Research to reality, a life-and-death quandary

Peggy Battin, of all people, understands that life-and-death decisions are fraught with conflicts and ambiguity. Medical personnel give mixed signals. Loved ones don’t want to let go. Even Battin, after all her studies and intellectual wrangles, did not want to say goodbye to her husband, Brooke, when he felt it was time to go.

Kansas City is living down to its high crime reputation

The recent highway shootings are among the grim reminders that Kansas City’s unacceptably high rates of violent crime and murder affect its reputation. It’s essential that leaders keep trying to reduce these rates. They are bad for businesses, bad for tourists and especially bad for residents.

Stand up against hateful ideologies

“While Kansas City-area residents mourn those murdered in the shootings at Jewish centers, and while we pray that the living shall seek justice, we should also learn from these terrible events,” historian Leonard Zeskind writes.

As terror lurks, the heart prevails

Violent political extremism combined with naked hate becomes a potent kind of virus, the sort that disrupts the human brain in ways most civil people on this earth cannot even fathom.

A lonely, tough existence for blacks in Guatemala

Livingston was a must-see place in this nation bordering Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras and Belize. Until Livingston, Bette and I were the only black people we saw in the country of 15.4 million. Livingston is where people who were part of the African diaspora live in Guatemala.

When news looks like promotion

Of course there are plenty of stories that qualify as news that nobody would want to keep in the dark, but it’s also true that many people want reporters and photographers to tell their stories in the interest of self promotion.

Kansas school funding bill is a huge win for Johnson County

Last week Gov. Sam Brownback and the Kansas Legislature made historic strides in bringing more local control to Kansas school districts, particularly to Johnson County and, specifically to the Shawnee Mission School District. They also made great strides for higher education, which has been lost in all the publicity about K-12 funding.