Commentary

Trump supporters have their reasons

According to major polls, including Gallup, President Trump’s popularity has hovered at the 40% line. Little has changed since his electoral college victory, and Americans remain intensely divided in their political views. Regarding those who oppose him, it is easy to categorize them into ...

Competence and elected officials

It appears that we are already in the 2020 Presidential election campaign mode. What role does the candidates’ competence and likeability play in this election dynamic? Time will tell. But, in my view, they are key. Likeability is a treasure, and unquestionable competence is essential. In an ...

The month of April

The St. Louis born, Nobel Prize winning author Thomas Stearns Eliot was considered by many to be America’s Poet Laureate. He penned arguably the most famous poem of the 20th century, The Wasteland. The masterpiece is best remembered by its opening lines-April is the cruelest month, breeding ...

Teachers supervised workers or professionals

From its earlier years a tension has existed between whether teachers are professionals or supervised workers. Much ink has been spilled over the criteria of a profession. Certainly specialized knowledge is one requirement. But professions are careers to which a person is called, for more ...

Roy, Eddie and God

Editor’s note: Former State University of New York at Fredonia professor and OBSERVER columnist George Sebouhian was preparing to write his life story when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2013. He died three years later, having left behind hundreds of pages of research notes, poems and ...

Remembering the Doolittle Raid

The goings on in Albany have been getting me down recently, including things like the new abortion law. But then I read a story that reminded me of an event in our history when average men bravely answered the call of their nation without a concern for “budget constraints.” The story ...

Children’s games

Kick the Can. Capture the Flag. Both played within biking distance at neighboring friends who shared huge back yards. When it wasn’t summer perfect and we’d aged a bit, Monopoly and Clue. Card games of course. I ran out of game players as I turned older though one drawer still holds Uno ...

State testing system is flawed

It is a shame that for the second time in two years the computer based grades 3-8 state ELA exams have been interrupted by technical issues. More times than not, during the past decade, there has been some issue with either the state math or the state ELA exams, be it content, scoring or ...

Why reparation for slavery is a bad idea

Why reparation for slavery is a bad idea Leading Democratic Presidential candidates support reparations for slavery or a commission to study reparations. This includes Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Julian Castro, Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-TX), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), ...

Jumping into the deep end with words

Words have meaning. That is certainly a simple statement. If they didn’t have meaning they would not exist. Without words, could our lives progress in any way? Words portray, and are symbols of thoughts. By the same token, if a mosquito never existed, we would have no such word in our ...

Progress in Dunkirk? Where’s that?

At the last city of Dunkirk council meeting was a resident from another municipality who claims to be a previous resident of the city of Dunkirk and owns property in the city. She couldn’t say enough and was giving high praise to this administration for the progress that has been made in the ...

Not quite passing the smell test

The ever-chubby North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un has a plan to make his country great again. It involves the populace of his nation performing at almost super-human levels. His plan will require an amazing effort on part of the average NoKo citizen. The plan is no joke. Apparently, there is ...

The short, but long way, home

In his later years, before he stopped driving altogether, my dad would ask me to drive him to Erie if he needed to go there. “I ain’t drivin’ in the big city no more,” he’d say. Well, let me tell you about driving in the “big city,” of which Erie is not one. I just completed ...

Why build a new Brooks?

Editor’s note: The Brooks-TLC Hospital System is planning on building a new hospital at the former Cornell Cooperative Extension site in Fredonia. Since the announcement in January, there have been a number of questions from the community regarding the proposal. Here are some frequently asked ...

An aging dog

I should have known. She’s absolutely impossible. Not that she wasn’t already, but getting an article about her — HER — in the papers has gone to Gloria’s head. She sashays around, twitching that sleek fanny of hers, and expects us to make room for her. Don’t count on it, I ...

Young man’s compassion shines through

Welcome to the third of a three-part vignette. At the first session, we met Shirl and Brian, parents of Austin and Elise. They provided an overview of the circumstances leading the school principal and guidance counselor to suggest family counseling and anger management counseling for Austin. ...

Democrats are becoming alarmists

If the Democrats are ever going to gain control again, they’ll have to rein in all of the radical socialists in their party. First of all, they need a good candidate to run for the office of president. They don’t need Kirsten Gillibrand, Bernie Sanders, Joe Biden, Beto O’Rourke or ...

Religion vs. science

Perhaps the most basic function of religion (and spiritualism) is the attempt to explain the inexplicable. The fear of death is at the core of the human experience, and life itself has no significance or beauty if its purpose is simply to sustain its own existence for as long as it can while ...

Legacy of caring lives on

Since its beginnings in 1898, Brooks Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk has been a vital and dynamic health care facility. Truly through the years, Brooks has a distinguished historical legacy of extraordinary responsiveness to a variety of health care needs for hundreds upon hundreds of individuals. ...

States take the lead on gun control

It is time to return to the subject that spurred me to start writing commentaries a year ago: guns and the violent taking of innocent lives tragically and unnecessarily. The determination of the Parkland, Fla., survivors has been instrumental in finally seeing some action from our ...