To the editor:
Two writers in Saturday’s Journal-World — in the “Saturday Column” and Marsha Goff in “Your Turn” — expressed their views regarding the proposed new Menards. At first blush, their positions appear sound and their conclusions reasonable. However, when one examines their underlying arguments, it is apparent that key parts of their positions are based on irrelevant facts or false assumptions.
The editor states that those making an investment in a new store would know more regarding its potential for success than would members of the community. So what? Their impetus is to make money; the citizens of Lawrence are concerned with protecting the character and quality of our hometown.
Goff offers another paper tiger, citing the sales tax that would be generated. Let’s do the math. Today, Lawrence needs to buy a hammer, 20 2-by-4s, some nails, and a ladder. He can go to Ace, Home Depot or, if one is approved, Menards. Maybe someday, he can also go to Lowe’s. So what? If there are three hardware stores or a dozen, our buddy Larry is not going to buy more stuff. Net tax gain? Zero.
I also noted the tone of disdain in the Saturday Column when it referred to “the almost-sacred downtown Lawrence area.” It is sacred, not almost; blood has been spilled there. When I travel and meet folks who have visited our town, downtown is the first thing they mention. It deserves our protection.