Columns

Is America’s death penalty dying?

(Editor’s Note: This column was written before Dylan Roof was sentenced to death earlast week for killing nine people at a church in South Carolina.) Upon the birth of a new year, let's talk about death, shall we? Or the death penalty, to be precise. The topic loomed over a courtroom ...

Our sanctuary cities are intolerable, endanger children and public safety

For more than a year, I have warned about the dangers posed by sanctuary cities. Sadly, Philadelphia keeps proving me right — at the terrible expense of our children and public safety. Just before Thanksgiving, federal law enforcement officers ended a year-long search for Winston Enrique ...

A radicalized Don Quixote

In one of my previous articles, I reached back into my childhood for an image. It was of a barefoot boy, with his cow chasing stick, following livestock paths to adventure. My cow stick, at times, could be magically transformed into a sword, which I would slash and stab at any villains I met. ...

Questions about county changes to Blue Building

The Clinton County commissioners and prison officials are not eliminating the work-release center at the prison, they’re just moving a new version of it downtown. It’s part of the commissioners’ decision to buy the former Piper Blue Building and move a bevy of government services there ...

World views and political polarization

It is no secret that we live in a politically turbulent time. Both at home and abroad, there is a growing sense of division among western populations, an apparently widening rift between what has been identified as globalism vs. nativism. Here in the US, we have conflated these forces with ...

The rationalization of hunting

You can now hunt with auto-loading rifles in Pennsylvania. I wonder who pushed for that; the guy who invented the electric pencil sharpener? A crank was too much for him. This topic deserves a rant for the deer will not speak for themselves and because it illustrates an important concept ...

Helping houseplants survive, thrive

In the middle of winter when many of us yearn for something green and growing, it’s tempting to bring home an attractive house plant. The problem, however, is that often the beautiful plants we bring into our homes don’t stay that way. Understanding the needs of house plants and placing ...

Looking forward … to many positives in 2017

A year can bring ups and downs to the economic and industrial development world. But when it comes to Clinton County’s development arena, most of what happened in 2016 — or perhaps will happen in 2017 — is very positive. Let me start my year recap last February. I was very excited to ...

How the political rules changed in 2016

Over the 40-some years that I have been working or closely observing the political campaign business, the rules of the game haven't changed much. Technology has changed the business somewhat, but the people who ran campaigns in the 1970s could have (and in some cases actually have) run them ...

Tracking the ‘us’ vs. ‘them’ mentality

When was the last time you had the urge to pick at an imperfection? Maybe it was the loose thread, hanging from a fabric seam, which you can’t resist the urge to pull. Maybe it involves your interactions with others. When you latch on to something that is said or someone does, making a ...

Resolutions to protect your family

During the holidays, families gather together and celebrate the season with their traditions. Many anticipate seeing the new baby, eating Aunt Penny’s red and green M&M cookies, going to candlelight church service, having a special family game night or just being still in front of a ...

Doctors: Mild forgetfulness can be treated

Q.    : Like many seniors, I notice I am getting more forgetful. My friends complain about this as well. While this issue doesn’t seem to interfere with my life, I still am concerned, and I would love to find ways to prevent my forgetfulness from getting worse. Any suggestions? A.: ...

Bible Digest

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, said God, I will pour out of my Spirit on all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:” (Acts 2:17 AKJV) Oh how we need the Holy Spirit in power in our ...

Still shopping? Think about your electricity

Some people don’t want to hear another mention of the word “shopping” at this time of year. It’s a word you tend to hear an awful lot. Still, you may be able to save money on your electric bill by spending a few thoughtful minutes shopping for your energy supply. You won’t have ...

Bible digest

“I was glad when they said to me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.” (Psalms 122:1 AKJV) I look forward to going to God’s house. It is a privilege and a joy.

What the world needs now …

For about the past month and a half, I have been possessed by two opposing sentiments. On one hand, it is the Christmas season, and somewhat in spite of myself, I can’t help but look forward to the happy days of family, food, and the general warmth of the holiday season; on the other, ...

Firefighters did prevent a calamity

We’re still in awe of the effort by firefighters early Friday morning to quell a fire that could have easily spread and consumed an entire block of buildings downtown. Reported about 6:30 a.m. as the temperature hovered around 10-15 degrees Fahrenheit, the blaze at the vacant furniture ...

A perfect gift for the holidays: Subscribe to the news

If you're stressing over what to give friends and loved ones during this holiday season, I'm here to help. Consider giving them print or digital subscriptions — or both — to news organizations you regularly count on to provide strong journalism. That includes national newspapers and ...

President-elect Donald Trump, vital issues and foregiveness

President Elect Donald Trump must be successful in multiple areas, but the following are vital. Americans will be unforgiving in four years if he fails in these key areas. Keep Social Security solvent: America is getting older. Fewer Americans have pensions they can count on because ...

Sick of the news? This is no time to tune out

In another strange time in American history, the counterculture guru Timothy Leary urged people to “turn on, tune in, drop out.” Five decades later, it’s time for quite a different formula. In the era of fake news causing real trouble, and of the news media under fire for sins both ...