Joco spotlight

Watch DOGS volunteers lend a helping paw in Johnson County schools

The Watch DOGS — Dads of Great Students — puts volunteers in classrooms with the aim of being a positive male influence and an unobtrusive security presence. The national program, part of the Kansas City-based National Center for Fathering, was started in 1998 with the goal of making schools safer but has evolved to include academic support and direct interaction with students, catching on across the country in the process.

Mary Sanchez

NRA members need to step up on ending gun violence

For years, former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been the best membership recruitment the NRA could hope for: a walking, talking, Big Gulp-banning embodiment of government overreach. And look what he’s done now, given the NRA yet another gift on the eve of their national convention.

No gap in Kansas law on hate crimes

One difficulty of hate-crime laws can be the high legal standards. Some call for proving not only that a murder had occurred, but at the same time that bias was the motivation. If reasonable doubt exists on either, the whole case could implode. Better to get the conviction and then offer the judge or jury the ability to upgrade the sentence if indeed the crime had been motivated by hate.

The Buzz

C.W. Gusewelle

Blooms proclaim that we are blessed

I’ve been to some places in this world where people should not be obliged to live. To remember those grim scenes — as in spite of myself I sometimes do — is to be reminded that we’re privileged to live in an urban forest in one of the planet’s sainted zones.

The city that holds our hearts

I confess to being fiercely devoted to this community that 464,000 Kansas Citians call home. At risk of being accused of boosterism, I consider this place at the prairie’s edge a collection of treasures.

Columnists

Nation & World

Divers begin pulling bodies from sunken ferry

After more than three days of frustration and failure, divers on Sunday finally found a way into a submerged ferry off South Korea's southern shore, discovering more than a dozen bodies inside the ship and pushing the confirmed death toll to 50, officials said.

Politics

816

816 North

Northland sites keep history alive

History isn’t always framed or boxed or bound. It is alive in the Northland at sites like the James farm, Watkins Woolen Mill State Historic Site and Shoal Creek Living History Museum. 816 North set out to discover the area’s living history sites and the people who are breathing life into the tales of legendary and ordinary Missourians.

Wyandotte & Leavenworth

Charge dropped in Tonganoxie street-painting caper

City had cited Charlie “Tuna” Conrad for painting a green line down Fourth Street on March 15 before Tonganoxie’s St. Patrick’s parade. Various “leprechauns” have done the deed since the late John McCaffrey started the parade in the late 1980s.

Remote monitoring of patients expands the medical frontier

It may not be long before many of us are being watched over by distant health care professionals as we go about our lives. There’s a booming new market in remote patient monitoring technology that promises to change the way we diagnose perplexing conditions, manage recently hospitalized patients and care for the frail elderly.

For Frazier Glenn Miller Jr., a war declaration and a reduced sentence

In December 1987, he was facing 15 years in prison and half a million dollars in fines after mailing a “Declaration of War” to authorities and white activists across the country. In a letter to the judge, Miller said his declaration was wrong. Miller cut a deal with prosecutors, agreeing to cooperate fully with a federal investigation. In less than three years, he was a free man.

Families flee Kansas and Missouri so sick kids can get medical marijuana

Otis Reed will soon move from Kansas to Colorado so he can get marijuana every day. Otis is 2. He and little ones like him who suffer hundreds of seizures a day have become the new face of America’s discussion about marijuana. A growing number of health professionals say medical marijuana, specifically an oil extract called Charlotte’s Web, can help those children. The big question is, why do these families have to move to Colorado to get it?

In 2014, the Boston Marathon is a very human race

This year’s marathon will be a celebration of the sport a year after two pressure cooker bombs exploded, killing three people and injuring more than 260. Sixteen people lost limbs. Qualifying for this year’s marathon was tougher than ever after last year’s tragedy created so much interest in the race. But five Kansas City area runners made the cut. Each brings a special story to Boston.

Stand-in purchase of guns in Johnson County shootings is a puzzle

Authorities are searching for a middleman who is believed to have purchased guns for F. Glenn Miller Jr., the avowed anti-Semite accused of killing three people outside Jewish facilities last weekend. As a convicted felon, Miller is prohibited from buying or possessing a firearm. Such a gun-buying go-between represents a vexing problem for law enforcement.

Casino says defect in cards made by Blue Springs company led to big wins

In the world of high-stakes gambling, the edge between clever play and cheating can be thin and arguable. A lawsuit says poker superstar Phil Ivey, playing baccarat, took advantage of an alleged defect in cards manufactured by Gemaco to cheat the Borgata casino in Atlantic City, N.J., out of nearly $10 million.