JEFFERSON CITY — After two years in power, Republican state lawmakers are leaving their mark on society — one that may subtly influence the way Missourians live for years to come.
The GOP’s greatest legacy likely does not lie in the incremental spending cuts or increases contained in the much ballyhooed state budgets of this year or last.
Some people are content to let life happen to them. Others are compelled to pursue every possible opportunity.
Nabiha Calcuttawala is one of those people. Somebody with drive, with ambition and a huge need to constantly help people. A 21-year-old raised middle-class in Hannibal, she graduated Sunday from MU with a degree in communications and a minor in sociology. But she’s not going to St. Louis for a job in advertising, or back to live in her cushy home to save money.
The room next to Beulah Ralph’s office is a shrine to the glory years of Frederick Douglass School.
Dust covers trophies from the ’40s and ’50s. Photos hang from the room’s east wall in a glass case. The images are stirring. Move through each school year. Take in each smiling face, each still and perfect moment. There are prom photos and banquet photos. There are images of science fairs and art exhibits.
Kansas City’s Union Station is one of my favorite Missouri places. During the days when railroads were a major form of transportation, I spent many Sunday afternoons there, sitting with my notebook, watching passengers depart and arrive. I’d make up my own stories about the people, making them residents in my own little fantasy world. I’d have them visiting relatives, going off on honeymoons, taking their first trip to Chicago or New York. Because I was a small person and never intrusive, people came and went and never seemed to notice me.
Because I was a longtime train rider, I was able to provide my characters with authentic, detailed adventures. I almost always had them aboard the Rock Island lines because that was the best connection between Kansas City and Minneapolis, where I spent most of my summers. My trips back and forth provided me with enough information to write a book because I always spent a lot of time visiting with the train porters and listening to their stories.
Jim Windsor has two adult daughters with disabilities, neither of whom qualifies as a family member under the five-person Activity and Recreation Center Family Group Membership. Under current membership rules, Windsor must pay an additional $25 annually for each of his daughters. He said he and his family are not ARC members because of additional costs and an implicit lack of attention to people with disabilities.
“The Parks Department didn’t do its homework when setting up rules,” Windsor said. “People with disabilities are overlooked in situations like this.”
Time has become an issue as the Columbia City Council seeks to fill what will soon be three vacancies on the Planning and Zoning Commission.
The terms of both Michael Perkins and Karl Skala expire May 31. Cyndy Jones, whose term expires on May 31, 2005, resigned six weeks ago because of health concerns. The council hopes to interview the people seeking a position on the commission, but after tonight’s meeting it will not meet again until June 7. This would give the three new commissioners only a few days to prepare for the commission’s first meeting in June.
While Blake Tekotte takes most of the spotlight during Hickman’s baseball games, Justin Jackson’s improved performance is often overlooked.
Jackson has hit .500 and surprised a lot of pitchers more worried about Tekotte, who hits in front of Jackson.
After beating Hazelwood West on Wednesday, the only thing higher than the Hickman girls’ soccer team’s offensive production is its confidence.
With the 2-0 victory, the Kewpies have outscored opponents 33-0 in May.
The friendship of Hickman juniors Josh Brady and D.J. Chung thrives off competition on the golf course.
“Me and D.J., we love to go out there and compete with each other every time,” Brady said. “It doesn’t matter if it’s practice or tournaments, we both love to compete. It’s really pushed me to another level.”
Amos Morris, Douglass School’s former athletic director, has a story he likes to tell about George Brooks because he says it reflects the late coach’s attitude on race and equality.
Morris says the coach was waiting in the The Minute Inn where blacks could order take-out food only, and Brooks’ daughter Sharon, who was about 8 or 9, sat on one of the counter stools and began twirling in circles.