A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Jacqueline Coleman: Gov. Beshear and I committed as good teammates, to end divisive political rhetoric

As part of Team Kentucky, Andy Beshear and I made a commitment to be good teammates to our fellow Kentuckians, to end the divisive political rhetoric and verbal attacks by demonstrating the compassion, empathy and leadership we believe they deserve. I wanted to govern with Andy because I believed he would deliver on the promise of unity, people over politics and civil discourse during his time as governor. Six...

Bill Straub: Be prepared, ‘fanning the fames and condemning the fire’ has just gotten started

There was some strange fruit hanging from a tree on the grounds of the state Capitol in the hours before Memorial Day, fruit that was nowhere near as savage and ghastly as the sort Billie Holiday sang about, but strange nonetheless. A proud product of the Kentucky educational system, attending a rally to promote guns that morphed into a protest over state-mandated coronavirus restrictions, drove his...

Dr. Rudolph Buchheit: In Kentucky, we are meeting the engineering talent demand — and much more

Earlier this month, the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education released results of a study assessing engineering workforce trends relative to the offerings and effectiveness of engineering programs of Kentucky schools, colleges and universities. The study found that Kentucky engineering jobs are growing slightly faster than engineering jobs across the U.S., and that earnings for engineers are...

Constance Alexander: Film chronicles 20-year journey to Medal of Honor for Kentucky hero

Some say that the story of a World War II soldier, Lieutenant Garlin M. Conner and the Medal of Honor, has a fairy tale ending. Others would disagree. With a record of courage under fire and a passel of other honors for his performance in the Third Infantry Division, Conner was no super hero, but an ordinary man who demonstrated extraordinary leadership and bravery in battle. On January 25, 1945,...

Gov. Andy Beshear: Kentuckians prove we are a great people — strong, resilient, kind, compassionate

It is hard to believe that Kentucky saw its first confirmed case of COVID-19 just over two and a half months ago. The virus began spreading quickly, escalating like past pandemics such as the Spanish flu. Areas like New York and Louisiana saw spikes that exceeded their health care capacity, and the losses mounted. Here in Kentucky, we took quick and decisive action, declaring a state of emergency after...

Rob and Lauren Hudson: Letter of Common Ground about freedom and health care

Letters for families based on the book “It Can Be Done” @studentsleadusa We write to comment on calls for more government control of healthcare markets. We begin with the positive. Our healthcare system has delivered remarkable medical technology and advances, leading to longer lives and some of the most effective treatments in the world. It’s no secret, however, that healthcare has become very...

Dr. Jay Miller: To improve nation’s foster care systems, listen to those who’ve been through it

In 1988, President Ronald Reagan issued the first presidential proclamation that established May as National Foster Care Month. Since that time, May has been an opportunity to critically reflect on successes in shortcomings in meeting the needs of foster youth and their families. The foster care system is one of unique complexity. Having been in foster care myself, I can personally attest to this...

Al Cross: On Memorial Day, we will get to see a story that was almost never told

Fifty-one years ago last month, my Clinton County High School classmate Paul Conner and I got on a bus in Lexington for a 4-H trip to Washington, D.C., our first visit there. We rode up with his parents, Murl and Pauline Conner, whom I knew mainly as mainstays of the local Farm Bureau. I also knew Murl from my work at WANY in Albany, where we would often read a notice that he would be at the courthouse...

Aaron Thompson: Amid the uncertainty, Class of 2020, you’ll be better off with a college degree

As the head of public higher education in Kentucky, I’m usually asked to deliver at least one commencement address each May. If I were giving one this year, I’d probably start by offering both my congratulations and condolences. I’m certain you never imagined your high school or college career would come to a close during a global pandemic. I’m sorry that your graduation ceremony had to be...

Bill Straub: Where should the public invest its faith? Trust has always been the American way

The late Jimmy Breslin, my hero, said it succinctly: “You’re supposed to be despised.” Breslin was, of course, referring to newspaper reporters, that constant target of critics who complain that they are either paying inadequate attention to a critical subject or they’re paying too much attention to a trivial matter. Regardless, it’s true that reporters are always poking their collective...

