Northern Kentucky Wingnut Freaks Out

Luke Barlow and Jim Meade of Bardstown met 48 years ago and married in 2009 in Iowa. But, as Barlow said 90 minutes after the Supreme Court declared their marriage legal in Kentucky, the two men had never held hands in public here. [H-L]

When President Barack Obama learned that the Supreme Court had rejected a major lawsuit against his signature health care law, White House photographer Pete Souza was there to capture the moment. [HuffPo]

Gov. Steve Beshear on Friday named Carol Martin “Bill” Gatton as an “honorary member of the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees for so long as he shall live.” [C-J/AKN]

The U.S. Supreme Court’s declaration on Friday of a right to same-sex marriage resolved a momentous question, yet the ruling left many others unanswered and is likely to spark future legal battles over gay rights. [Reuters]

Jail time was averted, at least for now, by an Amish father and son who refuse to pay fines for violating an Auburn city ordinance requiring owners to prevent waste from horses from falling on city streets. [BGDN]

North Carolina and Tennessee are the latest states to side with telecoms, which have long lobbied against allowing cities to become Internet providers. [ProPublica]

A Northern Kentucky clerk said no to all marriage licenses Friday after the U.S. Supreme Court declared that all states are required to marry gay couples and recognize marriages from other states. [Cincinnasti.com]

In Charleston, South Carolina, Civil War history and accounts of plantation life are a huge part of the town, and state, culture. An entire tourism business thrives off of showing visitors parts of this history – reenactments of Civil War battles, tours of mansions once owned by slave-owners, and staged scenes of home life for aristocrats of the period. It would be difficult for a culture that sees the Confederate flag as a symbol of Southern pride instead of slavery, not to manifest itself at school. [ThinkProgress]

In a rolling Kentucky pasture, the first few wooden ribs of a giant Noah’s ark tourist attraction have begun to sprout up. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

NPR’s Audie Cornish and Rachel Martin read the concluding paragraph in Justice Anthony Kennedy’s opinion in Friday’s Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage. [NPR]

Berea Mayor Steve Connelly and a group of local representatives have launched the Berea Age-Friendly Survey 2015 to gather public input on making the city more Age-Friendly. [Richmond Register]

Every single US state fails to comply with global standards for police use of lethal force. [Mother Jones]

Rand Paul is looking for big green from the marijuana industry. Paul, Kentucky’s junior senator and a candidate for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, is scheduled to attend a fundraising reception next week at the National Cannabis Business Summit and Expo in Denver. [H-L]

President Barack Obama is a major fan of Sir David Attenborough, the celebrated British naturalist and TV host who has created and narrated numerous science and nature documentaries for the BBC. [HuffPo]

People Still Support That Racist Flag

“The Confederate Battle Flag means different things to different people, but the fact that it continues to be a painful reminder of racial oppression to many suggests to me at least that it’s time to move beyond it, and that the time for a state to fly it has long since passed. There should be no confusion in anyone’s mind that as a people we’re united in our determination to put that part of our history behind us.” [Mitch McConnell]

The University of Kentucky has twice violated the state’s open-records law since 2014, according to opinions released Monday by the Kentucky attorney general’s office. [H-L]

An Afghan family returning to their home after fleeing a possible military operation struck a roadside bomb Saturday in the country’s south, killing at least 12 of them and wounding eight, authorities said. [HuffPo]

Aetna Inc. has made a takeover bid for Louisville-based health care giant Humana, increasing speculation that one of the city’s biggest employers is about to change hands. [C-J/AKN]

With the U.S. Supreme Court expected to rule by the end of the month on whether same-sex marriage is legal, many Christian evangelicals say they would refuse to obey a decision allowing gay unions. [Reuters]

Under certain scenarios, a large percentage of Americans could subsist on a diet made up of mostly local food, according to a new study. [WFPL]

America earns $3 billion a year charging strapped college parents above-market interest. “It’s like ‘The Sopranos,’ except it’s the government.” [Politico]

The Governor’s Medal of Valor was presented posthumously to Delano G. Powell, a Kentucky State Trooper killed in the line of duty in 1965, at a ceremony held in Lexington Thursday. [Richmond Register]

Government forces in northern Afghanistan launch a counter-offensive against the Taliban after they took control of a key district. [BBC]

The Kentucky Community and Technical College System and Shaping Our Appalachian Region have a three-year strategic partnership designed to provide eastern Kentucky residents with the educational opportunities that lead to good jobs. [Ashland Independent]

