Saturday, January 31, 2015


Friday, December 12, 2014

Hearing elected U.S. officials apologize for the CIA's use of torture and other enhanced interrogation techniques when dealing with America's sworn enemies is hard to justify when weighed against the pain and suffering endured by survivors and family members of 9/11 victims.

Horrible scenes of that infamous morning when nearly 3,000 innocent Americans died in a coordinated attack by terrorists on our homeland are still fresh in our mind.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Over 17 million Americans, or one in every 12 adults, suffer from alcohol abuse or dependence, and several million more engage in risky drinking patterns that could lead to alcohol problems.

More than 7 million children live in a household where at least one parent is dependent or has abused alcohol.

This is just one of the addictions. We all know about the hazards of nicotine, plus there are opiates, cocaine and marijuana that are addictive.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

World War II ended nearly 70 years ago. The number of people alive today who lived through that trying period is rapidly dwindling.

Stories of heroism, valor and lessons learned are vanishing forever.

This is why it was great to see actual participants from the historic Battle of the Bulge visit two local schools recently.

They were at Lehighton Area High School on Veterans Day and last week spoke to the older students at the L.B. Morris Elementary School in Jim Thorpe.

Monday, December 8, 2014

While protests continue to swirl in a number of cities over the excessive force used by police, there is a common thread found in each of the situations.

In two of the most publicized cases Ferguson, Missouri, and New York City the failure of suspects to obey basic instructions by police fueled the confrontations.

Regarding the death of Eric Garner, former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik said if Eric Garner did not resist the police, the outcome would have been very different and he would be alive today.

Friday, December 5, 2014

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, South Carolina's poverty rate of 17 percent is ninth-highest in the nation, surpassing the national figure of 15.8 percent.

Over 23 percent of the children in the state live below the poverty line. Another reality is that one in six South Carolina families will not have enough food to feed themselves each night.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

For many years, local residents and news media have learned what was in the neighborhood by listening to a scanner.

The benefits are self-evident. An aware, informed person is a safe person.

But imagine this scenario: A shooting takes place in your neighborhood and you have no access to information, no way to find out what's going on. That hypothetical scenario is becoming reality in our local area and across the state.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

While Benjamin Watson, a tight end for the New Orleans Saints, was playing a tough Monday night football game against the Baltimore Ravens, news broke in Ferguson, Missouri, of the grand jury's decision not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown.

Like many black Americans, the 11-year NFL veteran was stunned and angry, but condemned the rioters in Ferguson and in other cities around the country.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Beyond the frenzied shopping, food feasting and the football, some families had reason to be truly thankful over the Thanksgiving holiday. Some of the blessings were basic to life, like the air we breathe.

In Tacoma, Washington, the family of Erik Brooks have been thankful on every Thanksgiving holiday for the past 13 years. Erik was just 4 months old when he suffered two heart attacks in one month.

Friday, November 28, 2014

The war on coal is a reality, and things are expected to get worse for the fossil fuel industry, which generates 40 percent of the nation's electricity.

Already suffering from the switch by utilities to cheap and cleaner-burning natural gas, Pennsylvania and the Appalachian region must also deal with EPA pollution standards which will steepen the decline. For years, environmental groups have been targeting plants for producing carbon dioxide emissions that scientists link to global warming.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Lehighton Area School District held discussion about whether it should hire an independent construction manager for a proposed building project or have the contractor overlook the work.

No official action was taken, but for the district it should be a no-brainer.

The district should hire a construction manager.

Quandel Construction Group of Harrisburg made a pitch to Lehighton's school board claiming it could save the district around $2 million on $52 million worth of work.

"Corners are cut when nobody is watching," said John Koury, Quandel vice president.