A wish list for Santa

Clausie Smith Enlarge photo

December 21, 2011

Dear Santa:

I know it has been a couple of years since I wrote to you. I originally started writing you way back in the 1960s in The Kilowatt, an industrial newsletter that I edited for the Board of Public Utilities. The letters started to be a yearly feature in the Mulvane News, continuing in the Carrollton Daily Democrat and now here in the Tri-County area. Things have changed a lot for me. When I started writing, I was young man. Now, however, I’m a jolly old man myself. No, I don’t have, nor will I ever have, a beard.

If you remember, I represented you for many years. I spent a lot of Saturday mornings listening to the Christmas wishes of children. Now I’m too old for that, although, I do have the stomach for the job. I’m not sure I would need any help in filling out the suit now. My last time was as a last minute fill-in at the YMCA five years ago.

I really don’t need anything for Christmas. After all, I have a wonderful wife, family, a comfortable home and a big screen TV. I live in a great town in the best country that has ever existed. Other than discovering where my wife hides the cookies, I have everything and more. But there are some things that I think our society needs.

First, how about creating a few million new jobs that pay well and have good benefits? There are a lot of people who want and need work. If everyone had a job, most problems would be solved and the tax revenue that would be generated would alleviate a lot of governmental woes, too.

Second, how about a rock in the sock of companies that ship jobs overseas? If not a rock, than a major cut in corporate bonuses might get the point across.

If there is one thing our entire nation needs, it’s a lesson in good manners and civil discourse. I read that a Johnson County city council almost had, or did have, depending on who you believe, a physical fight at a meeting. There are so many examples of tremendously bad behavior, ranging from booing President Obama, President Bush, Michelle Obama, Sarah Palin and many other prominent people. Now, I don’t agree with all of them, but they deserve courtesy and respect. As far as I’m concerned, the only persons who I believe can be booed are umpires and referees — certainly not the first lady of the nation and her children.

How about a rock in the sock of radio talk show hosts who spend hours stirring the pot while never having to defend their opinions? They are entitled to their opinions but need to be challenged by other views. I do have a method of dealing with them — I don’t listen. And on the same subject, we all need to learn to respect the opinion of others because not one of us is correct all of the time. We need to observe and listen with an open mind.

How about a little enthusiasm for everybody? When you reach a mature age, you hear a lot of folks talking about “the good old days.” In my opinion, these are the best of days and the future can be as bright as we make it.

Of course, no letter would be complete without my annual pleas for winning seasons for the Royals and Chiefs. I really believe that the Royals are on the verge of winning and I’d like to see another divisional title. I’d like to see a return to the community spirit we had in the 1980s when the Royals were winning. I think the Chiefs will do OK in the future and Sporting Kansas City is a proven winner and might make this a soccer community.

I could go on and on. I want to see the Bonner Springs and Basehor-Linwood teams win. I hope that all new business enterprises are successful. But most of all, I want to see peace in the world with countries getting along and accepting differences.

I hope you have a wonderful and safe Christmas and all of your wishes come true.

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