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 […]

McDonald: Dream big, but prepare for work

It’s that time of year, when just about every newspaper in the state gives front-page attention to at least one local graduation. They’re always a big deal, especially to those who walk across that ceremonial stage and the families they’re making proud. Graduations mark a transition in our lives, but sometimes I think it’s over-emphasized. […]

Wise to protect from fraud with no singling out

With several taxpayers, a state legislator and an AARP representative questioning whether tax returns of older New Mexicans are receiving extra scrutiny at the state Taxation and Revenue Department, it would behoove Secretary Demesia Padilla to address those concerns with appropriate statistics, sooner rather than later. Lea Long with the AARP Foundation Tax-Aide program said […]

Sloan: You might want to start drinking

Editor’s note: Dear Cuzins is written by cousins Chef Juandel, The Anglo Mariachi Cowboy, Bootlegger Sloan and Wendel Sloan. Dear Cuzins, My Mexican wife, my kids, and I — an angry white guy — are having serious political conflicts. She supports Clinton; I support Trump; our 24-year-old daughter, a university studies major, supports Sanders; and […]

Voter ID poorly thought-out idea

Letter to the Editor The proposed ordinance for voter ID will be a nightmare; it’s another example of a bad idea poorly thought out by city commissioners. You have to imagine what the polls will look like if this ordinance passes as it’s written. There are going to be longer lines in which people are […]

Massive B-52B Stratofortress worth preserving

Almost as impressive as the massive B-52B Stratofortress parked outside the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History in Albuquerque is the speed at which the museum surpassed its goal of raising $60,000 in 30 days to return the bomber to its former glory. On April 1, the museum kicked off a month-long campaign to […]

McDonald: It’s an honor to work in local news

A little more than three years ago, I started my own business, Gazette Media Services LLC. That happened after eight years running the Las Vegas Optic for its corporate owner. I wanted to carve out my own niche, and one of the first and most important things I accomplished was to create the Community News […]

Today’s children facing different kind of reality

The horrific death of 11-year-old Ashlynne Mike near the Shiprock Pinnacle on the Navajo Nation is a tragic reminder that, no matter how vigilantly children are taught to be wary of strangers, danger can lurk nearby. On Monday, after getting off the school bus, Ashlynne and her 9-year-old brother, Ian Mike, lingered near an irrigation […]

A day in the mind of Wendel Sloan

Random thoughts: • I understand concerns about the transgender bathroom issue, but if someone wants to harm opposite-sex children, can’t they simply dress up as the opposite sex without going through the emotional turmoil, pain and expense of surgery? My impression is transgender persons simply want to live an authentic life. I admire their courage, […]

Wilson: Real talk will stop meme problem

“Miss Rodriguez, tear down this meme.” Nope, doesn’t have the same gusto. I’m guessing you joined this discussion a little late, or you just don’t pay attention to legislation in other countries. A member of Mexico’s congressional body named Martha Orta Rodriguez wants to criminalize the dangerous meme trade. What is an internet meme, you […]

State should be compensated for taken land

State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn came out with rhetorical guns blazing last week when it was announced that state Trust Land was among two areas within the Rio Grande National Monument near Taos that were included in the U.S. Senate’s energy bill for wilderness status, calling the move a “land grab” that is “tantamount to […]

McDonald: Being a cop requires accountability

It’s tough to be a cop these days. It always has been, but in today’s climate it’s particularly difficult. And it’s not just nationally, it’s local too, right here in cities and towns across New Mexico. Nationally, a new era of aggressive scrutiny of police shootings rose out of Ferguson, Missouri, when an 18-year-old black […]

Nice that school board’s making effort to do right

A little sunshine made its way into a public meeting last week. Portales’ school board acknowledged its recent failure in adhering to the state’s Open Meetings Act, then took action to correct errors and make the public’s business a little more transparent. The board on April 12 went into executive session, saying it planned to […]

Sloan: Best journalism involves digging

While attending the recent New Mexico Press Women Convention (open to everyone) in Albuquerque, I heard several panelists discuss the state of journalism. With so many competing news sources, staff sizes have been sliced. Thousands of veteran journalists have lost their jobs, with newspapers and broadcast media often retaining less experienced and lower paid reporters. […]

Letters to the editor — May 1

Golf course reflects great community As a 12-year-old kid first introduced to golf in Montana, I did not care that we only had a nine-hole course. It didn’t matter that our course had no water hazards or sand traps. Golf was far too challenging anyway. It didn’t matter to me if the greens were mowed […]