Your Turn

To submit a lengthier opinion piece about a topic of public interest, please email your submission to letters@ljworld.com and indicate that you would like it to be considered for a “Your Turn” column. Submissions must bear the name, address and telephone number of the writer.

Opinion: Judicial independence under attack

Judicial merit selection was first adopted right here, in this part of the country. Will its death begin here as well, in this year’s Kansas judicial retention elections?Merit selection is just a shorthand. The plan Kansas and many other states use is officially called the Missouri ...

Opinion: Trump is Brownback on national scale

Sam Brownback’s approval ratings as governor of Kansas are dismally low, yet polls show Donald Trump winning Kansas. How can both of those things be true? It does not make sense for Kansans to boo Brownback but vote for Trump.Over the last year, Brownback has consistently polled in the 20 ...

Opinion: Medicaid change starts with Legislature

Kansas’s hardline opposition to Medicaid expansion has to change, if health care and health outcomes are going to grow in rural Kansas. Given the governor’s position, and a bill (HB 2552) passed in 2014, that change will have to begin in the Kansas Legislature. A change in the Republican ...

Opinion: Brownback coalition an utter failure

With the approach of upcoming elections I am reminded of a private conversation five years ago with Gov. Sam Brownback’s chief of staff, who mused: “The real issue is whether conservatives can govern.” At that time I held out hope that the relatively new governor and his legislative ...

Opinion: Kansans, are you better off now?

Debating incumbent Jimmy Carter in 1980, Ronald Reagan pulled one of his classic moves. Reagan summed up decades of political science research with a pithy, homespun-sounding question. Once thought impossible, inflation and unemployment were both high at the same time, so the economy was on ...

Opinion: Facing a Trump-Brownback ticket

Like a supernova, Donald Trump has illuminated the electoral universe in 2016. Win or lose, he is likely to explode, showering his light and heat upon thousands of other races across the country, from county commissioner to U.S. senator. Like a red dwarf, Sam Brownback’s presence has shrunk, ...

Opinion: We must restore confidence in the value of education

It is time for a reality check.Americans are losing confidence in higher education, its quality and its availability. According to a recent poll by Public Agenda, 57 percent of the public are uncertain about the necessity of college; 46 percent say a college education is a questionable ...

Opinion: Brownback dealing in dreams, not reality

Recently, Gov. Sam Brownback held a press conference to invite Kansans to email him ideas for a new school finance formula. That sounds nice. Can anything be wrong with asking people for input? Well, actually, quite a bit.The big problem: A new school finance formula requires resources — ...

Opinion: Brownback’s economy spin wearing thin

For six years Gov. Sam Brownback has put his spin on the state of the state’s fiscal condition. Perhaps we have all been too dense to appreciate the underlying grand strategy of this supremely skilled budgeteer and his legislative allies who knew in advance that planning both pleasure (tax ...

Opinion: Kansas Chamber represents only a very few

The tail wags the dog when it comes to the politics of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce. A few businesses underwrite the chamber’s electioneering with results contrary to the interests of most Kansas businesses.The Kansas Chamber Political Action Committee conducts the chamber’s campaign ...

Opinion: Kansas especially reckless, thoughtless on taxes

I’ve lived in the Midwest my entire adult life. By temperament, I’m a Midwesterner — relatively pragmatic, optimistic within reason, and generally kind (I hope). I’ve lived in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, and — for the past 37 years — Kansas. Traveling through this ...

Your Turn: City’s action diminishes access to arts

In 1974, when Lawrence decided not to leave engagement in art up to the private sector or the marketplace, the Lawrence Arts Center and the City of Lawrence entered a collaboration to bring arts exhibitions, performance, and visual and performing arts education to the entire community. Our ...

Your Turn: Universities face uncertainty

In a matter of weeks — yes, weeks — our colleges and universities will be in full swing for the 2016-17 school year.And what can we expect? A survey of 12 college presidents and a review of the literature give us pretty clear insights. If pushed to define the upcoming academic year in a ...

Your Turn: Cuts will impact Cottonwood clients

Most days, there is news about the governor’s attempts to stem the state’s massive tax-cut-induced hemorrhage. School payments are delayed, highway funds are seized, KPERS loans are unpaid, and Medicaid reimbursements are cut 4 percent across the board.School and hospital voices are big and ...

Your Turn: Secretary shares Kansas ag stats

The agriculture industry has historically been a fundamental part of the Kansas economy, so we were surprised and concerned to see the article in the June 28 Journal-World that claimed agriculture was no longer a strong part of the “three-legged stool” of the Kansas economy.When the author ...

Your Turn: Group helps build sports participation

This is a great summer for sports fans. A partial line-up includes: NBA and NHL finals, Summer Olympics, baseball, three golf majors, Wimbledon, Copa America and UEFA Euro, more than a dozen NASCAR and Grand Prix races, and the Tour de France.  This is also a great time for the business of ...

Your Turn: Storm bearing down on Kansas schools

I grew up in central Kansas, where (for better or for worse) dark stormy skies were more likely to draw me outside with my dad than send me for cover in the basement. I’ve seen big storms, I’ve cleaned up the mess they leave and I’ve helped rebuild in the weeks and months after. It’s ...

Your Turn: Higher education must address criticisms

As another academic year draws to a close, higher education is facing increasing criticism and scrutiny. Seemingly, little progress has been made in long-standing areas of concern.  • Higher education is unaffordable for many. Over the last 20 years, average tuition and fees have increased ...

Your Turn: Humans also part of nature

I never fail to read columns by Leonard Krishtalka, as they appear in the Journal-World. They are always insightful, intellectually honest and they tell us what we need to hear, not necessarily what we want to hear. However, I do take exception to one of his statements, listed as fact in the ...

Your Turn: U.S. candidates must face the facts

Cal Thomas and others think there “must be a better way to nominate and elect a president” (“Voters need better choices,” Journal-World, April 5), one that attracts smarter, more capable people. Thomas blames a “ravenous media” that scavenge the candidate’s life for the ...