A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Commentary: Kentucky’s incoming governor has a mandate to restore voting rights, should take action

By Eliza Sweren-Becker and Sean Morales-Doyle Brennan Center for Justice   On Election Day, voters in Kentucky made a strong statement in support of expanding democracy and restoring voting rights to people with past felony convictions, building on a years-long trend around the country. Ending Kentucky’s policy of lifetime felony disfranchisement was a prominent part of Andy Beshear’s platform...

Tara Kaprowy: Details of a rural upbringing can make for an exceptional story in college admissions essays

I live in a place where one of the best lunches you can get is a bologna sandwich from Nelson Valley gas station. It’s not a fancy sandwich and it’s not a fancy place, but there is something about it that is good and honest and makes you feel like you are suddenly sitting snugly inside 1962. Pretty often in the summer, it can take some time to get to Nelson Valley because cars get hung up behind...

Mitch McConnell: Democrats fail to fund national defense, put partisan agenda ahead of armed forces

At the end of October, President Trump announced U.S. special operations forces eliminated Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the world’s most wanted terrorist and the vile leader of ISIS. Whatever your politics, every American should express sincere gratitude to the intelligence professionals and servicemembers who carried out this brave defense of the American way of life. Kentuckians should be especially proud...

Bill Straub: Sen. Rand Paul cuddles up to Trumpism using the oldest, lamest excuse — everybody does it

Sen. Rand Paul appears to be joining other members of the flock in an exodus from the once-grand, old Republican Party and cuddling up to a new political sect – Trumpism. Paul, R-Bowling Green, who at one time called the object of his devotion “a delusional narcissist’’ and compared him to Joseph Goebbels, is doing everything except wash the feet of President Donald J. Trump, aka President...

Ron Daley: Are we losing our democracy in the nation and in Kentucky? What’s wrong and how do we fix it?

It took nearly 200 years for the great experiment created in 1787 at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia to become a true democracy. After 232 years America is losing elements of its democracy. The question remains will our nation and the Commonwealth of Kentucky keep their democratic framework? Historians point out that many of the delegates to the Constitutional Convention had serious reservations...

Constance Alexander: Remembering ‘Kristallnacht’ and the persecutions of Jews throughout history

Imagine. A crisp fall evening at home. The sun has gone down; you’ve just had dinner. Suddenly, the sounds of a crowd in the distance, moving closer. The growing din brings you to the window. Peeking out from behind the curtains, you see a mob coming down the street. Armed with bricks, pipes and other weapons, they clearly have mayhem in mind. Their flickering torches are beacons of intolerance....

Lauren and Rob Hudson: Positive messages for youth — overcome negative outside influences —

Columns for families based on the book “It Can Be Done” @studentsleadusa None of us are islands unto ourselves, isolated from our environment. In fact, we can’t help but be influenced by outside factors such as media, popular culture, and peers. Unfortunately, these outside factors present special challenges today. Let’s compare how these outside factors worked many years ago in America to...

Kyle Keeney: Developing new drugs is expensive, but failing to develop them comes at even greater cost

The cost of medicines we depend on for our health has been a major topic of public debate. Biopharmaceutical innovation is reshaping the fight against chronic disease and saving lives, but all too often this is missing from the debate. Developing new cures is expensive, but the cost of not developing them is even higher.  The Kentucky Life Science Council was created to support the research and innovation...

Al Cross: For Andy Beshear, ‘I’m not Matt Bevin’ actually mattered; Bevin now knows words matter too

What seemed like Andy Beshear’s unspoken campaign theme – “I’m not Matt Bevin” – turned out to be sufficient after all, contrary to opinions expressed in this space more than once.                The Democratic attorney general ran a solid, steady campaign that gave voters little to fear – contrary to the alarmist, abusive rhetoric of the governor, which only confirmed the...

Bill Straub: Looks like Bevin managed to step on his own tail, but don’t count Mitch out just yet

It was during the Republican National Convention in Houston in 1992 and renowned columnist Molly Ivins was talking about Clayton Williams, the Republican gubernatorial candidate in Texas who, despite all odds, lost to Democrat Ann Richards as a result of highly erratic behavior and questionable comments, like publicly recounting various adventures in a Mexican cathouse. Ivins allowed that the Williams...

