Just wanted to express my opinion on a couple of issues.
One is the horrendous news regarding "Planned Parenthood" practice of selling body parts. I was stunned, like many of you, by the callous way the doctors discussed the killing, dismemberment and sale of unborn children. The truly sad thing is how our views of right and wrong have changed so drastically. Try to picture your grandparents' reaction if someone had told them 50 years ago that we would get to the point in our society where it was perfectly acceptable to murder babies and then butcher their bodies to harvest organs and parts to sell to the highest bidder. Make no mistake, there are plenty people who will defend this awful practice as perfectly fine. Those who define a fetus as nothing more than "tissue" will argue that the organs harvested will help scientists discover wonderful cures to all the illnesses in creation. As one state representative said, and I tend to agree, "If that is what it is going to take to cure me, I would rather stay sick." Be not mislead by my comment, I support research in finding cures for illness, but not at the point of murdering unborn babies. When the Lord calls me and His mission for me on earth is complete, if I have an organ or tissue that will help another person live longer and do the Lord's work, I give my permission. The difference is, I give my permission. The unborn does not. I feel it is not the right of the pregnant mother, doctor, scientist or politician to make that decision. I will support efforts to stop this practice in Missouri. I know there will be legislation drafted well before session convenes dealing with this situation.
The investigation into Senator Lavota's sexual harassment of an intern was concluded. There was sufficient evidence to suggest that something did occur and as a result, he resigned his office. These allegations are deeply troubling and should not be tolerated on any level. The actions of a few give a very poor view of legislators as a whole. I am deeply disappointed in these legislator's actions and assure everyone that I, and most Missouri legislators, do not condone this behavior.
The House Representatives tried to pass a new ethics bill last session but failed to get enough support for it. I am in support of crafting a new bill that addresses this behavior as well as campaign finances. In any working environment, there is going to be some social fraternizing, but elected officials should hold themselves above any impropriety.
--A one-day road trip
If you are thinking about having one more outing for your family before the end of summer, you may want to consider a road trip to Jefferson City. It is our State Capitol, and it is filled with lots of history. There are several things to see and do.
Here is a listing of some of the things that are available:
Missouri State Capitol Tours: Capitol tours are given Monday through Friday every hour on the hour (excluding the noon hour) for walk-in guests. Reservations are required for groups of 10 or more. During these months, walk-in guests may participate in the group tours.
You may call 573-751-2854 to arrange a tour; however, it is much easier to review what times are available and make your tour reservation by scheduling it online at mostateparks.com/statecapcomplex/statecapitol/tours.htm.
The Executive Mansion: This has been the home of the governor and the first family since the 1870s. It is available only by reservation/appointment -- made at least 24 hours in advance. Tours are 9 a.m. to noon and 1-3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. From March 1 to May 15, the same times are also available on Wednesday. There are no tours in August and December. One may make a reservation by calling 573-751-7929 or by going online to mostateparks.com/statecapcomplex/.
Jefferson Landing Historic Site: The Landing is open every day from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. There are three areas of interest to visit: the Union Hotel, the Lohman Building and the Christopher Maus House. Orientations for a self-guided tour of the Lohman Building and a film on the history of Jefferson City are given every half-hour with the last tour starting at 3:30 p.m. Tours are offered March 1 through Labor Day. Walk-ins are always welcome in both the Lohman Building and the Union Hotel's Rozier Gallery. For additional information or to schedule an orientation, call 573-751-2854. Reservations can be made for groups of 10 or more at mostateparks.com/statecapcomplex/.
The Lewis and Clark Presentation: Located between the State Capitol and the Executive Mansion, volunteers are on duty on the weekends. Times are: Saturdays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sundays from 2-4 p.m. and Holiday Mondays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., from mid-May to mid-September. They will also try to make presentations to fit the schedules of the attendees on weekdays. To schedule a presentation, contact the Jefferson City Parks and Recreation at 573-634-6482.
The Supreme Court Building: Reservations are highly recommended for a group of more than 10 and can be made by contacting the Missouri Supreme Court at 573-751-0418. To make the experience as informative and enjoyable as possible, the Supreme Court judges provide their law clerks to guide and visit with those who attend. The free tour is offered to the public on the half-hour from 9 am to noon and from 1--4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding public holidays and times when the court is hearing oral arguments.
Runge Conservation Nature Center: Located north of Highway 50 on Route 179, the center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon until 5 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. More information is available by calling 573-526-5544. Their website is http://mdc.mo.gov/regions/central/runge-nature-center.
The Highway Patrol Safety Education Center and Enforcement Museum: For tours of 10 or more, call 573-751-3313, ext 149. In this tour, students will view the museum, which features law enforcement antiques and guns, alcohol, drug and seat belt displays. The museum is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday; and the location is 1510 East Elm. More information is available on their website at wegoplaces.com/Attraction_214256.aspx.
The Missouri State Penitentiary Historical Site: Tour the oldest continually operating prison west of the Mississippi. The Missouri State Penitentiary (MSP) was decommissioned in 2004 and now serves as a great historic landmark in downtown Jefferson City.
Select from a variety of tour options including 2- and 3-hour history tours where you will learn about the 168-year history of the prison. Also available are ghost tours and paranormal investigations where you will hear about the first-hand ghostly sightings at MSP and hunt for paranormal activity. Private tours for groups of 15 or more are available. Call 866-998-6998 to make arrangements or book your tour at MissouriPenTours.com.
Jefferson City General Tour Information: More information is available at http://visitjeffersoncity.com/.
I continue to pray daily for the Lord's guidance in making decisions as your state representative. As always I welcome and appreciate your help, support, contacts and opinions. Please pray for me, the legislative body, and pray to preserve our freedoms.