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Editorials

  • Safer pedestrian crossings needed on busy streets

    Kingston is a wonderful place to walk if you just want to get exercise along the lakefront.
    But if you ever find yourself trying to cross busy Kentucky Street on foot — watch out.
    Last week a teenage girl was struck by a car as she was trying to do just that. While her injuries didn’t seem to be life-threatening, the accident could have been deadly.
    Even at well-designated major intersections like Race Street at Kentucky Street, pedestrians are dangerously pitted against motorists.

  • Safer pedestrian crossings needed on busy streets

    Kingston is a wonderful place to walk if you just want to get exercise along the lakefront.
    But if you ever find yourself trying to cross busy Kentucky Street on foot — watch out.
    Last week a teenage girl was struck by a car as she was trying to do just that. While her injuries didn’t seem to be life-threatening, the accident could have been deadly.
    Even at well-designated major intersections like Race Street at Kentucky Street, pedestrians are dangerously pitted against motorists.

  • Free-speech issues abound on Internet

    By GENE POLICINSKI
    First Amendment Center
    Freedom of speech might logically seem to apply the same way whether the speech takes place on the street corner or on the Internet.
    But that basic First Amendment premise is as yet unsettled in our new Web world. An intricate set of laws and judicial opinions on free speech and defamation has evolved over several centuries, from a system that existed mainly to protect the elite from criticism to one that enables anyone to seek compensation for what they see as unfair damage to their reputation.

  • Discussion, not closed doors, may better serve official

    By GENE POICINSKI
    First Amendment Center
    Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal has a complaint about a news report by an Atlanta TV station, but his objections likely would be better served by an open debate than a closed door.
    A reporter and photographer from WAGA-TV, a Fox network station, were refused entry May 13 into Deal’s office for the signing of a controversial immigration bill. A day earlier, the station had reported on an investigation involving Deal’s election campaign and a fundraising company linked to the governor’s daughter-in-law.

  • Graduation at church means more conflict

    By CHARLES C. HAYNES
    First Amendment Center
    Like thousands of other public school students across the country, seniors in Irving, Texas, will graduate from high school next month — although in Irving they’ll go to church to get their diplomas.
    The venue is the Potter House, a megachurch led by Bishop T.D. Jakes, site of Irving commencements since 2004.
    But this year’s ceremony will be the last mixing of secular and sacred during graduation in the Dallas-area school district.

  • Trying to stifle student reporting just won’t work

    By GENE POLICINSKI
    First Amendment Center
    Wanna keep a secret? Betcha can’t — particularly when it involves an arrest and later the resignation of a local teacher.
    But when allegations of improper conduct involving a teacher are involved, principals still keep trying to stifle the news through the heavy-handed — and futile — method of censoring the school publication.

  • Budget time needs full attention

    Now is the time county and city governments are cobbling together their budgets for the upcoming fiscal year.
    This difficult work is taking place in difficult economic times.
    Grants are harder to come by, state and federal funding is being cut back, and yet, state and federal governments continue to add more requirements for local governments to live up to.
    Local governments also have to deal with the unrealistic expectations by some residents to have Cadillac services at a Kia price tag.

  • Atheists, the First Amendment and equal treatment

    By CHARLES C. HAYNES
    First Amendment Center
    In case you missed it, on May 5, the president of the United States called the nation to prayer — just as past presidents have done on the first Thursday of every May since 1952.
    Mandated by Congress, the National Day of Prayer was marked this year by events around the country, many of which were organized by the National Day of Prayer Task Force, an evangelical Christian group that maintains the self-described “official site” on the Web for celebrating the day.

  • Celebrate World Press Freedom Day

    By GENE POLICINSKI
    First Amendment Center
    Thanks to the First Amendment, I’m free to write these words — and you’re free to read them.
    But for about 84 percent of the approximately 6.9 billion people with whom we share this planet, that’s not the case. They live in nations where the press is only “partly” free from government control or criminal intimidation, or not free at all.

  • What’s next for America now that bin Laden is gone?

    Public Enemy No. 1 for America and for much of the rest of the world is dead.
    Osama bin Laden was killed in his compound in Pakistan by a Navy Seals team, putting an end to his lengthy, personal reign of terror.
    We’ll still have more terrorists to deal with. Killing one man, no matter how high he ranks, will not put an end to hatred, cruelty and misunderstanding.
    For all the death and destruction bin Laden has left in his wake, it strikes us that his worst blow to America was what he did to us as a people.