Sunday, November 30, 2008

I am Thankful for . . .

Thanksgiving Day may be behind us, but events, local and far away, on this 2008 version of our Thanksgiving Holiday reminded me of how much we have to be thankful for in Raytown and as Americans. The events in Mumbai, India reminded me of how thankful I am for living in a country where political differences are not settled at the end of a gun. I am thankful for living in a country where freedom of speech is more than just a thought, but a practice. I am thankful that Raytown’s major eyesore, the old First Baptist Church in Downtown Raytown, will soon be an image of the past. I am thankful for the two young men who have taken the bold step of trying to breath life back into the Raytown Post. Print media is the barometer by which the health of a community can be gauged. A community without a local newspaper to bind it together is less than healthy. I am thankful for living in a community where two of our local high school teams have excelled in the area of sports. Recognition is deserved for the O’Hara High School Girls Volleyball Team, who earned the title of Missouri State Champions earlier this fall. This makes the third year in a row the O’Hara Girls Volleyball Team has captured the State Championship – very impressive!!! And how about those Raytown South Cardinals! They made it all the way to big show. They played like the champions they are only to see fate take the game away from them in the last four seconds of play. The Raytown South Cardinals Football team should be proud of their season and the record-breaking advance to the Missouri State final. Finally, I am thankful for the regular participants of this blog. It is there activism and interest in the community that is slowly but surely nudging our city government to be more responsive and accountable. Just as the light of day can expose the shadows of night be nothing more than the lack light – nothing cures a community’s ills as much as the free flow of information. Please remain active. You are making a difference. Recall? Impeachment!!! From time to time there have been calls of for recall and impeachment on this blog. Since Raytown is a fourth class city, both options are a hard way to reach that end. If you are sincere about your desire to change how your local government is run, you should consider filing for public office. The filing period for five of the ten seats on the Board of Aldermen, the Municipal Judge and the Chief of Police opens on December 16, 2008 and closes on January 20, 2009. Requirements are that you be a registered voter, a resident of Raytown and not have a criminal (felony) record in the State of Missouri.

36 comments:

Andy Whiteman said...

Greg, There was a time in our country when policital difference were handled by violence. It almost happened before the election except the FBI stepped in.

I would like to see more than one person run for Judge. The problem is any good attorney can make much more than the judge's salary! That office definately needs a replacement.

Andy Whiteman

Pat Casady said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pat Casady said...

I think "Recall and or Impeachment" is a little harsh.
However, I don't believe things will ever change in Raytown.
Let's say you could remove some of the elected officials,
who would you replace them with? More of the same?
I don't think these people are bad people. I just think they're
in over their heads when it comes to sorting out the BS
thrown at them from developers, big corporations and lawyers.
It would have been better if they would have ask some simple
questions such as how much will it cost the taxpayers in the long
run, and what would all this do to our town?
As much as I disapprove of what and how these elected officials
do things, I doubt it will get much better until someone with a
business background runs for office.
I feel it's a shame that our elected officials chose not to visit the
people and businesses in their wards. Nobody expects them to
know everything there is to know about everything. A simple "what
do you think about this or that?" might have made them look a
little harder into some of the decisions they have made.
Let's face it, it couldn't make them look any worse could it?

By the way I have heard there is a well known grocery store
in town that may close after the first of the year. I think it is
only the first in a long line of businesses going away.

Anonymous said...

The problem with our elected officials is that they are not educated in running a business. They are just simple folks that went out and got the votes to get elected. Most of them DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH COMMON SENCE or EDUCATION to make the enormous decisions to move our city in a positive direction. We need some educated, professional, younger, people to get this city out of the mess it's in. Where are the CPA'S, the LAWYERS, the DOCTORS, or other educated people that are willing to serve? RAYTOWN NEEDS HELP!!!

Andy Whiteman said...

Pat makes a good point as does Anon 9:01AM. I can think of at least 3 board members who are/were business managers. Also Mayor Bower has business experience.

I really question, what professional would donate his/her time for only $400 per month? They make that much in 2 hours!

Andy Whiteman

Greg Walters said...

In answer to the person who wanted to know if the large Oak trees will be spared when Ye Old First Baptist Church is torn down -- the answer is YES!

