Opinion

Opinion: New threat for American ally in Syria

Kobani, Syria — In the direct and disciplined voice of Gen. Mazloum Abdi, the commander of the Syrian Kurdish militia, you can hear the determination that has made the Kurds a great partner for America, and one of the extraordinary survival stories of the Middle East. Mazloum quietly ...

Opinion: It never should have come to this

“Hold tight to your anger, don’t fall to your fears.” — Bruce Springsteen, “Wrecking Ball” It never should have come to this. The first responders who, on a September morning 18 years ago, rushed into toxic clouds that once had been the World Trade Center never should have been ...

Opinion: Some questions for the Democratic candidates

Washington — The Democratic presidential circus pitches its tent in Detroit this week. It will be especially entertaining if the presidential aspirants are asked some questions like these: For Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders especially, but others, too: Three of Barack Obama’s ...

Opinion: Mueller was no savior; that will be up to voters

Washington — I was at the dentist getting a tooth drilled at the start of Robert Mueller’s comparable experience on Capitol Hill. I am the kind of person who cringes intensely while watching anyone fail in a public and humiliating fashion. So it was just as well that I missed the beginning ...

Opinion: New K-12 initiative holds promise

Last week 3,100 offenders were released from federal prison as a result of bipartisan criminal justice reform that will reduce prison populations, provide social services and cut federal incarceration costs. This restructure, years in coming, was helped by an effort from industrialist and ...

Opinion: America’s military muscle in the Persian Gulf

Aboard the Uss Boxer in the Persian Gulf — Capt. Ronald Dowdell was on the starboard side of the bridge, looking toward Iran, as his vessel passed through the Strait of Hormuz on July 18. He’d been monitored by Iranian helicopters and speedboats, but now a drone was closing fast. Dowdell ...

Opinion: So, no Academy Award for Mueller?

Minutes after Robert Mueller III had completed his first round of Wednesday’s congressional testimony, journalists and pundits started weighing in — on his acting abilities. Mueller was “boring” and “phlegmatic.” His performance was “a disaster,” “painful” and “deeply ...

Opinion: Honorary whiteness a powerful drug

You had to become an “honorary white.” That was the status South Africa used to bestow upon black performers from the United States who visited the apartheid regime. The O’Jays, Tina Turner, Ray Charles and Eartha Kitt were among those who received that designation, allowing them access ...

Views from Kansas: ‘Send her back’ hits local nerve

Editor’s Note: Views from Kansas is a regular feature that highlights editorials and other viewpoints from across the state. Oh, for the good old days, when crowds at Trump campaign events merely chanted calls for the imprisonment of a political adversary. “Send her back!” invokes the ...

Opinion: ‘Cadillac tax’ repeal showed bipartisan hazard

Washington — Acting on the principle “Why put it off until tomorrow when you can do the wrong thing today?” the House of Representatives last week voted to repeal a tax that is not scheduled to take effect until 2022. The vote against the “Cadillac tax” was 419-6, a reminder that ...

Opinion: Stop looking for a Democratic Donald Trump

Our vote for president is the most “personal” vote we Americans get to cast. We’re far more likely to base our choice for the U.S. House or the Senate on issues — such as health care costs, immigration or the environment — than we are our presidential choice. In a presidential ...

Opinion: Finding the path in Afghanistan

Kabul, Afghanistan — At the military headquarters here where commanders oversee America’s longest war, an official explains in one sentence the U.S.-led coalition’s bottom-line objective: “Peace is a situation where we can leave, and we don’t have to come back.” But how will the ...

Editorial: Local leaders are working to keep property taxes in check

Local elected leaders deserve some credit for how they have addressed property taxes this budget season. Lawrence city commissioners appear to be on track to hold the property tax rate steady in the upcoming 2020 budget. Douglas County commissioners have committed that they will limit a rate ...

Opinion: GOP leaders are shilling for a bigot

Washington — American politics is now caught in an odd and dangerous form of escalation. The cycle begins with President Donald Trump engaging in some form of divisive prejudice, either out of calculation or compulsion. (A group of elected, progressive women of color, say, should “go ...

Your Turn: Climate change isn’t a single issue; it frames all

Fifteen out of 240 minutes. That’s how much time was devoted to the unfolding climate crisis during the first set of Democratic presidential debates. Six percent of the total time (toward the tail end of the debates) devoted to a topic that threatens our existence as a species. A topic that ...

Opinion: We must reject racism at the ballot box

Washington — When the racist chant began Wednesday night — “Send her back! Send her back!” — President Trump paused to let the white-supremacist anger he had stoked wash over him. George Wallace would have been so proud. That moment at a Trump campaign rally in North Carolina was the ...

Letter to the editor: Misguided SRO editorial

To the editor: I want to thank Lawrence school board member Kelly Jones for raising questions about the School Resource Officer (SRO) program. The July 17 Journal-World editorial suggests that if a program has existed 18 years it doesn’t need to be questioned. I don’t understand that logic ...

Letter to the editor: Crossing a line

To the editor: After watching the recorded chants of “Send her back” at his North Carolina hate rally Wednesday, I conclude that President Donald John Trump and his followers are committing federal hate crimes. The line has been crossed. Even small children are being encouraged to chant. ...

Letter to the editor: Thanks to Carrier

To the editor: Reading the weather reports this week made me think it is a good time to give a shout out to Willis Carrier (1876-1950). Although he is no longer around to hear the accolade, I do sing his praises on these toasty summer days for having invented the air conditioner. Kansas’s ...