Tyler White: Time to end subsidies for wind, solar; coal-fueled plants essential, provide fuel security

As the federal government contemplated how to help people hurt by the pandemic and lockdown, the renewable energy industry was scrambling behind the scenes to use the COVID-19 rescue package to extend something called the Production Tax Credit — one of many government subsidies used to prop up wind and solar producers. The renewables industry didn’t get its way on this particular COVID-19 bill,...

Constance Alexander: Murray’s WKMS Celebrates 50 years with voices from Between the Rivers

Unlike a character in the movie “The Sixth Sense,” I do not see dead people but I do hear their voices, because of Connecting People & Place, a documentary series first broadcast in 1997-98, on WKMS-FM, the National Public Radio affiliate in Murray. What began as a cooperative oral history project between WKMS and Land Between The Lakes Association, ended up as a 13-part series, with support...

Opinion: Kentucky’s research universities — UK and UofL — answering the call now and for the future

By Neeli Bendapudi and Eli Capilouto When the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Commonwealth this spring, Kentucky’s research universities – the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville — answered the call. Local and state leaders turned to us to lead the way in identifying and treating patients, addressing shortages in testing and protective equipment and conducting research close...

Dr. Mark Evers: Kentuckians should make regular checkups, cancer screenings a priority

With COVID-19 dominating the headlines, it’s easy to forget – understandably – about many of the other actions we should be taking to keep ourselves healthy. You’ve heard a lot of guidelines about the importance of wearing masks, social distancing, washing your hands regularly, and much more – good advice that we should all continue to follow as we try to prevent the further spread of the...

Tom Haggard: As a result of COVID-19 pandemic, afterschool community is more essential than ever

When and how students learn has taken on new meaning since the pandemic hit. The shift to remote learning was so swift that many school districts are still working to address the needs of the students who don’t have access to the internet or the necessary tools to complete their schoolwork. In time, this will get fixed. But in the near term, the digital divide is real and putting our most vulnerable...

Al Cross: As Trump’s virus work drags them down, Republicans seem frantic

Republicans facing an election amid a century-rank catastrophe made worse by their president are throwing anything they can against the political wall to see what sticks. Some of what they’re throwing is pretty slippery – trying to discredit experts, shifting the blame to China, or, well, just making stuff up. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had been a voice of reason, repeatedly volunteering...

Robert Kingsolver: Glories of capitalism on ‘Common Ground’ difficult to find for most Kentuckians

Rob and Lauren Hudson have been regular contributors to these pages with their “Letters of Common Ground” proclaiming the glories of capitalism. You have to wonder where, exactly, are they finding this “common ground?” Apparently it lies within the gated communities of the affluent, because most Kentuckians have never set foot on the lush green landscape that unrestricted capitalism...

Bill Straub: Ugliness joins with falsehood to come out in open, revealing McConnell’s disdain for Obama

It’s no secret that Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root-‘n-Branch’’ McConnell has long looked upon former President Barack Obama with the sort of disdain the University of Kentucky faithful hold for Christian Laettner. Now it’s getting ugly. McConnell, of Louisville, is pulling out the falsehoods. And that sound you hear is the dog whistle growing louder. McConnell on Monday aimed some...

Brent Cooper: Newport gaming facility is good first bet, but state should double down on other gambling

The recent announcement by Churchill Downs to construct a $38.4 million gaming facility in Newport’s Plaza Shopping Center that will open later this year is a trifecta for the Northern Kentucky region. First, when completed, the new facility will create about 70 new full-time jobs, not to mention the construction-related jobs the project will produce. Second, the project will help to revitalize...

Constance Alexander: Calloway County Collective makes lists, solves problems in lockdown era

Grocery list, bucket list, hit list. Doesn’t matter. Any list is an attempt to still the beating heart of chance. Mary Scott Buck, founder of the Calloway County Collective, can tell you all about it. Every day she makes a list and checks it more than twice, to mobilize a band of volunteers in a battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. “We got started because on my Facebook newsfeed I kept seeing...