Archive for Saturday, May 12, 2012


May 12, 2012


To the editor:

Surely I cannot be the only one who sees the glaring inconsistencies between what various city “authorities” say they want and what they do or don’t do.

They say they want to encourage retirees to relocate to Lawrence. Yet one thing discouraging anyone of “mature years” from coming to the city is the absence of the simple amenities, e.g., well-maintained and well-lit sidewalks to encourage healthy walking day and night, parks in all parts of town, not just the center, which provide places to sit and read without the din of baseball games or other kid-related activities, library resources easily accessible wherever one lives, and the like.

Yet I read in this newspaper of a new skateboard facility, a sidewalk with automated lighting from campus to the downtown bars, a sports facility with an ice rink, permission to a developer to put sidewalks on only one side of the street in a new project, etc. Get real, be honest!


Katara 6 years, 1 month ago

So are you saying that today's retirees are not active and fit people? That they are so fragile that they cannot enjoy a skateboard facility, a sports facility that includes an ice rink or cannot cross the street to get to the sidewalk?

And to maintain the things you believe will attract retirees (e.g., well-maintained and well-lit sidewalks to encourage healthy walking day and night, parks in all parts of town, not just the center, which provide places to sit and read without the din of baseball games or other kid-related activities, library resources easily accessible wherever one lives, and the like.) are you willing to pay the increased taxes for those things or are you going to be one of those retirees who thinks you should get reduced property taxes or be exempt from property taxes because you are on a "fixed" income?

geekin_topekan 6 years, 1 month ago

Something that is consistent is the JumboJack. Juicy and fresh always!

A great way for the elderly to stay fit would be a brisk walk to Jack on the Box.

friendlyjhawk 6 years, 1 month ago

katara-what a snippy/snotty person you are to scarcastically take on the retirees in this town. As a matter of fact the retired population has contributed mightily to the taxes you refer to. Can't blame any one of any age to want to be places that aren't filled with the noise and behavior of kids whose parents don't control their behavior and noise level. Just last week at Art in the Park young children probably under the age of 5 were running free around booths and into adults of all ages. The only thing worse then that was the amount of dogs that one had to step around. Evidently in Lawrence to be "urbane" you must have a dog and child running before you at all public events.

JayhawksandHerd 6 years, 1 month ago

Well, the letter itself was fairly snarky. Why complain about the lack of well-lit sidewalks accessible to retirees only to turn around and imply that providing the same for KU students is somehow wasteful? Without KU, Lawrence would be South Leavenworth.

Katara 6 years, 1 month ago

Wow. Kids running all around a park?! How dare they?!?! What is this world coming to?

You really do miss the point of this lady's letter. She is complaining that there are not sidewalks for both sides of the streets. She is complaining that she can't walk to a park to read a book. She is complaining about facilities that allow people to remain active and fit (which BTW benefits them greatly when they get older).

If you want to sit and read a book outside, you have the option of sitting on your porch or patio. It is free and you get to breathe fresh air.

As for snippy/snotty, perhaps you should read your post. Additionally, you should also consider that all those young children are the ones who will be paying the taxes that will be funding your retirement check and will also be the ones supplying your care when you are unable to do so.

JackMcKee 6 years, 1 month ago

I wish people could learn how to title LTE so I could avoid ones that just aren't worth the time to read. This one should have been a Sound Off. It's just someone whining.

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago

Actually, I agree with their point.

If the city wants to attract retirees, it has to provide things that are attractive to them.

High property taxes, combined with a lot of city spending on things that are attractive and helpful to college students aren't those things.

Would you retire here? I don't think I would.

Katara 6 years, 1 month ago

How do you think all those things on her "wish list" are funded? Property and sales taxes. They most definitely be even higher if she wants those things funded. I'm willing to bet that she would also write in to complain that she has to shovel those sidewalks once they are put in and how it is so unfair because she is a retiree and is unable to do so herself.

The only thing on her list of complaints that is specific to college students is the lighted sidewalks from the campus to downtown & even then those sidewalks benefits the non-college students that do live in those neighborhoods. All the rest benefit everyone.

