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Editorials and columns

Folks, you think you’re baking now?

If you think this is hot, you should have been around in 1936 — now that was a scorcher! Of course, to remember it, you would have to be 84 or older today, and, no, I do not fall into that category. Our good friends at the National Weather Service in Gaylord have fantastic records, ...

Our newsrooms need a lot more diversity

I have made mistakes as a reporter covering members of my community who are not white. I have made mistakes though one of my mother’s oft-repeated lessons was that we are all God’s children, that we all bleed the same red blood, and that the truest thing that’s ever been said is ...

Celebrate the sounds of freedom

Because freedom comes with a cost, those who defend it never rest. As a result, northern Michigan residents will play host again this month to Northern Strike, a very practical and useful training exercise for various National Guard units, law enforcement agencies, and active military ...

Smitten with kitten

Nobody can resist a kitten. That was the hope, anyway, a few days before Father’s Day as I talked my offspring into a trip to the animal shelter. We were doing it for their dad, I told them. He loved kittens. He needed a kitten. He would totally buy into the idea that we needed to add a ...

Downtown on a Monday night

EDITOR’S NOTE: This column appeared previously in The News. Once upon a time, before Meijer, before Walmart, even before Kmart, there was the Black & White Grocery, Tony & Norms menswear, Pickett’s pharmacy, Doctor Burkholder, and Vaughn’s department store. Adam’s bookstore ...

What soil scarification does for germination of tree seeds

Forests are complex ecosystems comprised of biotic (living) and abiotic (non-living) components. Forests change constantly because of the interrelationships of different ecosystem components and the timing of environmental events. Some forest changes are dramatic, while most are quite ...

Emilio Olivo and Cody Graham are heroes

If it takes a village to raise a child, then, apparently the folks in Alpena are doing pretty well at it. Earlier this month, two 11th Avenue residents noticed small flames at a neighbor’s house and immediately the two sprung into action to warn the residents of the apartment ...

Masks are not a personal choice

Michigan has made remarkable progress in slowing the spread of the coronavirus, enough so that much of the state — including Northeast Michigan — has been reopened since Memorial Day. But, to protect that progress, we must continue to take precautions — washing our hands, keeping our ...

A crucial time for Michiganders

The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically altered all of our lives, upending our state economy and budget in the process. But, right now, there is an opportunity to support efforts to provide important relief for people who are struggling and our state budget. You can help make that happen. ...

Whitmer has made the outbreak worse for Michiganders

The COVID-19 outbreak has had an enormous impact on our state, but it was made even worse by several major mistakes by the governor. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer failed to anticipate the effect of her stay-at-home order on the livelihoods of Michigan families, and then failed to ensure that the ...

Happy 20th, Sanctuary!

The Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary turns 20 this year. Lake Huron off the Northeast Michigan coast has been protected since 1981, when the state created the 290-square-mile Thunder Bay Underwater Preserve. In 2000, the federal government created the National Marine Sanctuary, ...

Plenty of differences in lawmaking

Today’s installment begins with a warm memory, because it takes one back to a high school college English teacher named Ed O’Rourke. He was an Ichabod Crane-type instructor and others ignorantly laughed about him behind his back. But make no mistake, this guy was brilliant and he was on a ...

Support South Bay efforts

To a great many of our visitors, tourists, passers-through, and seasonal residents, U.S.-23 South, up from Squaw Bay, is their main gateway into Alpena. The area has taken an economic beating, of late, with the closure of Peebles and the announced closures of Burger King and J.C. Penney in ...

Better to let Trump talk than be unpleasantly surprised

Few would argue that the cat’s got Donald Trump’s tongue. He talks all the time. The president is so full of words that he needs multiple outlets. When his mouth isn’t moving, he’s tweeting. Or, in the annals of the unbeknownst, he’s twitching. Yes, twitching. Give the man credit ...

Are uncivil protests and mob violence winning in America?

The Seattle Commune is no more. Declared three weeks ago by radical leftists as CHAZ, the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, rechristened CHOP, the Capitol Hill Occupation Protest, the six-block enclave inside Seattle ceased to exist July 1. The cops shut it down. As Marx said, history repeats ...

End digital divide for students

Students and school districts had to adjust dramatically this spring as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The transition from face-to-face education to remote learning was challenging enough given how quickly it had to be enacted, but, for many districts in rural areas, the transition was made ...

Glad to see area curricula reviewed

Hate is often bred from misunderstandings or ignorance, a lack of exposure to people, beliefs, ideas — and history — that is different than ours. Quite frankly, that is one of our weaknesses, here in Northeast Michigan. We have much to be proud of here, but we are a mostly homogenous ...

Lansing: Save the grandparents, kill the grandchildren

Michigan’s political response to COVID-19 will prove lethal to the most vulnerable of our population — the young and the poor. To her initial credit, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s administration forced a temporary lockdown on Michigan when COVID-19 first struck. At the time, data from China ...

School this fall will be unlike anything before

While returning to school later this summer still seems like a dream — or a nightmare, depending on your perspective — some light was shed on the issue this week by Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. Whitmer released a plan she and an advisory committee helped formulate titled “Mi Safe ...

Fight for truth, justice, and the American way

“Journalism is an incredibly prevalent career in the comic book world – many of the biggest superheroes tangle with reporters and photographers along the way (whereas few, if any, regularly meet with accountants or used car salesmen).” — Rose Moore, ScreenRant (2016) I was ...