Opinion and Commentary

Journal-World Editorials

Editorial: Insulting effort
Kansas legislators should drop their effort to place unreasonable limits on who is eligible to serve on a local school board.
October 4, 2015
A survey recently sent to local school boards at the request of Kansas legislators is insulting to board members and probably a waste of everyone’s time.

Local Columns

October 4, 2015

Opinion: Small bridge still a symbolic link
I am the proprietor of a small bridge near Vinland, a few miles southeast of Lawrence. My bridge spans a nameless ditch which winds into humble Coal Creek. From Coal Creek, the waters that pass beneath my bridge flow to the Wakarusa, thence to the Kaw, the Missouri and the mighty Mississippi. At the end of their journey, they spill into the Gulf of Mexico where they mingle with sharks and dolphins.

September 23, 2015

Opinion: 'Win' fails if judiciary loses its independence in Kansas
If the Legislature should “win” this contest, it would not really win at all. In that case the judicial system would operate at the whim of the Legislature. There would no longer be an effective separation of powers.

September 19, 2015

Saturday Column: Awards raise concerns over local high school equity
Last week, the Journal-World carried a story about the National Merit scholarship program with photos of 10 Free State High School students, two Lawrence High School students and one Bishop Seabury Academy student who have been selected as semifinalists for the prestigious award. Why the disparity in the number of Merit semifinalists between Free State and LHS?

September 18, 2015

Your Turn: Just Food seeks to restore trust, stability
Just Food, Douglas County’s largest food bank, needs the community’s help! This is such a hard column to write because Jeremy Farmer, Just Food’s former executive director, was my friend. We worked together as city and county commissioners, sometimes with the opportunity to help the most vulnerable folks in our community, particularly the hungry. That’s why I was glad to say yes to Jeremy’s invitation to join Just Food’s board this year. After all, it’s a great organization with important work to do. But now, like so many others, I’m left scratching my head. The only work I’ve done on behalf of Just Food in the past couple of months is scrambling to keep its doors open. On the heels of a Jeremy-sized scandal, Just Food’s future is tenuous, at best.

Syndicated Columns

October 4, 2015

Opinion: Police investigations need civilian eyes
What can I do? Not quite six months ago, a reader named Tracy posed that question to me and I, in turn, posed it to you. Tracy, a 55-year-old white woman from Austin, said she was sick of hearing about unarmed African-American men being injured or killed by police. “What can be done?” she asked. “What can I do? I’m sincere in this question. I want to DO something. What can that be?”

October 3, 2015

Opinion: Putin’s maneuver humiliating to U.S.
If it had the wit, the Obama administration would be not angered, but appropriately humiliated. President Obama has, once again, been totally outmaneuvered by Vladimir Putin. Two days earlier at the United Nations, Obama had welcomed the return, in force, of the Russian military to the Middle East — for the first time in decades — in order to help fight the Islamic State.

October 2, 2015

Opinion: Dreams run into reality in Syria
In 1992, not long after the Soviet Union collapsed, I wandered through the massive Russian Embassy compound in Damascus. As a center of Soviet power off limits to Westerners, it had been a beehive of activity, with about 5,000 civilian and military advisers. Now it was virtually deserted.

October 1, 2015

Opinion: U.S. Navy facing new demands
The Navy’s operations, on which the sun never sets, are the nation’s nerve endings, connecting it with the turbulent world. Although the next president may be elected without addressing the Navy’s proper size and configuration, for four years he or she will be acutely aware of where the carriers are. Today they are at the center of a debate about their continuing centrality, even viability, in the Navy’s projection of force.
Letters to the Editor

October 3, 2015

Letter: Just Food thanks


We asked, and you answered. This community’s outpouring of generosity has overwhelmed us. We believed Just Food’s mission was too ...

Letter: Noise control


My husband and I recently moved back to Lawrence. It is still the Lawrence we knew and loved, and, yet, ...

Letter: Safest route


I live in southeast Lawrence and use Kasold to get from 31st Street to Sixth Street to see my primary ...

Letter: Kasold questions


Wow! I can hardly wait to learn which of the few remaining north-south streets across the city will be throttled ...

Submit your letter

October 2, 2015

September 30, 2015

September 28, 2015

Sports columns