IllinoisTimes - Guest Opinion https://illinoistimes.com/articles.sec-33-1-guest-opinion.html Tue, 17 Sep 19 00:00:00 -0400 en hourly 1 Paul Findley remembered names https://illinoistimes.com/article-21591-paul-findley-remembered-names.html Paul Findley remembered names
 There is power in names. That is something of which former Illinois Congressman Paul Findley was keenly aware. Findley, a Republican from Jacksonville, died last month at age 98. Findley, who se...]]>
Planting seeds of what comes next https://illinoistimes.com/article-21581-planting-seeds-of-what-comes-next.html Planting seeds of what comes next
The Amazon burns, urged on by Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro, an elected official who is all-consuming, literally. I do not understand why we continue to elect Neros to positions of power, to lea...]]>
Concerts brought Springfield together - First year a good test for the future of the Y Block https://illinoistimes.com/article-21529-concerts-brought-springfield-together.html Concerts brought Springfield together - First year a good test for the future of the Y Block
 It would seem as if Springfield’s new favorite night this summer was Thursday. If you weren’t at the weekly Knights of Columbus Mega Jackpot drawing, you were likely out with family and frie...]]>
KC’s Jackpot is about more than money https://illinoistimes.com/article-21507-kc%25E2%2580%2599s-jackpot-is-about-more-than-money.html KC’s Jackpot is about more than money
 I wouldn’t consider myself a gambler. I never learned to play cards, my poker face is the exact opposite of Lady Gaga’s and a night at the horse races never elicited much interest from me. H...]]>
Consider more inpatient mental health treatment https://illinoistimes.com/article-21491-consider-more-inpatient-mental-health-treatment.html Consider more inpatient mental health treatment
Santa Fe, Texas – Last week, I sat in this small Texas town and listened to a mother tell me how a gunman killed her son as he hunkered in a classroom closet. Her boy was one of 10 people killed in...]]>
Don’t just focus on elections, but on how we elect https://illinoistimes.com/article-21459-don%25E2%2580%2599t-just-focus-on-elections-but-on-how-we-elect.html Don’t just focus on elections, but on how we elect
 A few years ago, I was at a polling place here in Indiana where a long line of people stood waiting to vote. A woman recognized me and called me over. “Why is it,” she asked, “that you pol...]]>
You think this weather’s bad? Illinois in the Depression was worse. https://illinoistimes.com/article-21420-you-think-this-weather%25E2%2580%2599s-bad-illinois-in-the-depression-was-worse.html You think this weather’s bad? Illinois in the Depression was worse.
The Great Depression was a dark time in Illinois history, with mind-numbing unemployment, homelessness and wage losses. State residents also had to contend with horrific weather.Though climate extreme...]]>
The day terrorists destroyed Black Wall Street https://illinoistimes.com/article-21403-the-day-terrorists-destroyed-black-wall-street.html The day terrorists destroyed Black Wall Street
June 1 of this year was the 98th anniversary of the annihilation of Greenwood, a community in Tulsa, Oklahoma, known as the “Black Wall Street.”  Following the massacre of African-Americans b...]]>
Denied communion but who cares? - The church’s influence has waned https://illinoistimes.com/article-21376-denied-communion-but-who-cares.html Denied communion but who cares? - The church’s influence has waned
 After being elected to the Illinois legislature in 1936, Richard J. Daley would do the same thing every morning in Springfield.The future mayor of Chicago would kneel and a priest would intone:...]]>
How much federal debt can we afford? https://illinoistimes.com/article-21361-how-much-federal-debt-can-we-afford.html How much federal debt can we afford?
A few months ago, the federal debt we have accumulated over the past decades crossed the $22 trillion mark. That’s a record. And it’s surely not going to be the last.According to Congressional Bud...]]>
A full pension payment? Don’t be fooled. https://illinoistimes.com/article-21333-a-full-pension-payment-don%25E2%2580%2599t-be-fooled.html A full pension payment? Don’t be fooled.
 Many have reported that the state legislature, in its budget agreement, made its “full” payment to the five state pension systems. While this may be technically true, it is misleading becaus...]]>
Pritzker gambles on new direction https://illinoistimes.com/article-21322-pritzker-gambles-on-new-direction.html Pritzker gambles on new direction
Democratic Gov. J. B. Pritzker and the legislature have gambled on a new direction for Illinois. The dramatic new course seeks to turn our state from a government mired in conflict, impasse and perenn...]]>
The key to democracy? Persuasion. https://illinoistimes.com/article-21292-the-key-to-democracy-persuasion.html The key to democracy? Persuasion.