If the court hands a victory to Republicans by ending subsidies for 6.4 million Americans, Republicans in Congress will be left scrambling to come up with a new game plan. Because they still don’t have a game plan. [ThinkProgress]

Bill Redwine, chair of the Rowan County Board of Education, announced at the regular meeting Tuesday that he is resigning effective June 30. [The Morehead News]

Nearly two centuries before Dylann Roof, the state of South Carolina conducted its own massacre of Emanuel AME Church members. Roof, who embraced white supremacy, killed nine church members Wednesday evening. The white supremacist-controlled state of South Carolina killed 35. [The Intercept]

C-SPAN will participate in a press conference on Monday with Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and Time Warner Cable representatives to announce details about its week-long visit to Lexington to report on Lexington’s history and literary life. [H-L]

On the morning of December 14, 2012, as news trickled in painfully slowly about a shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut, aides gathered in the White House to chart out a response. [HuffPo]

Airline? In Pikeville? Well, About That…

Won’t say we told you so, but… Appalachian Air, and Public Charters, Inc., will end service to the Pikeville- Pike County Regional Airport in July with the final date of service to be announced soon. [H-L]

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announced Tuesday that the Pentagon has added “sexual orientation” as a protected class under its Military Equal Opportunity Policy. [HuffPo]

Beve Cotton ticked off all the ways his body is failing him — high blood pressure, bone spurs, circulation problems, pinched nerves, diverticulitis, cataracts and five broken vertebrae from a car wreck. [C-J/AKN]

President Obama on Tuesday made an emotional plea to protect the Affordable Care Act just weeks before the law could face its biggest legal challenge to date. [The Hill]

Opponents of a proposed Environmental Protection Agency rule on carbon emissions by power plants lost an initial round Tuesday when a federal appeals court said it cannot review a regulation that doesn’t yet exist. [Ronnie Ellis]

Coal companies and 14 states sued to stop a draft regulation to cut greenhouse gas emissions from power plants, a priority for the Obama administration. [NY Times]

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) held a Strategic Planning Listening Session Thursday at the Morehead Conference Center. [The Morehead News]

Student poverty is a major barrier to learning, according to teachers polled in a new national survey of educators. [WaPo]

In 25 years, Kentucky’s energy landscape will look dramatically different than it does now. [WFPL]

U.S. stocks rose slightly on Tuesday, bouncing back partially from the previous day’s decline as higher oil prices helped energy shares, but the dollar slipped on global economic concerns. [Reuters]

Here’s the latest column Greg Stumbo’s Legislative Research Commission staffers have written for him. [Floyd County Times]

The national high school graduation rate is an impressive 81 percent. So impressive, President Obama highlighted it in his State of the Union address this year: “Our high school graduation rate has hit an all-time high.” [NPR]

Next week, the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees is expected to approve UK’s largest budget ever, a $3.4 billion document that reflects a burgeoning health care enterprise paired with continued reliance on tuition paid by out-of-state students. [H-L]

Investigative journalist Bob Woodward on Tuesday rebutted former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s claims that he had always been skeptical about U.S. efforts to promote democracy in Iraq following the 2003 invasion. [HuffPo]

Don’t Lock Meemaw In Your Basement

Jean Ritchie, a daughter of Eastern Kentucky and “The Mother of Folk,” who introduced mountain dulcimer music to the outside world, died Monday at her home in Berea. [H-L]

Ten months into the U.S.-led war against the Islamic State, Congress still has neither debated it nor voted to authorize it. But on Tuesday, a House committee decided to do something about that: It passed a measure saying Congress should do something about that. [HuffPo]

Despite a fitful start, billionaire coal operator and West Virginia gubernatorial candidate Jim Justice is making progress in addressing a record number of environmental violations at his Kentucky strip mines, state regulators say. [C-J/AKN]

The United States and European Union aren’t doing enough to address emissions from land use — such as agriculture — in their carbon reduction plans for the upcoming climate talks in Paris, France, according to a new report. [ThinkProgress]

You can’t even imprison old ladies in your basement these days. Thanks, Obama. A Richmond man was arrested Monday after imprisoning his 84-year-old aunt in a chair in the basement of their residence, according to a Richmond Police Department press release. [Richmond Register]

A group of scientists and economists is calling for the equivalent of the Apollo space programme to produce cheap, clean energy. [BBC]

After hearing about services for Court Appointed Special Advocates that represent abused and neglected children in the court system, Ashland Rotarians had plenty of questions. [Ashland Independent]

