Daily Archives: Feb. 22, 2013

MAPC made right decision on clinic property

The Metropolitan Area Planning Commission made the right decision Thursday in denying a request by Kansans for Life to change zoning to prevent South Wind Women’s Center from opening in the building that previously housed George Tiller’s abortion clinic (in photo). The property reportedly has been zoned for medical purposes since 1937, and that’s how it was advertised when South Wind purchased it. Though many citizens oppose abortion, it is a legal procedure. And it struck many other citizens as ironic and insincere for anti-abortion groups to argue that the zoning should be changed to protect the neighborhood from disturbances created by those same groups.

August is poor time to amend state constitution

Even those who think Kansas needs to alter its constitution to try to prevent courts from making decisions about school funding should see a glaring problem with the amendment approved Wednesday by the Senate: It would put the issue to voters at the August 2014 primary. It was wrong to hold a vote to rewrite the state constitution to bar same-sex marriage in April 2005, when only 35.5 percent of registered voters turned out. It would be just as wrong to try to rewrite the constitution in an August primary, especially one in which seats for only one chamber of the Legislature are on the ballot. Turnout was 23.2 percent statewide in August 2012 and 25.2 percent in August 2010, compared with 66.8 and 49.7 percent in the general elections of those years. As state Sen. Carolyn McGinn, R-Sedgwick, argued Wednesday in unsuccessfully trying to persuade senators to move the vote to November 2014, independent voters may not even realize they can vote in a primary on the issue. If the House agrees to put the amendment on the ballot, it at least should change the date.

Wichita area handled the snowstorm relatively well

Driving on snow-packed streets and highways Thursday was no one’s idea of fun, but the thunder that accompanied the storm won’t be soon forgotten and the sledding was great. All in all, the system for predicting and coping with more than a foot of snow worked as intended – meteorologists warned the public, crews treated and plowed the roadways, school districts and businesses closed, and many people stayed home and safe. Special thanks are due those who did the work that had to be done to clear streets, respond to emergencies, and tend to the sick and the frail elderly despite the storm.