Letter to the editor: Rural vs. urban

To the editor:

I thought your editorial in the most recent Sunday paper, “Rural vs. urban divide harmful,” provided good information for the beginning of an important and necessary discussion. Obviously there are many variables that need to be considered in that discussion.

I am curious about what impact corporate farming, concentrated animal feeding operations and the prison industry have on the divide. I am under the impression that many of these are located in rural areas where both land and a local government grateful for the economic benefit and employees are available. However, I am also under the impression that most corporations are headquartered in urban areas and may have a disproportionate influence on our elected officials. With the decrease in family farming and the increase in robotics, mechanization and technology, I would expect even less population in our rural areas. For example, a friend recently posted information based on data from the Kansas State Data Center that showed there are more “frontier” counties in Kansas today than there were in 1890. Frontier is defined as having fewer than 6 people per square mile. How we choose to best represent the will of the people, their interests and that of our nation I believe has never been more important, and that cannot be fairly started until we heal the toxic divide that now exists.

Robert Wittman,



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