For those of us who think and write about democracy, few things are more appealing than a book about how to make it work better. My shelves are groaning with them.
Thursday is July 4 - a day when many American flags will be flown. As a person who loves his country and that flag, my heart swells with pride when I see it fluttering in the breeze. I think most citizens do show respect for Old Glory on holidays such as Independence Day and Flag Day, but they occasionally forget about the rest of the year.
I try to make it a habit to hang around with smart people. Given that my IQ is not much larger than my waist line, this isn't difficult to do.
It's time to clean up the grill and break out the hot dogs, lawn chairs and American flags. Summer is in full swing and Independence Day is upon us. And though rain is in the forecast for Thursday, it's unlikely everyone will hole up in their homes and spend the day indoors. Even for those who might otherwise want to spend the day in front of the TV, the Fourth of July beckons to gather outside with friends, and even strangers, to celebrate the holiday.
It's officially summertime and the living is easy, right? Not necessarily.
Editor, I really hate taking the time to sit down and write a letter to the editor these days. When I was younger and less busy, I jumped at the opportunity. But when my ex-student (and a fine fellow, I might add), Mike Riddle, cranks up his old sourpuss critical word machine, I feel compelled to respond.
I like the daycare my husband and I send our daughter to. We trust her teacher, Miss Jennifer, and Reese really seems to have warmed up to her new routine and classmates. The facility, for the most part, serves healthy food - I do occasionally grimace when I see tater tots or chicken nuggets listed on the lunch menu - and the children are allowed plenty of time outside.
It was one of those days. The kind when you have a lot of work to do and none of it you want to do so you just piddle.
There will be a lot of gnashing of teeth over the U.S. Supreme Court's 5-4 decision to strike down Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act. And while Section 4 was stuck down as unconstitutional, requiring Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, Alaska and Arizona, plus parts of seven other states to seek Department of Justice preclearance before any changes in voting laws could be implemented, the decision left standing Section 5 that mandates preclearance. For proponents for striking down Section 5, this had to be a disappointment.
Last week, in a 7-2 decision, the United States Supreme Court struck down an Arizona law requiring a person to submit documented proof of their citizenship before he or she could register to vote.
I recently became aware of two programs offered in Liberty and Long counties that concern me. While created with good intentions, I'm sure, the more I thought about these programs, the more upset I became.
Editor, Thank you, Coastal Courier, for the very informative article on May 31 about how much the Liberty County Board of Education spent on travel in 2012.
When Jimmy Carter ran for the state Senate in 1961 and was defeated, he claimed voter fraud. Carl Sanders, Senate president pro tem, supported Carter's claim and provided legal counsel from the Democratic Party. Carter prevailed.
One evening in late spring, I returned home from two weeks of flitting through major airports and hurrying bare-footed through security sensors. I was bone-weary from cramped planes - the center seat too many times - and delayed flights.
It's a sure bet that Americans aren't inclined - especially right now - to pony up even more money to the Internal Revenue Service so the tax folks can buy themselves some public relations help.
Editor, After all that has been said and done, I want to take a moment to reflect and thank the Hinesville Military Affairs Committee members and supporters for all their love and dedication to our first Veterans Salute event.
Editor, There is one day every year when my husband and I look forward to enjoying a free or reduced-price meal or treat in honor of our service to the United States of America. We also like to mingle with other veterans and current service members. Sadly, we were denied this opportunity Nov. 11 at Applebee's in Flemington.
While campaigning for his health care law - and in the years since its passage - President Obama repeatedly assured the American people that, "if you like your health-care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan."
Last week, family and friends gathered in the small town of Chattahoochee Hills, south of Atlanta, to celebrate a life well-lived.
Homecomings are the stuff of sweet dreams and dessert for breakfast - so perfect and delicious, but often followed by either a rude awakening or a few extra pounds. As a military family member who has experienced distances because of deployment and training, I can tell you it doesn't necessarily get any easier. The families who recently have or are welcoming home loved ones this week have a few battles ahead as they work together to find a new family life balance.
Where has this year gone?
Welcome to the first of many military life columns. Whether it is among civilian friends or military colleagues, military life presents its own unique challenges and opportunities. Your neighbors, children's friends and strangers in the grocery store all have been affected in different ways by the military. In our community especially, we live, work and play next to military families without realizing it.
Around the corner, out in the country where we live, is a hardware store owned by a guy I have known since the day I was born. Our bassinets were next to each other in the hospital nursery.
The Internet is bad for me. I'm an obsessive worrier, and I've only gotten worse since the advent of search engines. I often think that if someone got a hold of my web-search queries, I'd end up an international laughing stock. Among the best last week: "Can you become addicted to nasal spray?" "Affects of eating slightly brown guacamole," "Can Tums cause kidney stones?" and "My cat ate cellophane."
We did it for four years while I was a member of the planning and zoning board of the city of Pooler. We did it for 11 years while I was serving as either Pooler mayor pro tem or mayor. And we've done it for the past nine years while I've served in the state Legislature.
I congratulate Mayor Clemontine Washington, who was able to turn out her core constituents for a decisive victory in Midway's municipal election last week, but I am very embarrassed for the city of Midway.
Welcome to the first of many military-life columns. Whether it is among civilian friends or military colleagues, military life presents its own unique challenges and opportunities. Your neighbors, children's friends and strangers in the grocery store all have been affected in different ways by the military. In our community especially, we live, work and play next to military families without realizing it.
Each Nov. 11, America takes time to honor and remember those who have put their lives on the line in the defense of this great nation.
Dear Dr. Morehead:
As Congress moves forward on budget negotiations, the word out of Washington is to expect nothing major: no grand bargain, just more stopgap, short-term fixes.