Columnists

3 lessons from the Jussie Smollett hoax

So, Jussie Smollett was lying. The “Empire” actor claimed that when he was walking home at 2 a.m. in Chicago, in the midst of the polar vortex, he was accosted by two assailants, both of whom shouted anti-gay and anti-black slurs at him. They then attempted to throw a noose around his ...

Bernie Sanders has a harder hill to climb in 2020

Having won 13 million votes in his failed 2016 campaign against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination, it’s no surprise that at age 77 Bernie Sanders is trying again in 2020. But a significant difference this time around is that he will not be alone peddling his message ...

Importance of well-child visits

We have been focusing on your child’s health and its impact on development by looking at hearing and eyesight. Now, let’s focus on your child’s overall wellbeing by looking at the importance of well-child exams with your doctor. What to expect Each visit includes a complete physical ...

Back to Munich

“There are none so blind as those who will not see.” One might think that after denying the evidence of Adolf Hitler’s rise and objectives that resulted in World War II, Europeans might be more attuned to modern threats. Last week on a visit to Munich (oh, the irony), Vice President ...

Smollett and the ‘fakes first’ media

The left would expect mere mortals to understand that as opposed to them, the left rises above the rumormongering and misinformation of social media. As with so much else regarding the left, that’s nonsense. It cuts, pastes and amplifies the unsubstantiated ardor of liberal Twitter, Facebook ...

The making of an Edventure

Edventure, Iowa Valley Continuing Education’s course schedule, contains course offerings that enhance career development and deepen personal enrichment. Our mission is to provide courses that increase your skills and knowledge to boost job productivity and career potential or fulfill personal ...

‘Nobody likes to see us as kids’

Most of us are more than one thing, but sometimes one thing happens that changes us forever. David Hogg, a survivor of last year’s Valentine’s Day massacre in Parkland, Florida, comes to mind. He was 17 when, sitting in his AP environmental science class at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High ...

Why are Democratic presidential candidates endorsing ‘the Green Dream?’

There’s an old joke about an egotistical politician whose disgruntled speechwriter, just before quitting, prepares a draft that promises the moon, and specifics for how to pay for it, on the first two pages, and leaves the third page blank except for the words “You’re on your own now.” ...

Sports betting should not be legalized

I’m continuing to work on bills I’ve filed on behalf of my constituents on a variety of topics, as well as work on bills assigned to the environmental committee I chair and bills that have been assigned to me in the committees I sit on. Bills that I have primary responsibility for include ...

Adding to mental health resources, education and workforce

As we moved into the fifth week of the legislative session, subcommittee work remained the primary focus while bills have been moving through the senate. This week one of my sponsored bills, Senate File 88 passed out of the Transportation Committee. This bill creates a new specialty license ...

Pagan politics in post-Christian America

In 2016, I dissented. I said that, even though I had been an elected Republican, I could not support Donald Trump for president. I found him to be an amoral man and an unprincipled politician. I was and remain horrified by Christian voters who rally to the man as some sort of savior and twist ...

Dear Dietitian

Dear Dietitian, My friend is always on the latest health kick, so now she is taking probiotics every day and swears she feels so much better. She keeps bugging me to take them too, but I priced them at the drugstore, and they are expensive. Are they worth it? Sharon Dear ...

Virginia unreal

Politics is not brain surgery; it’s not that complicated. Politics is about addition, not subtraction. Show me a political party that is openly seeking and welcoming “converts” to its side and is finding common ground and I’ll show you a growing, healthy and, yes, winning political ...

Why not just be ‘an American’?

Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s insistence that she is Native American has drawn racial taunts from President Donald Trump, who frequently refers to her as “Pocahontas,” as well as reprimands from tribal leaders, who note that tribes themselves determine tribal membership. She has frequently said ...

Cheeseburger Macaroni

This seems like the winter that doesn’t end, so I invited some friends and neighbors in for lunch between snow storms. I debated making the Cheeseburger Macaroni or the Lasagna Roll Ups, so I made both. Cheeseburger Macaroni 8 oz. uncooked small elbow macaroni 1 lb. ground beef 1 ...

Ridicule, the last great death of a culture

A few words about the Trail of Tears and other jokes. Granted, the Trail of Tears would hardly seem a laughing matter. To the contrary, as recounted by History.com, it was an ordeal of robbery, mass relocation and death growing out of what white Americans of the 19th century saw as their ...

Trump can only win again if Democrats keep moving leftward

Donald Trump can’t win in 2020 but the Democrats can lose, and they seem determined to give it their best shot. Straight-line predictions are the undoing of every pundit and prognosticator. But it seems safe to say that if present trends hold, President Trump has no path to winning a ...

Will diversity be the death of the Democrats?

Both of America’s great national parties are coalitions. But it is the Democratic Party that never ceases to celebrate diversity — racial, religious, ethnic, cultural — as its own and as America’s “greatest strength.” Understandably so, for the party is home to a multitude of ...

My surreal experience with Rep. Steve King

To the best of my recollection, on Jan. 26 I attended the town hall meeting Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) held in Primghar. King noticed me taking copious notes and asked I attend three more public forums. Here’s my envisioned and visualized journey. On Feb. 2 we met Sen. Charles Grassley ...

Just another God story

Our outside temperature gauge told me it was -21 degrees at 2 a.m.— the time I usually get up to read and write. I could hear the wind howling outside and the house popping and banging (frost quakes?), like pond ice cracking under the weight of too many skaters. The wind-chill factor had to ...