Why I think a scandal-plagued speaker is wise to hire a scandal-scarred former speaker

BY: - November 10, 2023

Even during his reign atop the Missouri political world, former House Speaker Rod Jetton’s life was a looming disaster. He’d lost the discipline of his Southern Baptist upbringing and his Marine training. He was drunk on Southern Comfort and power, and it is not hard to see how both inebriations impaired his judgment.   Over a […]

With a new normal emerging in America, lessons from our past could serve us well

BY: - October 30, 2023

In today’s political environment, one could easily conclude that America is in the midst of a metamorphosis, where its character and identity are undergoing radical change. When you consider the major shifts and developments in the public square that have occurred during these first decades of the 21st century, some disturbing trends cannot be ignored. […]

Our ‘thing-oriented’ society puts development ahead of human needs. We all suffer the consequences

BY: - October 23, 2023

It takes concentration not to see certain realities — the mother holding the handwritten sign at the traffic light; the man sleeping under a bridge; the tent cities on public right of ways. But we make the effort. In downtown Kansas City, developers plan an entertainment district with a Ferris wheel centerpiece. There’s also talk […]

The Republican Party has reached a critical crossroads

BY: - October 16, 2023

Once upon a time there was a Republican Party that was identifiable and recognizable by its policy positions and political principles. Whether at the state or national level, what defines the Republican Party today? During its history, it has been known and identified as the party of Abraham Lincoln, and more recently the party of […]

America’s farmers are getting older, and young people aren’t rushing to join them

BY: , and - October 13, 2023

On Oct. 12, National Farmers’ Day, Americans honored the hardworking people who keep the world fed and clothed. But the farming labor force has a problem: It’s aging rapidly. The average American farmer is 57 and a half years old, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. That’s up sharply from […]

Confessions of a birthright citizen

BY: - October 12, 2023

I am an invader. Actually, the son of “invaders.” But with presidential hopefuls Donald Trump, Vivek Ramaswamy and Ron DeSantis having taken aim at the 14th Amendment’s explicit creation of birthright citizenship, it’s clear that “invader” by association is enough to lump me in. I’m the U.S.-born son of Mexican immigrants. My parents emigrated separately, met in this country, married […]

Saddling Steve Scalise with David Duke’s baggage

BY: - October 11, 2023

Almost as soon as Kevin McCarthy lost his position as speaker of the U.S. House, attackers pivoted their artillery toward Majority Leader Steve Scalise, an obvious candidate to replace him. Scalise’s detractors loaded their cannon with the same ammunition fired at him nine years ago, when Scalise sought to become GOP whip, and it exploded […]

Why the UAW union’s tough bargaining strategy is working

BY: - October 10, 2023

The United Auto Workers union isn’t backing down as it bargains for more compensation and better benefits in its new contracts with General Motors, Ford and Stellantis. Under the deft leadership of its president, Shawn Fain, and other officials elected in March 2023, the union has thrown the three companies off balance with a strike […]

A disturbing conclusion about rising maternal deaths: Most are preventable

BY: - October 9, 2023

Our society faces a number of health care challenges, but the one I find most troubling is maternal mortality — women dying as a result of child birth. The actual numbers are quite small but the tragedy associated with them is immense.  Furthermore, these deaths provide a window into the overall functioning, or rather the […]

Capitol Perspectives: The legacy of Missouri’s 2023 legislative session

BY: - October 4, 2023

As Missouri lawmakers prepare for the 2024 legislative session, they should consider how many of their major 2023 accomplishments received limited public attention. The 2023 legislative session focused on divisive issues like restricting transgender medical procedures for minors and restricting students from participating on school sports teams designated for a sex different than the student’s […]

Missouri Capitol renovation plan mentions accessibility. Does this include reporters?

BY: - October 3, 2023

A common anecdote used by disability activists is that the Roman Colosseum is wheelchair accessible.  Translation: Historic buildings have no excuse. But Missouri’s Capitol has long had a myriad of stairways that create a maze for anyone utilizing a wheelchair. I’ve seen parents struggle lifting a stroller over a small set of stairs above the […]

Reclaiming our voices of reason amid all the craziness

BY: - October 2, 2023

In this political season, where it seems that anything is up for interpretation and speculation — truths, codes of ethics, rules of law — where do we turn for a sense of direction or best decision-making? The craziness occurring in our nation’s capital, or our state legislatures, is not all there is. What craziness, you […]