Sloan: ‘Brief History’ can’t be summarized

My book-of-the-month summary for June is “A Brief History of Time” by Stephen Hawking. Impossible to summarize in 300-plus words, here are selected passages: • “We give little thought to the machinery that generates the sunlight that makes life possible, to the gravity that glues us to an Earth that would otherwise send us spinning […]

Wilson: A few more grammar pitfalls to avoid

Two weeks prior, I wrote a column about writing pitfalls to avoid. To my extreme frustration, I forgot a few. Also, readers supplied me with enough encouragement, and some of their own faux pas, to inspire a Part II. Many of these are built around the phrase, “If I had more time, I’d have written […]

Drug proposal deserves serious consideration

Many Americans are experiencing a new pain at the pharmacy cash register due to skyrocketing medication costs. For many seniors and others on fixed incomes, that financial pain level is 11 on a scale of 1 to 10. Spending for Medicare’s outpatient prescription program grew by nearly 60 percent from 2007 through 2014, from $46 […]

McDonald: State deals sweet for film makers

My older daughter tells a great story about how she met Jeff Bridges and didn’t even know it. She was a teenager at the time, working at a local bookstore in “the original” Las Vegas (New Mexico) when he came in to the store. She said she was decorating an Easter egg for an upcoming […]

Remember our flag waves for freedom, equality

The Rainbow Pride flag has long been a symbol for the gay community. Over the last couple of days, its symbolism has expanded as one of unity not just for those Americans, but for Americans of varied backgrounds who together mourn the senseless murders inflicted by a terrorist-inspired American in an Orlando, Florida, nightclub catering […]

McDonald: Rights are for all, including LGBT

Sex is always a topic that gets attention, but lately it’s been getting attention in some disturbing ways. Transgender rights, sexual assaults on college campuses, and Internet pornography have all been in the news lately — and while they’re unrelated in the way in which they’ve made news, they all have one thing in common: […]

City shooting itself in the foot with range plan

Clovis city commissioners on Thursday are expected to discuss the pros and cons of a taxpayer-funded shooting range being established at Ned Houk Park. We think it’s time government got out of the entertainment business. Promoters say the proposed 720-acre range would feature 100-yard and 200-yard rifle targets, an area for pistol shooting and skeet […]

Sloan: Life still found in declining towns

Despite amateurish photography skills, I enjoy taking photos of rustic buildings in rural areas. While recently chauffeuring a teacher to the small West Texas towns of Morton, Muleshoe, Lazbuddie, Dimmitt, Wilson and Meadow for interviews for elementary positions, I killed time by snapping photos of old houses. I assumed the dilapidated structures — with missing […]

No such thing as a grammar Nazi

Little can rattle me faster than a word, or piece of punctuation, used incorrectly. As an editor, it’s part of my job to stop them so they don’t rattle you wonderful readers. But why stop at my desk? Here are a handful of pitfalls, mostly linguistic, with some definitions and personal rules added: • Regarding […]

The smaller our government, the better for us all

We don’t endorse political candidates, primarily because we seldom see any who reflect our core values of limited government. Those seeking office in Tuesday’s primaries across the state are mostly well-intentioned people. Their hearts are in the right place, but we can’t identify even one we could recommend whose intentions are to make government smaller […]

Sloan: It was just a freak accident, really

My book-of-the-month summary for May is “Super Freakonomics” by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner. The authors reveal unintended economic consequences of policies and often sub-conscious behaviors. Excerpts: • Title IX had an unintended consequence on the number of female college head coaches. Before the law, 90 percent of college women’s sports had female head coaches. […]

Wilson: Great layover location still elusive

Leave it to my dad to note financial disparities of an industry. While overseeing a paint crew for the state government, he was accused of being inefficient with the paint used to mark the roadways. An investigation was launched, with numerous state employees taking three weeks to check his work. At the end, his supervisor […]

Dogfighters should be caged like fighting dogs

Dogfighting is despicable. It is not a sport. Breeding dogs to tear at each other’s throats, training them to fight to the death, keeping them stacked in crates in basements, abusing them in the worst possible ways is the sick blood activity of weak people. An Albuquerque man, Robert Arellano, 62, was arrested last week […]

McDonald: Trump has show, not depth, of Ali

As I think back on Muhammad Ali and his impact on American culture, I’m struck by a couple of comparisons. Specifically, Jack Johnson and Donald Trump come to mind. Ali transcended his professional boxing career by thrusting himself head-first into the struggles of his time. If you remember him in his prime, you know he […]

McDonald: Census gives clear view of state

It’s amazing what you can learn about a place from its numbers. U.S. Census Bureau numbers, that is. If you’ve never linked into its Quick Facts data, you don’t know what you’re missing. For example, from this data I can tell you that when compared to our three big neighbors to the west, north and […]

Ariel Kokoricha more than local word nerd

If we were to pick a perfect representative for eastern New Mexico, we’d want someone smart, personable and approachable, with a good sense of humor, a healthy curiosity and a hunger for success who’s earned the respect of colleagues, superiors and even casual acquaintances. We did not pick Ariel Kokoricha to represent us at the […]

New Mexico perfect to host World Air Games

New Mexico has a golden opportunity to raise its status as a world-class ballooning venue to even greater heights if it can convince the Switzerland-based Fédération Aéronautique Internationale to bring its World Air Games to Albuquerque in 2019 or 2020. Supporters say the games, billed as the olympics of aviation, could bring in a quarter-million […]

Sloan: Let the name game commence

Here is the spring edition of “Do commencement names determine destiny?” Will … • Ms. Scales and Mr. Justice receive fair sentences from Mr. Judge? Ms. Riper and Mr. Vineyard ferment extraordinarily sweet wine? Ms. Gard protect herself from Mr. Stalker with Mr. Mace? • Mr. Rhode be told to hit it because Ms. Holliday […]

Gessing: Justice system could use changes

New Mexico could make significant improvements to its criminal justice system by embracing a common-law principle called mens rea. A new Rio Grande Foundation paper describes in detail why the New Mexico Legislature should embrace the principle of “guilty conscience” in criminal justice. As described by Roscoe Pound, the dean of Harvard Law School from […]

Circle of violence amongst Navajos needs to end now

The statistics are numbing: Four of five American Indian and Alaskan Native women have experienced violence. More than half have experienced sexual violence, and they are 2 1/2 times more likely to be sexually assaulted than women of all other races. More than one in three have experienced violence in the past year. Young Ashlynne […]