Columnists

Tips for positive relationships between home and school

With the school year back in full swing, this is a great time to talk about the importance of parent and community involvement in our local schools. Researchers, educators and policymakers alike have all noted the importance of parent involvement as a key factor in helping students learn at ...

Parenting positively

There is no such thing as a perfect parent. As parents, we can and will make mistakes. If there is one thing that we can do, it’s parent positively. The Zero to Three organization introduces us to the idea of “positive parenting.” It comes with the notion that parents should answer with ...

The media and Kavanaugh’s kangaroo court

The erupting accusation of “attempted rape” against Judge Brett Kavanaugh when he was 17 show just how shameless the Democrats and the “Facts First” media have become. They are promoting accusation when the accuser can’t remember when or where it happened. That is enough to stop a ...

Are we still pretending Donald Trump isn’t lying?

On the day after his inauguration, Donald Trump gave a speech at CIA headquarters. He lied about the number of people attending his inauguration, claiming the crowd was far larger than it was. He also lied about the media, falsely accusing journalists of manufacturing his feud with the ...

A cold wind off Lake Michigan — for Chicago and America

“It’s the Lord of the Flies on LaSalle Street,” wrote columnist John Kass in the Chicago Tribune. In case the references are unclear, whether because high schools haven’t been assigning the William Golding novel in the last few decades or because out-of-towners unaccountably don’t ...

Not every problem needs a federal solution

F ifty-five percent of voters believe that Facebook has too much power. Forty-seven percent believe the same about Twitter. For those in the political world, such numbers represent an obvious call for government action. But voters disagree. Just 21 percent want the federal government to ...

Kavanaugh will be on the Supreme Court; Garland will not

One of the most striking things about the age of Trump is that Democrats have convinced themselves all the misogynists, racists, anti-Semites and moral cretins are on the right and everyone on the left is either pure as the driven snow or their motives can be explained away. Meanwhile, ...

Reasoning about race

So much of our reasoning about race is both emotional and faulty. In ordinary, as well as professional, conversation, we use terms such as discrimination, prejudice, racial preferences and racism interchangeably, as if they referred to the same behavior. We can avoid many pitfalls of misguided ...

Gun violence target: the bullets

The mantra “It’s the economy, stupid,” propelled Bill Clinton’s candidacy during the presidential campaign in 1992. His decision to highlight the nation’s then-struggling economy (and promise to fix it) helped him win the White House. One theme in this year’s midterm elections is ...

The unpardonable heresy of Tucker Carlson

Our diversity is our greatest strength. After playing clips of Democratic politicians reciting that truth of modern liberalism, Tucker Carlson asked, “How, precisely, is diversity our strength? Since you’ve made this our new national motto, please be specific.” Reaction to Carlson’s ...

Scooters outrun law

I just zipped down a city street on an electric scooter. It cost me 15 cents a minute. Fast and fun! My scooter was just lying on the ground. I picked it up, activated it with my phone and rode away. When I was done, I simply abandoned it. Won’t it be stolen? No, because you need an app ...

School dsciplinary policies must be local

The Trump administration is considering rescinding a Dear Colleague Letter, sent to public school administrators nationwide in 2014, which provided guidelines regarding school discipline policies consistent with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act. According to Title VI, racial discrimination at ...

Make the most of life’s sinkholes

You just can’t make this stuff up. Last Tuesday I went out to take photos of some of the flooding on the north side of town. I pulled off on the shoulder of Iowa Highway 14 to get some photos of the water that pooled around the Marshalltown welcome sign — you might have seen it in the ...

Honolulu Chicken

This past week has been wonderful weather-wise. It’s because of weather like this that we live in Iowa. Honolulu Chicken 4 skinless chicken breast halves 1/4 c. flour 1/2 tsp. salt pepper, to taste cooking oil 1 c. peach preserves or jam 1/2 c. barbecue sauce 1/2 c. diced ...

No, I’m Spartacus!

It was Day Three of the Brett Kavanaugh hearings when Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J,, launched his 2020 presidential bid as a Thracian gladiator. His eyes glimmering pools of earnestness, Booker girded his loins and told the chamber that he was going to do the unthinkable. He was going to put ...

Both-sideism not just a journalistic problem

A prediction. When the history of this era is written, when future generations wonder how a mostly educated and largely literate nation became mired in “truthiness,” when they ask how we became so mentally muddled that we lost the ability to identify facts and the capacity to care, ...

Theater of the absurd has taken over Senate

Supreme Court confirmation hearings have mostly been theater for a long time. The dismaying thing about the latest episode — the Brett Kavanaugh show — is that it became the theater of the absurd. In the classic absurdist dramas of the 1950s and 1960s, Brittanica.com explains, European ...

Wear Copper for Joint Pain

When I was a kid my father ran a gas station in Monroe. I loved “helping” my father with his business. I swept the floor and washed windshields — albeit I had to stand on a five-gallon bucket in order to reach the windshields. Mostly, I drank pop and ate Cherry Mesh candy bars. ...

Americans value free trade

Most Americans are life-long learners and will change their mind when facts become known. Of course, despite what evidence is presented, there will always be stubborn, stick-to-their-guns individuals. The conservative Wall Street Journal reported (Sept. 5) about a Chicago Council on Global ...

Back-to-school season: Not just for kids

As kids head back to school this fall, they’re not the only ones feeling a renewed sense of vigor and motivation. For many of us, September is synonymous with the fresh start of a new school year and the satisfaction that comes from busy, productive days and learning new things. That makes ...