The Midwest Report – Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Midwest Report is a news-roundup dedicated exclusively to the American Midwest.

1)   Ohio

Pew report says children in Ohio struggle to get access to dental care,” written by Ellen Jan Kleinerman for The Plain Dealer, and published on 06/25/13.

“Children in Ohio and across the country struggle to get access to dental care, according to a report released this morning by the Pew Charitable Trusts.

A nationwide shortage of dentists and a small percentage of dentists accepting Medicaid patients are two of the major barriers to children trying to get necessary care, according to the report by the independent, nonprofit policy organization.

‘Millions of children are going without dental care every year because we don’t have a system that can treat them,’ said Jane Koppelman, senior officer of the Pew Children’s Dental Campaign.

More than 14 million low-income children did not see a dentist in 2011, the report stated.

In Ohio, about 19 percent of the children have untreated cavities and 51 percent have a history of tooth decay, according to the state health department.”

2)   Indiana

Indiana leopard: Since when did leopards live in Indiana?” written by Eoin O’Carroll for the Christian Science Monitor, and published on 06/24/13.

“No, that headline isn’t a typo. It really says ‘Indiana leopard,’ and not ‘Indian leopard.’

Your double-take is completely understandable, though, as leopards are not native to the Hoosier State. The nine known subspecies of leopard make their homes in Africa and across Asia, the largest habitat of any species of big cat. But definitely not Indiana.

Or so we thought. According to news reports, a Charlestown, Ind., woman and her boyfriend spotted a large cat in the woods at the edge of her property. Fearing for the safety of the woman’s housecats after several pets in her neighborhood had been attacked, the boyfriend shot and killed the animal Thursday, thinking it was a bobcat.

It wasn’t. It was a much bigger cat. ‘The cat in these photographs has been identified tentatively as a leopard,’ said an official with the state’s Department of Natural Resources told a local news station.”

3)   Michigan

Michigan gay marriage supporters waiting on Supreme Court, not waiting to work on repeal,” written by Jonathan Oosting for MLive, and published on 06/24/13.

“Gay and lesbian advocates across Michigan are watching closely this week as the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to decide two same-sex marriage cases.

But they are not expecting the nation’s highest court to invalidate Michigan’s ban and are setting their sights on alternative approaches to repeal.

Michigan’s gay marriage ban, approved by 59 percent of voters in 2004, is the subject of a federal lawsuit in Detroit, and state Democrats have announced legislation seeking to repeal it. Barring progress on those fronts, activists are working to raise $12 million in hopes of putting the issue back before voters in 2016.

‘We’ll take progress as soon as possible and as cheaply as possible,’ said Emily Dievendorf, managing director of Equality Michigan, who already is working on the ballot proposal on a daily basis. ‘But we’re certainly willing to raise the money necessary for victory. We do intend to win in 2016, and we do think people will be interested in making sure that happens, financially and with their time and energy.’”

4)   Missouri

Missouri GOP sentiments reflect party’s split on immigration,” written by Bill Lambrecht for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and published on 06/25/13.

“Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt joined the majority of Republicans who voted Monday against the so-called ‘border surge’ amendment, an indication of a stark difference of opinion in the GOP on overhauling immigration laws.

Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk was among 14 Republicans aligning with Democrats in the 67-27 vote to advance the amendment. It calls for investing $30 billion in border security and doubling the number of border patrol agents.

‘A secure border and a path to citizenship are good for Illinois’ economy and good for Illinois jobs, and I look forward to supporting its final passage in the coming days,’ Kirk said after the vote.

But Blunt, who has watched his own security proposals defeated, did not find the key amendment appealing.”

5)   Kansas

Sam Brownback Accused Of Seeking ‘Absolute Control’ For Kansas Conservatives,” written by John Celock for The Huffington Post, and published on 06/24/13.

“Kansas’ moderate Republican insurance commissioner is accusing conservative Republican Gov. Sam Brownback of doing anything it takes in an attempt to seize ‘absolute control’ for conservatives in the state’s political offices.

Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, the last moderate Republican in statewide office, told The Kansas City Star that Brownback has ‘proven he can take anybody out’ when they run for reelection in his quest for total conservative control. Praeger is the latest in a long line of moderate Republicans to make the accusation against Brownback, and her remarks are a continuation of a bitter GOP civil war which paralyzed state government last year.

‘I hear (other Republicans) saying they want to get rid of all the moderates and the Democrats,’ Praeger told The Kansas City Star. ‘But why? They’ve got control. I don’t know why they need absolute control.’”

6)   North Dakota

North Dakota: Oil wealth, Microsoft and spectacular people,” written by Eric Golub for The Washington Times, and published on 06/23/13.

“The expression ‘North Dakota nice’ is true. Just like Minnesota and Wisconsin, North Dakotans are very neighborly. However, the movie ‘Fargo,’ as with much of what Hollywood does, is wildly exaggerated. People here are not country bumpkins. Perhaps if Hollywood producers spent time in the places they depicted and met the people, movies would reflect that…

North Dakota is fairly homogenous. Diversity comes in various forms of white Christians, although some are eggshell and creme. There are some black people, but not as many as in other states. A Jewish person will be delighted to find three synagogues in the major cities, two in Fargo and one in Grand Forks. However, for Jewish dating, New York and Los Angeles are better options.

If one thing separates North Dakota from anywhere else in America, it is the ‘two for one hamburger specials.’ When you order a burger, you get a whole other burger to eat on the way home ― for free. Those not blown away by this should be. North Dakotans take it for granted, and it makes sense. You drive long distances in North Dakota, and in North Dakota cold, you need the extra calories. Big D’s is just one of several Fargo places that offers this beautiful experience of twice the deceased cow for half the price.”

Compiled by Corey McLaughlin for Common Culture: Midwest and The Big Slice.

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Author: The Blue Route

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