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.

Drought in Brazil another sign of global warming

The drought in California has grabbed people’s attention, but a similar water shortage is gripping Brazil. Just like the drought in California, the drought in Brazil is expected to hurt that country’s coffee and other agricultural production. Global warming is real, and the effects are becoming more difficult to deny.

Kansas City’s future depends on overcoming a racial divide

Because of rapidly increasing racial and ethnic demographic changes, the future in the Kansas City area will depend on this community overcoming its racist past and present. That won’t be easy because of racism’s deep roots and its regenerating ability to hurt and exclude people of color.

Snow, cold, ice contribute to slow economy and job creation

Even though joblessness is at a five-year low, job creation was less than expected for the second straight month. The awful weather with terribly low temperatures, snow and ice throughout the country — including the South — played a role in keeping people out of stores and depressing jobs and the economy.