Letters to the Editor

Letters on pit bulls, abortion rights, brainwashed voters, smoking at State Fair, noise pollution

Shouldn’t have to live in fear of dogs

If I hear one more “But I don’t know why she did it” from an owner of a pit bull that has just attacked a neighbor or a neighbor’s pet, I’m going to scream. But no doubt not as loudly as the woman who was frantically trying to save her little dog from death – or, worse, as she would have screamed had the dog bitten and nearly killed her instead (“Pit bulls figure prominently in area attacks, officials say,” June 1 Eagle).

Treating a pet with kindness helps behavior, but that’s often not enough to negate millions of years of evolution and thousands of years of human breeding, which in the case of the pit bull was for “bear-baiting” and fighting with other dogs. A muscular chest, large head and bite pressure of 235 pounds per square inch are the result.

Do other dogs bite? Sure, but no one has ever died from being mauled by a Chihuahua.

How many more stories of dead children, small pets and old folks, and maimed mail carriers do we have to hear before we outlaw these dangerous dogs – or at the very least mandate iron-bar fencing and insurance so expensive it’s prohibitive to own one? There are hundreds of other breeds to choose from. Why should the rest of us have to live in fear so a few folks can stroke their egos with these dogs?



Seem powerless

“Kansas retreating” (May 31 Letters to the Editor) was on the mark. In the eligible voter population, we have citizens who familiarize themselves with issues and candidates, then make informed votes. Unfortunately, many eligible voters either don’t vote, cast an uninformed vote or vote the party line like a bunch of sheep.

Now we seem powerless to stop the destruction. Has something brainwashed or corrupted our government? How many have the integrity to do the right thing?



Hostile to women

In just the past four years, states have enacted more than 230 abortion restrictions – unprecedented numbers that have created the most hostile environment for American women since the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to protect abortion rights in 1973. More clinics have closed because of these punitive laws, and more physicians have retired from practice. More clinics are subjected to threats and intimidation of doctors and staff.

Former Wichita abortion doctor George Tiller’s assassination, which occurred six years ago this week, came after years of threats, intimidation and physical violence against him and the clinic he operated. I’ve seen it firsthand since founding Trust Women – an organization that honors Tiller’s legacy by opening clinics in underserved areas. Anti-choice protesters routinely picket our first clinic, South Wind Women’s Center, as well as my family’s home, evidently indifferent to the history that they are repeating.

It is long past time for the U.S. Department of Justice to aggressively pursue the extremists who harass, stalk and murder abortion providers and their staff members. Local law enforcement must also take a proactive approach to protecting the clinics in their communities.

South Wind provided nearly 2,000 women with full-spectrum reproductive health care last year. We are now working to open our second clinic, which will serve a community in Oklahoma.

Though the road to equal reproductive rights in this country may be long, it is a road we must travel.



Trust Women


Meddling kids

Meddling, busybody do-gooders apparently have no age limit (“Fair to start designated smoking areas in 2016,” May 21 Eagle). Obviously, those crusading Reno County teens didn’t know about the unpublished and suppressed 1998 World Health Organization study that found no harm (but some possible benefits) in secondhand smoke.

It’s too bad those zealous teens didn’t focus their civic energy on getting rid of a law or regulation that limits freedom rather than trying to create another one.

Another shame is that fair manager Denny Stoecklein said: “It is a pretty big step to take, and it is not one that, if you try it, it is something you can undo.” Why not? You pass it, and you can repeal it.

Smokers should stay home from the fair. Then the fair board will see what it’s like to sell about 78,000 fewer tickets annually. Local merchants just might feel it, too.



Disturbing peace

Wichita should enforce its ordinances against noise pollution and especially the loud stereos some have in their cars.

At least 10 to 15 times a day my tranquil home is invaded by a loud, booming noise that, at the least, is very distracting and, at the most, is completely irritating.

Ever since this started, about 20 years ago, I couldn’t believe that such a small minority could be so rude as to think that we want to listen to their noise. Some cities not only impose a fine at the first offense but impound the car at the second offense. Come on, Wichita – get with the program.



Letters to the Editor

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Phillip Brownlee at 316-268-6262, pbrownlee@wichitaeagle.com.