The New Year has begun, but the 2015 United Way Campaign is in the final stretch. The United Way of Southwest Missouri and Southeast Kansas will end its campaign on February 15, but we still need your help. Thanks to the generosity of local businesses and individuals, this year’s drive has raised over $180,000 in Southeast Kansas alone, but we’re still 10% short of our goal. Contributions help the United Way fund 49 programs at the 36 local partner agencies. One in five people in the region (more than 50,000) were touched by a United Way program last year alone. If broken down to Crawford County, it becomes one in three.

To ensure the best use of your gift, your United Way’s allocation process utilizes over 75 local volunteers to review the fiscal performance, effectiveness and accountability of all agencies and programs it funds. Every year, panels of volunteers visit each agency to determine the agency’s effectiveness, and the need for the services the agency provides.

For those of you who have generously given already, a heart-felt thank you! If you have not yet pledged, please consider a contribution to our United Way. Thanks to low overhead costs, 86 cents of every dollar donated goes to United Way partner agencies, and every penny raised in Southeast Kansas stays in Southeast Kansas.

I agreed to serve as this year’s campaign co-chair because I’ve seen the impact our United Way has on local agencies like the YMCA, Wesley House, Family Resource Center, Salvation Army and several others. These agencies do a tremendous job of serving our community and they deserve our support.

Please join me in making a difference in our community by giving to the United Way. Simply return your pledge form, if you have one, or call the United Way’s Pittsburg office at (620) 231-8140.

Blake Benson



Removal of banner bullying

Dear Morning Sun, Joplin Globe, and Fellow Americans:

The recent bullying and pressures from the special interest group, Freedom From Religion Foundation, which resulted in the Pittsburg, KS Post Office removing a patriotic banner posted in support of America and the 9/11 victims, has caused me and others harm and duress, denied us do process, and deprived us of our Constitutional Right to see this banner.

It is not right that groups like the FFRF and the ACLU are allowed to conduct nation wide witch hunts and prosecutions of Americans who are exercising their Rights. Nor, is it right that most Americans cannot financially protect themselves in court against these attacks compared to the $11.5 million empowerment of these groups.

Worst of all, is the complacency or the despondency that prevents Americans from standing up together and fighting this evil! Even Marines have been beaten down in spirit and think, "we have no option but to go along with being PC!"

Americans unite now and, as stated in The Gettysburg Address, show increased devotion (and action!), highly resolving that these dead shall not have died in vain, and that government of the people, by the people, and for the people, shall not perish from the earth! It will happen soon if we do not stand against our enemies, both foreign AND domestic.

Carol Fauster