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Letters: Each school should post course offerings on its websites to help with transparency

How difficult would it be for each school, particularly high schools, to post a list of course offerings on the individual school websites? This would accomplish several objectives. It would allow the community to see what sets schools apart by unique course offerings and allow schools to feature strong curricular areas. It would help parents provide guidance to… Continue reading →

Letters: When it comes to eggs there are plenty of good alternatives to end chicken suffering

McDonald’s recent pledge to start using cage-free eggs is only a small step in preventing staggering suffering endured by millions of birds. Hatcheries that annually supply 200 million female hens for U.S. egg production, including cage-free, also kill the same number of male chicks at birth by grinding them up alive in industrial macerators or suffocating them… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: So far U.S. Sen. David Vitter’s gubernatorial campaign has been sadly lacking in substance

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Sen. David Vitter, R-La., talks before the gubernatorial candidates debate at WDSU in New Orleans, La. Thursday, Oct. 1, 2015.

The frenetic end to this year’s governor’s race has gotten me pining, strangely enough, for its beginning. Months before the airwaves filled to the brim with nasty attack ads, the four major candidates spoke to an industry gathering of engineers and contractors about how Louisiana government works and doesn’t. Here was my take at the… Continue reading →

Our Views: Nothing 'heartless' about pairing work with food stamps

Formally called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, food stamps are a huge success in this country, where malnutrition amid wealth was commonplace little more than a generation ago. But what is the rationale for food stamps for a healthy working-age adult without children? We don’t know that there is one, although the U.S.… Continue reading →

Letters: A yes vote on two Louisiana constitutional amendments on the Oct. 24 ballot can improve transportation

Do we need transportation issues solved with common sense and money we already have? I say yes. You asked your Legislature for innovative transportation financing solutions to make improvements without impacting your bottom line. You also asked that we re-establish your trust and spend transportation dollars only on transportation infrastructure. We… Continue reading →

Letters: It’s crucial that Louisiana candidates, citizens invest in the future of the state’s children

Your editorial “The Future in Children” (Sept. 30) directs our attention to the right place as we consider candidates for elective office — our children’s future. The Louisiana Platform for Children, recently released by the Louisiana Partnership for Children and Families, shows that almost 70 percent of births in our state are paid by Medicaid, one-third… Continue reading →

Political consultant James Carville: WDSU gubernatorial debate can only be described as 'disgraceful'

James Carville

The first time I ever watched TV as a young boy, it was WDSU. I was sitting in my grandmother’s house, watching a snowy picture on a small round screen. The first time I appeared on national television, I was sitting in WDSU’s historic studio on Royal Street in the French Quarter, as the signal beamed from New… Continue reading →

Letters: Louisiana can have clean air and a growing economy by supporting the Clean Power Plan

On Sept. 9, Philip Joffrion, from the group Americans for Prosperity, wrote a commentary published in The Advocate that claimed new clean air safeguards from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency were going to result in “higher utility bills for years to come.” Mr. Joffrion cites dubious statistics implying that electric bills are going to go up,… Continue reading →

Letters: Sept. 14 is an important day in Louisiana history

Sept. 14, 1874, was an important day in Louisiana history. On this day, 5,000 disgruntled members of the Crescent League, a paramilitary organization of the Democratic Party that was unhappy with Reconstruction, charged New Orleans. Their intent was to overthrow Gov. William Pitt Kellogg and Lt. Gov. C.C. Antoine from the state capital (during the Reconstruction… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Louisiana voters strong, negative feelings about Bobby Jindal could be a factor in the upcoming Louisiana governor’s race

Republican presidential candidate Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal  speaks during the Values Voter Summit, held by the Family Research Council Action, Friday, Sept. 25, 2015, in Washington. ( AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Looking for one statistic to explain how this year’s governor’s race is shaping up? The new Advocate/WWL-TV poll, rolled out all last week, offers a choice of them, from primary and runoff matchups to favorability ratings to questions on whether voters care if a candidate once voted to raise taxes (not so much) or has been… Continue reading →

Our Views: Related to roads, transportation on Oct. 24 ballot: We say ‘no’ to Amendment 1 and ‘yes’ to Amendment 2

s the outgoing chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, Robert Adley understands how Moses felt when Pharoah told the Israelites to make bricks without straw. Building new roads without new taxes is just about as impossible. And hostility to raising taxes resulted in little progress on infrastructure in the 2015 Legislature. Adley, R-Benton,… Continue reading →

Jeff Sadow: We must follow Pope Francis’ calls against materialism as a basis for society

