McDonald: San Miguel codes might hold up

Well, it’s settled. But only for a moment. Mora County officials recently settled with some high-powered plaintiffs in a couple of lawsuits that effectively put an end to the county’s attempt to place permanent ban on oil and gas drilling inside its county lines. Actually, the crux of the lawsuits was settled last January, when […]

Legislature should toughen penalties for brutal crimes

In New Mexico, you can get away with serving just three years for stabbing your girlfriend 19 times. You can sever her nerves and tendons, puncture a lung, a kidney, her intestines, gouge her face, her back, her arm – then ditch the weapon and try to run out the prosecution clock. And if that […]

Some women better off divorced

This wraps up a five-week series on divorce from the female perspective with childhood memories from two High Plains residents about their parents splitting up. • “After my mom’s divorce, she struggled with her identity and a sense of failure. She felt especially judged by her church. “I think this was the biggest reason she […]

Arrowsmith: Enough green covers abuse well

Each day I learn more and more, it is about the green. I have been a huge boxing fan most of my life. Last year for my birthday I went to Las Vegas for my first fight. The point is, I am a boxing fan. ESPN last week ran a story on the domestic abuse […]

Hinckley shouldn’t be confined because of notoriety

A recent Denver Post report revealed Colorado defendants accused of first-degree murder but found not guilty by reason of insanity spent an average of 7.4 years at the state hospital. Colorado is not Washington, D.C., of course, but its experience (and that of other states) with the legally insane does suggest that John Hinckley Jr. […]

McDonald: Men like Dean fewer, farther away

He was a short and stocky man, loud in life and with a laugh to beat all hell. As far as I’m concerned, he’s the most interesting man I’ve ever known. Unfortunately, I lost touch with him years ago, so to protect his privacy I’ll only call him Dean in this writing. I wouldn’t want […]

Letter to the editor — April 26

Media on Christian bashing bandwagon These comments are in response to the editorial by Kevin Wilson, “No hypocrisy served here,” published April 23, 2015. Much of the news media have jumped on the bandwagon of Christian bashing these days, probably not realizing that the ultimate result of this, for any group, can fuel deadly behavior […]

Airline industry full of security red-flag moments

While top airline industry designers convened in Germany this month to float ideas for making the flying experience more imaginative and downright warm and fuzzy, here’s what was happening on the ground and off. Taken from the pages of the past week’s Albuquerque Journal, reality ranged from several hundred airport perimeter breaches to TSA same-sex […]

Bostwick: Prairie chicken fight continues

Wendell Bostwick

In what has become a cast of dozens of litigants, New Mexico counties, conservation districts and livestock organizations continue to push for fair treatment from the federal government in relation to lesser prairie chickens and their habitat. In March 2014 the U.S Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) listed the lesser prairie chicken as “threatened” under […]

Sloan: Happiness after divorce a choice

My book-summary-of-the-month for April is Jane Thompson Hasenmuelle’s “Choosing Happiness After Divorce: A Woman’s 52 Week Guide to Living a Positive Life.” Thompson lived in the Clovis/Portales area from 1977-2003, where her children were raised and two still live. As described on Amazon, her book “helps women regain their perspective, adjust to a redefined relationship […]

Upended flag, freedom has consequences

Most rules of etiquette tell us the United States flag should never be displayed upside down except as a signal of distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property. According to the Supreme Court, however, punishment for violating this rule is unconstitutional as a violation of free speech, on the federal level. In […]

Politics involved in police behavior

By Tom McDonald State columnist With all the heat that police officers are taking lately, I’m thinking it’s a good time to bring up a related topic — the politics that infiltrates police departments everywhere. Admittedly, my perspective on the inner workings of law enforcement operations is a bit antiquated, since it’s been years since […]

All law officers in field should have cameras on

A video is a convincing piece of evidence. In light of the recent rash of officer-involved shootings across the nation, one thing is clear: Body-worn and dash cameras are essential to modern policing because they provide real-time information. Prior to their increasingly widespread use, determining what really happened depended on what officers, suspects and witnesses […]

Divorce a teacher of hard knocks

By Wendel Sloan Local columnist Here is the third installment of divorce stories from female readers: • “It was heartbreaking, and we were devastated, but through the process of divorce we became closer than when married … The hardest part after 12 years is wondering if it was a mistake.” • “My first divorce at […]

There really are things to do here

By Robert Arrowsmith Publisher I hear it often. I hear it from multiple age groups, in several of our communities. I’m told kids cannot wait to get out of town because of it. Supposedly there is nothing to do here. Every time I hear it, my question in response is: What do you wish was […]

Reader reaction

We asked our Facebook followers, “What’s something every teen should know?” Some responses: • Savannah Borquez: Learn about building credit. • Laurie Birch Kennedy: The choices you make today will affect you tomorrow. • Resa Ann McCard: How to change a tire. • Sabryna J. Duran: Think twice. Babies aren’t easy to take care of. […]

Local papers vital to community

By Tom McDonald State columnist Every weekend, from my home office in Las Vegas, New Mexico, I find myself knee-deep in some old-fashion community journalism. It’s not a hobby. It’s for a news service I created two years ago next month — the New Mexico Community News Exchange, or CNEx for short. The service includes […]

Candidates’ shift in less taxation encouraging

Today, April 15, is the day everybody hates the IRS — everybody, that is, who has waited until today or just before to grudgingly send in their tax forms and checks. Those who received refunds, however, have probably already spent them, many thinking they are bonus checks. What those who send and those who receive […]

VA wait times should already have improved

Despite a new — and supposedly better — treatment plan, this patient has shown little improvement. It’s been a year since revelations of long waits for medical treatment at the nation’s Veterans Affairs medical facilities — and attempts to hide the problem — rocked the nation. In some cases veterans died while waiting to be […]

Living good life is best revenge

By Wendel Sloan Local columnist Here are more divorce stories from female readers: • “I had to raise my boys without child support (it doesn’t matter what the courts say). For 15 years I balanced two to three jobs, made their games between work schedules, and kept up with their homework. “There was no time […]