The city had a tree specialist from the state come and look at the trees. The ones that were deemed worthy of saving have been marked by the city.

An interesting footnote . . . one of the trees is estimated to be over 150 years old.

To paraphrase Joyce Kilmer, "blogs are written by fools like me, but only God can make a tree."

Pat Casady said...

There in lies the problem. What professional person would
want to run for office? I believe a professional person that cares
for Raytown and would like to see better things happen should
try it.
Do I think it will happen absolutely not. So the next question is
what do we do now?
I say we find people to run as true representatives for the people.
People that at the very least, are not afraid to talk to, and listen to their constituents. If we can't find "professionals" find people that
will talk to professionals in the field that is being discussed.
I don't mean a study or a survey, I mean an elected official that will get up off his or her backside and go out and ask questions!
However, we shouldn't expect them to listen to any one person but,
we should expect a little common sense to do the right thing.
For far too long it's been an easy ride for our elected officials.
They haven't had to think for themselves. They just listen to lawyers and administrators and do what they are told. It's time they listen to the people of Raytown and do what's right for them for a change.
Again do I think this will happen...............

Anonymous said...

Not all lawyers make $200 a month. Many of them are starving. There is a glut of them serving the people. So much so that UMKC quit taking part-time students many years ago.

Who says they have any kind of corner on the intelligence market anyway?

Andy Whiteman said...

Pat is correct that city officials should ask questions without paying for studies. I can think of at least 2 Aldermen who are professional and investigative (ask questions). I noticed one in particular asks questions at the meetings that seemed like he didn't know what was transpiring, but I finally realized he was trying to clarify an issue. We need officials like this.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I am proud of what the Raytown South Cardinals Football Team and their coaches accomplished this year. I was in St Louis and saw the game myself. It was a good game. And it was a heartbreaker at the end, the last 4 seconds of it. You have nothing to be ashamed about at all. We are looking forward to next season already!

Anonymous said...

I was also at the game and have to say GREAT job Cardinals. What an amazing year they had. Great support from their fans who represented the community well. At least the sports teams in Raytown usually give us something to be proud of. The Coaches deserve a lot of credit and if one or two plays go different South wins.

Tom Rigot, Sr said...

Of the 580 some odd High Schools in the great State of Missouri only 12 teams made it to the final round. The rest stayed home! That says a lot for every team that played in the dome last weekend. Raytown South can hold their heads high just for reaching that level. They will have the memory of this accomplishment for many years to come. For most, this was the last time they will play organised football. This marks the end of the years of training and practise with their teamates and coaches. A few will go on to play in college somewhere. Another precious few will return as coaches to high schools and kids leagues in their communities Many of these young men have developed friendships with their team mates and will stay in close contact with each other for years to come. Thank you to all the players and coaches for their dedication to each other and the sport of high school football.

Anonymous said...

I didn't attend the game, but watched it on TV. What a remarkable effort on the part of our boys.

Our kids played like nothing in their lives could ever be more important; to some, maybe it will prove to be, and their thoughts will often drift to 4 hours that changed them forever...fantastic plays, humbling mistakes, heartbreaking calls by the referees. The only detail worth mentioning, and will be forever etched in the hearts and minds of the players and their fans, is 4 seconds. Four very short seconds that seemed like a lifetime.

Score 33 to 34...one last play with 4 seconds on the clock...quarterback looking desperately for a connection...ball flys, arches, caught. Four seconds to mind-blowing glory for one team, 4 seconds to disbelief and unparalled despair for the other.

I felt every second.

Pat Casady said...

I would like to thank all that were involved with the downtown
Raytown lighting ceremony. It was a great idea and I hope it
grows into something big in the years to come.
There were over thirty four businesses and services that participated.
Gibbens, Drake, Scott provided money to purchase the lights
that were given to merchants along the downtown route.
The Raytown Main Street organization, The Raytown Chamber and
Gobbens, Drake, Scott Engineering along with all who participated
have shown me that Raytown is not dead yet. There is still hope that
the town we all care deeply for, has a lot of good people trying to
make it better.
I would like to extend a heartfelt thank you.

Greg Walters said...

Pat,

I was unable to attend the lighting ceremony but drove through about 8:00 p.m. last night.

