Thursday, March 26, 2015

Why I don’t like Wichita

Some of my friends seem stunned at my negativity to the city of Wichita and the community that belongs to it. They are right I am negative and I don’t like this town. Here are some reasons why:
I have lived in several towns in Kansas and Missouri. I have lived in Hutchinson and Junction City and Lawrence. I have lived in Clinton and many other towns in West MO. I was raised in St. Louis until 13 years. Wichita is the most repressive city I have ever experienced.
This city is as resistance to new ideas and change as water is resistant to mixing with oil. New ideas are never welcome in such an environment. It just doesn’t work. Without new ideas the town can’t change and improve. Innovators with new ideas are run out. The town, its leaders and its industrialist chiefs all expect conformity. They want Autotrons who will do what they ask and never ask questions.  
Anytime I worked for a company here I have been discouraged from discussing new ways to do things. I usually hear “we’ve always done it that way and that is not going to change.” After a while it becomes clear that it is better to follow directions and not question what I’m told. To question anything invites getting the reputation of a trouble maker. I have learned to follow rules even when it leads to disaster. That way when things go wrong I can say “I just followed the instructions and did what I was told.”
One year they started Visioneering Wichita. The first statement they came up with is “This is a God centered community.” There you have it. No atheists or agnostics allowed. If you are not “God centered” stay out. The community is over-religious and antagonistic to those who are not religious. Such dogmatism does not mix well for an environment that seeks innovators. Visioneering turned out to be a complete waste of time.
People here get all their inspiration from the Republican Party and ridicule anything else, such as Democrats and socialists (not to be confused they are NOT the same). No matter how bad the Republican ideas are people here refuse to believe these things are wrong. If an idea doesn’t work here, the presumption is that we didn’t do enough of whatever we did that didn’t work. It’s like a man who is convinced gasoline can put out a fire. Every time he throws gas on a fire it gets bigger, but he just keeps throwing on more gas thinking his mistake was not using enough gas. The bottom line is that people here CAN’T learn from their mistakes.
In my thirty years of living here in Wichita, off and on, I have never seen a program developed here that worked. If someone says this is a new program that developed in Wichita, my instincts are to run as fast as I can from that idea.
The people in Wichita demand conformity. They want everyone to act alike and think alike. There is no room for a free thinker. Words like new, innovation and imagination are oxymoron to the name Wichita.


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