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Columns

  • Your time has come

    “The American Creed”

    I believe in the United States of America

    As a government

    Of the people,

    By the people,

    For the people,

    Whose just powers are derived

    From the consent of the governed;

    A democracy in a republic;

    A sovereign Nation of many sovereign states;

    A perfect Union;

    One and inseparable;

    Established upon those principles

    Of freedom, equality, justice and humanity

    For which American patriots

  • A house divided

    Most of us know of and many can even recite President Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address delivered during the Civil War on November 19, 1863. And most of us know of and probably sometimes paraphrase his House Divided speech delivered when he was a candidate for United States Senator in Illinois (June 16, 1858). Lincoln lost to Stephan Douglas whom Lincoln later beat for the presidency in 1860.

  • History reported not repeated

    I would like to return to those thrilling days of yesteryear, you know, when you could turn on the television and not hear overpaid jerks shouting at one another, “You are lying!” Unfortunately, unless I watch re-runs of “I Love Lucy”, invective is the only fare available. As Anne Murray sings, ”We sure could use a little good news today”. Well, here is some.

    My friends Glenn Curtis, Ray Kessler, Jerry King and Harold Morgan, Gentle Reader you might note a particular demographic here, all write a lot of good news.

  • Judicial Bias

    The National Judicial College has asked me to submit an article on Implicit Judicial Bias for inclusion in its magazine, Judicial Edge, because unfortunately, as proven by the #MeTooMovement, Ferguson Missouri, and our current political climate, implicit bias is all too explicit in the good ‘ole U.S. of A even in our courts. Therefore, I have submitted the following article to NJC and since judges throughout America may be wasting their time reading it, why, Gentle Reader, shouldn’t you? Here it is.

  • Putrid porridge

    As this is a family newspaper I cannot recite the W.C. Fields (1880 – 1946) actual quotation about why he did not drink water. However, after spending two full days removing a winter’s worth of sludge from Peg’s above ground pool I side with W.C. My first clue as to the toxicity of the greenish, quivering mass clinging to the Walmart plastic liner was when my friend Paul Axton, who is a Department of Natural Resources officer, stopped by to retrieve the racoon trap he had loaned me. Paul smelled the acrid fumes rising from the pool and walked over to investigate.

  • Another empty chair

    As President Trump and Secretary of State Pompeo negotiate with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and his lead negotiator Kim Yong Chol over a possible summit, the 5.7 million Americans who served during the Korean War (1950-1953) continue to pass away. We have already lost about two thirds of them and on May 23, 2018 we lost another, Harold Lee Cox.

    Harold and his brother-in-law Gene McCoy served in Korea at the same time. In September 2005 I wrote the following Gavel Gamut column about their service:

    AN UNKNOWN VICTORY

    You name the WAR:

  • What could go wrong?
  • I wanna be a girl singer in a rock band

    I am so excited! Our new granddaughter-in-law is already what I have always wanted to be: a girl singer in a touring rock band. Well, maybe not the girl thing, but ever since I spent my Sunday School offering of a dollar to buy my first record, a 45 rpm single of Sonny James’ “Young Love”, I have secretly dreamed of headlining a rock and roll show. I could have done it too if I hadn’t been unfairly held back by the inability to know a musical key from a wash tub.

  • Enough suggestions, already

    Those few of you who actually read this column on a regular basis will recall my completely justified response to Peg’s destruction of my weekend by sentencing me to help her haul, open and spread 120 fifty-pound bags of brown mulch at JPeg Ranch. You might say, “Well, Peg worked too”. But you see, Peg lives for such opportunities so to her it is not work. On the other hand, as for me, a ball game viewed from the couch is a more appropriate way to spend a Saturday.

  • Mucho mulch

    Ah, spring! The hummingbirds have returned to JPeg Ranch and the falling locust tree blossoms can make me forget for a while how the thorns attack me each time I must deal with a fallen branch. The air is filled with perfume and a symphony of avian love songs.

    Of course, it is not called spring for nothing and the Equinox strikes deeply into Peg’s cortex causing her to spring into a frenzy of projects around the Ranch. Unfortunately for me Peg’s projects become my sentence.