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago

Well, you can try to argue folks into coming here to retire, but I don't think it'll work.

In theory, a skate park benefits anybody who wants to use it, but in reality, it benefits mostly younger people - I haven't seen any senior citizens using those.

Likewise, with skating rinks.

I agree that amenities need to be paid for, and that many people want them without paying for them - but that happens in many age groups.

Seems to me that she'd prefer tax revenue be spent in different ways, that's all. And, there are many ways I might agree with that - I don't understand why the heck the city can't fix the **** streets, for one.

Would you retire here?

verity 6 years, 1 month ago

"Would you retire here?"

In a word, NO.

For any number of reasons. There are a few things I miss about Lawrence, but not much.

Katara 6 years, 1 month ago

Yup, I would. I chose to live here for many different reasons. I don't anticipate those reasons changing due to age.

So, because you personally haven't witnessed a senior citizen using a skate park, you make an assumption that it is mostly for younger people? A grandparent can't teach their grandchild how to skateboard there? They can't watch their grandchild show them the new skateboard tricks they've learned?

Engaging in physical activity is very important as you age. It keeps you healthy. It helps keep your mind active and it is good for your attitude.

The senior citizens who come out in droves to Crown Center in KCMO to use the outdoor ice rink seem to think skating rinks are useful.

Do you think sidewalks on both sides of the street are necessary for "healthy walking"?

The things that she is complaining about are things that she can utilize if she can think outside of the "get off my lawn" mentality.

She is concerned about noisy kids in the parks? She's a retiree. Go to the park when kids are in school. There's 5 days a week where she has about 6 hours when they are not in use.

She wants to walk? Cross the street and walk on the sidewalk there. How is a sidewalk on one side of the street preventing her from taking a healthy walk?

Perhaps she is not aware of the bookmobiles the Lawrence Library has? Or the free door to door delivery the library offers?

We don't have to spend additional taxpayer monies on these because all the things she wants are already within her and every other retirees' reach right here and right now.

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago


See verity's post - she wouldn't retire here.

As I said, you can try to argue that folks should want to retire here, but I don't think it'll work.

You seem to have a thing with the older generation that I don't really understand - we've talked about it a little bit before.

Katara 6 years, 1 month ago

I am not arguing that folks should want to retire here. I don't see why a college town should be a retiree destination. If you don't want kids around who make noise & utilize the public facilities, there are communities that are child-free. Sun City, AZ is one of those.

If you are not interested in things that a college town offers, I fail to see why you would want to live in one.

To me, it is no different than moving from an urban area to a rural area and then complaining that the farm next door smells like manure. Or moving next to a railroad and then complaining about the noise and the vibration.

For all the talk about younger generations being lazy, the older generations sure do want to have things handed to them on a silver platter.

The things she desires are here. She is not choosing to seek them out. She is not willing to make any effort whatsoever to see if they are available to her. Whose fault is that? And why should taxpayers foot the bill for it?

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago

I'm not saying it should - the city seems to think it would be a good idea to attract retirees.

If they want to do that, then they should consider what older folks might want in a community they retire to.

She's saying they're not doing that.

Your thing with older folks is a bit disturbing to me.

Katara 6 years, 1 month ago

I don't have a "thing" with older folks. I have a "thing" for people who expect others to do their work for them, particularly when it is not difficult for them to do it themselves and particularly when they don't make any effort to attempt to do so.

It applies to all ages.

You must be in agreement that the things that she (and according to her - retirees) want/s are already in existence.

Perhaps it is simply a matter of educating those as to what is already available in Lawrence rather than spend money that just serves to duplicate services. But that takes money to do as well.

jafs 6 years, 1 month ago

I was with you when we were talking to Moderate, who seemed to do what you mention - I agree that it makes no sense to move to Lawrence if you don't want to live in a liberal (for KS) college town.

That's a different conversation though.

Jimo 6 years, 1 month ago

Yes, if there's one glaring blindspot in our society it's that we don't spend enough money on the elderly!!!!! ROFL

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