A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Judge William Bertelsman dismisses lawsuit against Washington Post filed by CovCath student Sandmann

Staff report One of three lawsuits against national news media filed by lawyers for then-Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann has been dismissed by Eastern District Federal Judge William O. Bertelsman. Bertelsman heard oral arguments in Covington earlier this month in the $250 million lawsuit against the Washington Post. Lawsuits against CNN and NBC are pending. In all, Sandmann sued for amounts...

Bill Straub: Rand Paul’s excuse for voting against 9/11 victim’s compensation bill was deficit. Really?

Sen. Rand Paul wants it both ways. That, as you likely realize, is par for the course with politicians who too often say one thing and then do something different, hoping no one notices. But it’s particularly striking for the Bowling Green Republican who presents himself as the Drakon Kholkikos when it comes to guarding the federal treasury, tersely rejecting various efforts to fund initiatives that...

Climate change report: Few places will be unaffected by extreme heat conditions by midcentury

Increases in potentially lethal heat driven by climate change will affect every state in the contiguous U.S. in the decades ahead, according to a new report and accompanying peer-reviewed study in Environmental Research Communications, both by the Union of Concerned Scientists. Few places would be unaffected by extreme heat conditions by midcentury and only a few mountainous regions would remain extreme...

Constance Alexander: One small step toward history in the making; now, how about creating a better world

If it weren’t for my brother-in-law, I would have missed the moon landing in 1969. I was spending the summer with my sister Jeanne and her husband, David. They lived in the Bay Area of San Francisco. Haight-Ashbury was hot, Janis Joplin was still singing, and the Berkeley Barb newspaper was the nexus between free speech and free sex. We, of course, were not part of that scene. My sister was a librarian...

Lauren and Rob Hudson: America is exceptional; education and training is key to jobs, the economy

This week, we focus on how education and training can make or break America’s ability to remain an exceptional country. Education and training, now more than ever, will be keys to our country’s economy and jobs. Earlier in our nation’s history, more Americans could get by without as much education or training. Today we have fewer high-paying jobs for people who have less education or less training...

Al Cross: McGrath stumbles, Broihier steps up, others in wings, then there’s Mitch McConnell

The very idea that Kentucky voters would turn out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell next year, given his and their allegiance to President Trump, seems the stuff of fiction. But Amy McGrath made the all-but-impossible look possible in the first day of her Senate campaign last week, setting a first-day record of $2.5 million. McGrath thus raised the prospect that the national following and fund-raising...

Bill Straub: Trump doubles down on congresswomen of color who ARE already where they belong

“This country is a hellhole. We are going down fast.” — Donald J. Trump, Fox News, May 20, 2015 Enough. Enough already. President Donald J. Trump, better known in these parts as President Extremely Stable Genius, appears to be morphing into Lester Maddox, telling a quartet of progressive Democratic congresswomen with darker skin than his own that they should return to whence they came if...

Commentary: Public health is where science, politics meet but that doesn’t change need for vaccinations

By F. Douglas Scutchfield and Al Cross Special to KyForward Public health is the nexus of science and politics. Unfortunately, the two frequently do not mix well. A recent example involving childhood immunizations prompts real concern for the erosion of science in the name of politics.  State Sen. Ralph Alvarado, physician and lieutenant governor candidate with Gov. Matt Bevin, recently declared: “I...

Constance Alexander: Historian Jill Lepore’s book chronicles life of ‘Anonymous’ woman named Jane

A few days into my brand new job at AT&T, I was called into the Division Manager’s office for a chat. He complimented me on my taste in clothes and my demeanor, assuring me I would do well in the corporate world if I learned to smile more. He framed his parting words as fatherly advice. “Don’t be one of those women’s libbers.” That was more than thirty years ago, and I like to think...

Lauren and Rob Hudson: Positive messages for youth; exceptionalism through education

Columns for families based on the book “It Can Be Done” @studentsleadusa In this column series we write about fifteen parts of life which most people find to be favorable, productive common ground. We refer to them as “pillars of exceptionalism.” Many of the pillars can be covered in a single column, but not today’s pillar. Today’s column addresses how education and training can affect...

