A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Billy Reed: It’s time to update Kentuckys state song and send ‘My Old Kentucky Home’ to the dustbin

This proud traditionalist is ready for a change. I can no longer, in good conscience, defend “My Old Kentucky Home” as our state song. Its warranty expired about 1960 or so, but only now am I ready to send it the way of Jefferson Davis and Stephen Collins Foster. The truth is, the song has become an embarrassment. Why, in this day and time, should we continue to support anything to do with slavery?...

Ed Massey: Collaboration is key to delivering effective educational programming to Ky’s students

Earlier this year I was asked to participate in the Kentucky Coalition for Advancing Education (KCAE). As an individual who has been involved in Kentucky’s educational system for nearly 30 years, I welcomed this invitation. Trying to understand how we can make our delivery of educational programming and curriculum more effective is always at the core of advancing education. This initiative allowed...

Al Cross: Gov. Andy Beshear may be masking a reason for not going to Fancy Farm… masks

When Gov. Andy Beshear said he and Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman wouldn’t attend the Aug. 7 Fancy Farm Picnic because there are no elections this year and they wanted some family time, they left Democrats unrepresented at the annual political speaking event that is nationally known for its partisan and intra-party clashes, even in non-election years. For some, it was a signal that Kentucky Democrats’...

Bill Straub: Recent efforts to undermine president are especially despicable, even for Mitch McConnell

It’s no secret that Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell is full of it. What’s stunning is the incredible amount of it the Louisville lawmaker continues to shovel out on a daily basis. McConnell entered the Senate chamber on Monday to bemoan President Biden’s inability to capitalize on what he characterized as the golden opportunity presented to him on a platter by the previous GOP administration,...

Brian Matthews: Fair chance hiring is key to impactful criminal justice reform in Kentucky

Kentucky lawmakers have made major strides in criminal justice reform. Just last year, the House Judiciary Committee passed two bills that lowered the criminal penalties for possessing trace amounts of controlled substances and gave judges the option to consider graduated sanctions against offenders who violate terms of their probation, instead of just sending them straight back to prison. The business...

Constance Alexander: 31st anniversary of Americans with Disabilities Act showcases everyday heroes

Four-year-old twins Max and Major Lindberg, along with their parents and big sister Malena, are a team of superheroes. Working together every day, this family overcomes obstacles to accessibility, advocating for change in big and small ways to make the world a better place. Before Max was born, he suffered an intraventricular hemorrhage or IVH. He has cerebral palsy, epilepsy, and is considered medically...

Lynn James: We’ve made it halfway through 2021 — remembering what was, as we move on

We’ve made it halfway through the year – already – filled with fireworks, cookouts, and gatherings. And that’s not all the celebrating we did that we are moving forward with life in these United States. We saw 2 billionaires blast off into space as private citizens on the plane-like Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity and the pilot-less Blue Origin’s New Shepard. One billionaire...

Billy Reed: He was a giant of Ky. journalism, but there was a lot more behind David Hawpe’s public persona

When I first got to know David Hawpe, I thought he was just a little crazy. I say that lovingly, not to detract from any of the accolades cited by obit writers after his death last weekend at 78. To explain what I mean we must go back to the fall of 1965. I was soon to be named assistant sports editor of The Herald, and David, fresh out of the UK School of Journalism, had been hired by the Associated...

Mac Brown: Political gamesmanship with spending could jeopardize recovery from COVID-19

While Gov. Andy Beshear writes in his editorials that he is effectively reaching across the aisle, truth is, a lot more needs to be initiated by his administration and not just responding to the Republican legislative overtures. Further, Gov. Beshear needs to stand up to Democrats in D.C. on their political gamesmanship with spending proposals, and work more closely with Republican lawmakers here in...

Commentary: Cameron’s decision regarding public officials’ private devices sets dangerous precedent

By Amye Bensenhaver and Scott Horn Special to NKyTribune Daniel Cameron has given the green light for public officials to hide public records on their private devices. Remember the controversy around public records on Hillary Clinton’s private email server? The one used in part to get around public disclosure laws? That kind of thing is no problem in Cameron’s Kentucky. In a three-page open records...

Bill Straub: Dr. Anthony Fauci isn’t perfect, but Rand Paul and company’s accusatory antics cross the line

I’m tired of morons. Now, by moron, I don’t mean the Curley of the Three Stooges sort who at least provide a modicum of entertainment. I’m referring to anyone who allegedly has exhibited at least a fair amount of intelligence yet insists on appearing before God and everybody to issue inane statements, act self-satisfied in doing so, and renders himself or herself the subject of ridicule. These...

Rick Christman: State legal system salted with shady characters with too much power over daily lives

Just after being elbowed from our attention by pandemic tunnel vision, the juiciest judicial scandal was on the boil. You might have missed the story of a Northern Kentucky Family Court judge and her courthouse escapades, the details of which are far too salacious to be repeated in this publication. In August 2020 this judge was removed from the bench by the Kentucky Judicial Conduct Commission, bringing...

Constance Alexander: Recalling memories of Girls Scouts, girl power and summers at Camp Sacajawea

Sacajawea was a Girl Scout camp in northwest New Jersey. It was cheap, democratic, no frills. We slept in tents, bathed in cold water, ate every meal whether we liked the food or not, earned badges, created lanyards and other arts and craft projects, and sang songs around the campfire. Every day we discovered girl power in new ways. Camp was definitely low-tech, stubbornly plebeian, and nothing like...

Jason Bailey: Expanded Child Tax Credit is landmark victory against child poverty, let’s not let it vanish

This week Kentucky families began benefitting from the most extraordinary policy change to address child poverty in many decades — payments of up to $300 per child, per month to help ease the costs of raising kids. These payments are advances on an expansion of the child tax credit contained in the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Previously, families got a $2,000 credit per child when they filed...

Gov. Andy Beshear: Largest budget surplus in history adds to Kentucky’s already-booming economy

For months now, Kentucky’s economy has been heating up and we have seen a slew of positive economic development and new jobs announcements. Last week, that heat grew hotter when the state budget office reported we are ending the 2021 fiscal year in the best shape of my lifetime, with a general fund surplus of over $1.1 billion – the highest ever in the commonwealth – and a 10.9% increase in general...