Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor (June 27)

Playgrounds: there are better ideas

The proposal to fence Wichita elementary school playgrounds needs some rethinking. Loading our children into a playground defined by chain-link fencing makes a poor statement about our community and our ability to provide a secure environment.

If indeed syringes and drug paraphernalia debris is really such an issue, properly protected school volunteers or students in upper classes needing service hours can be recruited to regularly “sweep” these areas.

From a security standpoint, fencing is a weak deterrent. Any vandal with a $10 bolt cutter can make quick work of a lock or chain-link material after hours. And during school time, in a completely horrific doomsday scenario — having children’s recess in a fenced compound flies against the best security advice that we are hearing from most experts: run, hide, fight.

Consider alternatives to fencing, at all but perhaps the most crime-ridden venues: 1. Provide lighting or enhanced lighting; 2. Add surveillance cameras and prominently-posted signage to that effect; 3. Where it exists, replace flammable and expensive recycled rubber playground cushion material with sand, readily available in our area. This would deter arson attempts; 4. Post – and enforce — Wichita’s curfew laws with signage and regular law-enforcement drive-bys.

Dave Carter, Wichita

No room for midwives

A recent news story on local certified nurse midwife Sharon Foster focused mostly on her personal life, but there is a broader issue that forced Foster to where she is today.

Two years ago, Foster was the only nurse midwife delivering at Wesley Medical Center. The reason for there being only one available midwife in a hospital that delivers close to 6,000 babies a year is simple: Wichita hospitals require an obstetrician to be present for all certified nurse midwife deliveries. This is not based on a safety issue.

In Kansas, CNMs are licensed as Advanced Practice Registered Nurses and a signed collaborative agreement is necessary to practice. Yet Kansas statute does not require the physical presence of the physician when care is given by an APRN, and this includes CNMs.

Wichita hospitals have ignored the statute allowing for the autonomy of CNMs during deliveries. This led the obstetrics group Foster practiced with to end its collaborative agreement.

Foster is the face of a deeper issue, which is Wichita does not have the same birth options as Topeka, Overland Park and Kansas City. Let’s focus on changing Wichita hospital policies. Bring back our CNMs.

Kayla Suderman, Wichita

Media bias

The writer of the letterDemocracy or Demagoguery” (June 1 Eagle) served us well by alerting us to a threat that endangers the survival of our cherished successful constitutional republic.

He explained that “the critical point can be reached by denying and distorting information.” Such an alarming condition exists when one political ideology so dominates the media that it virtually becomes the defacto news of the day, a condition that, sadly, exists in our nation today.

A recent investigation of the voter registration of the faculties of the nation’s 40 leading journalism schools revealed that liberal professors outnumber conservative professors by 20 to 1. A report recently published in Academic Questions revealed 78.2 percent of university academic departments have either no Republicans nor so few as to make a difference.

A columnist for the liberal Washington Post has listed 10 mistakes the national media make (Nov. 26 Eagle), including “We let our bias show. Many of us are anti-Trump and pro-Democrat. We don’t even bother to hide it anymore. In fact, many of us seem proud of our activism and partisanship.” As the letter said, the key words are “denying and distorting information.”

David Gudeman, Wichita

Letters to the Editor

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