Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor (June 8)

The baker’s rights

First, let me state that I am an atheist. I have no religious beliefs, but I do have deeply held personal beliefs. The baker’s case raises many interesting questions.

The baker was not asked asked just to sell a wedding cake. He was asked to use his special talents to create a unique cake celebrating an event that was, at that time, illegal in Colorado and was contrary to his closely held personal beliefs. He was right to refuse.

What if he were a sculptor, painter, potter, florist, or of any other creative profession? What if the couple wanted a cake celebrating a murder, rape, robbery or incest? He would refuse and we would all support his decision. Can you sue Dillons if you ask the baker to decorate a cake and they refuse because the baker considers it offensive or immoral?

Further, what if he accepted the order and using his creative talents, created a wedding cake that was offensive to the couple? Could they break their contract and refuse to pay?

He did not refuse to sell stock items in his store to this couple. He just refused to be used. I would do the same.

Jay Longfellow, Wichita

Results stronger than rhetoric with Trump

With the exception of his reference to coarsening dialogue, everything Davis Merritt said in the preamble to the bullet points in his Tuesday column (“Trump erodes our democratic soul”) applies to President Trump’s predecessor, President Obama. Politicizing government agencies to go after those who don’t follow his elitist “we know better than you how to live your life” philosophy.

Merritt is really concerned about Trump releasing some jobs numbers early and denigrating Obama jobs reports. Please. Obama spent eight years blaming his predecessor for anything that went wrong.

I’ll readily agree that I don’t like the tweeting and bombast from Trump. But I like the results of actions being taken. Merritt was right that politics as usual won’t save us. That’s what over the last 60 years got us where we are. Deep in debt and a nation divided. Not as badly as in the Civil War period, obviously.

Too many in Washington, in both parties, like the status quo, in which they and the bureaucrats do fine and the nation slowly sinks. Reducing regulations, re-establishing our position as a world leader (which doesn’t re-draw lines) and creating a better economic environment are positive things. I’m OK with that.

Mike O’Bryhim, Wichita

Statehouse only open to some

About 300 of us in the “Poor People’s Campaign” were kicked out of the People’s House (our Kansas State Capitol) on Monday. I have been in the Governor’s office many times over the past 30 years, but Monday when we knocked on the door, it was locked.

Police officers said singing there was not allowed and we must leave. We were disturbing those trying to work behind that locked door. Many chose not to leave and were later arrested.

We returned to the Rotunda for silent prayer and meditation about the ecological devastation happening across our state and for our poor neighbors who can’t get health care because we refuse to expand KanCare. Our silence was interrupted, and we were told we couldn’t pray there, either. I have been to more than 100 gatherings in the Rotunda, but on Monday we were kicked out of the People’s House.

We quietly gathered on the Capitol’s south steps and decided to sing and walk to the North side in support of our sisters and brothers who had been arrested, only to be told we were not even allowed to be on the sidewalks outside the People’s House.

Rev. Dr. Don Miller,

Carbondale

A radio monopoly

Few people realize the degree to which monopoly media is destroying their right to free speech and free thought essential to a functioning democracy.

Rocking M Media just bought four Salina radio stations to add to their existing stable of three stations in the Salina-Manhattan market. This takeover of better than two-thirds of the area market is itself a cause for concern. But that concern is compounded by its owners’ actions.

At the end of the legislative session, these stations ran a spot saying, “Our schools already get $14,000 per pupil. Isn’t this enough? Do you want activist judges to give them more money, deciding for you that your taxes, property and sales will skyrocket by 20 percent?” These inflated scare statistics are straight out of the Koch brothers’ think-tanks — and false.

President Chris Miller’s family owns Rocking M Media. Asked about this opinion ad, he replied, “It’s not an opinion, it’s just that the family wanted to ask this question.”

Add this fact: Rocking M media owns more than 30 stations blanketing central and western Kansas. Monopoly radio can blanket the air, using the stations they own, and the airwaves they don’t, yet you have no equal time.

David Norlin, Salina

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