Letters to the Editor

Letters on global warming, Keystone, race relations, white stereotype, TV ads, coyote danger, good deed

Increased CO2 not necessarily good

Increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is not necessarily a good thing (“CO2 a good thing,” Dec. 6 Letters to the Editor). Controlled studies have shown that it is possible to boost plant growth in greenhouse conditions; however, many variables affect plants grown in natural conditions.

Plants would require extra water in order to process extra CO2, and with temperature increases due to increased CO2 levels, water becomes less available. As geographical ranges for plants and animals change, traditional locations for growing crops change. This affects conditions required to maximize crop growth. Increased CO2 has also been shown to increase plant vulnerability to insect pests, which reduces productivity.

While the amount of rainfall has not decreased significantly, increased levels of CO2 have caused storms to be more intense. Rain falls in short, intense bursts and doesn’t soak into the ground. Storms are less frequent, with plants spending more time in drought situations. Kansas State University researchers are researching these effects on prairie vegetation and already seeing changes in species composition.

Climate science is complicated. While Earth’s climate has changed historically, there has never been a period in Earth’s history when CO2 has been released so rapidly in such a short period of time. Visit skepticalscience.com to learn more about legitimate science behind climate change and perpetuated climate change myths.



Keystone strategy

The Keystone pipeline strategy seems to be the classic “divide and conquer.”

One main issue is the tar sand oil. This oil needs additives in order to flow through the pipeline. It also has more end products to dispose of when refined. It is harder to clean up a spill.

Because this oil needs processing in the first place, shouldn’t the United States require Canada to clean up the tar sand oil before entering the pipeline? This would eliminate some problems for the United States.

The present approach attempts to sidestep this issue by pitting different sides against each other.



Can’t we get along?

The fact is that human beings, regardless of their color, are not perfect. On any given day, we all make mistakes. Some mistakes are bad ones. We all say and do things every day we wish we could take back.

Something tragic and bad happened in Ferguson, Mo. Was it murder? Was it justice? That’s not my call. There is someone who will judge this incident someday. He’s not any of us.

In the meantime, can’t we just all get along?



White stereotype

Seton Hall men’s basketball coach Kevin Willard’s comment about Wichita State basketball player Ron Baker revealed one of America’s favorite stereotypes (“Baker has the shooter’s touch going for WSU,” Dec. 10 Sports). Willard said: “Everybody looks at him as this white kid who can’t defend, dribble or do anything else.” It’s the kind of comment that typically passes not only unchallenged but is accepted without consideration.

This specific notion concerning the athleticism of white people is, of course, perpetuated by the very people it denigrates. If Willard can make this comment without so much as a blink, I have to wonder if his worldview is somewhat skewed. When his assistants describe a prospective recruit’s qualities, do they include skin color?



Beware of coyotes

On Thanksgiving, my last cat disappeared. She was an indoor and outdoor cat, so it is possible she was hit by a car. But since then I have noticed that there are no other cats in the neighborhood.

I called the county animal control department, and they suggested that we have coyotes in the area. I believe them, because I have seen coyotes near 87th Street South and Hydraulic several times over the years.

I am going to send my children through the neighborhood to inform people. They can then protect their small animals and warn their children.



Good deed done

I would like to thank the lady who took the time to help us out of a parking space in Brittany Center on Black Friday. My 17-year-old granddaughter was trying to back out, and traffic was not stopping either way. This woman came out of a store, saw what was happening, and walked to the back of our car and stopped traffic, allowing us to get out.

I could not believe what an impact this had on my granddaughter. Her mood lifted at once, and she promised to pay it forward and did. I want to thank this woman for her act of kindness in all of the craziness that day.



Letters to the Editor

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For more information, contact Phillip Brownlee at 316-268-6262, pbrownlee@wichitaeagle.com.