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What's Environmentalism to You?

LAWRENCE, Kan. - I could talk about a lot of very sad and tragic things going on in the world right now.

Haiti would be number one. The continuing polarization of the United States government may be number two. This would make the lack of progress our country has made in the past year number three (I'm still an Obama believer, though). The list goes on and includes everything from substantial funding cuts to vital programs, to the low employment rate, and yes, I have to say it, to Conan being off the air. But something which is of crucial global importance is hardly being mentioned at all in the sh** list of today's world.

And yes, my friends, I'm talking about the environment.

But before I go on, I have some questions I want YOU (yes, YOU) to answer about it at the end of the article. No right or wrong answers. No personal judgments. All I'm looking for is an open dialogue.

Close Encounters of an Undocumented Kind

LAWRENCE, Kan. - Next month, the Spanish edition of Underground America: Narratives of Undocumented Lives is coming to bookshelves near you. Edited by Peter Orner, Underground America is the third installment of McSweeney's Voice of Witness series. It consists of 24 first person accounts from one of the most silenced groups in America: undocumented immigrants.

According to the 2006-2008 state censuses, 66.1 percent (plus or minus 3,628 people) of the 167,159 foreign-born Kansas residents are not U.S. citizens. Even with Lou Dobbs off the air, undocumented immigrants, who account for four percent of the total Kansas population, are still seen by a large group of people as foreign opportunists, preying on the innocent United States of America.

But, as Underground America reveals time and time again, this couldn't be further from the truth. And this truth hits close to home.

Really, Sam Brownback? Really???

LAWRENCE, Kan.- Does the name Jamie Leigh Jones ring a bell? If not, don't worry. I didn't know who she was either until I heard about the bill Sam Brownback voted against that was introduced in her name.

Her story is just as important as it is tragic. Here are the basics, taken from Think Progress:

"In 2005, Jamie Leigh Jones was gang-raped by her co-workers while she was working for Halliburton/KBR in Baghdad. She was detained in a shipping container for at least 24 hours without food, water, or a bed, and "warned her that if she left Iraq for medical treatment, she'd be out of a job." (Jones was not an isolated case.) Jones was prevented from bringing charges in court against KBR because her employment contract stipulated that sexual assault allegations would only be heard in private arbitration."

LAWRENCE, Kan. - Thanks to the required First Amendment class I'm taking, I've been thinking way too much about freedom of speech lately. We talk about the market place of ideas, in which citizens have a right to listen to, deny, accept or even contribute to public discussion. We talk about the importance of allowing beliefs to be expressed without government regulation. And we talk about how every view, no matter how unpopular or gross, is considered equal.

I really do believe that the First Amendment defines America, which is a good thing... sometimes.

Want to read more posts by Kayla Regan? We surely have more! By default, this page only lists some of the recent stories by this writer. Most of the stories that our authors post are very timeless and relevant, regardless of when their articles are originally published. We encourage you to look back through all of the archives for Kayla Regan. The archives for this author are listed left sidebar on this page.

To see the rest of this author's entries, just click on any of the months shown in the left column of this page!


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About This Page

This is the main archives page for Kayla Regan. To learn more about this author, you can also read a short biography of Kayla Regan here.

Just a few of the most current posts by Kayla Regan are excerpted in the center of this page. However, we have links to this author's complete archives, listed below.

Archives for Kayla Regan

This list shows all of the stories ever published in the Kansas Free Press by Kayla Regan, organized by date:

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