Republicans need to call

off their war on health care

Don’t let my son be collateral damage in the war on health care

I am the father of a beautiful 3-year-old daughter and two stunningly handsome 1-year-old boys. Earlier this year, my family found out that one of our sons has cancer.

My wife and I both have insurance, and our son is currently covered, but I worry about his future. What if we need to change plans, will he be denied coverage? When he gets older, will he get the coverage he needs to pay for his scans and medical costs?

It does not benefit any Missourian to allow insurance companies to discriminate against people with pre-existing conditions, but that is exactly what a lawsuit supported by Attorney General Josh Hawley would do.

Missouri has among the largest shares of people with pre-existing conditions, and this lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act puts all of them at risk.

This time last year, a bipartisan coalition stopped Congress from repealing the ACA. But now the law and its life-saving protections are under attack again, as politicians like Hawley and others try to dismantle it piece by piece.

For my son, and the millions of Missourians with pre-existing conditions, we cannot go back. Republicans should call off this war on health care once and for all.

Paul Washington, Kansas City


Washington needs to

take care of gun laws

The country cannot go on like the way it is. Guns can be carried by patrolmen, police officers, private investigators or guards. All other private citizens can go to target practice areas only with their guns, where they cannot be reached – in the trunk and unloaded.

The license and insurance is part of the authority to head off wrongdoing. This is not Texas or frontier days in early America, and certainly not Missouri or Iowa in present times that I know of.

The people in Washington need to stop fighting among themselves and take care of the matter.

Robert L. Nauman, Independence


Teachers for

elected office

makes sense

Let me start by saying that I think we have some (emphasis upon some!) wonderful and capable lawyers and businessmen in elected office, but I would like us now, at this phase of our movement "toward a more perfect union," to start placing more emphasis on teachers for public office. I don't quite know how we would negotiate this, but school districts might have to place a type of clause in contracts allowing for a sabbatical for running for elected office.

Teachers generally choose their profession out of strong desire to work with a very diverse population of students and pay less attention to money. It seems today in our "progression" toward this "more perfect union," little attention is paid to "the least among us" and too much attention is paid toward "what is in it for me." As far as preparation goes, if you have been in the classroom lately, you will notice that a teacher is great at multitasking, without losing sight of the goal – that everyone's needs are met and no one is left out. They have also developed a special gift in listening, and they have to do a lot of collaboration.

Teachers can wait to retire and then run for office, but we need some of these young teachers now helping guide us in determining what laws are needed today (and of course, you will notice that most teachers are women!) How about women dominating our legislative assemblies!

Joe Bayless, Independence