Something to Think About - keep (312)

          In this wild world, names are changing faster than a baby’s diaper!

          The Dirty Kanza bicycle race through the Flint Hills will have a new name before the gravel flies again.

          The Washington “Redskins” have announced they are dropping their egregious mascot after years of criticism.

          Other sports teams are being challenged to do the same with differing levels of pressure. The Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves and Chicago Black Hawks come to mind.

          This makes me wonder about our Kansas City Chiefs?

          Let’s take a look back.

          Lamar Hunt’s Dallas Texans football team moved to Kansas City in 1963, but without a nickname. It’s reported Hunt wanted to call them the “Kansas City Texans.”

          Fortunately, that did not happen so the club decided to hold a re-name the “Texans” contest. Over a thousand names were included in the over 4,800 names submitted. The most popular was Mules with the Royals next. Chiefs received 42 votes with other possibilities like Mokans, Drovers, Pioneers, Plainsmen, Stars, and Stockers getting votes.

          But, Chiefs solved two problems, so it prevailed. In addition to providing the new name, it also honored Roe Bartle, a public official who had played a key role in attracting the team.

          Bartle’s nickname was “Chief” stemming from his years of involvement with the Boy Scouts.

          Unfortunately, the naming didn’t stop there. Columnist Vahe Gregorian points out “the team went all-in with imagery and branding appropriated from Native Americans.”

          An early logo depicted a bare-chested Indian in full headdress with a raised tomahawk in one hand and a football in the other. “KC” on his loincloth did little diminish the savage look it embodied.

          Even though the Chiefs have been leaders in integration in pro football this early degrading of native Americans will not go away.

          The columnist asks two key questions?

          First: Can the name successfully be uncoupled from the behavior it evokes, i.e., the Tomahawk Chop, and second; How long can the team still get away with that name?

          I think both questions will be answered sooner rather than later.

          I’m Steve Sauder


          As this Pandemic rolls on we older folks are challenged daily to find ways to fill our waking hours. Reading books is great, but at my age often results in a nap. Learning to play the piano is challenging, but harder than golf. Speaking of golf – it’s too dang hot right now!

          So, let me share with you some ideas using that old stand by – your Television set.

          If you are a network TV watcher you are currently trapped in re-runs and it’s only gonna get worse!

          Bobbi and I are thankful for The Big Bang Theory on Channel 6, nightly at six o’clock. All re-runs, but so good that watching a Sheldon replay for the 3rd or 4th times is still fun.

          “Cord Cutting,” is a phenomenon that can open up a whole new world of entertainment. A majority of customers at cable companies now subscribe only to the internet and stream all their entertainment from places like Netflix, Prime Video, and Hulu.

          I’m not an authority, but if you call 208-5000 and ask for Jordan you will be talking to one. You won’t be disappointed!

          Let me drop a few viewing ideas on you.

          The Kominski Method with Michael Douglas and Alan Arkin is really special. Grace and Frankie with Jane Fonda and Lilly Tomlin is good too. Both are on Netflix.

          The Americans, is on FX. It’s a spy series lasting 6 seasons? It’s awesome!

          Other favorites for us are: Breaking Bad, Orange is the New Black, Better Call Saul, and Ozark.

          If you like documentaries try Jeffrey Weinstein. It will knock your socks off!

          Currently, we are watching the third season of Yellowstone starring Kevin Costner as the patriarch of a sixth-generation massive cattle ranch in Montana.

          John Dutton, Costner’s character, has three children that all live at the ranch and all are in some ways dysfunctional. Dutton is widowed, blames his daughter for his wife’s accidental death, and just for grins occasionally sleeps with Montana’s lady governor.

          If you like cowboys and cowgirls, rodeos, politics, an occasional fight, and some good stories Yellowstone will please you. What might not please you is the occasional salty language, but it would be hard to be a cowboy without saying “damn” once in a while!

          There’s a whole new world of entertainment out there for you! A call to Jordan at 208-5000 can help you discover it. That is a promise!

          I’m Steve Sauder, and There’s Something to Think About.

Less than two weeks ago I was on the phone with my friend and Dirty Kansa founder Jim Cummins congratulating him on being included in Kansas City’s prestigious Ingrim’s magazine as one of 50 Kansans You Should Know.

          I was also scheduling Jim to join us on the On-Air Chat today to discuss his newest honor and the plans for this year’s DK.

          Obviously the narrative has changed with Jim unfortunately posting a controversial piece on social media and eventually agreeing to leave Dirty Kanza Promotions. He declined an opportunity to join us today suggesting, “he’d probably had too much air time already.”

