Chickashanews.com

Opinion

January 3, 2011

“Our Oklahoma”

Thank you, Oklahoma

CHICKASHA — By Governor Brad Henry

For eight years, it has been my honor to serve as Governor of the Great State of Oklahoma. I want to say thank you to all Oklahomans – thank you for your faith, your support and your trust. It is a rare and amazing blessing to serve our state as Governor and First Lady, and Kim and I thank you for the opportunity to do so.

Together, we weathered some challenging times, but we always met our challenges head on and made the most of our opportunities, emerging stronger and better than before.  

While there is certainly much more work to do in the months and years ahead, I’m proud of all we have accomplished in the last eight years. We have moved Oklahoma forward and built a solid foundation for future growth.

There is nothing more important than a strong public education system, and we did our best to improve schools and expand opportunities for students.  We created the first new revenue sources for education in decades and channeled those funds to classrooms and higher teacher salaries. We increased standards and accountability and enhanced an early childhood education program that is a model for the rest of the world.

With a historic bond issue, we made much-needed capital improvements on state college campuses, and we fully funded the Oklahoma’s Promise scholarship program, allowing thousands of hard-working Oklahoma students to attend college tuition-free.

 We established the EDGE research endowment to spur job creation and directed record amounts of funding to Oklahoma’s transportation infrastructure, repairing roads and bridges statewide to assist Oklahoma motorists and economic development.

 We drew national attention with Insure Oklahoma – an innovative private-public partnership that has helped small businesses provide health insurance to thousands of employees.  Other states followed our lead again when we cracked down on methamphetamine labs with a landmark law that restricted access to meth ingredients.

We were both tough and smart on crime, expanding drug and mental health courts to punish first-time offenders in a more cost-effective manner while reserving expensive prison cells for the truly dangerous criminals.  And, as our country fought wars overseas, we honored and assisted the members of the Oklahoma Army and Air National Guard and their families with Operation Homefront.

While all of these accomplishments are significant, I am most proud of the tone we have set at the State Capitol. There have been disagreements and squabbles – that is simply the noise of democracy – but in the end, Democrats and Republicans never failed to pull together and do what is best for Oklahoma.

 Neither party has all the answers. By listening to each other and building consensus, we can find innovative solutions to the challenges we face. As I said in my first inaugural speech, we must all be Oklahomans first.

And we should be proud to be Oklahomans. Oklahoma is unlike any place on Earth, and I am glad to call it home. With a wealth of scenic beauty and natural resources, with friendly, smart and creative people, our state has all the tools it needs for incredible success.

As I prepare to leave the Governor’s Office, I look forward to the future of our state with anticipation and optimism. Oklahoma, in its second century of statehood, will shine more brightly than ever. God bless you, and God bless Oklahoma.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Fightin' Words: Lessons from sports, even in tragedy

    This week, Americans got to hear firsthand accounts, some for the first time, of a sporting tragedy, the lessons from which are as poignant as sport itself.

    April 18, 2014

  • Weir speaks on good traffic stops do for society

    On the law enforcement side the county was fairly quiet last month. There was an incident which may not have seemed of great importance to many, but I would take exception to that.

    April 15, 2014

  • The Hero of Haarlem…For the Common Good

    “Trudging stoutly along by the canal,” as the story goes, the eight year old son of a Dutch sluicer was returning home from delivering cakes to a blind man. Humming as he passed the dikes, he noticed that recent rains had made his father’s job even more important.

    April 11, 2014

  • Morning Ralph…Morning Sam…For the Common Good

    Deep in the vaults of Warner Bros. there is a series of Merrie Melodies cartoons featuring Sam the Sheepdog and Ralph E. Wolf.  It has been years since I have seen the animation; however, the tan sheepdog with the unruly mop of auburn hair and the thin brown wolf that bears an uncanny resemblance to Wile E. Coyote (except for Ralph’s red nose and Wile’s yellow eyes) are readily recalled.

    April 4, 2014

  • Fightin' Words: A right way and a wrong way to treat a college players union

    Initially the ruling by the National Labor Relations Board over Northwestern football players' ability to unionize was, at first, the start of a ticking time bomb on college sports.

    March 28, 2014

  • In New Orleans, Katrina victims live out Hollywood eco agenda

    I visited Lousiana recently to do some reporting on Sen. Mary Landrieu's bid to win a fourth term in a tough political year. But before heading to the key parishes that will determine Landrieu's fate this November, I stopped by New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward to see how rebuilding efforts are faring nearly nine years after Hurricane Katrina.

    March 25, 2014

  • BLOG: America is doing all it can to Russia

    The conservative response to President Obama's handling of the Ukraine crisis is a perfect example of what some Americans need to learn about how the world around them works now.

    March 21, 2014

  • In jam over Obamacare, Dems don't know which way to turn

    When it comes to Obamacare, many Democrats take comfort in polls showing a small majority of voters, or at least a plurality, oppose repealing the Affordable Care Act. To them, that proves the Republicans' do-away-with-it position is out of sync with voters as this November's midterm elections approach.

    March 18, 2014

  • Il Buono, Il Brutto, Il Cattivo and the Common Good

    The term “Spaghetti Western” is used to describe a movie about the American West but directed and produced by Italians and normally filmed in Europe. This motion picture genre has been around for more than 70 years.  Outdoor scenes are often shot in an area of Spain that bears a striking resemblance to the Southwestern United States.

    March 14, 2014

  • Have Bazooka - will travel and the Common Good

    For seven seasons from 1957 through 1963, actor Richard Boone played a gentleman gunslinger named Paladin in the CBS television, Have Gun—Will Travel.  The storyline involved Boone’s character, a highly educated and cultured mercenary whose residence was the Hotel Carlton in wild-west era San Francisco.  Paladin’s business card intimated that he had no qualms about using his Colt .45 revolver or his single action Marlin rifle for hire, wherever his career would take him.

    March 7, 2014

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
AP Video
Raw: Kangaroo Rescued From Swimming Pool Raw: 3 American Doctors Killed in Afghanistan Raw: Obama Arrives at State Dinner in Tokyo Raw: Obama Plays Soccer With Japanese Robot Raw: Obama Visits Meiji Shrine in Tokyo Stars Talk Guns N' Roses at Golden Gods New Pictures of Ship That Sank in 1888 Oregon Gay Marriage Ban Goes to Court SKorea Ferry Toll Hits 156, Search Gets Tougher Video Shows Possible Syrian Gas Attack Admirers Flock to Dole During Kansas Homecoming FBI Joining Probe of Suburban NY 'Swatting' Call U.S. Paratroopers in Poland, Amid Ukraine Crisis US Reviews Clemency for Certain Inmates Michigan Man Sees Thanks to 'bionic Eye'
Poll

Do you expect more businesses will develop in downtown Chickasha in the next year?

Yes
No
     View Results