Something to Think About - keep (237)

          During our Monday Morning Quarterback show our guest was Jory Collins, ESU Lady Hornet Head Coach and in addition to talk about his team and new recruits a question was posed about the fact our Ladies have on three occasions lately been ranked Number One in the Central Region, but unable to host because White Auditorium was busy with a high school state basketball tournament.

          This has become an ongoing problem.

          Years ago there was an attempt to hold both tournaments simultaneously with a less than acceptable result. A broken leg resulting in a 45 minute delay caused the college event to start late with games ending after the witching hour.

          The city controls White Auditorium and isn't about to give up the very lucrative annual state high school tournament to accommodate the university on a "need be" basis.

          Kind of a “bird in hand deal.”

          I was in Hays several years ago when they gave up their longtime high tournament to host a college regional.

          Conversations with the hotel owners and merchants indicated lots of disenchantment with not having 16 high school teams in Hays starting on Wednesday compared to having seven visiting college teams arriving on Thursday and starting to leave after Friday games and dwindling down to one visiting team by Saturday!

          My favorite retired Emporia dentist texted me Monday suggesting I ask Jory about the hosting situation.

          Jory obviously doesn't like it, but doesn't over react understanding that would hurt his team.

          What we have is a very perplexing problem with no lack of discussion or concern, but also without a good answer.

          Using Emporia high school was considered, but that floor doesn't meet championship regulations.

          Moving our host location to say Washburn has even been considered, but they weren't willing.

          Discussions about this can get heated. A comment from an outside source suggesting - our city doesn't look out for its' students and fans - struck a nerve with me.

          My reaction was - well, maybe Emporia State needs to build a crappy little field house like Harding has in Searcy, Arkansas.

          And therein lays my question for today.

          Maybe our solution is bigger than we've been considering.

          Emporia High's gyms are not convenient for fans in terms of parking, bathrooms or concessions. Maybe an upgrade is in order?

          Maybe a new venue in Emporia could make sense?

          What if the school district, university, community, area schools and the public all decided to collaborate? Maybe Jones Trust could help?

          Pittsburg State and the city just built a facility together.

          Hosting indoor track, tennis, wrestling, other youth sports, and the list goes on might be considered?

          We'd still use White, but maybe another gym solves lots of problems?

          Let's at least take a look.

          It's "Something to think about" and I'm Steve Sauder.

The United Methodist Churchhas about 12 million members across the world. In the United State, United Methodist ranks as the largest mainline denomination, the second largest Protestant church, and the third largest Christian denomination. It’s founding is traced back to John and Charles Wesley and the Church of England according to Wikipedia.

          Today the church is facing a possible split in its clergy and membership over the handling of gay issues. The conflict pits traditional preachers against more liberal ones, many who have officiated at same sex weddings. Also in question are Bishops who some think have not appropriately enforced the “Book of Discipline”  in these cases.

          On May 22, a group of 80 Methodist ministers issued a press release suggesting there be an “amicable separation” within the church. One denomination would be the conservative Methodist churches and the other well “everyone else.”

          But, a recent poll taken by a reputable research firm found that 90% of respondents said “The United Methodist Church should not split over issues related to human sexuality.”

          Adam Hamilton is the founder and Senior Pastor of the Church of the Resurrection in Kansas City and a noted leader of Christian beliefs.Hamilton released this week an idea to hopefully fix this issue called “A Way Forward for a United Methodism.”  It is described this way:

“The ongoing debate over homosexuality continues to divide the United Methodist Church. We believe that most of the denomination’s pastors and laity do not want to divide over this issue. The signers of this proposal offer it as one possible way forward, focusing on what United Methodists share in common, and then offering a way to allow us to live with our differences over how we interpret scripture regarding homosexuality, and how we will be a church in ministry with gay and lesbian people. It is a conversation starter, not a perfected conclusion.”

          It calls for a local option for churches within the denomination, but it would take a super majority for a church to adopt.

          Release of this idea has met with much debate with vocal opinions on both sides.

          I’ll end with a thought found in a response to Hamilton’s idea. It should give you “Something to think about!”

          A blogger suggested “you would not find Jesus anywhere near you if he were walking the earth today. He would be with us the ones being snubbed and condemned.”

          Your “something to think about” is:

What would Jesus being saying about same sex marriage if he were here today?

          I’m Steve Sauder

In these days of news most of us aren’t all that pleased to hear – i.e., stories from the circus in our state capital often disparaging our public schools – it is my pleasure to mention some really encouraging news coming from right from here in Emporia that indicates one school district is trying to be efficient.

          Last week USD 253’s Superintendent, Theresa Davidson announced changes within the district concerning the Turning Point Academy.

