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Guest Commentaries

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Veterans court bill deserves to pass

The proposed bill, passed in the Missouri House of Representatives by a 149-1 vote, would create a court to take on criminal cases related to substance abuse or mental illness of military veterans or current personnel.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Rush to cut tenure wrong way to try to improve schools

State Republicans are too quick to insult teachers rather than working with them to improve public education.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Payday loan initiative unlikely to appear on ballot

Cole County Judge Daniel Green has announced the summary on the petitions, written by the secretary of state, isn't specific enough; and the cost estimate, prepared by the state auditor, is too narrow.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Tax Freedom Day — Liberating or aggravating?

Tax Freedom Day marks the day of the year when the public has collectively earned enough money to pay all taxes due.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Supreme Court votes to allow strip searches

The court ruled that individuals of any criminal background arrested for any reason could be subject to strip searches by jail personnel.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Sex offender registry can be more useful

The purpose of the registry is for notification and not additional punishment of the offenders by the public.

GUEST COMMENTARY: It's time to raise Missouri's cigarette tax

Missouri has the lowest cigarette tax in the country at 17 cents per pack — a rate established almost 20 years ago. Raising the tax 73 cents per pack would place Missouri 33rd out of 50 states and create $400 million in new revenue.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Fend off diseases borne by ticks, mosquitoes

Prevention is being emphasized with ticks and mosquitoes because these disease-bearing pests may be more abundant and more annoying this year.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Scary approach is needed

Weather and smoking scare tactics could be a good thing.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Loophole in law could cost $1 billion

Missouri risks having to pay back $100 million that tobacco companies paid to the state just in 2004. The damage from the years until 2012 could amount to more than $1 billion.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Low state taxes don't benefit Missourians

Missouri is now the lowest tax-collecting state per capita in the nation, which leads to local taxes paying for what the state won't.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Gubernatorial candidate's credibility at stake

Republican David Spence is losing credibility after instances of dishonesty.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Base closure talks needed to get serious about deficit control

Political maneuvering needs to take a backseat to making tough decisions about deficit control and military base closures.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Missouri by the numbers: A state in trouble

The low-tax Show-Me state hasn't brought the type of prosperity legislators typically look for, leaving education and public health facing deep cuts.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: It's pitch perfect that Voter ID measure tossed as fraud

Complicated language cannot hide that the measure is meant to stifle potential opposition voters.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Why is Missouri lagging behind economically? Education

Missouri's poor performance measures, relative to other states, are nearly all education-related.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Accident prevention preferable to punishment

If an accident is caused by negligence, carelessness or intoxication, the punishment should fit the severity of the offense.

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Troubling response to killing of black youth in Florida

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Illogical proposal reappears to ease helmet restrictions

The bill would require helmets only for those younger than 21. But of the 84 motorcycle operators who died in 2010, just three were under 21. 

WHAT OTHERS SAY: Closing gap in two-party system creates complications

Under a proposed bill in the state senate, voters would be required to declare party affiliation when they register to vote. Although it may not make much legislative progress, it raises issues worthy of discussion.

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