A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Constance Alexander: Three little words from classic book spark timely discussion of timeless issues

Politics, power, and corruption. Can you think of three better words to spark a lively community discussion? On Monday, September 24, at 6:30 p.m., the Calloway County Public Library is hosting a program focused on Robert Penn Warren’s groundbreaking novel All the King’s Men. The book reflects those three little words and provides a launching pad for civil discourse on timeless issues. Readings...

Bill Straub: While McConnell is ‘shaking the treat box’ for money, Republicans will likely keep the Senate

Anyone who has cats (we have four, which, at times, is five too many) can tell you they can be very, well, cat-like sometimes, leaving you wondering if they’re off hiding somewhere or if they somehow snuck out of the house when you weren’t looking and are out in the street ducking traffic. The only way to get them out of their undisclosed location, to cite a chestnut from the President George W....

Danesh Mazloomdoost: Patients deserve further research on affects of cannabis-based medication

As a physician specializing in pain and regenerative medicine, I see pain on the front lines and understand how debilitating it can be. I read and recognize the potential value of specific parts of cannabis, however, marijuana as a whole is a different story. We need to distinguish between whole marijuana and hemp-derived cannabinoids, the latter of which are already legal and marketed. Studies show...

Constance Alexander: The semicolon is a valuable writing tool, that could some day save a life

“The great thing about the semicolon,” I tell my students, “is that it can make your writing look more sophisticated, and forge longer sentences that are flowing, not choppy.” But what I like best about semicolons is how Amy Bleuel transformed the symbol into a badge of hope. Thanks to her, the punctuation mark is a way to honor those who struggle with depression, suicide addiction, anxiety,...

Jason Crosby: Don’t make God a schoolhouse bully — look deeper at meaning of religious liberty

Be cautious of those who insist on posting the phrase “In God We Trust” in schools or demand that everyone says “Merry Christmas” in December. Take note that most of the time the figures we hear advocating for such measures are politicians seeking to gain and maintain power. A lot of people say a lot about which the Bible says very little (or nothing); while saying little about which the Bible...

Mike Farrell: Kaepernick’s motives for taking-a-knee have been lost; find them — and find solutions too

Colin Kaepernick’s message has been overshadowed by storms of protest, by social media blasts back and forth and now by an advertising campaign by one of America’s commercial giants. Could we rewind the tape to the 2016 NFL preseason? The then-San Francisco quarterback took a knee during the pregame National Anthem. Others around the league soon joined him. Kaepernick said it was a protest against...

Jeff Rubin: Happy Grandparents Day, as we recognize the importance of their role in our children’s lives

Today is Grandparents Day. Signed into law by presidential proclamation in 1978, the statue marking this day lists three purposes for the designation: 1) to commemorate and pay respect to grandparents, 2) to recognize the importance that older people can have on the lives of the young, and 3) to give grandparents the opportunity to show love and support for their children’s children. Not nearly...

Letter to the Editor: Workers’ Comp Reforms are good for private and public employers

Private and public-sector employers do not always agree, but when we do come together progress is almost always made for our state. This was the case during this past session of the General Assembly when legislators from both sides of the aisle along with a broad coalition of employers from the public and private sectors worked to pass reforms to Kentucky’s workers’ compensation system for the...

Ron Daley: Like state’s other rural school districts, Lee County has major economic importance

In addition to providing quality education preparing students for the workforce, the Lee County School District is a major economic driver in the community. The school district directly contributes to the educational attainment and future earnings of its youth. The district is the largest employer in the county despite the county’s population and student enrollment loss which has forced school staff...

Bill Straub: Certainly no witch hunt as Mueller moves right along; and a word about ‘great guy’ Art Schmidt

With the November election now less than two months away, Republicans are ratcheting up their calls for a quick and painless end to the investigation being conducted by Special Counsel Robert Mueller into Russia’s apparent maneuvering in the 2016 presidential election that resulted in, and it hurts to say, “President’’ Donald J. Trump (good Lord in heaven). The probe, entering its 15th month,...