It is an impressive display of people stepping forward and taking charge. I am also impressed that it was done with minimal participation by city hall -- aside from the city's display at the vest pocket park at 63rd and Raytown Road.

Good job to all involved!

Anonymous said...

I went up to see the lights downtown Raytown last night. It certainly isn't the Country Club Plaza but better than what Raytown had last year.

Somebody should check out Rudolph at the little park -- his legs light up, his head lights up, but his body does not night.

Maybe they don't know about this at city hall. I hope they fix it. Makes the scene look trashy.

Pat Casady said...

I was surprised by the number of businesses that are still in the
downtown area. Over thirty four were listed and I know some
businesses chose not to participate, for whatever reason.
The lights were given to all that wanted them. The only thing the
building owners were required to do was to install them.
They even gave my business lights, although they were too long
for my building, so I gave them back and bought some myself.
To those who did not participate, all I can say is you missed the
wonderful feeling of contributing to a cause. The feeling of belonging.
This is a feeling none of us has had in over ten years.
Probably because the city had minimal participation. It seems every
time something good tries to happen in Raytown, someone at City Hall
puts a stop to it.
In fact I heard that there were volunteers willing to install lights at the Raytown
Plaza, even the existing stores said they could plug into their outlets,
but the city said no.
But that didn't put a damper on the rest of us.
I am surprised however, that the city didn't come around and make everybody
apply for a permit. As you know in this town you almost have to ask
permission to use the restroom.
But, I don't want to turn this good feeling and good deeds into a complaint.
I was proud to be apart of this and hope next year we are all still here and
can do even more.

Andy Whiteman said...

I think if a permit was required for a business to have Christmas lighting, the would complain that their rights were violated and put it up anyway.

Thats one man's opinion.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Why on earth would anyone ask permission of the city to plug in Christmas lights?

Anonymous said...

My question is why would the city even say no when it was not at their expense and they are trying to revitalize downtown Raytown.

Anonymous said...

Where was all the advertising saying there was even going to be a lighting. I missed that one completely. Why were there no signs telling about the lighting. This city has a long ways to go on letting the citizens of Raytown know whats going on. If they want more participation why did'nt they make the lighting more of a Raytown activity with Santa Clause and cocoa. We've lost what living in a small town means. TRADITIONS (EX: RAYTOWN ROUNDUP DAYS IN TOWNTOWN AND THE PARADE)

Andy Whiteman said...

Where was the advertising?:
Mayor Bower announced the lighting at the Board of Alderman's meeting. In this Fascist Fief of Raytown that is public notice expecially since everyone is expected to pay for cable TV so the can watch. My point: I have complained for over 2 years that there is little or NO PUBLIC NOTICE.

I agree there should have been advertising, but I don't know what the budget was like. If there was any advertising, it was not obvious to me.

The ON AIR TV stations have their weather person available for the Christmas lighting in various cities around the area. This is FREE advertising. Maybe the problem was that it was at 6:30 and not 5:58 or 6:17 so it could be on TV. Even 6:26 may bave worked! Why didn't someone invite the TV stations?

Maybe now is the time to start planning for next year!

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

I don't think the city needs a budget for a few signs around town advertising the lighting. Surely someone could pull a few bucks out of their pockets and a little bit of time out of their busy schedules to make them. Making this town a better place is their job. Or maybe I am wrong and it was only for the Board of Alderman to enjoy.

Anonymous said...

That's what happens when you don't have a local newspaper with any circulation and not everyone has cable tv. Most of those that do have cable wouldn't waste their time watching that bunch of clowns we call aldermen anyway.

Anonymous said...

I thought maybe our local newspaper had stopped circulating all together as the on-line paper has said the same thing for a couple of weeks now

Anonymous said...

The only time that the tv stations come to Raytown is if there is a stabbing, guns, or a fight at one of the Raytown Schools, or a murder in this city. Other than that, there is no signifigant news ratings value for them.

One does not need permission from the city to decorate for christmas! And I sure would not want the Chamber of Commerce involved with it either, look at what happened with Raytown Roundup Days and the Parade, and the demise thereof. It is the fault of inept leadership at the Chamber, and at City Hall, that this city is facing a dismal future!

