Render: Gun deaths should never be normal

My Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “normal” as usual or ordinary; not strange; according with, constituting, or not deviating from a norm, rule or principle; conforming to a type, standard or regular pattern. The Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood shootings resulted in the death of three people and the wounding of nine others. President Obama issued the following […]

Selfish cyclists should sing different tune

“The music falling in where it is wanted, and stopping where it is not wanted, The cheerful voice of the public road, the gay fresh sentiment of the road.” — From a “Song of the Open Road” by Walt Whitman When beloved American poet Walt Whitman espoused the enchantment of the open road in his […]

Roswell politics like South I know

In a way, my connections to the West are more real than my Southern roots would suggest. I’m certainly no native to New Mexico, though I’ve lived here more than 10 years now. I was born and raised in Arkansas, a southern state with a western tinge — especially in Fort Smith, where I survived […]

Freeing last chimps humane, ethical

This month, the National Institutes of Health announced it will retire the last colony of government-owned chimpanzees being held for biomedical research, including 20 that were subjected to decades of invasive, nonproductive testing at an Alamogordo research facility. This week, as our nation celebrates the holiday season, there is no better symbol of humanity, of […]

Sloan: ‘The World’s Gone Crazy’ indeed

During last weekend’s Friends of the Public Library book sale in Portales, I bought 97 books (including 59 children’s books I am donating to a first grade, and four DVD movies) for $7. For my November book-of-the-month summary, I’ve selected one: “The World’s Gone Crazy” by the Bathroom Readers’ Institute. Here are a few lowlights: […]

Wilson: Picked out some shorts for you

Column creation this week felt like Black Friday shopping. Everything I thought about was either too big or too small. Either that, or it was something I knew you wouldn’t like. Or there was a better version online. So I decided to go with stocking stuffers, not long enough for columns but too long to […]

Americans should thank those who serve us, country

Many can be grateful this Thanksgiving week for warm homes, good food, exciting football matchups and the laughter of family and friends. But as the world outside our borders seems to be coming apart at the seams, we can — and should — give heartfelt thanks for the men and women who voluntarily take on […]

McManigal: Life’s never perfect, but still good

You already know this, of course, but you may not think about it very often: You never know what the next moment will bring. The worst days start exactly like the best days. I was in the middle of writing last week’s column when I got the news that my 24-year-old daughter had been killed […]

Render: Democrats forgot how to debate

A friend of mine mentioned to me last August that he thought Jim Webb would be a viable candidate for president on the Democratic ticket. I said there is no way the Democrats would nominate a former secretary of the Navy, Marine Corps combat infantry leader with a Navy Cross, Silver Star, two Bronze Stars […]

Editorial: NMAA must provide level playing field

In 2014, teams of Albuquerqueo-area home-school students won the middle- and high-school divisions of the state Science Olympiad, complete with trips to nationals. In 2015, the New Mexico Activities Association has decided it wants to keep those students from competing unless the public school they would normally attend has 1.) a Science Olympiad team that […]

McDonald: Love greatest reason to give thanks

As you get older, you get more used to death. At the very least, you become familiar with seeing your elders pass on. Death can be painful; oftentimes more so for the ones left behind. It’s a tragedy when a loved one’s life is cut short; for parents, the loss of a child must be […]

Fields: Porches perfect for counting blessings

I’m thankful for porches. It’s my treat to have three of them at my home. The front porch is the gathering place. It’s where we greet our guests, and where we line up for family photos. It’s where my niece reads on the glider when she visits. The glider was already old when her great-grandmother […]

Philpott: Force of the Future initiatives not costly

Defense Secretary Ash Carter unveiled the “first tranche” of his Force of the Future initiatives last week. They included none of the costly or controversial ideas that his personnel chief, Brad Carson, had brainstormed with Pentagon and private sector personnel experts since last April. No end to the up-or-out promotion system. No dramatic “on-ramps” to […]

Letter to the editor: Gas prices ‘ludicrous’

The Nov. 15 Notebook article had gas-price comparisons for several towns. Our wonderful gas price in Clovis was $2.20 per gallon (one station was $2.17). Amarillo was $1.69, or 51 cents per gallon less. Lubbock was $1.65 (55 cents less), Albuquerque was $1.80 (40 cents less), Santa Fe was $1.68 (52 cents less), and Hereford […]

Stormin’ Norman loved to coach, fish until the end

Norm Ellenberger gave Lobo fans what they wanted — victories and a show. And unfortunately he also gave them a sad chapter in University of New Mexico history. Ellenberger, who died Saturday at age 83 in Michigan, was easily the most flamboyant and controversial figure in Lobo sports history. His larger-than-life personality allowed him to […]

McManigal: Dragging others slows everyone

Are there some things that can’t be accomplished without forcing people to go along? Let’s say you are trying to hike back to civilization after your plane goes down in a remote area. If your group is divided on the best way to survive, do those who want to walk out really want to be […]

Render: Nobody wins in racial situations

I am not foolish enough or naïve enough to believe there is no racial discrimination in this country. I do, however, find myself foolish enough to attempt a detached review of the University of Missouri situation as it has evolved over the last few weeks. Claims of systematic and institutional racism at the university are […]

New Mexico’s UFC champ act like true winner

Announcers introduce her as “The Preacher’s Daughter.” Sporting News calls her the “nicest girl on the planet.” Until Saturday, New Mexico just called her Holly. But in a matter of minutes everything changed, and now everyone calls the Manzano High School grad the undisputed UFC women’s bantamweight champion of the world. Holly Holm delivered one […]

McDonald: Paris attacks hit too close to home

War is a man-made institution, the worst thing we ever created. But there are times in which it’s either kill or be killed, so it becomes a necessity for survival. It’s no surprise that, last week, when terrorists killed civilians in one of the most culturally enriched cities on earth, the world took notice. It […]

True all-in energy policy on next prez

If only the hot air coming out of Washington could keep a major metropolitan area safe and warm this winter. Consider that this administration has not only unplugged a $15 billion solution to the nation’s nuclear waste storage dilemma but also disconnected plans for a $2 billion oil pipeline that would employ thousands of construction […]