China's ‘war on pollution’ is long overdue

Last week, Li Keqiang, China’s premier, at the annual meeting of the nation’s legislature said the country must wage war on pollution. Certainly, it’s long overdue. China is the world’s No. 2 economy, but it can’t continue as one of the world’s worst polluters. China has to play catch up to U.S., not in economic growth, but in air, land and water quality.

Downtown Kansas City will be THE party place next week

As if losing an hour from the jump to Daylight Savings Time over the weekend isn’t bad enough, downtown Kansas City will be a tough to navigate for many sleep deprived folks next week as some streets close and people fill the area for the Phillips 66 Big 12 Men’s Basketball Championship.

Adults text while driving more than teens, survey finds

Texting while driving is more of a problem for adults than for teens, a AA Foundation For Traffic Safety survey finds. The survey should prompt more states legislatures to toughen laws to include adults in banning cellphone and texting while driving along with stiffer penalties.

RadioShack closings sad for hobbyists

News that RadioShack plans to close up to 1,100 stores will make it a little harder for hobbyists to make a quick dash to the neighborhood shack for some important part or gadget to finish a project. Blame fickle and constantly changing consumer electronics needs and competition from big-box stores.

Liberty Memorial stands out in travel magazine

The National World War I Museum at the Liberty Memorial is a headliner in the AAA Midwest Traveler magazine. The exhibits “literally put visitors in the trenches of the war,” the article says. The artifacts of that great war should serve as a reminder of the millions of lives lost and that no war is worth the cost of human suffering.

In the U.S., guns have more value than children

A shooting near home reveals what matters most to people in America. Guns have rights in the Constitution. Children don’t. Instead of the empty, often-used phrase, “Children are our future,” in America, because of the Second Amendment, we should proclaim and put it on our money: “Guns today, guns tomorrow, guns forever.”

Nation reports fewer obese preschool-age kids

The obesity trend finally starts moving in the right direction. It’s also good that the Obama administration is pushing to phase out junk food advertising at schools. But to make it work, either the federal, state or local governments will have to fill the schools’ hunger for money with what the advertisements have provided.

Battle continues to build over same-sex marriage

Kansas came close to taking a step further with the House voting to allow people to refuse service to same-sex couples on religious grounds. Fortunately, the Senate backed away from the measure. The Arizona Legislature, however, didn’t get it and passed similar legislation.

Overcoming the past is critical to improving Kansas City schools

To gain more community support, Kansas City Public Schools should hold televised truth and reconciliation public hearings to let people express their feelings about the district’s troubled past. We will never get to that “greater good” until we overcome age-old awful feelings about majority-minority schools like Kansas City’s.

Nun gets severe sentence in protest against nukes

Locking up 84-year-old Sister Megan Rice for three years for breaking into a nuclear weapons complex in Oak Ridge, Tenn., is like authorities taking Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny on a perp walk in front of a preschool. The sentence seems severe. Hopefully, this isn’t the start of a trend.

Flight turbulence, injuries investigated

It is not uncommon for people who fly frequently to encounter turbulence on passenger planes. The problem could be connected to climate change because of the increased moisture in the atmosphere from the melting polar ice caps caused by the continued burning of fossil fuels.

Early voting push in Missouri continues to advance

Petitions seeking early voting in Missouri to boost civic participation go against the Republican-controlled state legislature’s efforts to restrict voting by requiring people to show government-issued photo identification cards before they can cast ballots. Call it the Missouri two-step: one step forward and two steps backward.