Letters from the week of January 25, 2001

Letters 

Letters from the week of January 25, 2001

Cracks and Spend
Downtown where? I usually manage to shrug off C.J. Janovy's articles as the usual "Pitch goofiness," but "Chamber Maids" (January 18) can't be let go that easily.

No, C.J., we do not need a new stadium downtown. In fact, we need to close the two we have and let the clumps of "past-its" and "never-gonna-bes" that hang out there try to find new careers, maybe as infomercial hosts. If the bistate tax has to be wasted on a stadium, build it out in La-La Land, perhaps on the space that's not going to be used on the "Sprint Campus."

Maybe the Pitch needs to arrange a tour of the existing stadium's parking lots for C.J. someday -- call it "continuing education." (Hint, hint, C.J.: "Kansas Citians" don't have Kansas license plates on their vehicles.) Does anyone at the Pitch have any idea how few residents of Kansas City ever even set foot in either of the existing stadiums? What on earth could make you think for a minute that a downtown stadium would be anything more than another Bartle Hall, sitting vacant as a tax drain for most of the year? We already have plans in the works for a success-proofed Performing (or rather, Nonperforming) Arts Center to sit vacant at the edge of downtown. Why add more failures?

The developer's hand puppets at "The Joke on Oak" can't be faulted for not doing anything to promote downtown. The only way it could be revitalized would be to use eminent domain to seize the vacant buildings from their Kansas-resident owners and then resell them to someone who could fix them up and bring in tenants. That ain't gonna happen, folks!

Instead, we can all look forward to $125 million being spent on a light rail system running from the City Market to City Hall that will close in two years from lack of riders, and a few more ludicrous Kemper buildings standing out like sore thumbs. (Where do they find those blueprints? At the Georgia O'Keeffe School of Architecture?)
Name Withheld Upon Request
Kansas City, Missouri


For the Love of Dick
Roughing the kicker: To Greg Hall: Just because you cannot stay at one radio station doesn't mean you have to go out and pick on someone, and I am not talking about your mother. I'm talking about one Dick Vermeil ("Leftovers," January 11).

I have been a St. Louis Rams fan even before they moved here from Los Angeles. Dick Vermeil is a great coach whether you like him or not. Why don't you take your sorry little butt out of Kansas City and move over to Africa and live with the rest of the monkeys. Face it, Greg, you just don't know how great Dick Vermeil is and how he will be a big assset to the Chiefs organization. Give him a chance; we gave Gunther Cunningham a chance and did we come out smelling like roses? So why not give Dick a chance to see what he can do?

Dick Vermeil is not a loser. Grow up, Greg, and get a life.
Tony Lordi
Kansas City, Missouri


St. John's Wart
Keep the faith: I'm not a Republican, I've never voted for John Ashcroft and I'm not a member of the Assembly of God church. With that out of the way, I've got to ask ... what is the point of Mark Kind's article ("He Lives," January 11)?

Is the point that only an atheist is qualified to hold public office? And why does the Pitch seem to be in the religion-bashing business lately? A person's religion (or lack thereof) is between them and God. Faith is based on the free will that God has given each of us to decide for ourselves. If you don't agree with a church's theology, the solution is very simple. Don't support that church with your attendance or your financial contributions.

But when you publicly try to discredit a church because you disagree with its teachings, you're lowering yourself to the level of Bob Jones University (which hates the Catholic faith), the neo-nazi (who hates the Jewish faith) or the communist (who hates all faiths).

Doesn't Kind find it ironic that in the process of trying to expose the hatred of others, he ends up exposing his own hatred? So what's next, a "Top 10 Religions Most Hated by the Pitch" issue? The hate needs to stop.
Jimmy Smith
Kansas City, Missouri


Ashcroft's rib: Hmmm. I wonder if Mark Kind would be so open in his dislike of John Ashcroft's religion if Ashcroft were a practicing orthodox Jew, as was a recent major vice presidential candidate? Or if he were a devout Buddhist? Would he have dared criticize Ashcroft's faith if he were a practitioner of Islam? Yet because he is of a particular sect of Christianity, Kind barbecues him like a side of spare ribs.
Paul R. Kimball
Independence
Religious write: As a conservative, I like to read the Pitch because I am interested in a wide spectrum of ideas. However, I was shocked by the intolerance expressed by Mark Kind in the unfair article on John Ashcroft and his Christian beliefs.

What was truly amazing is the lack of any real evidence for the kind of charges Kind makes. He stated that Ashcroft "doubtless spent many hot teenage nights ... begging for the Holy Ghost." What? He also guessed that Ashcroft must spend a lot of time "speaking in tongues." Ignorance run amok. Everyone in the Assemblies of God does not speak in tongues, nor are they expected to. What little we found out about the Assemblies of God was that early leaders of the church were accused of racism and of course John Ashcroft was somehow entirely responsible.

The most laughable part was when Kind implied that because Ashcroft married a white woman, his position on interracial marriage was obviously one of racism. Using the same logic, according to Kind, every black man who marries a black woman also must have racist views on interracial marriage. I know that isn't true, nor would any reasonable person think so.

One bright spot in the sea of speculation was the fact that Ashcroft didn't pardon the life of a repentant man on death row in Missouri, even though the man was a member of the Assemblies of God. This should scream out the fact that he can indeed make an impartial decision based on the laws. If you are looking for a clue, there it is.

Liberal politicians come wearing their agendas on their sleeves while conservatives are begged to leave their views at home. The media somehow expects George W. to appoint liberal Democrats and people they favor to the various posts. To the winner go the spoils. Get over it.

The beliefs that Assemblies of God hold are identical to mainstream Christianity, or at least very similar, with little exception. So Mark Kind is not only offending the Assemblies of God but the billions of followers of Jesus Christ everywhere. And that's really what this is about, isn't it?
Tim Arnold
Stewartsville, Missouri


What would John do? I enjoyed Mark Kind's article about that dangerous devotee to nonsense, John Ashcroft. Although his journalistic and literary style is excellent, I wish that he had come on more like the (real) father of our country, Thomas Paine. Or would the Pitch have the guts to print such "blasphemy"?

Ashcroft is extra dangerous because when he speaks in a "forking" tongue, he does it well and is a real super professional phony.
Joe Nichols
Kansas City, Kansas


Sympathy for the Devil
Who's sorry now? Regarding Kendrick Blackwood's article about Linda Rupard and her problems with the Johnson County law ("Chain Reaction," January 11). Do they really think anyone is to have sympathy for her? After the untimely death of her mother, did her FATHER TAKE A MENTAL LEAVE OF ABSENCE? Everyone else in this world has to take responsibility for their own actions, so what really makes this gal think that she is different?

People like her get themselves into their own "sorry messes." My compassion goes out for people who truly deserve a break.
Name Withheld Upon Request
Leavenworth


Correction: Last week's review of Went to Coney Island on a Mission From God ... Be Back by Five incorrectly listed the date of the Kansas City Filmmakers Jubilee screening. The film shows at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, January 25.

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