Kansas lawmaker introduces bill to permit teachers to hit children hard enough to bruise

Gail Finney, a Democratic Kansas lawmaker from Kansas, introduced a law that would expand Kansas's already broad protection for teachers who hit their students, making it legal to hit children hard enough to leave a bruise. Finney said that teachers and parents needed to bruise the children in their care because "some children that are very defiant and they’re not minding their parents, they're not minding school personnel."

The research on hitting children is pretty clear: it doesn't work. The bill would allow teachers and administrators to hit children, even those over 18, with permission from their parents -- legalizing the restraint and violent assault of a legal adult by a government agent. Read the rest

Kansas cable lobbyist writes bill outlawing Google Fiber and municipal broadband, gets it introduced in Kansas legislature

When Kansas lawmakers introduced a bill outlawing municipal broadband network, there was no sponsor's name on it: rumor has it that's because it was written by a lobbyist called John Federico, who is president of Kansas Cable Telecommunications Association. The bill masquerades as a pro-competition measure (pro-competition initiatives from the cable industry! Pull the other one), but it effective prohibits measures like the wildly successful Google Fiber project in Kansas City. Given that the big carriers and cable companies have shown no interest in providing fiber or even reasonably priced, reasonably provisioned broadband in most markets, this means that most people in Kansas can kiss any hope of a read broadband life goodbye. Read the rest

Cory coming to Lawrence, KS tonight!

Hey, Lawrence, KS! I'm giving the Richard W. Gunn Memorial Lecture tonight at Alderson Auditorium, University of Kansas Student Union at 730PM. Tomorrow, I finish the Homeland tour in Toronto, with a 7PM appearance at the Merril Collection. Come on out and say hi before I go home to London! Read the rest

Childrearing advice from the Kansas State Board of Health, 1900-1920

From the Kansas Memory project, a collection of childrearing public information posters issued by the Kansas State Board of Health from 1900 to 1920. I like this advice for how to give your kid fresh air: Don't put him in a wheelbarrow, you dope! Build him a cage!

Baby will be well and happy (via Retronaut) Read the rest

New Kansas abortion bill lets doctors lie to patients, withhold cancer treatment

The Kansas House of Reps passed one of the most draconian and awful abortion bills imaginable last week. Among other things, it allows doctors to lie to their patients to keep them from getting abortions, even if the mother's health demands it, and mandates that doctors lie about health risks from abortion. It also allows doctors and pharmacists to withhold cancer treatment from pregnant women if they believe it might harm the foetus's health. From Amanda Peterson Beadle's writeup in ThinkProgress:

– EXPANDED ‘CONSCIENCE MEASURE: Earlier this week, the state Senate aproved a bill that offers additional legal protection to Kansas health care providers who refuse to participate in abortions. The House had already approved the measure, and it is likely that Gov. Sam Brownback (R) will sign it. But critics of the bill worry the “conscience” measure goes too far, and that it would allow pharmacists to refuse to dispense birth control “allow a doctor to refuse to provide chemotherapy to a pregnant cancer patient because it might end her pregnancy,” according to the Associated Press.

– PREVENTING LICENSES FOR PROVIDERS: Last year, the legislature approved licensing regulations that specifically targeted the state’s three abortion providers, potentially making Kansas the first state where a woman could not access abortion services. But when a judge temporarily blocked the regulations from going into effect, Brownback’s administration planned to enact the exact same regulations to skirt around the court’s ruling.

– DEFUNDING PLANNED PARENTHOOD: Lawmakers signed off on a law last year to ban Planned Parenthood clinics in Kansas from receiving federal funds, endangering health care for at least 5,700 patients.

Read the rest