          Jim Cummins is a good man who made a mistake that he owned and now moves on. I wish him well.

          One of the unfortunate consequences of this episode was a re-awakening of a seemingly settled discussion about this epic bike race on gravel through our glorious Flint Hills. Some have suggested the name Dirty Kanza really means “Dirty Indian.”

          It’s my understanding that recently Cummins met with the leadership of the Kaw Nation and reached an agreement leaving the DK name intact.

          With recent events raising new awareness of this situation the DK’s corporate owner, Life Time has decided to change the name.

          A recent KVOE poll indicated that 70% of the respondents to our unscientific poll indicated they did not want a change.

          On today’s On-Air Chat we will have as guests; Kristi Mohn and LeLan Dains both key players in the DK’s operation and future. This year’s DK is now scheduled for September 12.

          These two requested the opportunity to appear and not only answer our questions about the DK’s future, but also requested listeners call in with their questions.

          The Dirty Kanza is as Emporia as anything one can imagine. We need

it and want to protect it. If changing the name is what’s best, then

let’s figure it out and keep moving forward.

          Kristi and LeLan are willing to answer all our questions so tune in at 10:06 and let’s figure out the future of Emporia’s premier bike race!

          I’m Steve Sauder

I wonder if Americans are even paying attention?

          Instances of new Corona Virus victims were at an all time high over the weekend yet we continue to “open up” with our President leading the way.

          Friday evening I needed to talk to my doctor’s wife so we stopped by. As she answered the door adorned with a mask my doctor yelled from behind her –“Where is your mask?”

          I gave the dumbest answer imaginable – “it’s in my pocket.”

          We visited on the driveway observing social distancing and he said to me, “Steve, you do not want to get the virus!”

          He described one of his patient’s bout with the COVID 19 and explained it was dreadful. Nuff said, our mask wearing will continue.

          Many have questioned the effectiveness of wearing a mask, but the following story at least gives evidence that wearing a mask can work.

          Springfield, Missouri in hair salon, maybe Great Clips. A beauty operator worked 9 shifts in 8 days seeing over 80 clients. While she was working this lady was experiencing Corona Virus symptoms! She was not asymptomatic, she actually had a fever and sore throat, but continued to work.

          The saving grace was she wore a mask all of the time and many of her clients did as well it is reported. Soon after she was tested positive for the virus. Contact tracing went into high gear with all of her clients contacted and traced through at least 2 weeks with zero cases of the COVID 19. That is amazing, true and a testament to the benefits of wearing a mask in public situations.

          Which brings me to a personal concern. I have traveled very few places recently but was in Wichita and Kansas City for brief visits this past week. We ate out twice with both restaurants exercising extreme social distancing and all personnel wearing masks.

          In Emporia several of our favorite eating establishments are not requiring their servers to wear masks. I know masks are recommended by our health professionals, but not required.

          My question is why not?

          Bobbi and I will miss eating in those places and miss seeing friends there, but we are vulnerable and need to stay healthy.

          My hope is this awful challenge is going away, but if we lose our resolve to follow the expert’s recommendations we will pay the price.

          How about if we all redouble our efforts by wearing masks and keeping our distances?

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

       Today’s thoughts come again from a column by Leonard Pitts who shares some numbers that some of you might not believe and/or like. We are talking about America’s cable news networks – Fox News and CNN in particular as reported by the Pew Research Center and PolitiFact, which is a Pulitzer prize-winning group.

       The study is about who might be America’s least trusted news sources. Pew lists Rush Limbaugh’s show as the least trustworthy source with a 40% not trusted rate. Fox News is a close second at 37%.

       But, while both Rush and Fox aren’t highly trusted they are certainly popular. Limbaugh’s show is the highest-rated show on radio and Fox News is the most-watched cable news network!

       This topic gets pretty complicated when you learn Pew says CNN, our President’s favorite – NOT, is the most trusted news source at 54% positive. But, even though American’s think CNN can be trusted we evidently don’t like watching it as it ratings are only a fraction of Fox’s. CNN has even been laying people off recently.

       PolitiFact reinforces who is trusted and who is not with these interesting findings. The question wasn’t perfect but examined the “truthfulness of broadcast pundits?”

       Over 60% of Fox’s pundit’s statements were “found to be some flavor of false.” while CNN’s were just 22% less than accurate.

       Let me interject here: If KVOE ever reached 2% false let alone 22% we’d be run out of Emporia! Obviously we carry network news and Talk Shows where announcers are likely not accurate all the time, but our local reporters better be correct.

