State govt. too extreme
Abortion is deservedly a highly contentious issue, one that in many cases serves as a litmus test for many elected officials, but students of Pittsburg State should demand that topics like it not dominate state politics.
We seek not to take a position on abortion itself.
Not elected for this
Even so, the debate is raging on.
The news is something we as journalists tend to concern ourselves with, and we remember that our state politicians did not center their campaigns in 2012 on special interest issues.
Conservative Republicans are the primary concern.
They dominate the state government, and they got to that position largely by attacking the broader economic and real policy positions of the past and promising a new path forward.
The fact of the matter is, though, especially in “red states” like Kansas, a politician may seek to work on as many innovative and engaging programs and policies as he or she likes.
Yet, they’ll miss out on critical support if they do not correctly define a position on issues like abortion, and will either be defeated or marginalized.
A good example is Rep. Julie Menghini, D-Pittsburg, who has admitted more than once in the past that much of what she wants to do for her constituents is disregarded in Topeka because she doesn’t much care for special interests.
This culture is not the fault of anybody in particular, though the leadership of Gov. Sam Brownback as ever has only made a natural situation worse by emphasizing these tired food fights over the welfare of Kansas.
We as a society have allowed people with too much money and too much free time to run wild in our politics.
The result is images like the ones seen in Texas, where thousands of people on both sides of the debate flooded into the capital this fall to rage over a women’s health issue while important state investments languished.
In Kansas, the situation is actually worse, because not only has the state failed to increase support for things Pitt State students and other residents need, but they’ve actively cut back on it.
Abortion has ceased to become a struggle for rights or for human life, and it’s one of several issues like this. Instead, it’s become a shameless crutch.
When our students call the offices of state legislators and demand, “Sir or Ma’am, why have you cut support for my university?” the answer is too easily, “Look over there, abortions!” or “Look over there, your gun rights are in danger!”
The longer our generation allows these actions to go on, the longer we have to put up with the consequences.
These include higher tuition and less support for those who need it.
Apply the lessons taught in philosophy and logic classes, and know what most of Kansas’ politicians are really about: Red herrings, and not particularly good ones at that.
Even if you plan to high-tail it out of the state with a degree in hand to greener pastures, what’s going to happen with your education now is largely dependent on that.
The state government knows it; we need only hold them to account.