Opinions

Wed
29
May

Pine trees and kitchen doorways

by Rick Mansfield

 

Reminders of how our life is passing.  Poet Joyce Kilmer described life as “…a highway and its milestones the years….”

We monitor our progress in more than mere months.  Markers include graduations and anniversaries, a marriage, a baby, a new job, a new home, maybe even a new truck or boat.

We set and achieve goals, we change, we grow, learn new skills, maybe a second language, or how to paint.  Maybe we rekindle a passion from our youth.  We once more write poetry.  We practice and re-learn to play an old song.  Maybe even put up horseshoe pegs in the backyard.

For some, we begin focusing on our legacy.  Concentrate our energies on how we will be remembered.  And for what.  Will we leave the world “…a bit better”?  Will we “know that even one life has breathed easier” because we have lived?  Will we “..as we have opportunity, do good to all people..” remaining mindful we “shall not pass this way again?”

Thu
23
May

Letter to the Editor - Unanticipated consequences

Unanticipated

consequences

Dear Editor,

Every week I read another column in The Mountain Echo from Rep. Jason Smith. Every week he keeps telling us how great Donald Trump is. We already hear how great Trump is every day from Trump! Jason Smith, please tell us what you have done to improve lives in the 8th District.

His last column states Trump made the right call that the United States would not participate in the Paris Accord agreement...because “We shouldn’t have to choose between a strong economy and reducing carbon emissions,” Smith says, “What we will not do, at least under President Trump’s leadership, is sign unfair international agreements that allow bad actors to take advantage of our country.”

Thu
23
May

Letter to the Editor - Undermining Democracy

Dear Editor,

The Missouri Legislature now wants to undermine Democracy in this state by getting rid of the “Clean Missouri Act” voted on by the people of Missouri in the last election. Sixty-two percent of the voters voted yes. Now, much to my disgust, these Republicans want to tell you that you didn’t know what you were doing, and that “they” want a new vote.

The Republicans definitely do not want to see the end of gerrymandering.  That is the edge they need to continuously win. Right now in the state of Missouri, there are about 70 districts controlled by Republicans, that are so gerrymandered that Democrats do not even run against them.  They win unopposed.  There is no reason to spend your time and money to run when you can’t win.  The election has already been decided. The Republicans will do anything to maintain this huge advantage and keep their control over state government.

Fri
17
May

Now Showing: Avengers: Endgame

by David Gifford

 

It’s finally time.

It has been more than 10 years in the making, and this marks the 22nd film in the Marvel Comic Universe (MCU). If you have been reading my reviews for some time, you will know that Doctor Strange was my first review with the The Mountain Echo as well.

Avengers: Endgame is bringing everything full circle. The Russo brothers are back again to direct this one, and I honestly don’t feel it necessary to even bring up the film’s massive cast. If you don’t know the characters by now, you aren’t going to see this movie. That would be saying something though, as the movie has already broken multiple ticket sales records and is likely to be the biggest grossing film ever made.

Fri
17
May

Progressive views from Rattlesnake Holler - Rural people like so-called ‘socialist’ benefits

by Sue Hagan

 

In 1995, the Southern Baptist Convention issued an apology for its former support of slavery and segregation. If Southern Baptists can embrace such liberalism, can the GOP be far behind?

For much of the 20th Century, Missouri was considered a strongly blue state, but more recently it has been colored red. That’s not because the Democratic Party abandoned the people, it’s because the Party abandoned its racist roots. I am convinced its core liberal values - support for families and workers, social benefits based on principles of kindness and charity, patriotism - all these are exactly the values most Missourians embrace.

Fri
26
Apr

The real troubles are back in the 8th District

by Chuck Banks

 

Congressman Jason Smith has published an column that states that the Mueller report vindicates President Trump of any collusion with the Russian interference in the last Presidential election.

At a time when every Democrat is trying to get a copy so that they might read the report, including the chair of the House Judiciary committee, Jason Smith seems to have read the report. He also seems to have forgotten what every American has witnessed. How many times have you seen the video clip of candidate Trump standing at the podium, and calling for Russia to find Hillary’s emails? How many times have we been reminded that Russia, on that very day, hacked into the DNC and other Democratic servers? It was certainly not a coincidence.

Thu
04
Apr

A misleading solution to a non-existing problem

by Chuck Banks

 

 

The GOP in the Missouri House is proposing to pass a law that will continue the trend of smaller and smaller voter turnouts.

Republicans want Missouri to join the small group of states that have “closed” primary elections. That means only people who have registered, six months in advance, with a political party can vote in that political party’s primary election during our August primary. Once again, a misleading solution to a non-existing problem.

Thu
04
Apr

Electoral College should be abolished

by Sue Hagan

 

 

Some consider the Electoral College system for electing presidents to be a great equalizer: it empowers states with fewer number of voters to win against a majority vote. They are correct, of course, but this certainly is not a democratic outcome nor do I think it best for a nation that believes in equality for all.

We ought not to forget the fact that the “small states” protection offered by the Electoral College was originally designed to protect the institution of slavery. The real question about the Electoral College is this: do you believe in democracy or not?

Thu
04
Apr

Review - Us

by David Gifford

 

Us is the newest film from director Jordan Peele who took the horror universe by storm with Get Out, and is already known for his deliberate filmmaking that uses a lot of unique and creative horror sequences.

Us stars Lupita Nyong’o (Black Panther) as Adelaide Wilson, Winston Duke (Black Panther) as Gabe Wilson, Shahadi Wright Joseph as Zora Wilson, and Evan Alex (Kidding) as Jason Wilson.

The movie follows the Wilson family, who are trying to enjoy their vacation, but when people who look just like them come to find them, then their vacation is thrown into shambles.

The movie’s plot is one that is hard to get into without spoiling it, so I will say that this is a horror film about “doppelgängers” hunting down versions of themselves. The story is fairly layered and complex, so it’s best to go into this one blind.

Thu
04
Apr

Fixing our gerrymandered state

by Chuck Banks

 

We laid Congressman Bill Burlison to rest last week. Bill was the last Democrat to from SEMO to be elected to congress.

Back then it was the 10th district, yes, we had 10 districts in 1968 and things were different. Bill was a conservative Democrat who fought for agriculture and rural Missouri. He proposed ending the electoral college and balancing the budget. Times were different, rural Missouri was a doing pretty good. Many of the small towns had shoe factories, small farmers could make a profit, and the rural children could stay home and work after graduating high school either on the farm or in town.

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