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Opinion

  • “Hillbilly Elegy” isn’t a political book per se. It is “a memoir of a family and a culture in crisis.” But the bestseller by J.D. Vance offers insights into political attitudes of white working-class Americans, and in particular, those of my tribe.

    Vance, a former Marine and Yale Law graduate with Scots-Irish roots in Eastern Kentucky, recollects growing up poor in Middletown, Ohio, where his papaw and mamaw moved as teenagers from Jackson, Ky., because Armco Steel offered good jobs for mountain migrants.

  • A little shot can’t hurt you, but it can prevent what could potentially kill you.

    It’s flu season in Kentucky, with cases already confirmed. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists Kentucky, along with six other states, as having already experienced regional outbreaks.

  • If you are a black man in America, exercising your constitutional right to keep and bear arms can be fatal. You might think the National Rifle Association and its amen chorus would be outraged, but apparently they believe Second Amendment rights are for whites only.

  • Hillary Clinton will almost certainly win Monday night’s epic presidential debate on points — and still could lose.

    It’s hard to see how Clinton, who has marinated in public policy for 30 years and is preparing for the debate like it is the invasion of Normandy, won’t best Donald Trump on substance.

  • Donald Trump’s diatribe on immigration Wednesday night dispelled any conceivable doubt: He is a dangerous demagogue who rejects the values of openness and inclusion that made this country great. Rarely has an American politician given such an un-American speech.

  • Donald Trump’s speech in Arizona has occasioned wailing and rending of garments among the commentariat and “respectable” people everywhere.

    At bottom, the cause of the freakout is simple: Trump believes in immigration laws, and the country’s elite really doesn’t.

  • I’ve been involved in politics for the better part of a lifetime, and have spoken at a lot of public meetings over the years. There’s one question, I think, that I’ve heard more than any other: “If I want to be an informed citizen, which sources of information should I consult?”

  • As we transition into September and children are settling into their school year routines, I am excited to participate once again in the America’s Legislators Back to School Program. Hosted by the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL), the program helps legislators educate young constituents in their classrooms on the values of civic participation and the legislative process.

    This event is nationwide, and I am happy to be participating again in District 14.

  • The first Labor Day was celebrated on Tuesday, Sept. 5, 1882, in New York City. While the specific originator of the idea for holiday is contested, it’s intent was clear. The day was designated by the Central Labor Union as a time to honor working men.

  • To the editor,

    Thanks for printing Randy Patrick’s excellent article on the front page June 26 concerning the direct harm of tobacco use.

    There is also harm of second and third-hand smoke to everyone else around smokers. The harmful carcinogens float in the smoke, and others are forced to breathe them indoors or outdoors.

    If you grew up around smokers, you know this firsthand.

    Smokers, if you won’t care for your own health, please think of others’ health.

    Rita Davis, SCN

    Nazareth

  • LEE H. HAMILTON
    Director of the Center on Congress
    Indiana University

    Now that the conventions are over, I know that all eyes are on the fall presidential campaign. But I’m going to ask you to shift your focus a bit, to Congress. Don’t do it as a favor to me. Do it as a favor to the country.

  • TERRY WELSHANS
    Community Columnist
    terry.welshans@gmail.com

  • Democrats have done a remarkable thing this week in Philadelphia: They have framed this election as an epic struggle not just to continue the policies of President Obama but also to renew the sunlit, optimistic Americanism of Ronald Reagan.

  • The Democratic Party has perhaps never been so radical or so conventional.

    The Democrats are now to the left of President Barack Obama and are desperately trying to placate the teary-eyed, obstreperous shock troops of the Bernie Sanders Revolution, yet they also are portraying themselves as the party of sobriety and traditional political norms.

    This year, Democrats want to fight the man and be the man, and running against Donald Trump, they might manage the feat.

  • With only nine days remaining until the deadline to file for any office, some local races have a good representation of political candidates to select from, and candidates for other offices remain scarce.

  • It seems to me that we have been blessed with two public servants that think a lot alike: John Royalty and Anthony Orr. Their philosophy is “my way or the highway.” I think if our other elected officials can’t rid themselves of these two problems, then we desperately need to elect officials that can and will do their job!
    Phil Carter
    Bloomfield

  • If you look at the polls, it is clear who’s winning the 2016 presidential contest: Barack Obama.

    There remains the technical impediment that the president is constitutionally barred from a third term. But the longer the campaign goes on, the higher Obama’s approval rating rises. This should be bad for Donald Trump and good for the eventual Democratic nominee, almost certainly Hillary Clinton. But it is even better for Obama’s legacy.

  • Even Donald Trump’s defenders on the right are hard-pressed to argue that he is conservative. He is, nonetheless, a kind of conservative dream candidate.

    Few politicians in memory have so powerfully tapped into and expressed the conservative id, which has long yearned for a Republican politician willing to heap the verbal abuse on the Clintons and, especially, on the media that they so manifestly deserve.

  • In this tumultuous election year, those described as “populists” have rallied angry Americans by blaming others for problems — Mexican immigrants, Wall Street investors, Muslims, evangelical Christians, liberals, conservatives, the rich, the poor.

    Once, however, there were leaders who inspired us, not by who they were against, but by what they were for — a promise of a better future for all of us.

    Bobby Kennedy was that kind of populist.

  • The latest controversy involving the Bardstown Police Department and the city’s accusation against a former officer of destroying files was easily avoidable.

    On Tuesday, the city claimed former police Capt. Tom Roby destroyed important files that are unrecoverable as he was cleaning out his office when he retired. He is accused of shredding paper documents and deleting his hard drive. The city claims it has no way of knowing what was destroyed. Implicit in its report is that there was malice behind Roby’s alleged actions.