Five Things to Know Today
Good morning! As someone who writes, teaches, and speaks, it’s always gratifying to me when I see someone else doing a good job with communication. It’s even better when that good communication is backed up with solid action.
Thus, I doubly appreciate some things coming out of Gov. Beshear’s response to the coronavirus, that show this administration is both planning well and communicating well. Two examples:
- In addition to “Healthy at Home” (much better than “shelter in place”), we now have “Healthy at Work,” the new program to work with businesses on reopening guidance.
- Yesterday Beshear laid out three “tests” that the state had to pass. We’ve already passed the test of sacrifice, he said, and now we were taking on the test of planning and patience. After that will be the test of perseverance, of keeping up the practices that keep the virus at bay. Like any good leader, he is giving us a preview of the future even while we deal with the present, using a simple three-point outline that can be communicated easily and quickly.
Of course, good communication needs to be matched with good actions, and Beshear’s administration seems to be doing that, unlike some other leaders across the country. In today’s story in the “Dear Kentuckians” series, I call out some of those actions: “Dear Kentuckians – Don’t be stupid.”
Sacrifice, patience and planning, perseverance. It’s not going to be easy, and it’s not going to be short. But as the Gov says: We’re going to get through this, together. #TeamKentucky
Bruce Maples, publisher
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Medical reopening begins Monday; testing expanded – 4/22 update
Slow and steady goes Gov. Andy Beshear’s plan for opening the state’s economy, with only a few health-care services being allowed to open Monday. But he also announced Wednesday that testing for the coronavirus, a key step needed for more opening, would expand significantly next week. (Forward Kentucky)
McConnell: Let states ‘use the bankruptcy route’ instead of giving federal ‘blank check’
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Wednesday he would rather let state governments file for bankruptcy than give them a federal “blank check” amid the coronavirus pandemic. Speaking to radio host Hugh Hewitt, McConnell said he is not going to be in favor of allowing the federal government “to borrow money from future generations to send it down” to the states.
McConnell’s comments come as state and local governments have been pleading for funding from the federal government to help mitigate coronavirus-spurred revenue losses. (Courier-Journal)
Broihier calls out McGrath in new ad
Mike Broihier has come out with an ad directly challenging Amy McGrath on her stance on the Brett Kavanaugh nomination, and calling on Kentucky voters to stand with women and him, and against McGrath and McConnell. Watch the ad and see what you think. (Forward Kentucky)
Wins for open-records advocates in Kentucky and Tennessee
Two recent wins in open-records cases make plain that the size of the request does not make it invalid – a key principal that will affect many such cases in the future. (Forward Kentucky)
Some retailers will soon let Kentucky customers pay online with SNAP federal food aid
Kentucky residents who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits (formerly called “food stamps”) could soon be able to use the federal aid when ordering groceries online through Walmart and Amazon.
Kentucky was one of three states to get approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a pilot program allowing customers to buy groceries and pay online with their SNAP benefits via their debit cards. Kentucky has more than 500,000 SNAP participants, and nearly $750 million annually in federal funding goes to Kentucky’s SNAP recipients. Only “eligible foods” can be paid for with SNAP; food delivery fees can’t be paid with SNAP benefits. (Herald-Leader)
How has COVID-19 affected Native Americans?
On tomorrow’s The State of Kentucky, we’re joined by Tiffany Pyette to discuss the impact of the coronavirus on indigenous peoples across the country. What unique challenges have they faced? Then, we’ll be joined by candidate Ryan Olexia, who is running for KY Senate. Watch the live stream at noon on Facebook and YouTube, or the recorded version on our web site later that day. Join us!
Did you miss any of these?
Featured Content on Forward Kentucky
([new] indicates new since last Forward Five; 🔥 indicates lots of reads)
— News —
[new] Deadliest day yet; ‘Healthy at Work’ announced – 4/21 update – 17 new deaths, 177 new cases; administration asking business for plans to reopen safely; testing continues to increase. More details and video in the story. (read)
Voter registration deadline extended to May 26 – Voter registration has ground to a trickle with the coronavirus crisis, so voter registration is extended. Go to GoVoteKY.com to register! (read)
Dear Kentuckians – Don’t be stupid – After we get our facts straight, we can recognize statements that are, truthfully, stupid – and call them out. This article does just that. (read)
[new] Pandemic transformations – if we chooose – In the Greek, the word “crisis” also means “opportunity.” The coronavirus crisis is forcing us to take a hard look at our country, and to consider what needs to change. This crisis could also be a time of opportunity – if we choose to make it so. (read)
🔥 Dear Kentuckians – Get these facts straight – Before we can talk about “reopening,” we need to get some basic facts straight. Here they are. (read)
America is rudderless amid the pandemic – Great presidents are forged in the crucible of great crises. Unfortunately, Donald Trump won’t be joining them in the presidential pantheon. He has failed abysmally to rise to what history will record as the defining test of his presidency. (read)
— Media —
[new] New Orleans artist creates perfect print for our times – New Orleans artist Terrance Osborne has created a print that both honors our health care workers and captures their spirit. Take a look. (view)
Posts with Most Social Media Shares in Past Fourteen Days
(🔥 indicates post with surge of recent shares)
- 🔥 C’mon Kentucky – our census rates stink, especially in rural areas. Let’s do better! (22,000+ shares)
- Koch Brothers try to use COVID-19 to reawaken Tea Party movement (4,000+ shares)
- Confederate flags: Changing flags doesn’t change the facts (2,000+ shares)
- Churches, COVID-19, and the First Amendment: An analysis (2,000+ shares)
- Lawmakers, state officials condemn threats to Beshear (1,000+ shares)
The Forward 5 is published Monday to Friday by Forward Kentucky, an independent media organization focused on progressive news and issues in Kentucky, and is re-posted with permission. You can sign up for the email version of the newsletter on their website.
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