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.
By now, everyone has read about or watched news segments regarding recent comments made by "Duck Dynasty" patriarch Phil Robertson.
Editor, It's the holiday season once again, also known as a prime time for break-ins and home invasions. Every year, just after Christmas and New Year's Day, there is a rash of thefts of this nature.
Congress is winding down its historically unproductive session with a small flurry of activity. It's a welcome change, but so long overdue that it can't possibly make up for what should have been accomplished on Capitol Hill this year.
At the annual Defense Policy Forum on Nov. 12, one of the major topics was Base Realignment and Closure and alternatives to BRAC.
On Sept. 25, more than 200 concerned citizens pack the Tybee Island City Hall in a standing-room-only meeting moderated by Mayor Jason Buelterman.
Good grief. I just took a peek at next week's calendar. It says 2014.
Editor, When you're looking from the inside out, it's amazing to witness the amount of time and effort that go into planning public events that attract thousands of spectators. This year, the Liberty County Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau hosted the 17th annual Illuminated Christmas Parade and seventh annual Christmas in the Park.
Editor, I have always planned on returning to my hometown of Hinesville after graduating from college. However, what is happening to our nation and, in particular, our military has caused me to reconsider the future viability and growth of the Hinesville area and, more importantly, the future of our nation.
My house just became a much more positive place. My husband and I usually do watch what we say when my daughter is around, but now I have iron-clad proof that she is always listening, watching and, more importantly, mimicking. Now that we know this, exclaiming, "Oh, fiddlesticks!" is about the only thing that is still permissible in our family.
Military life is surrounded by the grey clouds of deployment, the sunny days of returns and little is mentioned of the rest.
There are so many wonderful experiences at Christmas, but the accumulation of trash and waste is not one of them.
It was during mid-flight, perhaps somewhere over Virginia, that a thought hit me and I suddenly turned in excitement toward my husband, Tink.
Dear Santa, I know some people may think I'm crazy for writing this letter, but I believe God will find a way for Santa to hear my wish.
I believe in Christmas.
People usually are nicer and friendlier during the holidays. It is a wonderful time of the year! The downside, though, is that it also is one of the trashiest times of the year.