Jill Lawrence’s column “On gun control, there's nothing and everything left to say” made me wonder how many of the readers who agree with her have joined or are donating to a gun control organization, such as Everytown for Gun Safety or the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.When the topic came up in my book group, all the members jumped on me for being a gun owner. Then I asked them, since they were obviously passionate about the issue, whether any of them had ever joined or contributed to a gun control group. None had. In fact, whenever I get into this conversation with people who say they support gun control, I always ask the same question. Not a single person has ever told me they belong to a group that fights for sensible gun restrictions. POLICING THE USA: A look at race, justice, media After I left the USA TODAY Editorial Board, I joined Everytown. The intensity gap on this issue is very real. People who care about putting reasonable limits on guns … [Read more...] about Readers sound off: What are we doing to stop gun violence?
What can we do to help climate change
I'm pretty addicted to "Stranger Things." The critically acclaimed Netflix series, returning for a second season this week, appeals to me for a lot of reasons: The youngest characters are about the age I was in 1983 (the year the first eight-episode season takes place); it has a compelling sci-fi-tinged story and terrific actors; it recalls cultural touchstones of my generation, particularly the films of Steven Spielberg and the books of Stephen King. Add to this its take on loyalty, friendship and the value of belief in the face of overwhelming doubt and loss, and I'm sold. What I didn't expect from the show was a personal revelation: that my generation of parents has been royally messing up our kids with our constant interventions in their lives. Instead of shaping well-developed kids capable of making individual decisions, we're too often turning them into stressed out, overscheduled dependents, all because we simply don't let them alone enough to be themselves. In a way, our … [Read more...] about Let them roam: Watching the freedom of the kids on ‘Stranger Things’ made me ask, What are we doing to our children?
When he worked as a cop in Camden, Robert Chew regularly encountered people entangled in New Jersey's opiate epidemic. The number of people hooked after taking prescription painkillers surprised even him."That's the one thing people don't understand," Chew said. "It has no boundaries. People can become addicted, no matter what."MORE: Is opioid abuse preventable?On Thursday, the retired homicide detective will walk the streets of Camden once again, delivering educational materials door to door and visiting medical offices as part of Knock Out Opiate Abuse Day, a state-wide outreach effort organized by the Partnership for a Drug Free New Jersey. An estimated 2,000 volunteers will roll out in every county, said Angelo Valente, executive director of the state-backed organization.Valente believes it's the first time prevention advocates have targeted doctors' offices in much the same way pharmaceutical sales representatives do.In 2013, providers wrote … [Read more...] about What can doctors do to fight opiates addiction?
A retired Monroe County sheriff's deputy, an immigrant, a college student and two young women with ambitious career goals.All of the 45,000 employees at Wegmans Food Markets have distinct and diverse backgrounds, along with reasons why they decided to come work for the Gates-based grocer in the first place.Flexible hours, decent pay, good benefits, and the other typical reasons people apply to any job didn't come up as much during several interviews with Rochester-area employees of Wegmans.Rather, workers lauded company leadership for being approachable and taking an interest in professional development, empowering workers to solve customer issues and providing opportunities that they might not have had elsewhere.These are things not always mentioned in the annual rankings of best workplaces, a place Fortune magazine has included Wegmans in for the “100 Best Companies to Work For" 19 years running, including fourth this year.How do you … [Read more...] about What it is like to work at Wegmans
Jackie Riggs’ 11-year-old son called her Monday morning in tears.Quinten Riggs had just arrived to class at Blevins Middle School and found out his friend, a fellow sixth-grader who liked joking around in band class and talking to his friends about the girl he liked, had died by suicide over the weekend.Quinten wanted to go home.“As a parent, you’re supposed to be strong for your kids,” Riggs said on Monday afternoon, her son sitting beside her on the patio of Cheba Hut in west Fort Collins. “And right now, it’s really hard to do that, because I don’t feel like I have the strength myself. I’ve been on the verge of tears all day.”The deaths of two Fort Collins 11-year-olds by suicide in the last eight days have parents and caretakers thinking about what they can do to protect their children from a fate unimaginable for people who have not yet learned how to drive, suffered through calculus or fallen in love.Larimer County is … [Read more...] about What can parents do to prevent child suicide?
