Michael Leppert

Michael Leppert

Michael Leppert is an author, educator and a communication consultant in Indianapolis. He writes about government, politics and culture at


Respectfully, Indiana — just call students by their name

By: - March 28, 2023

I have a sister named Peggy. But because “Peggy” is not a saint’s name, my grandmother objected to my parents naming her that. So, the name they gave her was “Margaret,” and only to satisfy grandma and an outdated, dumb, Catholic rule. Peggy legally changed her name when she was old enough to do it […]


While celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, learn about Irish history and acceptance of others

By: - March 21, 2023

I’ve always been fascinated with St. Patrick’s Day, and there is no question that my fascination comes from the fascination others have for it.  Being of Irish descent used to make me feel like the holiday belonged to me more than others. In Ireland, it has been a religious holiday for more than a thousand […]


The valuable truth is that Fox News is no longer the press

By: - March 14, 2023

The competition for trust and credibility in the press are far from new. This struggle dates back to at least the late 1800’s when the “yellow journalism” battle between moguls Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst dominated the New York media market. Both were fighting for circulation and ultimately, you know, profit.  There was a […]


East Palestine’s battle is a lesson for all Americans

By: - March 7, 2023

At Indiana University, I teach government to students in one school, and speech to students in another. The subjects are quite different, as are the students. But the story of East Palestine, Ohio gives me a real life lesson to teach both classes and will for years to come.  On February 3, a train operated […]


From one parent to the legislature: “Show me where it hurts.”

By: - February 28, 2023

If you are a parent, I’m sure you have had the experience of seeing your child laying on the ground crying hysterically over what appears to be nothing. “Show me where it hurts,” is often the command that most effectively breaks through the noise. Amazingly, more often than not, nothing hurts at all.  In this […]

pence and fox news

During Oscar season, Pence and Fox News act afraid of the same truth

By: - February 21, 2023

“You can’t handle the truth!” That’s the famous line spoken from the witness stand by Jack Nicholson in his portrayal of Colonel Nathan Jessup in the 1992 hit movie, “A Few Good Men.”  That was thirty years ago, in a make-believe story of a governmental cover up, and long before the line became so true […]


Indiana lawmakers doing their best Butch and Sundance

By: - February 14, 2023

For those among you who haven’t seen the 1969 classic film, “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” let me spoil the ending for you. Paul Newman and Robert Redford, in the title roles, had been chased into a shack by authorities in Bolivia after a lengthy manhunt. They were surrounded, exhausted and had nowhere else […]


As state numbers shrink in Congress, its leadership shrinks even more

By: - February 7, 2023

The Hoosier state was buzzing on a Saturday afternoon in February over a basketball game. The storied rivalry of Indiana and Purdue was the sports event of the weekend—in America. The top ranked Boilers were actually one-point underdogs in Bloomington on Saturday to an IU team that played a great first half and then held […]


INPRS has a target on its back for the sole purpose of scoring political points

By: - January 31, 2023

I remember a meeting with my first financial adviser several years ago who told me that the money I had in the Indiana Public Retirement System, or INPRS, needed to be moved out of there. His perspective then was that INPRS did not give me enough control over my own money and that the government’s […]

roe rally

On its 50th Anniversary, Hoosiers say Roe was never enough

By: - January 24, 2023

There’s something happening in America following the upheaval of Roe that is surprising to some, and to others is completely predictable. Count me among the latter.  Last summer, the U.S. Supreme Court chose poorly in its decision, Dobbs v. Mississippi, effectively overturning nearly half a century of precedent protecting a woman’s right to choose an […]


On Martin Luther King Day, let’s reflect on how we have changed

By: - January 17, 2023

Legislation creating Martin Luther King, Jr. Day as a national holiday was passed forty years ago and signed into law by President Ronald Reagan. It was 1983.  The late Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” dominated the music, video and dance world. The Washington Redskins, which thankfully doesn’t exist anymore, won the Super Bowl. I got my driver’s […]

house speaker

When the new speaker stands for nothing, danger lurks in a chaotic House

By: - January 10, 2023

Early in the Broadway smash, “Hamilton,” the title character meets his nemesis, Aaron Burr. The polished and savvy politician advises young Alexander to “talk less, smile more, don’t let them know what you’re against or what you’re for.” Republicans in the U.S. House seem to be trying to follow the Burr plan, with the obvious […]