On Halloween: monster storm, frightening candidate, ghoulish Chiefs
The Kansas City Star
Halloween is our nod to the scary side, to dark forces real or imagined, to the chilling prospects that stand in our paths or flit around the borders of our minds. In an unusually eventful week, we highlight a few frightening forces.
Not technically a hurricane, but truly a monster of a storm. Sandy has taken lives, brought New York City to a halt, left more than 7 million homes and businesses without power, closed schools and created massive disruptions from the Carolinas to Ohio. Its effects will be felt for years.
Sandy is a reminder that some of the most fearsome occurrences come from nature. We should take seriously the preponderance of scientists who concur that a warming planet plays a large role in extreme weather events. We should invest in disaster preparedness. And more immediately, we should send thoughts, prayers and aid in the direction of the East Coast.
Kansas Citians are used to awful sports teams. The Royals recently finished another dreadful season and now have won more games than they have lost only one time in the last 18 years.
And the 2012 Kansas City Chiefs have slid from frustrating to frightening. Head injuries — which have befallen two quarterbacks so far — aren’t funny. And surely no one is looking forward to seeking the banged-up Chiefs play a Thursday night game in San Diego.
Fans of 1-6 teams sometimes wear masks to hide their faces. We think owner Clark Hunt needs to face up to the need for major changes. Jackson County taxpayers have invested too much in upgrades at Arrowhead and Kauffman stadiums to have to tolerate continued gruesome performances.
A victory for Republican Todd Akin in Missouri’s U.S. Senate race against incumbent Democrat Claire McCaskill on Tuesday would amount to a Halloween hangover. Akin’s “legitimate rape” remarks sent even the GOP establishment scurrying off in horror.
Besides showing a profound disregard for women and science, the congressman has opposed funds for school lunches, federally backed student loans and emergency spending for disaster relief. He was a fringe voter in the U.S. House and would be even more embarrassing in the Senate. Missouri doesn’t need a senator masquerading as a dinosaur — or the other way around.
Hide that costume
A few years ago, Phillip Cosby demanded the prosecution of a Halloween costume store that failed to keep its naughtier items out of sight of children. He actually made some headway with that crusade, although charges were dropped.
Ever on the alert, Cosby and some allies recently set their sights on a bronze sculpture of a bare-breasted woman in the Overland Park Arboretum. They claimed it was obscene and used a petition drive to convene a grand jury in Johnson County.
Fortunately, the jurors last Friday quickly declined to issue an indictment.
A U.S. Supreme Court justice once said of obscenity, “I know it when I see it.” Cosby sees it all over the place. It’s a bit spooky to speculate where he’ll turn up next.