Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges

Justyn Lewis is a candidate for Des Moines City Council. -promoted by Laura Belin

When I attended East High School in Des Moines, I played cornerback on the football team for three years. My senior year had arrived and it was time for me to step into the coveted starting role I worked so hard for. During training camp, I was asked by my coach to make a switch to defensive end–a position I knew little about–in order to round out the strength of the starting lineup. While this was not the role I dreamed of, I understood it was for the greater good of the team. I knew if one of the 11 positions on the field was not at its best, it affected the whole team. There was no doubt my team needed me here and I would answer the call. 

Hello, my name is Justyn Lewis, and I am running for Des Moines City Council At Large. Born and raised in Des Moines, I know that the communities of this city are equally valuable and unique. However, several of our neighborhoods have been unjustly left behind and are facing systemic barriers to fulfilling their basic needs.

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Five under-reported climate change stories

Tyler Granger is a climate change activist in Iowa. -promoted by Laura Belin

Between the presidential election, the special U.S. Senate elections in Georgia, the Capitol insurrection, the second impeachment of President Donald Trump, and Joe Biden’s inauguration, political happenings have overshadowed many other newsworthy events. Several climate change stories received little media attention but are worth noting.

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The long game: Where does winning in rural Iowa begin?

Glenn Hurst: Democrats cannot hope to build their bench if they undervalue down-ballot elected positions and concede those offices to Republicans. -promoted by Laura Belin

The Iowa Democratic Party needs to reconsider its strategy for winning elections in Iowa. Republicans have a stronghold on the governor’s office, the state legislature and the majority of Iowa’s Congressional delegation. They now dominate the Iowa Senate and have long controlled the majority in the House.

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Broadlawns board should respect voters, appoint Dave Miglin

Tony Leys had the scoop for the Des Moines Register: having lost his re-election bid for the Broadlawns Medical Center Board of Trustees, Bill Taber is hoping to remain on the seven-member board through an appointment.

Though it may be tempting to pull strings for a colleague they’ve worked with for years, board members of Polk County’s public hospital should respect the will of the voters and name Dave Miglin to fill the vacancy.

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Lulu Merle Johnson would be a fitting namesake for Johnson County

UPDATE: The Johnson County supervisors moved forward with this plan in September 2020.

The first decision of Iowa’s territorial Supreme Court affirmed a former slave’s right to remain out of bondage. Iowa gained statehood as a “free” state and sent thousands of boys and men to fight and die for the Union during the Civil War.

Nevertheless, our state’s fourth-largest county is named after a “particularly despicable” slave-owner. That needs to change, and the Johnson County Board of Supervisors took a first step toward doing so this week.

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