Ilan's take on current Kansas issues
Look, I’m not going to ignore the elephant in the room: I’m not from Kansas. But that doesn’t mean I won’t diligently research the issues important to everyday Kansans and try to educate myself to the be the best governor I can be. In that spirit, here are the ways I think we can improve the lives of the everyday resident of the great state of Kansas:
Civil Asset Forfeiture, or the process by which a law enforcement officer can seize your money or other belongings without a warrant or other legal authorization based on suspicion that it is being used for illegal activities, is a travesty on the rule of law and order. The worst part of this abhorrent practice is that your possessions are guilty until proven innocent, making them nearly impossible to recover. While most police officers are, of course, diligent, upstanding defenders of the law, there are bad apples who can cost a person their livelihood. There is almost no record of people recovering their seized belongings, and there is no requirement for authorities to record or track the belongings they seize, effectively meaning police can plunder your belongings at will— a serious violation of privacy. We need to eliminate this damaging and nonsensical process by requiring seizure of assets only after one has been charged with a crime.
The opioid crisis is raging across America and Kansas. Prescription opioid deaths rose by 28 percent and heroin deaths rose by 71 percent from 2013 to 2015. We need to work to educate the public on the risks of addiction to prescription drugs and to illegal drugs. We also need to work with hospitals and healthcare providers on alternative treatment options. As governor, I would set up a task force specifically geared to evaluating the opioid crisis in Kansas and recommending an unbiased, reasonable solution.
I support Governor Brownback’s $5 million initiative to promote the expansion of healthcare for rural Kansans. Why then, does Gov. Brownback not support a general expansion of Medicaid in Kansas? It’s vitally important that people receive healthcare who need it. We should look to increase the budget for healthcare for low-income Kansans while also encouraging Kansans to subscribe to the Affordable Care Act to ensure that they are insured.