Marshall Allen: I am a journalist and a Christian; both the ministry and muckraking serve a higher cause

This story was co-published with The New York Times and ProPublica. More than a dozen years ago I was a finalist for a reporting job at a small newspaper. All I needed to do was survive an interview with the top editor. The other editors warned me, saying their boss took perverse pleasure from smashing the hopes of naive reporters. I braced myself as he studied my resume. His lips curled into a sneer. To...

Constance Alexander: The last holiday of summer also a time to honor the legacy of our labor unions

The pressman always talked too loud; in fact, he shouted. When I asked my father why Daddy explained that the man had to make himself heard above the presses. He had gotten so used to the din, he seemed unable to turn down the volume even when things were quiet. For so many people, work does not stop when the whistle blows, or the boss goes home, or the time clock punches them out. Today, technology...

Eli Capilouto: Memorial Hall art, ‘Witness,’ is a powerful context for more dialogue and conversation

The work of art that now frames the vestibule of Memorial Hall is appropriately titled Witness. The word witness, I have been reminded recently, is both a noun and a verb. It speaks to the intentional act – the strong declaration – of telling a story. And it stands as a testament to the idea, deeply embedded in who we are as a university, to the responsibility we each share to both observe and...

Bill Straub: The view from Trump’s DC hotel is ruined by an ‘ugly’ FBI building — and therein is a story

Senate Republican Leader Mitch “Root-‘n-Branch’’ McConnell has emerged in the past few months as such a snuggling lapdog for “President’’ Trump (Lord have mercy) that even the most adorable Pomeranian might sneer in contempt. The Louisville Republican who, history shows, regularly places the desires of his party above those of the nation he has taken an oath to serve, has been doing the...

Bridget Powell: As a teacher, it’s my responsibility to help students to good mental health and resiliency

Every school year, I take my 5th-graders to the county jail and judicial facility as a culminating part of the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) program. This is usually a somewhat emotional experience for my students. Most have never been in a jail. Walking through the jail doors as we are “locked in,” anxiety kicks in and this experience gets real for my students and me. Leading my students...

Constance Alexander: Justine Riley shares her sensory appreciation of the horse in new book

“Most people think horses are beautiful, but I think they smell good,” says Justine Riley. In fact, she is so passionate about sharing her sensory appreciation, she created a book called “I’m a Horse Smeller.” When she wears the teal t-shirt that depicts the book’s cover, equine enthusiasts approach and tell her they understand exactly what she means. Those who don’t have much experience...

Mitch McConnell: Remembering John S. McCain as a statesman, a family man, a hero, a gentleman . . .

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) delivered the following remarks Monday on the Senate floor regarding the passing of his dear friend and colleague, U.S. Senator John S. McCain (R-AZ): “On Saturday evening, a great loss echoed through our country. Six decades of patriotic service came to an end. We’ve suspected for some time that we’d bid farewell to our colleague, the senior...

Joshua DeWar: Expanding cultural competence among state’s educators is key to academic success

There is a lot of discussion today in the world of education on what it means to be a culturally competent teacher. The world of Dick and Jane books, with their picturesque rural landscapes and happy, White children, apply to very few of our modern schools. Today’s students and teachers come from myriad backgrounds – and understanding what it means to be a part of both groups is essential to...

Letter to the Editor: Fayette Co. Public Schools safety plan paramount to student success, school safety

Commerce Lexington Inc. has held a longstanding belief that education and the success of our students go hand in hand with creating a vibrant city and healthy economy. Having a highly-educated and well-trained workforce is essential to attracting new business and retaining existing business and industry. As such, Commerce Lexington Inc. believes it is imperative to do what we can as a community to...

Jason Bailey: Kentucky needs a new economic agenda, from the bottom up and the middle out

When Kentuckians have made progress in the past — from improving our schools to expanding civil rights — we’ve come together around specific plans to build a better future. Making Kentucky’s economy thrive is a crucial goal we all share today. But Kentuckians across our state see our economy falling short. Despite a declining unemployment rate ever since 2010, there aren’t enough...