Melissa Martin: When adults bully, kids suffer; it’s malicious — how can we create a world without it

Adult bullies can be found and seen everywhere. How can we create a world without this awful behavior? “Every day thousands of young people experience bullying from their peers while at school, after school in their neighborhoods, and even when they are at home, through social media and texts,” PACER points out. Founded in 2006, PACER is a National Bullying Prevention Center. But, here’s my...

Constance Alexander: Our votes matter, casting them is the least we can do; see you at the polls!

Susan Shea won the poster contest; Kay Williamson and I came in second. We felt gypped. Our entry was better by far. All Susan did was to cut a photo of a blindfolded man from Life magazine and write the caption, “Don’t Vote Blind” in thick black crayon. Kay and I had developed a cartoon-like storyboard that promoted the importance of voting, using a pair of stick figures fashioned from brightly...

Rob and Lauren Hudson: Positive messages for America’s youth — focus on achievement not envy

Columns for families based on the book “It Can Be Done” @studentsleadusa There will always be people in this world who earn more money than us or have things we want. How will we view the people doing better than us? We get to choose 100% what we think about them. We could choose to be jealous. We could choose to criticize or tear people down. We could say to ourselves and others, “They...

Chris Perry: Kentucky’s electric cooperatives work to make sure rural voters show for gubernatorial election

Will rural voters show up in the 2019 Kentucky gubernatorial election? As political campaigns and pundits ask that question, Kentucky’s electric cooperatives have been working to make sure that the answer is a resounding “Yes.” Because co-ops are owned, operated and were built by the very people we serve, we are dedicated to improving Kentucky’s quality of life and advocating for issues that...

Al Cross: The values that drive voters will be the key as Kentuckians prepare to head to the polls Tuesday

Gov. Matt Bevin told The New York Times that Tuesday’s election won’t be close – that he will beat Attorney General Andy Beshear by 6 to 10 percentage points. “I think you’re going to be shocked at how uncompetitive this actually is,” he told reporter Jonathan Martin, who has a knack for getting politicians to say what they think. Bevin may have based his prediction on what happened four...

Bill Straub: Ah, the memories of George Wallace’s yesteryear revisit KY in Bevin, Cameron campaign

Return with us now, for a moment, to those thrilling days of yesteryear, when Alabama Gov. George Corley Wallace, whose face, a witness once observed, resembled a clenched fist, stood before the state capital in Montgomery to declare “in this very heart of the Great Anglo-Saxon Southland’’ — “segregation today . . . segregation tomorrow . . . segregation forever.” It was Jan. 14,...

Wayne Lewis: School resource officers are an integral part of each of Kentucky’s communities

Part of my daughter’s morning school arrival routine is stopping to say “Hi!” to Officer Steve, her school resource officer (SRO). And daily, even with all he is managing during morning drop-offs, he never fails to share a smile or a laugh with her. I am there enough to know that Office Steve enjoys similar relationships with many kids, not just my daughter. As a parent, I am more thankful for...

Constance Alexander: A lesson in paying closer attention to important things hidden in plain sight

My wedding ring was gone. Amidst comings and goings in a hectic week, I lost track of it. After searching through luggage, pockets, and the usual nooks, I even prayed to St. Anthony, the patron of lost things. Nada. I called the hotel where we stayed and asked them to search the room, but they found nothing. After a week, I concluded it was gone forever. Serves me right, I figured, for not paying attention....

Lauren and Rob Hudson: Positive message for America’s youth; exceptionalism through patriotism

Columns for families based on the book “It Can Be Done” @studentsleadusa Patriotism means being proud of our country, grateful, and willing to stand up for it. By looking at America’s positives, we find many good reasons to be patriotic. To begin with, we built the world’s largest economy and achieved a high standard of living. As we achieved, we became the world’s most generous nation with...

Jacob Clabes: ‘Unexpected friends’ can happen; embracing them can become unexpectedly wonderful

On Thursday morning, after finishing my hurried morning routine of rousing my three sleepy kids, preparing the day’s lunches and spiriting them off to their respective schools, I returned home and stood before my desk to begin the day. Like any other morning, the chatter of the news was on in the background as I went about my usual business. On this particular morning, an unusual solemnity interrupted...