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Letters: plastic bags; abortion and matricide; underpaid vets and abusive priests

Plastic bags

There are two truths about leadership in the Kansas Legislature: 1) They are totally out of touch with Kansas citizens and 2) They are bullies about it.

Now comes Senate Bill 47, promoted by their overlords in the Kansas Chamber of Commerce: “An act affecting cities and counties, prohibiting the regulation of consumer goods and auxiliary containers designed for the consumption, transportation, or protection of consumer goods”.

This proposed home rule repeal is intended to prevent cities or counties from restricting — in any way — the use of single-use plastic bags, among other types of packaging.

Such packaging, designed to be discarded, makes its way into our streams and rivers, poisoning our environment, killing wildlife and eventually becoming microplastics, which enter the food chain.

Thankfully, the bill says it doesn’t outlaw anti-littering laws. Fine thanks. I feared we wouldn’t even be allowed to remove these single use plastics from our roads, waterways, trees and ditches.

The Senate Commerce Committee will conduct a hearing on this legislative takeover at 10:30 am Tuesday. Go to www.kslegislature.org and search for committee members.

Call and/or email these members to let them know you are in their takeover. And while you’re at it, use the same website to search for your senator and let them know, too.

Elizabeth Bishop, Wichita, former Kansas House member, 2017-2021

Abortion and matricide

Your story on page 2 of Eagle Wednesday (Kansas teenager arrested after mother found dead at Canton home, KBI says, Jan. 25) offers food for thought.

The Kansas Supreme Court ruled that the state Constitution grants a woman the right to kill her child.

Last August, there was an attempt to amend that document to allow the legislature to limit a mother’s right. Sixty percent of voters said they do not want changes.

Consequently, it is a simple matter of fairness to grant Hayden C. Lance, or any other child, the right to kill his own mother.

Johnny Sawatzki, Wichita

Underpaid vets

Our disabled veterans are grossly undercompensated.

This travesty of justice is drying up enlistments. In fiscal year 2023 a totally disabled veteran with no dependents is compensated at the ridiculous rate of $43,463.40 dollars annually.

The National Average Wage Index for 2021 was $60,575.07 annually, and the median income for 2021 was $70,784. GDP per capita in 2021 was $69,288, among the highest in the world.

In my opinion, the fundamental reason for their severe undercompensation situation is because they are only compensated for the anticipated loss of wages due to their disabilities. They are not compensated for their low quality of life, which is the norm now in personal injury cases in court.

This is done to keep taxation low for wealthy elites. So this means that the people who had their assets and business interests overseas protected by our now-destroyed ex-troops pay virtually nothing to support them in their breakup. Congress needs to correct this now.

Cleda Potter, Topeka

Child abuse

In general, a Kansas core value is that if you hurt someone, you should be responsible.

Apparently, neither some in the Kansas Legislature nor the Kansas City Archdiocese hold that value, according to the Jan. 12 article (After KBI Report on Clergy Abuse, Will Kansas Allow Survivors to Sue Catholic Church? )”

Kansas has the toughest statutes in the nation limiting the time victims of sexual abuse can seek retribution. Attempts to change the limits have all previously died in committee. The Archdiocese of Kansas City opposes requiring clerics to report suspected child abuse if discovered in the confessional. Healthcare workers, teachers, public safety personnel, and others must report it promptly.

There is simply no legitimate reason to protect child rapists or not to hold people accountable for hiding it. Passing legislation to correct this should be an immediate priority.

Sheldon Hamilton, Wichita

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