Anonymous said...

Before you complain about what wasn't done.... Channel 9 was at the lighting and it was on their evening news. The Raytown Post newspaper printed the information about the lighting before the event. Printed flyers were created by volunteers and handed out and posted by downtown businesses, the Chamber and at City Hall. There are banners on the Main Street Office downtown. Are there other suggestions readers want to pass along to help notify people of the event? I think they did a great job and am already looking forward to next year.

Anonymous said...

To Ben Felder,

What is happening with the Paper? Is the online paper gone forever?
What happen to Dennis Rich?

Anonymous said...

Funny, I watch Channel 9 news and all they had was Parkville this and Parkville that, and Plaza this and that. I never saw anything about lights in Raytown.

And the Raytown Post is a subscription only paper. They do not deliver to everyone for free like they used to.

And not everyone can afford cable TV so if you do not have cable, you do not get the City Government Channel that so many up at City hall take for granted that everyone must get.

The City newsletter is a joke.

I do not always drive through downtown because of traffic and traffic lights so I did not see any banners or flyers either. So it was not widely publicised like you say that it was.

Even if I had known about it I probably would not have attended anyway, however, it sounds like it is a nice event as long as the Chamber and the City both keep their noses out of the event.

Andy Whiteman said...

I watch CH 9 news and don't recall seeing Raytown Christmas lighting, but I saw Parkville.

I think the idea was to get the attraction of the whole metro to attrack business. What a flop with no advertising. Even free PSAs would have worked. CH 4 shows events Friday at the end of the 5PM hour but I don't watch due to obnoxious music and find Nightly Business Report to be of more interest.

Some of the less than smart people at City Hall think CH 7 constitutes PUBLIC NOTICE. I don't waste money on cable mainly because all that I want is on free TV. In this economy how many waste money on cable?

It is very time consuming to keep a web site updated. (I have 3.) Since the Post hopes to make a profit, maybe it is not to their benefit to not update the site enorder to sell subscriptions. The previous owner wrote that his papers went out of business in another state because of giving the paper away free on the web losing subscriptions. I prefer the paper in my grubby hands but will read out of town papers on line. Truthfully I don't check www.theraytownpost.com unless there is breaking news.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

The Post will never be successful if it's a subscription paper only. Who would subscribe to a paper that has limited news and no advertising. Do you see a pattern here. Why do you think the Tribune left town?

Pat Casady said...

I can't believe you guys can complain about this.
Yes, it was on channel 9 news at 10:00pm.
The chamber was involved but the Main Street organization
and a few businesses got the ball rolling for the rest of us.
The lighting was a good thing for the downtown.
We should consider the local paper as a new paper.
It will take time for them to make it the way the new owners want
it to be.
I can see why some think this is just a complaint post.
You can't make everybody happy but it's the gutless Anonymous
writers that stir up things and take cheap shots at any and
everything that upset me.

Andy Whiteman said...

I am surprised to see Pat here on Sunday!

As to the Anon comment about little advertising in the Post, that can be said about all newspapers. I realized that there are very few classifieds in the Red Star. I then noticed that the Alamogordo News and the El Paso papers also had fewer classifieds than I expected. Could the economy be responsible for this? If Anon is referring to business advertising the same applies. Someone commented that the Post should be free. Free doesn't mean that it is read. All it means is that a driveway is littered and it may or may not lay on the ground for weeks. I assume subscribers read the paper.

Andy Whiteman

Andy Whiteman said...

I am surprised to see Pat here on Sunday!

As to the Anon comment about little advertising in the Post, that can be said about all newspapers. I realized that there are very few classifieds in the Red Star. I then noticed that the Alamogordo News and the El Paso papers also had fewer classifieds than I expected. Could the economy be responsible for this? If Anon is referring to business advertising the same applies. Someone commented that the Post should be free. Free doesn't mean that it is read. All it means is that a driveway is littered and it may or may not lay on the ground for weeks. I assume subscribers read the paper.

Andy Whiteman

Anonymous said...

Pat, I did say that however, it sounds like it is a nice event.... don't you get it?

And some of us go to bed before 10pm and do not see the news after that, so if it was on(about Raytowns Lighting Ceremony) , I did not see it. Sorry!