          Turning Point is a school designed for youngsters needing a non-traditional educational experience. The project has been successful, but with funds always restricted the district has not been able to give Turning Point its own home.

          The new plan has kindergarten through eighth grade of Turning Point moving into the WilliamAllen WhiteElementary School building. The older youngsters will move to EmporiaHigh School creating two so-called “school with-in a school” situations.

Principal Dathan Fisher from W.A. White moves to EHS to fill a vacancy; Tell Kirk, Turning Point’s current principal moves to W.A. White where he will become principal for both the elementary school and Turning Point’s K thru 8.

Acknowledging the schools involved may experience unknown consequences there appears to be a number of positive outcomes from these moves.

          Like: One less administrator in USD 253, permanent homes for TurningPointAcademy students, a significant cost savings by closing the Kansas Avenue building while maintaining the option for students to choose an alternative style education.

          Nice job USD 253!

And we also note with optimism the work of surrounding school districts as they struggle with decisions on space and efficiency. We appreciate the efforts of school officials to be good stewards of the public’s money.

There’s something to think about and I’m Steve Sauder.


          Saturday the Emporia State Alumni Association holds its annual Volunteer Appreciation Luncheon. A big part of this event is honoring the Distinguished Service Award recipients. These are folks who have provided “unique and significant service” to the university.

          A partial list of past honorees include: KVOE’s Ron Thomas, Don Hill, George & Gail Milton, Clair Hutchinson, Tom Tholen, Dave Eldridge, Skip Evans, Chuck & Doris Hanna, Russ & Jeanie Jenkins, Paula Sauder, Gilbert Rodriquez, Carl Hoffman, John Rich, DeWayne Backhus and my dad.

          This is a big honor.

          Four people will be recognized this year.

          Virginia “Ginny” Higgins long time ESU instructor and leader who first graduated in 1962 and spent most of her life at Emporia State winning numerous awards for outstanding teaching and finally being inducted into the Kansas Speech Association Hall of Fame in 2006.

          Dr. Loren Pennington started teaching at the university in 1960 and is an expert on World War II and the Korean War.  He became involved in Emporia Veteran’s Day celebration and is a permanent fixture at the annual Veteran’s Roundtable. Dr. Pennington means history in Emporia.

          Marion Stuart grew up in Emporia, attended the laboratory school, received 2 degrees from Emporia State and taught in 5 Kansas high schools. She and her late husband Chuck were fixtures at university events for decades.

          The final honoree is my close friend John Staton who graduated in 1960 and has never quit promoting and supporting Emporia State.

In a letter in support of John for a different award I said “There is no better or more dedicated Hornet anywhere than John Staton!”

I suggested John should simply be recognized as a “Proud Hornet Supporter.”

John knows no strangers. He has a conversation with everyone he comes in contact with and more times than not he finds a connection to Emporia State.

There’s not time to list all the ways John and his lovely bride Connie support the university - they are endless.

John is well into his seventies, but he still found the energy to help with the ESU Foundation’s recent Now and Forever campaign - and in a significant manner.

Professionally both John and Connie succeeded nicely, but their real calling may be in helping others. They’ve done everything from hauling a dog-napped beagle across the country to its home in Kansas to assisting for nine years an aging Army General.

It is a busy weekend in Emporia, but these folks are all Proud Hornets and Distinguished servants……… We salute and thank them.

I’m Steve Sauder.

An Addiction is the continued repetition of a behavior despite adverse consequences, according to Wikipedia.

Addictions we can conclude are for the most part not good.

Now consider this: Analyses of data from the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions show that people who begin drinking before age 15 are four times more likely to develop alcohol dependence during their lifetime than those who began drinking at age 21 or later. This has even been shown for identical twins who share the same genetics, but begin drinking at different ages.

Underage drinkers of alcohol are 4 times more likely to become addicted than adults!

KVOE has been running commercials from the Regional Prevention Center recently talking about alcohol and minors. These ads repeat things parents say to justify letting their kids drink like – I drank when I was that age, It’s only beer, We want our kids to be liked. These ads also talk about the legal ramifications of providing alcohol to minors. Good spots with great information.

The potential for a lifetime addiction associated with underage drinking makes a strong case for helping kids stay clear from booze.

So, how you ask can this happen with so many opportunities for kids to drink?

Amazingly the best and most successful manner by which youngsters can be convinced to wait until they are legal to drink alcohol involves their parents!

Parents are the most influential people in the lives of children. Kids are programmed to please their parents and react to requests coming from of their parents. This is a fact!

So, if you don’t want your underage child to drink – try asking them not to do so. Talk with them. Educate yourself so you can make the case. Facts like 2/3 of kids making mostly A’s and B’s don’t drink while over half the kids failing do drink are compelling.

