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Opinion

  • A sunny Run for the Roses is always a great day to be a Kentuckian, but that glare on our old Shelby County homes Saturday was even a bit brighter than usual.

    That’s because for the first time in decades we had someone local to root home, a personal chunk of us, a force to steal inside us and transform all those generic impulses of pride and emotion into true partisanship.

  • We are pleased to see that the conversation about whether the Ten Commandments should be posted in our state and federal offices has elevated and remained rational.
    Whether you are a proponent or opponent of these tenets being displayed, you have to feel good about a touchstone topic being brought to the public fore and the issue debated openly through our shared freedom.
    For all laws – all planks of the construction of our government – were built on your simple right to do that: disagree.

  • Jon Court didn’t ride off with the roses at the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, but he is nevertheless a winner.
    His perseverance, his patience, his talent and his character shone beneath a strong spotlight in Louisville last week, and for that we congratulate him.
    Winning horse races, games, political campaigns, agricultural competitions and even beauty pageants all take talent, poise and commitment.

  • The news from Frankfort regarding funding for education has been as gloomy as the recent weather. Last fall we received the news that half of the district’s professional development funds would not be coming from the state. In mid-winter we were notified that the school district was losing more than $500,000 in funding for the current school year.  Then about a month ago, we received notice of more than $300,000 in reduced state revenue for next year.

    How do we plan for such shortfalls?

    That’s a tough one to answer.

  • This is how much one man’s perspective of the world has changed in nine years.

    On Sunday night, as my wife and I sat on our sofa awaiting President Obama to go live  with a stunning, sleep-stalling, late-Sunday-night announcement, we speculated on what awful message we would hear, saying silent prayers for our world, our country and our family.

    And we never, not for one second, not even in an idle thought, speculated that the news we would hear would be that this awful murderer of thousands, Osama bin Laden, had been brought to the ultimate justice.

  • Americans awoke Monday morning feeling better about our world.

    No matter if you live in a metropolis that shook to its roots on Sept. 11, 2001, or in Harrisonville or Chestnut Grove, or anywhere else where residents have quaked in the aftershocks from nearly a decade ago, you feel better today knowing that Osama bin Laden, the dark assassin of this generation, is dead and gone and won’t be doing harm any longer.

  • In the continuing debate among students, parents and administrators concerning the new graduation seating policy for Shelby County Public Schools, we now have a new and important voice being raised if not necessarily heard.

    Members of the senior class at Collins High School have delivered to the administration their considered request to have the seating policy returned to its former structure, which was to seat honor graduates in the order of rank.

  • his open letter of April 18 from the 2011 senior class of Collins High School to the administration at Collins High School was provided to The Sentinel-Newsby Elizabeth Sames:
     
    On behalf of the 2011 Senior Class of Martha Layne Collins High School, we would like to formally object not only to the decision to eliminate class ranking from the seating of graduation, but also the fact that our classmates including valedictorian, salutatorian, and class officers will not be able to speak to their peers as we come together this final day.

  • Wednesday. 12:30 a.m. The tornado sirens are blaring through the wind and rain outside and windows closed against them. My wife’s voice is equally rousing, and I spring from my bed to see what is the matter.

    We grabbed up the kids and scurried to the basement, opened the door slightly and turned on the TV to track whatever mayhem was causing those sirens to blare.

    I’m sure many of you did the same, alerted, awakened and ambulated into early morning emergency response mode.

  • You had to be pleased and heartened by the news that the frighteningly short and deadly ramp from KY 55 onto eastbound Interstate 64 was on tap for repair within the next year.

    That’s what state transportation engineer Matt Bullock told Shelby County Fiscal Court, and we believe Mr. Bullock would not have been so public with his comments if the schedule were not indeed set in at least asphalt.

  • The debate about whether the Ten Commandments should be displayed in governmental buildings is predictable because of its foundation in the conflict of human emotions and beliefs against legal interpretations by the courts.

    When letter writer Linda Allewalt last week again raised the issue about whether the commandments should be posted visibly in government offices in Shelby County, the response from many was equally expected: We believe in these commandments, and they are the foundation for our laws. Thus, they should be displayed.

  • During the past several decades, we have had a number of court rulings:

    §       School-sponsored prayer or Bible reading.

    §       Removal of creches from public property.

    §       Ending the Pledge of Allegiance as mandatory.

    §       Removal of the Ten Commandments from public property.

  • I wholeheartedly support Linda Allewalt in her efforts concerning removal of the Ten Commandments from the walls of Shelbyville’s government buildings (“Ten Commandments must come down,” April 20).

    I don't understand the reluctance in taking it down – unless it's a daily reminder to the religious government employees who might forget? Let's go through the list itself as it

    might apply to a government building:

  • So you think the weather was nasty and no one showed up for your big event? This is how my weekend went:

    An emotional funeral for a beloved family member on Friday, then at my desk at home on Saturday and Sunday, bleeding on the tax altar.

    Please don’t tell me you’re sorry for my loss, but that the tax stuff was my problem for procrastinating. I’ve heard that. I understand. I didn’t mean for the process to be that way, but it just spiraled down that drain.

  • Nine years ago, as a newcomer to the state of Kentucky and a new resident of Shelbyville, I went to the Shelby County Courthouse to get a Kentucky driver’s license. On the wall of that office was a large standalone framed display of the Ten Commandments.

    To understand my reaction to seeing this, one must take the view of 1) a person who is non-religious and 2) a person who had at that time a budding awareness of issues of separation of church and state.

  • Seniors at both high schools are in the final stretch before receiving their diplomas. Excitement is high this year, too, because of some changes that will honor more students – at home.

    Both commencement exercises will take place in the individual school gyms with overflow seating with a live broadcast in the school theaters. This arrangement is made possible because of the reduced number in the graduating class because of the two high schools.

    The celebrations can now occur at home, rather than at the Frankfort convention center.

  • The recent letters to The Sentinel-Newsconcerning seating of honor students at Collins High School commencement reminds me of the same controversy two years ago at SCHS. At that time we were parents of an honor student whose seating was to be based on class rank.

    We had expected this, as this was the tradition at the high school when our older daughter graduated in 2005.  The message this sent was simple: There is competition in the academic world, it is important, and excellence will be recognized.

  • As you have been reading on these pages these past few weeks, there is an obvious and increasingly vocal disconnect between the parents and supporters of students in our county high schools and the administrators with the school district. We dare say there’s even a disconnect with the school board itself.

    There has lingered in their district for a couple of years now a debate – sometimes raging hotter than others – about how high-achieving students should be honored at commencement.

  • It’s always refreshing to encounter a true hero. It’s even better when the person is unassuming and doing an act of human kindness and care rather than for camera time and, even worse, money.

    But that’s what we have in Rodney Kidd, a police officer in Simpsonville.

  • In the 2008 election cycle, there was a phrase one candidate used that was then repeated over and over. The phrase was “putting lipstick on a pig” – meaning, of course, to try to make something that is ugly sound (or look) better.

    Nowhere is that phrase more appropriate than in the discussion over the government shutdown that was averted, literally at the 11th hour last Friday evening.