News

A new Tennessee license plate, without the phrase "In God We Trust." (tn.gov)

“In God We Trust” license plates draw attention

BY: - September 24, 2022

Tennessee drivers can choose whether or not to include “In God We Trust” on their license plates when renewing this year, an option that is attracting controversy.  In Nov. 2021, Gov. Bill Lee invited Tennesseans to vote on a new design.  The resulting new, all-blue design for license plates replaced the old plates, which depicted […]

Evelyn Boswell. (Photo: Tennessee Bureau of Investigation)

Testimony reveals Sullivan County toddler died after being placed in trash can — alive

BY: - September 23, 2022

A Sullivan County toddler whose disappearance more than two years ago drew international attention was “tightly wound” in a blanket and aluminum foil, placed in a trash bag and stuffed — alive — inside a trash can, testimony Friday revealed. Testimony in Sullivan County Criminal Court Friday revealed 18-month-old Evelyn Boswell suffocated inside a trash […]

Vanderbilt University Medical Center. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Democratic leaders push back on calls for Vanderbilt transgender clinic investigation

BY: and - September 23, 2022

A day after Gov. Bill Lee and state Republican leaders called for an investigation into transgender care at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Democratic leaders pushed back, saying that “hate” was being used “for political purposes.” “Parents should be able to make decisions in regard to their children’s health. That is something Republicans claim to fight […]

(Getty Images)

Christian schools association intervenes in suit against U.S. Department of Education

BY: - September 23, 2022

The nation’s largest Protestant association of Christian schools is joining forces with Tennessee and 19 other Republican states to try to block a Biden administration executive order that seeks to protect LGBTQ students in public schools from discrimination. The Association of Christian Schools International, whose members include 2,000 schools and 60 colleges across the country, […]

(Photo: Getty Images)

USDA to spend $500 million extending high-speed internet to rural America

BY: - September 22, 2022

The U.S. Department of Agriculture will send more than $500 million in loans and grants to telecommunications providers to bring high-speed internet to rural areas across 20 states, Secretary Tom Vilsack said Wednesday. The department will spend $360 million in grants and $141 million in loans through its ReConnect Program to benefit sparsely populated communities, […]

Vanderbilt University Medical Center. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Republican lawmakers plan to strip Vanderbilt Hospital of child transgender surgeries

BY: and - September 21, 2022

Fueled by a Twitter report, Republican lawmakers are planning to pass legislation in 2023 to stop Vanderbilt University Medical Center from performing pediatric transgender surgeries. Meanwhile, Gov. Bill Lee requested an investigation, and Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti’s Office said he will use the “full scope” of his authority to make sure state law is being […]

U.S. Republican Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia, at a press conference outside the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday, Sept. 20, on her legislation to make it a felony to perform gender-affirming care on transgender youth. (Photo by Jennifer Shutt.

Marjorie Taylor Greene leads GOP drive to criminalize gender-affirming care for transgender youth

BY: - September 21, 2022

WASHINGTON — Conservative Republicans gathered outside the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday to commit to bringing legislation to the floor that would make it a felony to perform gender-affirming care on transgender youth, should the GOP take control of the U.S. House following the November midterm elections.  “How on earth can this be happening in America? […]

John Cole’s Tennessee

BY: - September 21, 2022

Hardeman County Correctional Facility. (Photo: Tennessee Department of Corrections)

Private prison contractor CoreCivic hit with two new lawsuits over inmate deaths

BY: - September 21, 2022

The parents of three inmates who died behind bars in a span of just four months in 2021 are accusing private prison operator CoreCivic of Tennessee of repeatedly placing profits over safety and failing to police its own guards. “CoreCivic needs to be held accountable, and the (parents) intend to do just that,” attorney Janet […]

U.S. Supreme Court building (Photo: U.S. Supreme Court website)

North Carolina uses “fraudulent” document in gerrymandering case before high court

BY: - September 21, 2022

A group of legal experts says North Carolina is using a “fraudulent” document from 1818 to make its argument in a gerrymandering case set to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court this fall. A Politico op-ed written by Ethan Herenstin, counsel for the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University Law, and Brian […]

Lynfield Gardens in Bedford County, owned by Chris and Stephanie Sarsfield. (Photo: Lynfield Gardens)

Wedding venue on Bedford County farm hits legal snag with ‘Right to Farm Act’

BY: - September 21, 2022

The intent of the Tennessee Right to Farm Act, passed in 1982, was to keep local zoning and neighbors who don’t like farm activities from interfering with farmers. The Right to Farm Act and a recent Tennessee Court of Appeals ruling, allow farmers to supplement their income by hosting events and other recreational activities — […]

Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (Photo: TBI)

Lawmakers promise to seek more TBI crime lab funding in wake of high-profile case

BY: - September 20, 2022

State lawmakers are expected to pour more funds into a Tennessee Bureau of Investigation crime lab personnel after a Memphis murder shed light on the fact some rape kits are languishing for eight months to nearly a year unless they get “rush” status from local law enforcement. The Jackson crime lab, which handles Shelby County […]