acornwebworks (Kendall Simmons)


Comment history

Letter: Threat to U.S.?

Uh..."in a generation or two" means the children or grandchildren have become Americanized.."indeed Americans"...NOT necessarily the parents/grandparents.

In case you don't realize it, for most people, the older you get, the harder it is to learn another language. And most first generation immigrants who grew up speaking another language speak what American English they do with an accent.

But that accent is gone in the next generation and, by the third generation, almost none of the grandchildren of these first generation immigrants can even speak their grandparents' first language. Maybe a few words here and there, like calling their grandparents "grandma and grandpa" in their grandparents native tongue. But little else.

I have known countless immigrants. Neighbors. Coworkers. Friends. And family members. And I haven't noticed any difference in goals and efforts over the five generations of first-generation immigrants I have known.

Sadly, I also haven't seen a change in how far too many "real Americans" treat immigrants because those "real Americans" still prefer to stereotype, still prefer to make negative assumptions, still prefer to blame "those people" for as much as they possibly can, and do so based on absolutely nothing.

Immigrants today no more want to turn America into the place they left than they ever have. Just because some Hispanics want to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, some Chinese want to celebrate Chinese New Years, some Irish want to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. etc., etc. does NOT mean they want to change America into Mexico or China or Ireland. It merely means that becoming an American dos NOT require giving up and forgetting every shred of your family heritage...just like *BEING* an American doesn't require it. (Heck, chances are good that even *you* know what the family heritage is on both sides of *your* family, e.g. "English on my mother's side, German-Swiss on my father's side")

June 28, 2014 at 5:11 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Saturday Column: Football stadium isn’t the only KU embarrassment

Sorry, but Mark Mangino, himself, was a despot as well. And a number of campus employees (both students and staff) know it from unpleasant firsthand experience.

Having a winning football team is great, but it doesn't give the head coach the right to be rude, demanding and downright abusive to people when they don't cater to his every whim. Nor does it give him the right to attempt to physically intimidate people.

If Mangino was "stampeded", he brought it on himself. And I'd point out that, under completely new management, we have an athletic department that is now punishing student basketball ticket holders for the loss of a measly $350,000. So I'd suggest that this bullying, "despotic" behavior is a culture, and not something just limited to one person.

(As an aside, hiring Turner Gill was an INCREDIBLY stupid decision and I have fully expected it to take several years to get out of the incredibly deep chasm he dug for us. But we've NEVER had a topnotch football program and I never expect we will. Nor do we need one.)

June 28, 2014 at 4:27 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Letter: Propaganda tool

I've long wondered why my old colleague (and friend) Gary Bjorge has been writing countless letters over the years against KU's Confucius Institute without ever providing a single reason about why he's against it. That's always struck me as really strange.

So thank you, Leslie! I now understand. Both why Gary wants it shut down...and why he never gave any specifics.

June 25, 2014 at 7:40 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Committee fails to make recommendation on tax incentives for high-end apartments near Memorial Stadium

Jeremy Farmer has certainly turned out to be a real disappointment. He, of all people, ought to have a clue. But, no. Instead he keeps voting to spend money we don't have on things we don't need...or at least certainly don't need to spend taxpayer money on. What on earth is he thinking???

I mean, the 2014 HUD Fair Market Rent for Lawrence is $601 for a 1-bedroom unit. For a 4-bedroom unit? It's $1,253 - or only $53 more than these Chicago folks think they're going to be able to rent a 1-bedroom apartment for in Lawrence. And these new apartments are located where Berkeley Flats currently are. Are these people NUTS???

And keep in mind that this isn't empty land that's being built on. Berkeley Flats is already there. It already has tenants. And the complex already pays property taxes. So we won't just be giving "rebates" to build this new complex...but we will also LOSE the property tax income from Berkeley Flats for 12 years. (Oh, and Berkeley Flats provides affordable we LOSE that, too. Lucky us.)

Oh...and this company offered that elderly woman $600,000 for her property. That's more than one entire year of tax abatement from us. If they can afford to do that, they don't need an abatement. (Of course, that $600,000 was more than 1 year's worth of abatement, so perhaps they were counting on us Lawrence taxpayers to buy that property...which is why they were so generous???)

June 25, 2014 at 4:31 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Saturday Column: National security advice should be free of politics

Frankly, I think Dolph has his head up his butt when he writes things like "The public has every right to expect members of the National Security Council to be on top of all situations, with little excuse — really no excuse — for being caught napping."

Excuse me? We're one country. Nothing more. There is no way on earth we're going to be *"on top of <u>all</u> situations"*. It's frickin' IMPOSSIBLE!!!

Oh, and you want to know "Who should be held responsible for the current state of affairs in Iraq"??? How about we hold al-Maliki responsible? ISIS responsible? The people actually doing this responsible? Sure...we could go back to 2003 and hold Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, and...most assuredly, Bremer responsible. But we simply CANNOT control everyone!!!

So please stop with the American ego-tripping. It's stupid and pointless. We are NOT responsible for everything. We CANNOT know everything. We CANNOT solve every problem in the world. So let's stop pointing fingers for failure to do the impossible.

Oh...and what on earth did this diatribe have to do with the headline..."National security advice should be free of politics"??? Where were politics demonstrated as a factor even once??? All we suffered through, instead, was Dolph's bizarre belief that somehow America has superhuman powers that allows it to see all, know all and solve all. Yeah, right. Sure, Dolph.

How about...just for comment on things actually related to local issues? And I do NOT mean KU or the Chancellor or the Board of Regents. And I do not mean simply offer pointless rhetorical questions. Maybe your thoughts on how the state keeps trying to usurp power from local communities and the people and centralize it within the state government? Or the spending spree our commissioners seem to be on when we're already going to be faced with increased local taxes thanks to so-far obviously foolish state tax decisions?

