Limit: 480-500 words.

  • 16

You may have been wondering, as I have, about the odd assortment of characters who have pledged their troth to No. 45 — Paul Manafort, Mike Pence, Mike Pompeo, William Barr, Steve Bannon (who may soon need a Roger Stone kind of fix), Jerry Falwell Jr. (Even Michael Cohen couldn’t fix that), … Read more

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The Virginia Constitution gives the General Assembly the duty of drawing electoral boundaries after each decennial census. Therefore, the majority party, Democrats or Republicans, draws district boundaries to its advantage, effectively resulting in politicians picking their constituents inst… Read more

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Schools across the U.S. are closed because of the coronavirus and unlikely to reopen safely anytime soon. Parents are exhausted from constant, round-the-clock care while trying to work from home, and kids themselves are slipping behind academically. The potential to inflict lasting damage to… Read more

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I am currently entrenched in my 17th year in the classroom. Due to the current state of affairs, I feel like I am in my first all over again. I know you have heard that phrase from someone at some point in the last few weeks and although it sounds like a cute cliche, it is not. Teachers are … Read more

  • 27

A distant friend and I select books, set a reading schedule, and periodically share reactions by phone. We are now reading "Everything All at Once" by Bill Nye ("The Science Guy"). My friend and Nye take pride in being "science nerds." They share upbringing and interests, if not bow ties. Read more

  • 19

I appreciated James R. Poplar III’s Open Forum article (“Why I am Voting Republican,” Sept. 16) because it helped me define why I am voting for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Nov. 3. In the first place, I am voting for the best leaders who can pull this country together and restore an equita… Read more

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Today I ask you to join in an exercise of reflection for prisoners of war (POW) and those missing in action (MIA). Since World War II, there have been more than 138,000 men and women held as POWs with 16,837 of them passing while held in captivity. Also since World War II, there are more tha… Read more

  • 25

I am not voting for a man. I do not give blanket or tacit approval to everything our president has done or said in the past. I at times cringe at his tweets nor condone all that he has said. Like the fireman who drops the “f bomb” while putting out the fire in your house, I can live with som… Read more

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My uncle, Calvin Hodges, was a young man just out of Bridgewater High School. He had a special sweetheart and dreams, I'm sure, for the future. A stumbling block, World War II, interrupted his dreams. He was inducted into the Army at the age of 18 and was with the 29th Division, 115th Infant… Read more

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In the early 1970s, when racial tensions were high, I received some anonymous letters calling into question my decision to permit a person of color to sing in the youth choir for which I was responsible in a rather prominent, all-white congregation in another city. I chose to ignore them, an… Read more

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My father worked for the U. S. Post Office Department for 41 1/2 years. For 20 of those years he walked the beat delivering mail from door to door. Later, he applied for, and attained, an indoor job. The men who worked with him in that system were honest and dedicated to seeing that the mail… Read more

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Many young people today are enamored with Gal Gadot, the talented Israeli actress and titular star of the 2017 film “Wonder Woman.” Release of the film’s much anticipated sequel, “Wonder Woman 1984,” has been repeatedly delayed, most recently by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, it is now slat… Read more

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Well, what we have here is selective historical quoting. Since Mr. Motyka (“More Worthy Southern Traditions Than Confederate Tributes,” July 24) likes quotes from political leaders let me help him: Read more

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Recently, James Madison University launched a public relations campaign to convince the Harrisonburg community that all will be fine when 20,000 students come back to Harrisonburg. In a recent DN-R article, a university official reported that “(e)very day, students will be required to do a h… Read more

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I am by no means a Rolling Stones aficionado -- more of a Bach, Beethoven, Brahms and Beatles person. But I immediately recognized the haunting tune of one of the Stones' best-known songs at the end of an early 2016 candidate Trump televised rally. A puzzling question jumped out at me -- why… Read more

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During most of the world’s history, no one was concerned with time zones. After all, what difference did it make? You could only travel as fast as you could walk, a horse could carry you, or a ship could sail. You could say that it was noon when the sun was directly overhead. Travel was so s… Read more

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One of my favorite comic strips, “Pearls Before Swine” by Stephan Pastis, appears in the Daily News-Record. In the July 17 edition, Pig — in whom there is no guile — says to Goat: “Hey, I was trying to find out what happened to our mayor, but there were no newspapers in the newspaper rack.” … Read more