Civil Rights

Kansas judge to decide whether secretary of state can hide public records by altering software

BY: - July 14, 2021

TOPEKA — An attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas says the state’s open records law might as well not exist if Secretary of State Scott Schwab is allowed to keep public information hidden by reconfiguring software. Attorney Josh Pierson argued Wednesday in Shawnee County District Court for the release of provisional ballot […]

‘The Big Lie is just that — a big lie’: Biden urges fight against assault on voting rights

BY: , and - July 13, 2021

PHILADELPHIA — Returning to the state that handed him the White House, President Joe Biden made a passionate plea Tuesday for Americans to rise up and protect their voting rights from a series of restrictive measures pushed by Republicans in Washington and in state capitols nationwide. “It’s up to all of us to protect that right — […]

Anti-poverty advocates urge Congress to act on voting rights, minimum wage, filibuster

BY: - July 12, 2021

WASHINGTON — The Poor People’s Campaign announced on Monday the beginning of a weeks-long push calling on Congress to end the Senate filibuster and pass voting rights legislation. The anti-poverty campaign, “A Season of Nonviolent Moral Direct Action,” will run each Monday until Aug. 2. Advocates are urging Congress to enact the sweeping “For the […]


No longer waiting for a savior, we are saving ourselves in southwest Kansas

BY: - July 12, 2021

The Kansas Reflector welcomes opinion pieces from writers who share our goal of widening the conversation about how public policies affect the day-to-day lives of people throughout our state. Alejandro Rangel-Lopez is a Dodge City native, a public administration and political science student at the University of Kansas, and the lead coordinator for the New […]

U.S. Rep. Jake LaTurner, the Republican serving the 2nd District in Congress, shared his five-point crisis list and responded to constituent concerns during a town hall forum in Ottawa. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

LaTurner urges COVID-19 vaccination, dismisses idea of state or federal mandates

BY: - July 9, 2021

OTTAWA — U.S. Rep. Jake LaTurner is convinced the United States faces crisis on five fronts tied to the economy, energy independence, border security, cyber attacks and cultural erosion. The list offered by the freshman GOP congressman at a town hall Thursday in the Ottawa Public Library didn’t highlight the COVID-19 pandemic, which has killed […]


Audio Astra: Right-wing extremism, Medicaid holdouts, Confederate monuments, new media

BY: - July 9, 2021

Audio Astra reviews recent audio reporting on Kansas news, including podcasts and radio stories. Eric Thomas directs the Kansas Scholastic Press Association and teaches visual journalism and photojournalism at the University of Kansas. This week’s listening is brief in duration but packed with consequence. Listeners can blaze through all of the excerpts below in less than an […]

VP Harris says DNC will pour $25M into voting rights protection

BY: - July 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — Vice President Kamala Harris announced Thursday the Democratic National Committee will spend $25 million to protect voting rights, in response to a wave of laws pushed by Republican lawmakers in state legislatures that would restrict voting access. The move comes after Democrats have been stymied in their attempts to enact a national election […]

Federal investigation seeks to uncover painful history of American Indian boarding schools

BY: - July 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — The American Indian children travelled on trains, thousands of miles from their homes in Kansas and elsewhere, to Pennsylvania’s Carlisle Indian Industrial School in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Many had been forcibly taken from their parents and communities. Once there, they had to hand over their belongings, put on uniforms, cut […]

Schmidt urges Kansas Supreme Court to reconsider ruling on constitutional right to abortion

BY: - July 7, 2021

TOPEKA — Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is asking the Kansas Supreme Court to reconsider its decision that a law prohibiting an abortion procedure violates the state constitution. Schmidt, who is seeking the Republican nomination for governor, announced Wednesday he would again challenge the legal interpretation that the Kansas Constitution’s Bill of Rights contains a […]

Gen. Dwight Eisenhower speaks with American paratroopers in England on the evening of June 5, 1944, as they prepare for the Battle of Normandy. Presidential historians assembled by C-SPAN rated Eisenhower 5th in terms of presidential leadership. President Harry Truman ranked 6th. (Library of Congress)

C-SPAN survey of presidential leadership adds sparkle to Eisenhower, Truman

BY: - July 4, 2021

Eisenhower secures 5th and Truman 6th in U.S. presidential leadership survey, while Trump ranks 41st out of 44.

The Kansas Supreme Court dealt with a decision by the Kansas Court of Appeals by focusing on jurisdictional issues without defining boundaries of the Kansas Open Records Act as it pertained to public access to audio records of district court proceedings. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas Supreme Court dissent in open records case mimics Lucy pulling ball from Charlie Brown

BY: - July 2, 2021

Kansas Supreme Court majority dodges questions on boundary of Kansas Open Records Act, inspires Lucy-yanks-football-again minority opinion.

GOP furor over critical race theory hits college campuses

BY: - July 2, 2021

Professors say the Republican crusade to root out critical race theory is taking a toll on college campuses around the nation — places where academic freedom is supposed to encourage thought, discussion and analysis. Much of the critical race theory uproar to date has centered on teaching in K-12 schools. But several high-profile incidents, combined […]