Most of the glaciers in the Mount Everest region will disappear or drastically retreat as temperatures increase with climate change over the next century, according to a group of international researchers. [Mother Jones]

For centuries, people have followed trails in southcentral Kentucky, including naturalist and conservationist John Muir, who began hiking the countryside in the late 1800s, even walking through Elizabethtown to Mammoth Cave National Park. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Whistleblower website WikiLeaks offered a $100,000 bounty for copies of a Pacific trade pact that is a central plank of President Barack Obama’s diplomatic pivot to Asia on Tuesday. [Reuters]

USDA Rural Development awarded a $50,000 grant to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Department to help purchase four new vehicles. [The Morehead News]

New York City, Baltimore and other major cities have seen a recent rise in gun violence. The uptick has raised the alarm for many police departments that worry the summer months may make the problem worse. [NPR]

The University of Kentucky’s Gatton College of Business and Economics has wrapped up a 10-year, $2.5 million donation from BB&T that will result in a new program on capitalism and funding toward the college’s $65 million renovation. But Gatton officials stepped back from the more controversial aspects of the original 2004 agreement, including a requirement for an Ayn Rand reading room, named for the novelist and free market philosopher. [H-L]

The leaders of six of Europe’s largest oil producers are calling for a plan to price planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions, citing climate change as “a critical challenge for our world.” [HuffPo]

It’s Post-Primary Hangover Time!

You should check out this interactive map of last night’s vote results from across Kentucky. [H-L]

As much as journalists may fancy themselves superhuman observers of history, the truth is that we are as susceptible to trauma as the victims whose stories we tell. [HuffPo]

A Franklin County grand jury Tuesday indicted former Buffalo Trace Distillery security guard Leslie M. Wright, 34, of Frankfort, on charges of being paid to look the other way as barrels were stolen for what authorities say was a bourbon theft criminal syndicate. [C-J/AKN]

Kentucky hates old people. States with at least 40 percent of homes ranked on the bottom two rungs include North Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. [Newsweek]

The real reason Republicans running for governor didn’t have in-depth discussions is because two of the candidates were incapable. The other two, one a former state supreme court justice and the other, an evangelical extremist who is overcompensating like woah, have never been outside their respective bubbles. Ever. [Eye Roll]

After winning reelection and control of the U.S. Senate, Republican Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., appointed Hazen Marshall, a lobbyist for Koch Industries, as his new policy chief. [The Intercept]

A historic case against the iconic Wagner’s Pharmacy near Churchill Downs is likely to end, since the Kentucky Supreme Court has ruled that morbid obesity is not a state-protected disability. [Business First]

The White House on Monday called the fall of Ramadi to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) a “setback,” but vowed the U.S. is determined to help retake the Iraqi city. [The Hill]

An online fundraising campaign was successful for the Louisville businessman who is set to buy Guntown Mountain, the Western-themed roadside attraction in Cave City. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Obese young adults may be more likely to have a stroke than people who aren’t overweight, a U.S. study suggests. [Reuters]

His first four and a half months in office have included two record-breaking winter storms, two instances of flooding, collapsed bridges and the arrest of a Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program employee on forgery and theft charges. “All that’s missing is for a plague of locusts to hit Madison County, and we would have faced all possible challenges,” Madison Judge/Executive Reagan Taylor said Friday in his first State of the County address. [Richmond Register]

Millions of Americans use GlaxoSmithKline’s purple inhaler. But whether Advair poses a higher risk of asthma-related death remains uncertain 15 years after regulators approved the drug. [ProPublica]

The University of Kentucky has begun a sweeping overhaul of its body bequeathal program after finding numerous problems with its administration and oversight, including a three to five year delay in burying the remains of people who’d given their bodies for scientific research. The overhaul includes eliminating the position of program director Gary Ginn, who is also the Fayette County Coroner. [H-L]

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg officiated a same-sex wedding over the weekend, and according to New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, the Notorious R.B.G. gave a big shout-out to the U.S. Constitution. [HuffPo]

Mitch Loves Wiretapping, Rand Hates It

A coal mine closing in southeastern Kentucky has put 64 miners out of work. [H-L]

The urban poor in the United States are experiencing accelerated aging at the cellular level, and chronic stress linked both to income level and racial-ethnic identity is driving this physiological deterioration. [HuffPo]

