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Opinion

  • I pounded out this column on Friday as the area was preparing for another round of snow. I won't mind the few inches that were forecast as long as it doesn't turn to ice like it did last Tuesday and moves us one step closer to spring.

  • Editor's Note: The Hoosier National Forest will celebrate its 75th anniversary Feb. 6. Over the next year, Teena Ligman, a public-affairs specialist for the forest, will share aspects of the history of the forest and land-restoration efforts in southern Indiana.

    Congress gave the president authority in 1891 to create forest reserves out of the public domain. Since public-domain lands existed almost entirely in the West, most of the early forest reserves were in the West.

  • Indiana Rep. David Wolkins made a strange suggestion recently.

    A friend of Wolkins who works in a landfill reportedly told the representative that the majority of waste that he sees in his line of work is tossed-out newspapers. Deciding that this was a problem that he could propose a fix to, Wolkins introduced legislation in House Bill 1355 that would tax newspapers for the newsprint they use.

    By doing this, he believes newspapers will use a greater amount of recycled content, which would reduce the number of old papers lying around in landfills.

  • January is National Stalking Awareness Month, a time to focus on a crime that affects 3.4 million victims a year. This year's theme is "Stalking: Know It. Name It. Stop It." The designation challenges the nation to fight this dangerous crime by learning more about it.

  • Do the collection of communities that make up Perry County have the government and school systems they want and need?

    Many residents would say "yes, we're happy with the way things are."

    That's a perfectly legitimate response. If it's the way the majority of residents feel, perhaps things should remain as they are.

    We have reason to believe, however, some people feel they aren't treated as well as others are, even though they make the same contributions through property and sales taxes.

  • It was a week or so before Christmas, while following a police officer buying clothes and toys for a young girl, that I passed a boy in the electronics section of Wal-Mart. The pre-teen, maybe 11 or 12 years old, wanted to buy a video game console of some type.

    I overhead his mom asking how he was going to pay for the purchase. The boy pulled out a small wad of bills and said he had saved his money.  

  • Poland was conquered by the Nazi juggernaut early in the second World War. After only five weeks of fierce fighting, the country capitulated.

    The German conquerors herded 450,000 Jewish inhabitants of Warsaw into a 16-block ghetto section of town where they were, in effect, imprisoned, unable to leave.

  • It seems that Hollywood is obsessed with the apocalypse these days.  Over the past year I've seen "Knowing," "Terminator: Salvation," "The Road," "Zombieland," "2012," and now "The Book of Eli."  

  • Individuals make New Year's resolutions on a wide range of topics, from shedding pounds and giving up cigarettes to saving more money for retirement and spending more time with loved ones.

  • My national television debut had me on pins and needles Dec. 29 as "Paranormal State" aired about the experiences of a local family.

    I was interviewed for the show back in October and other than the camera making me look chunkier than I thought I was, I was pleased overall.

    The show looked at the experiences of Bruce and Danielle Collins in their home between St. Meinrad and Bristow.

  • The U.S. census 2010 is on our doorstep and will be here in just a little over 60 days and it really matters to everyone in our community, our county, our state and our nation.

    Many people turn their noses up whenever the census is mentioned. But it is an extremely important part of life in America every 10 years.

    We are all part of a team and when a player doesn't do his or her part, everyone loses. The census is not something that came about during this century or the last.

  • Who knew Sherlock Holmes was so cool? If you're like me, then the idea that comes to mind when you hear the famous detective's name is that of a middle-aged man with a funny hat, a pipe and an uncanny ability to solve complicated crimes by simply paying close attention to every detail. That doesn't mean director Guy Ritchie's new version of Holmes is an unfaithful adaptation of the beloved Sir Arthur Conan Doyle creation.

  • Several years ago when one of our staff writers said she wanted to write an editorial on vandalism, she was jokingly asked, “Are you for it or against it?”

    Amazingly, an issue that should be as cut and dried as that one is now before the Indiana General Assembly - whether to prohibit texting while driving for all Indiana drivers.

  • A few weeks ago I wrote a column about thinking before speaking. It was rather tongue-in-cheek and made mention of mistaken assumptions about people, their ages and relationships.

    An e-mail arriving about the same time offered a similar example of why it’s important to think before acting and holding people accountable for wrongdoing.

    In a case shared by the author of the e-mail, pranksters had hindered a family’s ability to support itself.

  • Wow ... just wow. "Avatar," the long awaited, majorly hyped new film from writer-director James Cameron is simply amazing. When watched in IMAX 3D it turns plain movie watching into a unique and breathtaking experience. There were times when I found myself with a grin on my face or with my mouth hanging open during this film.

    It completely encompasses you into the story in such a literal way that it will leave you wanting to go back in the theater and experience it all over again. Now, I've got my excited gushing out of the way, so let's get into the specifics.

  • Not long ago, I was speaking to a group of high-school students when one raised his hand, declared that he wanted to run for Congress and asked what he should study in order to prepare. I suspect my answer surprised him. I told him to study English.

  • The editorial staff of The Perry County News joins journalists around the nation in celebrating the advance of the Free Flow of Information Act out of the Senate Judiciary Committee this month. Known as the federal shield law, it will now go to the full Senate for a vote.

    Such laws exist at the state level in most of the country, and a federal law would protect reporters in cases where they may not apply.

  • The holiday season is upon us and is supposed to be a time for family, friends and festive celebrations, but unfortunately it is also a time when there is a tragic jump in the number of alcohol-related highway deaths each year.  

    That is why the Perry County Prosecutor's Office is reminding everyone this holiday season to always designate a sober driver before each holiday party or event involving alcohol.  

  • This is neither your father's recession, nor your grandmother's depression. In size, scope and duration, this economic downturn is different. And off-the-shelf solutions will not suffice.

    President Barack Obama has undoubtedly been hearing from businessmen, labor leaders and economists on how to reverse America's record high unemployment. Pedestrian proposals are inevitable. But truly innovative ideas that can be implemented immediately are what American really needs.

  • Would you consider a year-end donation to United Way of Perry County? Before you say no, please take a minute to read on. To date the 2009 campaign has raised almost $65,000, only half of our goal of $125,000.

    While we are obviously short of our goal, we sincerely understand how we have all been forced to tighten our belts during these rocky economic times. The campaign, however, is more than simply talking about dollars. More importantly, the campaign affects many people in Perry County.