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Guest Columns

  • Close the door softly

    What does it mean to close the door softly?

    It refers to letting things have a peaceful ending. This applies whether this is about a relationship, a job, or any affiliation. When we try to force things into a certain framework or outcome, they just don’t work. Sometimes someone wants a certain individual in their life so much that he/she tries to change this person, or manipulate them. Perhaps we think nagging, bullying or yelling will be an effective motivation to change.

  • Family and faith

    Every family begins with a marriage.

    Two weeks ago, my family got together in California to celebrate our parents’ marriage with a huge party for their 60th anniversary.

    It was a 50’s party, minus the poodle skirts and black leather jackets.

    My sister transformed her garage into a 50’s-style combination soda shoppe and hot rod garage, complete with a juke box in the corner playing classic oldies music.

  • Education initiative reviewed

    It has been a little more than 15 years since the General Assembly revamped Kentucky’s postsecondary system and set a series of far-reaching goals to reach by the year 2020.

    If that seemed a long time down the road in 1997, it doesn’t seem too far now. The good news is that, in many ways, we’re well within reach of what we had hoped to achieve. We got the latest update last month, when the Council on Postsecondary Education presented a comprehensive snapshot of our progress in recent years.

  • KSP crime report analyzed

    Earlier this month, and continuing a trend dating back to the late 1980s, the Kentucky State Police issued its annual report on crime in Kentucky, giving us a much clearer picture of the impact these actions have had on our citizens.

    In one sense, the numbers from 2011 are positive when compared to earlier crime reports. When measured against 1995, there were 50 fewer homicides, 6,000 fewer burglaries and almost 5,000 fewer DUIs last year even in the face of population gains, while auto thefts and robberies were almost half of what they had been.

  • Kentucky’s birthday unnoticed

    There wasn’t a birthday cake or a lot of fanfare, but Kentucky hit a major milestone earlier this summer when it celebrated its 220th birthday.

    Over the years, the commonwealth has been blessed to have quite a few of its citizens make a sizeable mark on the country and even the world.  Daniel Boone, President Abraham Lincoln and Henry Clay are arguably the most famous, and others readily known include Colonel Sanders, the Clooney family and Muhammad Ali.

  • Legislative committees active

    This has been a full week in Frankfort. I had three major meetings with the Transportation Committee that I chair, the Joint Committee on Labor and Industry, and the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Tourism.

  • Attitudes to accomplish your goals

  • OK, everybody, let’s stop!

    The other morning my friend and co-worker Cristy and I devised a solution for all the major problems of the universe.

    Everybody stop.

    Just stop. Take a breath. Step back. Chill out.

    Politicians, stop politicking. Forget about focus groups and pork spending and back room deals and war room strategies. Democrats aren’t evil and neither are Republicans, so stop treating people with whom you disagree as enemies. We’re all Americans, so stop!

  • A fight for shalom

    It was a rare day off in the middle of the work week.

    What to do? What to do?

    My husband had called dibs on the computer and I had already caught up on the antics of the Real Housewives of both New York and New Jersey.

    The only thing left to do was go out and get into a fight.

    Actually, fighting topped my list, trumping reading online pop culture blogs, trumping even shopping for clothes I don’t need.

    Beyond anything else I felt the need to fight - fight for peace, for the shalom of my soul.

  • Aging Baby Boomers present challenges, opportunities alike

    Like the rest of the nation, Kentucky is seeing a definite graying trend as more and more Baby Boomers move past their 65th birthday and a growing number of citizens reach their nineties and beyond.