Read this one paragraph and you’ll instantly see how crazy the bourbon heist mess is, corrupt law enforcement folks ignored for the moment. In Farmer’s case summary, Curtsinger told authorities searching his home March 11 that five Wild Turkey barrels in his backyard were being stored for now-co-defendant Mark S. Searcy because Searcy “was afraid his girlfriend’s husband was going to tell on him for having the barrels of stolen bourbon at his home in Lawrenceburg. Toby stated that he had agreed to keep them at his home … and that it was a mistake.” [C-J/AKN]

Congress is under new pressure to take action on the National Security Agency’s controversial surveillance program, as a deadline looms near and questions swirl about the legality of its data collection practices. [The Hill]

The Kentucky High School Athletic Association penalized both Pike County Central and Lawrence County after a violent incident occurred during Tuesday’s baseball game in Pikeville. [Ashland Independent]

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Sunday defended his support for a measure in the USA Patriot Act that has anchored a National Security Agency program to collect Americans’ phone data. [Reuters]

The Madison Airport, jointly owned by Madison County, Richmond and Berea, will be re-named the Central Kentucky Regional Airport. [Richmond Register]

Leading global food companies are failing to account for impending water scarcity in their business plans, a new report finds. [Think Progress]

City of Glasgow department heads presented their draft budgets for fiscal year 2016 to the city council’s finance committee Friday morning during a more than two hour meeting. [Glasgow Daily Times]

Chris Christie racked up a $82,594 bill at the concessions operator at MetLife Stadium during the 2010 and 2011 football seasons, the New Jersey Watchdog reported on Monday as part of a broader look at how the New Jersey governor spent $360,000 of his state allowance over five years. [Politico]

Morehead is filling in its city pool, which is not a welcome sight for poor people who just want to stay cool. [The Morehead News]

Employers in the US created 223,000 new jobs in April, a much larger increase than the month before. [BBC]

University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto will recommend bringing hourly workers to a starting rate of $10 an hour, a move that would affect at least 600 workers, he announced this week. [H-L]

What? Republicans still have no health care alternative? Surely not! [HuffPo]

Stealing KY Bourbon Is Like Kidnapping

Court documents filed Thursday say that Gilbert “Toby” Curtsinger, the alleged ringleader in the thefts of bourbon from Buffalo Trace Distillery in Frankfort and Wild Turkey in Anderson County, was suspected of stealing years before detectives discovered bourbon barrels in March at his Franklin County home. [H-L]

An openly gay Eagle Scout said he’s been axed by the Boy Scouts — and he believes it’s because of his sexual orientation. [HuffPo]

Pee alert… At a breakfast meeting in Northern Kentucky last week, state Agriculture Commissioner James Comer told local Republican officials and business leaders who have endorsed his candidacy for governor that he will win the general election in November. [C-J/AKN]

Forests can play a vital role in supplementing global food and nutrition security but this role is currently being overlooked, a report suggests. The study says that tree-based farming provides resilience against extreme weather events, which can wipe out traditional food crops. [BBC]

More than a decade after the first plans were put to paper, the Chavies Wastewater Treatment Plant is officially open. [Hazard Herald]

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will hold a public meeting this summer to address drug company concern that restrictions on what they can say about off-label use of drugs violate their First Amendment right to free speech. [Reuters]

Southeast Kentucky Community & Technical College has announced its plan to join a national movement to address smoking and tobacco use at community college campuses throughout the United States. Through a grant from Legacy, the national public health organization responsible for the national truth® smoking prevention campaign, SKCTC will encourage students, faculty and school administration to adopt a 100 percent smoke-free or tobacco-free policy. [Harlan Daily Enterprise]

In a little-noticed brief filed last summer, lawyers for the House of Representatives claimed that an SEC investigation of congressional insider trading should be blocked on principle, because lawmakers and their staff are constitutionally protected from such inquiries given the nature of their work. [The Intercept]

A spring-cleaning day is scheduled at Cumberland Falls State Resort Park in southeastern Kentucky. [WYMT]

The U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs in April, bringing the jobless rate to a seven-year low after slow growth in the first three months of 2015. [The Hill]

The personal, messy accusations in the Republican primary for Kentucky governor have likely opened the door for Louisville businessman Matt Bevin, a fact that some in the GOP fear. [WAVE3]

Here are the best stories we’ve come across over the past few months about the ever-increasing role of money in politics. [ProPublica]

The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees is expected to discuss a proposed new policy Friday afternoon that would return alcohol to campus in limited ways. [H-L]

Rand Paul said the attack in Garland, Texas, was “an example of how we do need to secure our border,” but neither of the attackers crossed the southern border to gain access to the U.S. Both were Americans who were believed to have been radicalized in their hometown of Phoenix. [HuffPo]