Pope Francis attends a meeting with members of the Italian Food Bank Network charity organization in the Paul VI hall at the Vatican, Saturday, Oct. 3, 2015. (AP Photo/Riccardo De Luca)

In the wake of Pope Francis’ visit to the United States, a few organizations with Louisiana ties held out the Holy Father’s commentary on climate change as something that state politicians should heed. Indeed, policy-makers should — but not in the way those scolders intended. These groups include Catholic dissidents Pax Christi, the environmental group Louisiana Bucket… Continue reading →

Letters: Chamber, LABI get it wrong regarding law

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, famous for promoting business as a primary source of progress and social prosperity, is also becoming known as the home of hack partisans whose agenda is based upon willful error and lazy research. I refer to the guest commentary of Lisa Rickard and her tagalong, Stephen Waguespack, of LABI, whose critique of Louisiana’s… Continue reading →

Letters: 'Old hearts die young' editorial is extremely important

The opinion in The Advocate dated Sept. 3, “Old Hearts Die Young,” is extremely important. Louisiana, Mississippi and Arkansas always vie to see who is the worst for health problems. We are the fattest and have the most heart disease in the United States. It is good to see this article, since in our heart study on children… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace quick take: David Vitter the target of subtle and direct shots in Louisiana governor's race debate

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Gubernatorial candidates including Rev. Jeremy Odom, second left, Louisiana Public Service Commissioner, Dist. 2., Scott Angelle, State Rep. John Bel Edwards, D-Baton Rouge, Sen. David Vitter, R-La., Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne, and attorney Cary Deaton, talk before they  take part in a debate at New Orleans NBC affiliate WDSU in New Orleans, La. Thursday, Oct. 1, 2015.

The first televised debate between the four major gubernatorial candidates was actually a debate between six hopefuls, not just U.S. Sen. David Vitter, Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle and state Rep. John Bel Edwards but also little known Cary Deaton and Jeremy Odom. This was one of several reasons it was frustrating to watch.… Continue reading →

Letters: Religion wrong litmus test for candidates

In every presidential election cycle, we are treated to politicians extolling their own religious beliefs and questioning the religious beliefs of their opponents. Our pandering governor just did this with the cartoon character Donald Trump. Undoubtedly at some point in these debates, candidates will be asked about their belief in the inerrancy… Continue reading →

Letters: Why can judge overrule jury?

A few weeks back, after Judge James Brady vacated the death sentence of Todd Wessinger, murderer of Stephanie Guzzardo and David Breakwell, I wrote a letter to this paper in protest. Everything I said in that letter I believe to be true, but I suspect the raw emotion may have come through a bit too stridently… Continue reading →

Letters: So-called Tiger fans have the 'right' to leave games early, but that doesn't make it right

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- LSU's Tiger Stadium is filled to capacity with 102,321 in attendance during the first quarter against Mississippi State, Saturday, Sept. 20, in Tiger Stadium.

With about five minutes left in the Auburn game and during a TV timeout, LSU football player Leonard Fournette walked onto the field — the only player on the playing surface. Fans in Tiger Stadium, which was about two-thirds full, roared as Fournette raised both hands, a gladiator strutting in front of his audience. This was an exhilarating… Continue reading →

Our Views: The focus on children in politics this year is welcomed

Teacher Lory Rehne, left, reads a book with pre-kindergarten student Junior Alvarez at Booth Elementary School in Reno, Nev. on Aug. 27, 2015. (Jason Bean/The Gazette-Journal via AP)

In politics, you hunt where the ducks are. As those under 18 can’t vote at all, that’s not a constituency where many politicians will focus their time and efforts. Also in an election year, as in this year’s race for governor, there is recrimination among the candidates about past records or misdeeds — more than talking… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: There is hope Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal could take the Republicans’ Iowa caucus, but what’s next?

Bobby Jindal

For months now, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has been almost entirely fixated on far-off Iowa, which will hold the nation’s first presidential caucuses Feb. 1. He’s got good reason. In recent years, the Republican contest has been kind to candidates like Jindal, politicians who are personable face-to-face and who wear their religiosity on their sleeves.… Continue reading →

Director of LSU’s Office of Innovation & Technology Commercialization: Guest commentary: It is time to help build Baton Rouge’s tech-based economy


Most metropolitan centers with thriving economies are (or have been) built around strong research institutions. Baton Rouge is no different. Research — whether at a university or not — can result in technology that can be commercialized. This commercialization process can spur the economy by creating companies, which create jobs that employ our workforce, including recent graduates.… Continue reading →