Kronick’s Chronicles: The issues

Susan EspirituOur Town Neighbors

Whenever I read or hear news, sports or entertainment, I want to know something about who is telling the story and who is the sponsor so to speak.

In the 1960s, the news was polarized by the war in the Vietnam. General Westmoreland gave us statistics about Viet Cong deaths that were never close to accurate. Richard Nixon as president lied regarding the Pentagon papers and Watergate. Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein did their journalistic thing.

Yet we had Edward R. Murrow saying “Goodnight and good luck” plus Walter Cronkite saying “And that’s the way it is.” We believed in these folks.

Now its 2024; Do we still believe it? The following are social issues that are all intrinsically important.

A first issue is our PreK-12 education. A good beginning for human survival is critical. The federal government added funds to Head Start, but Tennessee did nothing for PreK which is when children need a solid foundation for their education nor or did it add funding for school counselors who support the youth through the balance of those educational years.

A second issue is mental health care from young children to geriatrics. There is a lack of services, and a need for broad understanding of mental health and mental illness.

The third issue I still champion is juvenile and adult corrections. There is a need for coordination between law enforcement, jails, courts, incarceration, diversion and after care for juveniles who have been incarcerated.

A fourth issue we all read and feel the effects of daily: gun violence. It is affecting our cities, our neighborhoods, our schools and our families. The second amendment is thrown around like a bloody flag, but was it written to destroy everything we hold dear?

A lasting issue for all is our nursing homes, hospice and medical care. Everyone is worthy to be treated with integrity. These issues deserve a civil discussion and thoughtful change.

I hope we get folks off the bench and in the game.

Bob Kronick is professor emeritus University of Tennessee. Bob welcomes your comments or questions to


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