Consider that over 5,000 youth die annually from vehicle crashes, homicides and suicides that involve underage drinking.

And probably the most important thing parents can do for their children is be good role models – especially as it relates to the use of alcohol. This doesn’t mean parents can’t drink or shouldn’t drink in front of their kids, but it does mean not making alcohol the center piece of their lives.

Probably said enough, but if this made you uncomfortable that’s good. Anyway you cut it underage drinking has no redeeming qualities and lots of perils so why encourage it? Why?

I’m Steve Sauder.

Something to think about for many is Obamacare the code name for the Affordable Care Act which President Obama says has “surpassed his wildest expectations.”

          Our President has celebrated many successes. After a shaky start the numbers of Obamacare enrollees topped the 11 million mark after the 2015 Open Enrollment period. Using government numbers the uninsured number in America dropped to 11.9%. About 3 million of those with insurance were youngsters allowed to stay on their parent’s plans.

          Last week the Supreme Court relived pressure concerning the constitutionality for the controversial plan. Many Americans now have healthcare that previously did not. Among these are people with pre-existing conditions and others that were uninsurable.

          Despite all these positives there are many who question the wisdom and long term workability of Obamacare.

          The questions start with unkept promises.

          Patrons were promised by the President three things: they could keep their doctors; keep their plans intact and that premiums would go down due to increased efficiency.

          Unfortunately these promises have not been kept. And, the other shoe is starting to drop with renewal rates for people who have had health insurance all along are starting to skyrocket in many places.

          Economics don’t lie!

          If more people have coverage and those new folks include many people with conditions the insurance companies were previously not willing to cover somebody has to pay.

          President Obama is calling out state regulators concerning rate increases suggesting they need to do a better job of checking out the need for rate increases.

          If Obamacare is what we remember President Barack Obama for - will it be for its’ great success or the opposite? Only time will tell!

          Now there’s something to think about and I’m Steve Sauder.

          In the Big First District we have a heated primary election contest for the Republican nomination between the incumbent Tim Huelskamp and novice politician Dr. Roger Marshall.

          This is already a nasty/dirty race. Let’s take a look at what they are saying about each other.

          Huelskamp is attacking Marshall for suggesting a tax on internet purchases; flip flopping on his abortion position and for being a “law breaker” in an advertisement that he has run on this station accusing Marshall of driving away from an accident.

          Marshall has to own the tax comment since it came in a debate. He claims he is pro-life which matches the Congressman so he might be guilty of a flip or a flop. The leaving the scene ad is pretty flimsy. Marshall was in an encounter with an unhappy citizen supposedly over a lost bid at the local hospital. After the confrontation Marshall did plead guilty to a misdemeanor traffic charge, but he was not charged with leaving the scene even though that’s what the Huelskamp ad suggests.

          Candidate Marshall suggests Huelskamp uses public money for campaign purposes. Maybe, but that’s really the advantage of being a third term incumbent. They claim Huelskamp voted against funding to fight Isis and for pay increases for soldiers at Ft. Riley. The record on these is clear. Most important and factual are the claims that our congressman got himself removed from both the Agriculture and Budget Committees. Huelskamp claims he will be re-seated on the Ag committee, but a lot of damage has already been done.

          My belief is the time is right for a change. Huelskamp has had six years to show his worth, but what he has mainly shown is an ability to put himself in conflict with leadership and have an amazing inability to compromise or get along.

          It appears to me this kind of belligerent attitude is exactly why the American public has such a low opinion of our congress.  

          Roger Marshall is a rookie, but he has an impressive background. Not only is he a successful doctor - he also has farming on his resume.

          The Primary is August the second and once again we in Kansas have a chance to change. Please don’t miss this opportunity.

          I’m Steve Sauder

Concerning the race for Governor of Kansas statehouse watchdog Martin Hawver wrote on Monday, “The financial corner of the governor’s race took a sharp turn this afternoon when the Republican team of Sam Brownback & Jeff Colyer revealed in its campaign finance report that it may or may not have out-raised Democrats Paul Davis & Jill Docking.”


May or may not have?

Tuesday’s Topeka Capital Journal’s headline says “Davis campaign donations top Brownback’s in 2014.”

What is going on?

In actual new donations during 2014 the Davis/Docking team outraised Brownback/Colyer by some$398,000, but the Governor’s team used a loan from Lt. Governor Colyer, made to the campaign of $500,000, to push their total on the report, filed Monday, slightly ahead of their Democrat opponent.

Even more interesting is the Brownback campaign evidently pulled the same stunt at the end of 2013 when Colyer again loaned the campaign half a million dollars. That was done on New Year’s Eve. That loan was repaid on January the second. Colyer’s $500,000 was on the books just long enough to let it show up on the Brownback 2013 Campaign Finance Report thus making the report show their campaign receiving considerably more in contributions compared to Davis.

