To the editor:
I was surprised to read the Brownback statement in the April 12 paper: “The public is scared now. They are scared for the future of their country.” How could Sam grow up in Kansas and not know that you can’t scare Kansans? He must not have met my father or others of his generation who persevered through the Depression and the Dust Bowl. As for my generation, we’re nobody’s fool. Brownback’s tactic — if you scare people enough you can get them to do anything — is embarrassingly transparent.
Fortunately, we see legislators pushing back, including within the Republican Party, saying, “Not so fast!” Maybe we shouldn’t erode our tax base, or further cripple our schools or shortchange our public servants. Maybe we shouldn’t cut services for the elderly and the most vulnerable. Maybe it is in the interest of our state to encourage the arts and promote creativity in our young. At a minimum, our representatives are saying, if you’re going to make sweeping changes, don’t rush, let’s think it through.
In the next two years, Brownback may discover that Kansans are not such an easy mark. Kansans are wonderfully fearless, practical and stubborn. We tend to believe in a couple other adages. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” and “don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.”