Columns

Jim Brown

Is Louisiana a judicial hellhole?

According to several watchdog organizations, Louisiana has one of the worst judicial climates in the country. The state has been given the dubious title of the nation’s judicial hellhole by several neutral watchdog groups. Campaign funds given to a judicial candidate are often cited as possibly influencing future judicial decisions. Some are advocating the appointment of judges in order to do away with the pressure on judicial candidates to raise campaign contributions. So is this the solution? Is appointing rather than electing judges the way to go in Louisiana?

Christine Flowers

America from inside an immigration office

After listening to the stories I’ve heard over the past few weeks (and over the past 25 years) in the waiting area of the Lyndhurst Office of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service, I will never be anything but eternally humbled by my birthright.
Presidents and cabinets change, the spirit of this nation, this “shining city on a hill,” does not. And if you think it does, and you are callous and sarcastic enough to spew that hostile rhetoric in the comments section, you have no true idea of what this country represents.

Tom Purcell

Dad dreaded daylight saving time

He has his work cut out for him this coming weekend, when we “spring forward” by setting clocks ahead by an hour before going to bed Saturday night.
You see, my mother loves clocks — so much that he has 14 clocks to reset.
There are clocks in both guest bedrooms. That way, my mother argues, friends and family members who stay over always know the time and can set alarms to wake early.
My father finally figured out how to change the microwave’s clock, but the stove is brand-new and its clock is causing him grief.

Tom Purcell

Donations to pay down U.S. debt pointless

With America’s national debt surpassing a frightening $22 trillion, it makes sense that fewer people are volunteering their hard-earned dough to help reduce it.
Since 1961, the Bureau of the Public Debt has allowed Americans to “gift” money to the Treasury Department — on the condition that the money be used only to pay down the debt.
Last year’s donations totaled about $775,000 — “only the fourth time in 20 years that the fund didn’t reach at least $1 million in actual dollars,” says U.S. News & World Report.

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