Perception must be more important than the truth!

Or, is that deception?

It will be interesting to see if Governor Brownback speaks about this or just ignores it. I’m thinking that answer is obvious.

Locally, with a Primary Election next Tuesday the only real excitement is the Peggy Mast – Jeff Freeman contest for the Republican House nomination. Mast and Freeman are scheduled to appear on KVOE tomorrow morning at 10:06. That should be very interesting.

Freemen has been full of surprises maybe he’ll have one tomorrow!

The winner will run against Democrat Teresa Briggs and Independent Bill Otto in November.

Remember, voting is a privilege; hope to see you at the polls next week.

I’m Steve Sauder.

Dear Governor Brownback,


Steve Sauder again assuming you know what they say about chickens?

They always come home to roost!

You will soon have consequences to deal with you won’t be able to explain away like you do when you push Kansas poor people around, cut out programs for the mentally ill, take benefits from the elderly, discriminate against alternative life styles and cut programs for Kansas children.

There is a common thread running through the groups mentioned above – most of them – especially the poor and children – have very limited or no way to argue with you.

You are the best we have ever seen at deflecting, redirecting and misinforming people on topics on which you don’t have good answers.

But, Mr. Governor, Kansas teachers could be your chickens coming home to roost!. No doubt you have pushed them around and disrespected them, but Kansas teachers may just get the last laugh.

Here’s my case: From Monday’s Gazette, Richard John Schrock and Kansas Board of Education’s 2014-2015 Licensed Personnel Report – it says last year 654 teachers left Kansas to teach in another state. That number is up from 331 in 2010 & 11. Plus teachers leaving the profession, but not retiring rose from 416 to 740 in the same time frame.

It’s pretty obvious the teachers haven’t been much of a foe for you. You change the rules when you don’t like them and bully teachers using your all powerful, but not very creative legislature and you even took away their bargaining rights, but you cannot force them to teach. Teachers are moving out of Kansas and quitting at a record pace! This is growing crisis.

Who will you blame Mr. Governor when Kansas doesn’t have enough teachers to fill its classrooms?

That day is coming and you will be hard pressed to blame anyone but yourself.

Cluck, cluck…….

          Next Tuesday Kansas holds its Primary Election. Locally we have three races with multiple candidates asking for your support. If you are not registered to vote you won't need to listen to the rest of my thoughts. If you are registered you can vote now or wait and go to the polls next Tuesday.

          KVOE does not endorse candidates, but at times I share with listeners who I am supporting and why.

          The race to replace Peggy Mast in the 76th House District has two Democrats running: Teresa Briggs and Kelly Atherton. I supported Teresa Briggs two years ago when she opposed Representative Mast and I still believe she will be an excellent representative.

          Don Hill’s retirement was hastened by the knowledge that Mark Schreiber was willing to replace him. I'm not sure how a candidate could have a better endorsement? 

          Mark's Republican opponents - Steve Pearson and Dr. Matthew Shepherd - are both good people and under different circumstances excellent choices, but given the mess we have in Kansas we need Schreiber’s experience.

          Schreiber's job representing the interests of Westar in Topeka gives him a giant leg up. He not only already knows the issues and the people in the statehouse he understand how things get done in the legislature. We are lucky Mark is available!

          The third contested race is to represent the big First District of Kansas in the U.S. House of Representatives.

          Tim Huelskamp won a large primary six years ago and has been re-elected twice. He has kept his campaign promises by voting against everything, not supporting any new taxes, being a staunch supporter of the 2nd Amendment and has been Pro Life as is possible.

          Unfortunately Representative Huelskamp's history of not getting along with leadership raised its ugly head again in Washington. The First District is highly reliant on agriculture. It was perfect when Rep. Huelskamp landed a seat on the powerful Agriculture Committee. BUT, when he got cross ways with House leadership he unbelievably got kicked off this very important committee. He remains off the Agriculture committee!

          Not being on the Ag Committee makes Huelskamp expendable in this district according to Kansas Farm Bureau and the Kansas Livestock Association both of whom have endorsed his opponent.

          Roger Marshall from Great Bend is a respected doctor and a good choice to replace Huelskamp. Marshall is every bit as conservative as Huelskamp, but has the common sense to know when to speak and when to listen. Dr. Marshall who also has a solid farming background will be appointed to the Agriculture Committee a privilege Huelskamp squandered.

          We have an opportunity to be represented by someone who will not only get along with the leaders in Washington; he may well become a leader - something Representative Tim Huelskamp will never accomplish - never!

          Dr. Roger Marshall is an easy choice here.

          Here’s hoping you have a vote and that you will use it.

          I’m Steve Sauder

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