       Finally, Nielson was asked to find out in times of crisis where do people turn for their news and reported among other things that when 9-11 occurred CNN’s audience increased by 800%. “No other network came close.”

       It’s a free country and we have a bunch of choices for where we get our news.

       Maybe that old saying about “believing none of what you hear and half of what you see,” makes sense again?

       One request! Please remember I’m just repeating today what others wrote.

       I’m Steve Sauder and “There’s Something to Think About.”

       Watching the expanded coverage of the challenge for equality for all races in America at the same time we are also facing this daunting Corona Virus challenge it occurs to me that America is now facing TWO PANDEMICS: Corvid 19 and Racial injustice. One is new while the other has been with us, but ignored far too long.

       Friday, Emporia was the scene of a large march to protest racial injustice. Admittedly I had concerns for my community because there were rumors of outside influences that might create undesired activities. I even had a nightmare with Commercial Street on fire!

       Shortly before the event I called KVOE’s Chuck Samples and suggested he stay safe. If trouble started I did not want him to feel obligated to stick his nose in the middle of it. At KVOE we cover the news, we are not obligated to be the news.

       Fortunately, the protest was well planned, well organized, and occurred without incident other than some heat-related problems.

       Our local law enforcement people are to be thanked for their leadership and tactics in making this event peaceful. Emporia’s interim Chief of Police Ed Owens described on our On-Air Chat last week how he had reached out and met with the protest organizers and how the police were planning to not only protect the marchers and property but also walk with and participate in it. Sheriff Jeff Cope was all in with his colleague.

       We are fortunate in Emporia to have a positive history and leadership in our law enforcement organizations.

       Chief Owens when asked last week if he was aware of President Obama’s 21st Century Policing handbook, his response was, “yes,” but we started doing most of those things 15 years ago especially mentioning the good works of officer John Koelsch.

       Being a cop might be the toughest job in America right now, so when Ed and Jeff both explained why they “loved being a cop,” it suggests a lot about the character of law enforcement locally.

       Those “Unfund the Police” signs at protests have been hard to ignore. That’s not a good idea, but re-examining what we expect our policemen to do is a worthy goal. Maybe there are more efficient ways to meet the needs of society.

       Listeners are encouraged to agree or disagree with me and to have opinions on the goings-on in America today, but whatever you think or do - please understand your voice is really only heard when you register and vote. That’s how America can really be great.

       A big thank you to Chief of Police Ed Owens, who hopefully won’t be “interim Chief” much longer and Lyon County Sheriff Jeff Cope for their leadership.

       I’m Steve Sauder and “There’s Something to Think About.”

       I’ve been doing this commentary for over thirty years. Often I am challenged about what to talk about. Today the “what” to discuss is very obvious. My challenge is” how” to say it.

       For several days I’ve kept notes about thoughts I’ve heard about diversity. They come from friends, Facebook, preachers, TV personalities, and guests on our Monday Morning Quarterback show.

       Most important in anything I say is to – be part of the solution, not part of the problem.

       My mom’s favorite advice looms large, “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

       The Golden rule comes to mind, also.

       A minister suggested we all have biases and most biases were inaccurate or at least exaggerated. He suggested we need to address our biases, try to talk to them, debunk them.

       Chiefs Patrick Mahomes explained how he was lucky to grow up in locker rooms where every race, every background, and community come together and are accepted.  He hoped our country could become more like a locker room accepting one another.  Interestingly we came to the same conclusion on the Monday Morning Quarterback agreeing on sports is a good petri dish.

       Ali and Brandon Schneider, the former ESU Lady Hornet basketball coach, posted an open letter about racism which they concluded this way:

       “We pray through more education, better communication, and the desire to celebrate the blessing of ethnic diversity, progress can be made.

       Ali and I want our young sons to know they have a responsibility to be part of the solution. As a family, we want to be part of the solution. We stand together in promoting peace, justice, equality, and unity in the fight against racism.”

       The letter is signed by Ali, Brandon, Cash, and Cole

       An important part of this letter is Brandon and Ali’s desire to communicate with, educate, and include their boys in this effort. Kids do listen to their parents.

       What parents say, does matter!

       Let me finish today with a neat story.

       A friend told me his 10-year-old son came home one night telling his parents a story about Andy at school. When the parents asked about Andy who they did not know their son said, “Well, Andy has really big feet and he wears a Cubs hat all the time.” Pushed for more of a description the son added, “He eats a lot.”