Don’t look now, but this is going to be YET ANOTHER one of those episodes that spurs the ire of dear and dearest readers alike. With apologies to lifting this line from Cool Hand Luke (1967): “What we've got here is failure to communicate."And that is just what is going to be the true downfall of this country. Make no mistake, this country is headed for a fall.Oh yes, and before all the jingoists roll their eyes, suck their teeth and say: “America, love it or leave it.” Save it. Shut up. I am not going anywhere. I have the right of the First Amendment and the courage of my conviction to say -- while cowards bicker on social media under the guise of fake anonymity and bias-filled mobs attempt to rule with violence -- nearly everyone is out for himself/herself.And everyone is blaming everyone else. “If you are not exactly like me, think as I think, act as I act, you are a threat,” is what they think (they don’t have the courage to say it out loud … [Read more...] about Another tragedy; what should we do to help our country?
Arizona has to change its ways.Dry and getting drier as the climate trends warmer, the state faces important decisions in water policy. Either Arizonans and their representatives will shift how they use and secure water, experts agree, or they will suffer.The state has more than doubled in population since it created the Department of Water Resources in 1980 to manage water for the future. And at least for now, Arizona is in an enviable position compared to neighbors such as California. Big water developments including Salt River Project and the Central Arizona Project have made a desert life possible for 4.5 million people in metro Phoenix.For years, the Colorado River flowed in excess of Arizona’s needs, and those excesses have been banked in underground aquifers, giving cities time to plan and change even if those flows are curtailed to certain central Arizona farmers, as expected in the coming decade.Yet Arizona is pressed to adapt after 15 years … [Read more...] about Solutions: What can Arizona do to assure its water supply?
Baton Rouge, suburban St. Paul and, now, Dallas.Once again, America is being forced to take a hard look at itself and why the world’s most powerful nation cannot seem to contain its intractable culture of violence. Related: 5 Dallas officers slain, deadliest day for police since 9/11This time, the issue was not radical Islamist terrorism, as it was last month in the murders of 49 patrons at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla. Nor was it a question of stopping a killer in the grips of serious mental illness, as with the murders of 20 children and six adult educators at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., in 2012. Related: 'America is weeping': Taking stock after 3 days of tragedyThis time, the problem was race — or, as one North Jersey civil rights leader noted, “the perfect storm that has been brewing.”Separate fatal shootings earlier this week by police in questionable confrontations with black men in Baton Rouge, La., and Falcon Heights, … [Read more...] about What can we do to make violent culture change?
On this edition of the Tiger Basketball Podcast, beat writer Mark Giannotto and columnist Geoff Calkins digest the latest developments in what has been a wild offseason at Memphis.Among the topics discusses are Athletic Director Tom Bowen's statement of support for Coach Tubby Smith in the wake of six transfers from the men's basketball program and how it seemed to miss the mark. We also delve into what the Tiger could be doing on the public relations front to better weather this storm of bad headlines.In addition, Geoff and Mark break down Keelon Lawson's explanation for why his sons, Dedric and K.J., elected to transfer to Kansas and who deserves blame for their departure. They also look ahead to next season, the recent junior college recruits added by Smith and what to expect on the court.Be sure to stick around for the end, when Mark explains how his story from last week involving top recruit D.J. Jeffries came together and what Smith needs to do to help his recruiting efforts … [Read more...] about Tiger Basketball Podcast: What can Memphis do to escape this crisis?
After the horrific shootings in Las Vegas, Madison columnist Emily Mills and gun rights advocate Nik Clark, the founder of Wisconsin Carry, have been thinking about what the U.S. should do, if anything, about guns. Keep reading for their thoughts. And consider joining this important discussion. You can respond on Facebook, Twitter or by email: [email protected], [email protected] or [email protected] We'll publish a sampling of your responses in the coming days. Here's what Nik and Emily wrote: Nik Clark: After Vegas, politicians reveal their true intentionsThere is a saying, “crisis doesn’t create character, it reveals it.”The tragedy in Las Vegas proves it. And there is another famous quote from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel when he was chief of staff for President Barack Obama:“Never let a good crisis go to waste.”What a striking contrast in perspective.Let’s examine the words and actions of this past week.By 8 … [Read more...] about Guns in America: What can we do now? Anything? Two perspectives