Editorials

Urban-rural

A couple of Kansas studies released this week are pessimistic about the chances of stemming the population shift from rural to urban areas of the state, but they also suggest some opportunities for growth in several counties, including Douglas.The fact that rural Kansas is losing population ...

Ballot slots

The failure of the Kansas Legislature to approve redistricting maps has created plenty of uncertainty about the summer and fall election calendar, but one date remains firm: Candidates for county and township offices and precinct positions must file for election by noon on Friday.This year, ...

Information gap

The city of Lawrence recently did its police department a significant disservice. In fact, about every year at this time, city officials damage their own department by failing to give the public a detailed accounting of complaints made against Lawrence police officers. Earlier this month, the ...

Symbol of support

It was hard to believe last week that even the discovery that 300 flagpoles were missing from the Lawrence Veterans of Foreign Wars post would keep the flags from flying at Memorial Park Cemetery this weekend.We just knew someone would step up and help sustain this longstanding local tradition ...

Funding irony

There’s a certain amount of irony in new requirements approved by the Kansas Legislature in an effort to improve student retention and graduation rates at state universities.The bill forwarded to the governor lowers from 10 percent to 5 percent the portion of students who can be admitted to ...

Construction zone

Road construction season has once again descended upon Lawrence.This week, a Sixth Street repaving project from Iowa Street to Monterey Way got started. Construction crews will keep one lane of traffic open in each direction through the duration of the project, which is scheduled to be ...

Rainy day funds

The uncertainty of the state’s financial situation and how it will affect K-12 funding for the next few years should make Lawrence school officials rethink a couple of recent spending decisions.This doesn’t look like the right time to be depleting district reserves and making new spending ...

Amazing session

“We’re living in historic times, and Kansas — the world is looking at us right now,” said House Speaker Mike O’Neal at the conclusion of the most contentious legislative session in recent memory. “Everybody’s just going to be amazed, and your constituents will be very proud of ...

Economic roles

Lawrence city commissioners recently agreed to continue moving forward on a proposal to create a new economic development structure for Lawrence and Douglas County.It’s not a bad idea to look at ways to revamp the current lackluster strategy. The proposal being considered would create a new ...

Admissions goal

The new admissions standards presented to the Kansas Board of Regents last week wouldn’t necessarily make it harder for students to get into Kansas University, but it could make it less automatic.For students who aren’t prepared for the academic demands of a major research university, ...

Raising the bar

Public enemy No. 1 for the Lawrence police used to be Last Call, the bar in the 700 block of New Hampshire Street. A few years ago, it was a near-weekly occurrence for police to find guns in patrons’ vehicles and to respond to calls of other dangerous actions in and near Last Call.In May ...

Deciding issue?

What does it say about the United States and its people when we now are told the upcoming presidential election may be determined by what voters in six or seven so-called swing or pivotal states think about gay marriage?President Obama has come out and touted his strong personal support of gay ...

Arts funds

Gov. Sam Brownback has signed the legislation creating a new Creative Arts Industry Commission for the state. The next step is to approve the necessary funding to make the new entity viable.A merger of the Kansas Arts Commission and the Kansas Film Commission was proposed by Brownback at the ...

Tax standoff

Kansas legislators and Gov. Sam Brownback are playing a game of political “chicken” that could have a profound effect on the state.Sitting on the governor’s desk is a tax-cut bill that the nonpartisan Kansas Legislative Research Department has determined will produce a state budget ...

Rec questions

At tonight’s meeting, Lawrence city commissioners are scheduled to consider the first formal action on a proposed super-large recreation complex at the northeast corner of the intersection of Sixth Street and the South Lawrence Trafficway.The site, approximately 150 acres, is to be annexed ...

Overreacting

The high school years pack a lot of challenges on a teen, with tests of will, ranges of emotions, physical and mental maturation, evolution of relationships, learning to drive and 7 a.m. classes. Then there is homework, play rehearsals, sports and band practice.So, during the final weeks of ...

Time to reflect

Commencements and graduations at state and private universities are times for celebration, congratulations, family reunions, speeches intended to inspire the graduates, picture-taking, high-fives and an environment of excitement and enthusiasm.It is also a time to note the sacrifices made by ...

Keeping track

When a sex offender in Kansas moves from the state and doesn’t register his new address, he becomes the concern of the U.S. Marshals Service, which enforces sex-offender laws across state lines.It’s common for sex offenders to not re-register when they move, as a Journal-World investigation ...

After paying ‘debt,’ then what?

I promised Russell I would ask you something.We met last week in a medium-security correctional facility. There, I spent a couple hours talking with a group of men who are studying for their GEDs. I stressed to them the need for long-term goals, the criticality of education in an era where ...

Out of touch about Afghanistan

President Obama had every right to celebrate the first anniversary of Osama bin Laden’s death with U.S. troops in Kabul. No one can doubt the magnitude of that achievement — under his command.But everything else about Obama’s Afghan trip had a surreal feel, including his speech to the ...