June 21, 2014 at 12:42 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Saturday Column: National security advice should be free of politics

"Fred Whitehead Jr. 1 hour, 10 minutes ago

As usual, another tirade from the Koch Regime member owner of this Republican newsrag attacking the President of the United States. We see almost daily the revulsion and prejudice against the current Commander-in-Chief in the printed attacks on this lawfully elected Chief of Sate. I know that "Bleeding Kansas" is pretty much in line with this line of crap, and that the owner feels somehow the need to verify this stupidity, but it is getting very tiresome and disgusting to see the almost daily rant against the President and the Federal Government."

Note: I copied the above from the "apparently not signed in" comment section. I think Fred thought it was posted, but it apparently wasn't visible (at least not at 11:20 AM) once anyone else was signed in. Or maybe it was just invisible to me when *I* signed it :-) I guess we'll soon learn.)

June 21, 2014 at 11:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

Saturday Column: Declining Iraq situation reflects poorly on Obama

Good grief, Mr. Simons. Your negative focus on either Obama or KU/the Board of Regents has gotten SOOOO old. Are you truly not capable any more of finding anything else to whine about? Or anything to be positive about?

Your pointless misused/over used "rhetorical question" style...particularly when you use it also so frickin' OLD.

Want an example of deceitfulness? Your very first diatribe should NOT have just been "did Obama allow his staff to disagree with him...or did they back down...or, if they allegedly quit or were fired, did they go public?" There's an obvious additional alternative that you blatantly skipped right over. To whit, 'OR DOES OBAMA CHANGE HIS MIND AS A RESULT OF THEIR INPUT?"

I guess you wouldn't want to ask THAT one, because it would defeat your "This doesn't happen" bogus assumption. (My gosh. If you don't know how to use Google, then at least have one of the J-W staff fact-check for you!!)

You go off on how everything has "turned so sour so quickly and so dangerously"...then you, as "proof" bring up something Joe Biden said "SEVERAL YEARS AGO"!!! Oh yeah. That's soooo quickly. And are you seriously telling us that *you* didn't see this coming? Because the rest of us already knew things had gone to hell in a handbag. Yeesh.

Then you rant about "This situation alone verifies the concern of many in the intelligence community that it is essential to have boots on the ground, individuals who have extensive, up-do-date knowledge and training relative to the history, religion, government, language, politics and culture of a country and can keep Washington officials alert to the potential problems."

But you don't even know what "boots on the ground" means, do you??? Hint. It does not mean having spies. Not "individuals who have extensive, up-do-date knowledge and training relative to the history, religion, government, language, politics and culture of a country". The phrase refers to having TROOPS in the area!!! Sending our SOLDIERS back into Iraq!! Are *you*, Mr. Simons, out of your mind? Do you seriously want to send our young men and women back into Iraq??

And worrying about those 5 dumb Guantanamo prisoners exchanged for one of our troops? Do I really have to point out to you that Islamic nuts have done quite nicely without those guys? Of course, you're also shaking in your "boots" because there *might* be "potential" terrorists among the youngsters on our southern border.

How about starting to write PRODUCTIVE Saturday Columns? Columns talking about GOOD things happening in Lawrence? Columns making POSITIVE suggestions? No more negative rhetorical questions. No more negative focus on Obama or KU/Regents. After all, just because you're old doesn't mean you have to be crotchety all the time!

June 14, 2014 at 6:30 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Saturday Column: Declining Iraq situation reflects poorly on Obama

Because, of course, he's supposed to be at his desk working 24/7, right??? How dare he spend 3 hours taking a break and playing golf?

And God forbid he sleep at night. How DARE he sleep when he's supposed to be controlling the entire world!!!

June 14, 2014 at 5:45 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Opinion: Prisoner swap was very close call

I tried editing the above post...but it didn't work.

It seems that there *are* now 6 soldiers named as those that were killed...but the facts show that not a one of them was searching for Bergdahl (who disappeared on June 30th, 2009).

The 6 soldiers listed as "searching" for Bergdahl were killed between August 18 and September 11.

The first 2 died on August 18th...killed by roadside bomb exploded as they traveled through Afghanistan's Dila district traveling to provide security for Afghanistan's presidential elections. The 3rd died on August 26th, during a clearing operation at a hospital at a medical clinic in Sar Hawza. And the last 3 were all killed in September by roadside bombs as they were traveling to specific destinations.

Do any of those REALLY sound like soldiers killed because they were "relentlessly searching" for Bergdahl?

I find this an utterly dishonorable way to treat these 6 men...using them as pawns this way. Not a single member of his unit should be trying to blame Bergdahl for the deaths of these men. Be mad at him for disappearing if they want. But to blame him for things that OBVIOUSLY had nothing to do with Bergdahl or any search for him?? They ought to be ashamed of themselves.

June 7, 2014 at 1:31 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Opinion: Prisoner swap was very close call

As an aside, in 2009, a military Army fact-finding investigation concluded that he left his outpost deliberately and on his own free will. However, there has been no definitive finding that he deserted, because that would require knowing his intent -- something Army officials couldn't do without talking to him.

And some soldiers claiming they were involved in the search for him are also claiming that 6 soldiers were killed looking for him. However, that claim itself is unsubstantiated...and wouldn't you think that the fact-finding investigation would have found this out? I mean, 6 dead soldiers???

Plus one might also think that those other soldiers would know the name of at least ONE of those killed, wouldn't you? Since they "served together"? But they don't.

June 7, 2014 at 12:48 p.m. ( | suggest removal )