Sid Miller: Presidential candidate Ross Perot was agriculturist who never forgot deep Texas roots

As Texas and the nation mourns the loss of H. Ross Perot, many might remember him as a tech business tycoon, a quiet philanthropist, an unsuccessful candidate for President, or perhaps as an American patriot. But I’ll bet you there’s one word that rarely appeared in the many obituaries written for Mr. Perot this week:  agriculturalist. Perot Born in Texarkana on June 27, 1930, Henry Ray Perot...

Bill Straub: Enter fighter pilot Amy McGrath who will need big fire-power against Mitch McConnell

Former fighter pilot Amy McGrath is hoping that politics, like love in the old Sammy Cahn-Jimmy Van Heusen song, is lovelier the second time around. McGrath, the Democrat who fell to Rep. Andy “Empty Suit’’ Barr, R-Lexington, in a close-but-no-cigar race for the Commonwealth’s Sixth Congressional District seat last November, has emerged from the fog to challenge bigger game – Senate Republican...

Beth Davisson: Employers have important role in combating Kentucky’s opioid epidemic

Kentucky employers have a growing front-line awareness of the devastating impact the opioid epidemic is having on our state. They know that this epidemic is more than a public health issue. It is also a serious workforce issue that must be addressed – with employers playing a key role – if they are going to meet their challenges of finding and retaining workers. As Jonathan Copley, CEO of Aetna...

Constance Alexander: Celebrating a birthday happy, healthy, and blessed and marveling in life’s miracles

Celebrated my birthday last week, July 1, same day as the births of Princess Diana, Olivia De Havilland, Tommy Dorsey, and Esteé Lauder. The day also marked the invention of sunglasses in China in the year 1200, and the start of the bloody Battle of Gettysburg in 1863. In 1898, the Rough Riders stormed San Juan Hill, and in 1916 Ike and Mamie Eisenhower said “I do” in Denver, Colorado. On the...

Lauren and Rob Hudson: Exceptionalism through respect for faith, a positive message for youth

Columns for families based on the book “It Can Be Done” @studentsleadusa Every thoughtful person knows religion raises some of life’s biggest questions. Should a person believe in a higher, godly power? If so, is that godly power good, bad, or maybe even a little of both? What type of religion, if any, should a person practice? The purpose of this column is not to say which religious faith,...

Richard Nelson: Remembering our nation’s 243rd birthday and the soul-stirring 56 words that define us

Just a few days ago I was in Washington D.C. where I visited the National Archives and saw the Declaration of Independence. It was featured alongside the U.S. Constitution and other historical documents in the dimly lit rotunda. It was amazing to see our founding documents in person. Yet I had trouble deciphering the words. Centuries had taken their toll on the parchment and the ink was fading. I couldn’t...

Al Cross: Beshear, Bevin, Alvarado finagling with the facts, but everyone wants their own version of truth

People and politicians have always wanted their own versions of the truth, facts and science be damned, but the modern media environment has made it easier to do that – and to fool others into mistaken belief. Witness the Kentucky governor’s race. When Attorney General Andy Beshear, who is the antithesis of nimble, went off-script June 26 and called his Democratic candidacy “an opportunity ....

Commentary: If enacted, Governor’s pension plan would further undermine an already broken system

By Rep. Joe Graviss and Rep. Buddy Wheatley Special to KyForward With Governor Bevin expected to call a special legislative session soon to pass his public pension plan, we are reminded of Henry Ford, who famously said his customers could have cars painted “any color, so long as it’s black.” For weeks now, the debate has focused solely on the governor’s bill and a few tweaks he’s made. Legislators...

Bill Straub: Civics lesson for Independence Day and the most joyful event of them all — press bashing

Tis the 4th of July, time for baseball, firecrackers, backyard barbeques and the most joyful event of them all, press bashing. As usual, it’s the president of the United States, Extremely Stable Genius, leading this Independence Day parade, asserting reports that his administration dropped plans to add a citizenship question to the 2020 census form are “FAKE!” Forget for a moment that the...

Jason Dunn: Kentucky knows SNAP work reporting requirement isn’t working, and here’s why

Food assistance through the SNAP program has been getting harder for some low-income Kentuckians to access during the past year because of new work reporting requirements. Thousands of families have lost benefits as a result. As changes to the SNAP program started taking effect over the last year, we have maintained that mandatory work reporting requirements create bureaucratic hurdles and deny people...