 I am lucky enough these days to be in regular touch with young people – students – who are interested in public service. I find hope in their quality, energy and motivation, and they press m...]]>
Community must engage with police https://illinoistimes.com/article-21281-community-must-engage-with-police.html Community must engage with police
There is a way forward with criminal justice: examine what works, and strengthen it; examine what doesn’t work, and change it. Law enforcement and the community share the responsibility and share th...]]>
I’m outwitting and outworking my Parkinson’s https://illinoistimes.com/article-21255-i%25E2%2580%2599m-outwitting-and-outworking-my-parkinson%25E2%2580%2599s.html I’m outwitting and outworking my Parkinson’s
 Parkinson’s is a label that has been attached to me for nine years. The only positive was that it explained slight oddities I detected in my walking and fine motor skills during the previous t...]]>
Tax holidays for Illinois gambling https://illinoistimes.com/article-21232-tax-holidays-for-illinois-gambling.html Tax holidays for Illinois gambling
 Gov. J.B. Pritzker could immediately raise billions of new tax dollars by simply taxing Illinois gambling at the average rates of other states. Duped Illinois legislators have shortchanged pensi...]]>
CWLP rule would slow Springfield solar https://illinoistimes.com/article-21203-cwlp-rule-would-slow-springfield-solar.html CWLP rule would slow Springfield solar
 As a physician, I support clean energy alternatives that decrease our reliance on coal-powered electricity plants that produce air pollution impacting respiratory ailments and toxic coal ash tha...]]>
Too many people in prison - There are good alternatives to mass incarceration. We need to regain our balance. https://illinoistimes.com/article-21186-too-many-people-in-prison.html Too many people in prison - There are good alternatives to mass incarceration. We need to regain our balance.
Four decades ago, we began to create a new problem: mass incarceration. In 1974, Illinois had 6,000 people in prison. Now, Illinois has more than 40,000 people in prison. In the same period, other sta...]]>
What Michelle O doesn’t know about divorced dads https://illinoistimes.com/article-21161-what-michelle-o-doesn%25E2%2580%2599t-know-about-divorced-dads.html What Michelle O doesn’t know about divorced dads
 When the most admired woman in America last week compared Donald Trump’s presidency to spending the weekend with a fun-loving irresponsible divorced dad, she probably didn’t intend to dispar...]]>
How politics have changed https://illinoistimes.com/article-21152-how-politics-have-changed.html How politics have changed
I became active in politics in the late 1950s, got elected to Congress in 1964, and have remained engaged in one way or another every year since then. I’ve had a ringside seat for a long time. So I...]]>
Police and community can solve problems. Or cause them. - Former U.S. attorney shares lessons learned https://illinoistimes.com/article-21118-police-and-community-can-solve-problems-or-cause-them.html Police and community can solve problems. Or cause them. - Former U.S. attorney shares lessons learned
 In a series of articles, I’m looking at questions about criminal justice: “Are we safe?” “Are we smart?” “Are we fair?” “What is the best way forward?” I’ve discussed Peoria�...]]>
Take action on plastic pollution https://illinoistimes.com/article-21105-take-action-on-plastic-pollution.html Take action on plastic pollution
Let's contrast two trips. Over Thanksgiving we visited relatives in Australia. We were struck by the lack of garbage along roads and near towns.  We rarely saw a plastic shopping bag or a plasti...]]>
Providers should call the shots - Don’t turn over mental health care to insurers https://illinoistimes.com/article-21074-providers-should-call-the-shots.html Providers should call the shots - Don’t turn over mental health care to insurers
 Since leaving the U.S. House of Representatives in 2011, I’ve dedicated my professional life to fighting for full implementation and enforcement of the Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equit...]]>
‘Focused deterrence’ reduces gun crime - Former U.S. attorney shares lessons learned https://illinoistimes.com/article-21062-%25E2%2580%2598focused-deterrence%25E2%2580%2599-reduces-gun-crime.html ‘Focused deterrence’ reduces gun crime - Former U.S. attorney shares lessons learned
I believe, based on experience, that we can reduce gun violence. When faced with a surge in gun violence, Peoria adopted “focused deterrence,” and this seems to reduce the problem.David Kennedy, i...]]>
We need something better than blue bins - Human-based systems must replace market-based failures https://illinoistimes.com/article-21010-we-need-something-better-than-blue-bins.html We need something better than blue bins - Human-based systems must replace market-based failures
 “I’ve got a funny feeling they got plastic in the afterlife...” – BeckBruce Rushton’s article (“The blue badge of shame,” March 6) highlights a critical need for future-thinking. W...]]>
Former U.S. attorney shares lessons he learned - Reducing gun violence https://illinoistimes.com/article-20989-former-us-attorney-shares-lessons-he-learned.html Former U.S. attorney shares lessons he learned - Reducing gun violence
I offered to write some articles for Illinois Times about criminal justice, because I have some concerns, and because I suspect that many readers also have concerns. I plan to look at a series of ques...]]>
What happened to a journalist who did his job https://illinoistimes.com/article-20970-what-happened-to-a-journalist-who-did-his-job.html What happened to a journalist who did his job
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. -Edmund BurkeMichael Leathers is a good man who did something.And it cost him his job. Back in 2002, he was the editor o...]]>
The great divide in American politics https://illinoistimes.com/article-20959-the-great-divide-in-american-politics.html The great divide in American politics
One of the more striking political developments of the last few years has been the partisan sorting of American voters. It used to be that both the Republican and Democratic parties covered some ideol...]]>
Oprah Winfrey and her mom’s strong finish https://illinoistimes.com/article-20929-oprah-winfrey-and-her-mom%25E2%2580%2599s-strong-finish.html Oprah Winfrey and her mom’s strong finish
 Oprah Winfrey’s mother, Vernita Lee, died on Thanksgiving Day, and Oprah recently shared with People Magazine the tender story of their last conversation. As usual, when Oprah shares a persona...]]>
What great legislators have in common https://illinoistimes.com/article-20910-what-great-legislators-have-in-common.html What great legislators have in common
Each of the great politicians and legislators I’ve known over the course of my career in Congress was very different. They were masters of the rules, or unassailably knowledgeable about a given issu...]]>