       Later my friend told me he and his wife discovered Andy is

African American. Pretty amazing a 10-year-old school kid has a friend but doesn’t think to describe him as being black. A lesson for us all!

       The George Floyd story is just the most recent example of racial inequality in our country. Being white I have no idea of the burden my minority friends carry. My nightly prayer now includes a request for help in being a part of the solution to the racial injustice problem in our country.

       I hope you will join me. I’m Steve Sauder and There’s something to think about.

            I shared this idea on a Zoom call last Friday hosted by Senator Jerry Moran and included a number of Emporia leaders.

          My son Jamie called me a few weeks ago concerned about the future of Emporia State University and the Corvid 19 challenge. We ask Don Hill who is ESU’s legislative guru to meet with us. Complete with masks we met one morning.

          Our first point of agreement was that having students back on campus at Emporia State this fall is the most important benchmark for our community to recover successfully from this crisis.

          Repeat: College students back in Emporia this fall is VERY IMPORTANT!

          We visited for a while about housing and how landlords may have to be prepared to have single tenants in units designed for more and other challenges in housing.

          Our best idea came from Jamie who suggested testing and tracing availability may be where ESU could set themselves apart from other schools.

          “Heck,” Jamie exclaimed, “if ESU could say they will have 10,000 tests available this fall lots of students and their parents should be very impressed.”

          We concluded buying a bunch of Corona Virus tests - set aside for ESU, and maybe Flint Hills Tech too would be a tremendous marketing coup.

          Not sure how this would be handled by the University, but Allison Garrett did call me and say she is interested.

          Shane Shively, the CEO of the ESU Foundation promised to visit with President Garrett about this idea. The Foundation is best positioned to lead this effort. Hopefully, both Emporia residents and ESU alums would understand and support this effort.

          This idea may be way outside the box, but I believe if we created such a fund and have a thousand tests available along with a solid tracing plan ready to go that could make Emporia State the safest place in Kansas for students!

          Please discuss this idea and make your feelings known to the leaders at both our post-secondary schools. Emporia’s future is at stake!

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


       I play golf because I like it, certainly not because I’m good at it.

       In early adulthood, I was known as a tennis player who played golf when forced to. I’ve never been “great,” at golf but do have plaques from both the City and Country Club Championships.

       No holes in one, but I did make a 2 on a par 5 about 20 years ago, but today it takes me 4 good shots just to get on that green!

       Golf today is a struggle with a cranky back, bum foot, only one eye, and well you get the picture.  But, golf can still be fun. I shoot my age every time I play hitting 73 after 12 or 13 holes.

       Since March golf has been therapy for my state of mind. Without golf several times a week, I’d be nuts. We have a group of 9 guys that participate in our daily games. Unique is the only way to describe us.

       Our ringleader is retired pharmacist Don Hill who never arrives early and has lots of responsibilities even when he’s on the golf course as he’s never far from his cell phone.

       Our only golfer of note is Dr. Wes Jones who can still play. He’s a shrink and former paratrooper in Viet Nam who never lacks for a joke or opinion many coming on-line.

       Dr. Ken Wright doesn’t play as often as some but still has some game. Fortunately, he’s not as competitive at golf as he was reported to be on the hardwoods.

       Retired Veterinarian Dr. Duane Henrikson is our most improved golfer.  He’s also our registered Democrat, so he has some political responsibilities at times.

       We don’t lack for doctors with Dr. Jim Geitz next in line. He is fun because he seldom loses his temper, but occasionally will shout “well shoot!” Jim’s game is better than he knows.

       Bill Barns and Mike Hudson are engineers by training and are pretty annul in their approaches even to golf. One is fast, the other not so much, but good to have with us.

       Dr. John Patton has joined us of late. He was one of the best athletes ever at Roosevelt High School and a former competitor with me on the tennis courts. He’s still a horse!

       Last is the Dean of ESU’s Business School, Ed Beshaw who plays on weekends. He’s a little young for our group but adds a personality we need.

       As the final member of the group and I play golf for three reasons: exercise, socialization, and a distant third, competition.

       Several years ago it became obvious my competitive days in golf were behind me! If I keep score, it’s by numbers - 1 for a bogie, 2 for a par, 4 for a birdie, etc. I come home from an 18 round and tell Bobbi I scored a 12 or 13 and she asks? “ Is that good?” And I say “ It was today!”

       You see, my golf game is kind of like the Marines who are “Looking for a few good men,” when I play golf “I’m Looking for a few good shots!”

       I’m thankful I can still play a little and I have such a great group of friends who tolerate me.

       I’m Steve Sauder

Something to Think About - 05-13-20



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