Commentary

Retrospective

Twenty years ago - 1995Fredonia native Eva Dawn Bashaw was named high school principal at Brocton Central School. Ms. Bashaw is an alumna of Fredonia High School and obtained her administrative degree from Fredonia State University College. She is currently teaching summer school in Jamestown ...

Bonds of war last a lifetime

CASSADAGA - "Freedom is not free" is a statement many motorists and residents have seen for years on World War II veteran Charles St. George's pickup truck. For those who have been on the front lines, they do not need that reminder.War is hell. Soldiers are removed from their families and loved ...

Wide-open race for president

There's a German saying that dates back to antiquity: "Die Gedanken sind frei." The translation - "Thoughts are free," is central to a functioning Democracy. Wouldn't it be spectacular if it became a "thing" in the upcoming political season? Wouldn't it be powerful to see voters actively ...

Are we often too quick to judge?

I read of a jail suicide in a recent OBSERVER edition. His picture was above his obituary the following day. Left behind, a mother, children and grandchildren; he also had a couple of interesting hobbies.I probably passed his place a few times on my walk or bike ride. I would've liked to have ...

Street talks find support for Iran deal

Since my last article regarding the Iran nuclear deal, I have kept my ear to the ground and have walked up to total strangers and engaged them in a conversation if time permitted. I have found people quite open and willing to speak to me, especially veterans.In this installment I am urging U.S. ...

Recalling life on the farm

A dairy and vegetable farm in this rural region was the setting. The four seasons of the year determined the course of daily events during those Depression years of the 1930s.The scene was a white farm house and dairy barn surrounded by cultivated farm acreage, tucked away in the picturesque ...

Plenty of support brings winning spirit

On behalf of the Laurel Run Planning Committee, the Hotelling family, The Resource Center and Filling the Gap, Inc., I want to thank everyone who supported the 19th annual Laurel Run.Laurel Run was created to celebrate the achievements of people with disabilities and to emphasize the point that ...

City on right path with development

Over the last three and a half years I have been urged on numerous occasions to respond to the negative commentary surrounding the city's development department. I find that exercise time-consuming and counter productive to accomplishing the directive at hand of growing our city in a ...

A home and punishment

The crisp autumn air smacked Joey Cullen in his face as he quietly cursed the blisters on his hands.With the hoe propped against his shoulder, he kicked at the dry dirt beneath his feet. Regretting the words that flew out of his mouth while addressing Sister Mary at the orphanage. Having to ...

Crews come to rescue of family

Our family will be forever grateful to the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department, EMS, Border Patrol and U.S. Coast Guard from Erie and Buffalo. Their rescue efforts led to my husband's safe return from a "routine" sailing trip last week on Lake Erie.We watched him sail towards the horizon, ...

Margaret’s musings

Shakespeare asked, "What's in a name?" Thinking about that phrase lead me to consider whether some doctors' names could influence patients.If you are pregnant, you might relate to Dr. Seaman.If you are looking for a psychologist, would you make an appointment with Dr. Nutt?A new clinic has ...

Night Out tradition continues in city

As we close out our 22nd year of National Night Out and begin to prepare for the 23rd edition I want to take a few minutes to reflect on this year's program. We had one of the largest turnouts for this year's event with about 300 to 400 people attending throughout the evening.One of the most ...

Buzz is bad one for city hospital

One of my annual speaking engagements occurred earlier this week at the monthly United Senior Citizens gathering on the second Monday of each month. For the last five years, I have been honored to be a guest of President Charles St. George.During the picnic lunch at the Beaver Club in Fredonia, ...

Giving those knees a rest

A heavy - really, really heavy - downpour just before breakfast and then sunshine.Rushing through morning necessaries, I grab hat and bug scarf and head outdoors, the dogs a step or two behind me.I unfurl my brand new kneeler with enthusiasm. Expensive, especially compared to those available ...

Why our teachers matter

It's the onset of fall and that means, as it does every year, that school is about to start. This is a process we take for granted.Because we take it for granted, we underestimate its complexity. But the sheer size of the undertaking is mind-boggling. Here in the United States, our K-12 public ...

City missing on momentum

If Chautauqua County is on the move, where is the city of Dunkirk? If we "as a city" are to prosper and be a part of the efforts our county executive and IDA director are pursuing, we must get on board.When speaking with County Executive Vince Horrigan on the Chautauqua Sunrise show, he was ...

Where do we lose innocence?

I may be getting in over my head here; but sometimes I get worried about what we think we're doing. My confidence, however, is in the intelligence of mankind, you and me, to save us from the destructive, ricocheting ignorance that echoes throughout the world.There seems to be a resurgence of ...

State’s generosity depends on hard work

Residency should be an official residence.A requirement is an order to do something, ask or claim as by right demand.Welfare is a charity given by taxpayers.The state of New York has no residency law for welfare recipients. Therefore, without any type of residency law, anyone from other states ...

Air show, assistance earn high marks

July 19 was promised to be one of those Sundays where planning for the difficult mobility of senior citizens was going to be prominent. Our family, including my mother of elder age and my father in-law who is a World War II veteran, decided to make the trek to the Niagara Falls Air Force Base ...

Jenner is perfect ‘$10’ option

Here's a look back at some of the stories making news in the last month: If you've been saying to yourself, "Self, our money sure is getting boring. It's time for America to jazz up its cash," you're in luck. Are you sick and tired of staring at Andrew Hamilton staring back at you every time ...