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A March 20 memo from the Michigan Department of Education declared that emergency online education would not count toward a school’s required number of instructional hours. The declaration added confusion and frustration to the state-ordered school building closures prompted by the COVID-19 …

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I’m noticing that most of what I’m seeing on social media is scary. Don’t get me wrong, there are small blips of light and beauty – Italians singing with each other, their voices carrying over the empty streets – but for the most part I’m seeing stories that make even my own inner-Pollyanna …

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Social distancing is the phrase of the day, and what it pretty much means is staying away from people while America shuts down, the economy gets clobbered and death seeks out at a million, maybe 2 million of us.

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When I visited my brother and sister-in-law last weekend, I didn’t come empty-handed. They have four kids, so I brought a few rolls of toilet paper for them. They were pleased.

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In an effort to slow the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has invoked emergency powers granted to her under Michigan law to prohibit individuals from gathering in large groups. She also called for closing schools, restaurants, theaters, coffee shops, gyms, casinos, l…

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San Francisco and six Bay Area counties, with a combined population of nearly 7 million, are under “shelter-in-place” orders directing everyone to basically stay inside their homes for the next three weeks in hopes of suppressing the rapid spread of COVID-19 across the region.

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I am sitting at my desk the morning after Super Tuesday, still “blown away” by the resurrection of Joe Biden. No one, not even Joe himself, saw this coming. What have the first set of primaries taught us?

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Social distancing makes all the sense in the world in the pivotal early stage of a fast-moving outbreak like this coronavirus. We must prevent our hospitals and ICUs from being overwhelmed as Italy’s currently are, not only for those struggling with this particular bug, but for all others wh…

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When our youngest went off to college, we had a million projects we said we were going to conquer. Things that had been broken for years were going to finally be fixed, updates would be made, and the great purge would begin – donating, selling and discarding all of the things we’d accumulate…

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President Donald Trump’s speech about the coronavirus pandemic did not go well. His travel ban on Europe made him seem confused and poorly informed; because the virus is already rapidly expanding within the U.S., closing the borders won’t help. And his plan didn’t have as big of an economic …

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The modern media trend is to make fun of President Trump for his alleged and actual misstatements of fact. You have to go a long way – in this case Sky News in Australia – to find a media outlet willing to make fun of a U.S. liberal Democrat.

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‘I want to tell you, Gorsuch, I want to tell you, Kavanaugh, you have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.” These were the words of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer to a group of pro-choice demonstra…

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I saw a comment on social media recently that made me shake my head a little. A person commented that they had seen a report of a group of evangelical Christians gathered in support of a particular cause or policy that this person happened to disagree with personally.

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One dramatic moment of Super Tuesday was choreographed by anti-dairy protesters, who rushed the stage while Joe Biden was delivering a victory speech in Los Angeles – and his wife blocked them from reaching her husband.

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Baby boomers are going to “pot.” No pun intended here. According to a recent CNN report, a study conducted by JAMA (the Journal of the American Medical Association) found that marijuana use among seniors over 65 has risen dramatically in recent years.

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Emma Lazarus’s 1883 sonnet “The New Colossus” on the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

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The state House Tax Committee recently heard testimony from the Michigan Economic Development Corp. This was offered in response to a package of bills recently introduced to make the Michigan Strategic Fund and MEDC more transparent and accountable to the public. These agencies oversee the s…

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I’ve just placed our foster son into the arms of the case aide who transports him to and from his parental visits every Tuesday. He waves good-bye and smiles as the young woman carries him to her vehicle.

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By the time this column is published, we will know the results of the 14 states voting on Super Tuesday. Given the polling so far, it looks like Bernie Sanders seems likely to continue the momentum built in early contests. I had been leaning toward Pete Buttigieg, but now I’m pretty firmly i…

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Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued a press release Feb. 25 calling on the Michigan Legislature to delay implementing work and community engagement requirements for able-bodied adults receiving Medicaid benefits through the state’s Healthy Michigan program. Whitmer’s request comes on the heels of a…

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No one is served well when opinion pieces are written and published containing incomplete, inaccurate, or distorted information. Facts should speak for themselves. The people form their best opinions, and make their best decisions, when facts are well developed and accurately stated, without…

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In recent years, the popularity of “true crime” stories seems to have soared, with shows such as “Dateline” reporting on the gruesome details of real-life murders. The “Investigation Discovery” cable channel exclusively broadcasts these types of shows, and podcasts such as “My Favorite Murde…

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This week, a local news station posted a story about abortion. As you can imagine, Facebook lost its collective mind and the sniping and self-righteous comments began immediately. They were often backed up with the pro-life movement being a reason to vote Republican, or, more specifically, t…

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The only thing that can be said about former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s first appearance with his fellow Democratic presidential candidates in Las Vegas last week was that Mike did not get it done, as his campaign ads promise he will if he becomes president.

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I think I need to start playing golf again. It turns out that “hitting a golf ball at least once a month could lower the risk of death among older adults,” according to an article published by the American Heart Association News website.

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As a life-long resident of Grand Haven, the bulky smokestacks on Harbor Island always rubbed me the wrong way. Growing up, I often cursed the power plant and its seemingly endless stream of smoke for cloudy firework displays and hazy sunsets (regardless of whether or not it happened to more …

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Former state Sen. Arlan Meekhof was in the news last week – his West Michigan Community Preservation Fund causing controversy once again. It’s basically a smaller-scale, Michigan version of the Clinton Foundation, but with even less transparency.

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Since Virginia voted to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment in January, there’s been lots of speculative talk about the future of the long-stalled constitutional amendment. The House voted last week to remove the deadline for ratification (which came and went decades ago), and the technical qu…

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Remember back in the day when you knew what size you took? You know, when a small was actually a small and a medium was somewhere between a small and a large, and jeans had standard numbers assigned to them that made sense and stayed consistent? What the heck happened?

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Michigan Education Association President Paula Herbart wrote an op-ed about what “Trump and DeVos” are “doing” to some public schools which will make them “suffer … even more.” It badly misses the mark, has a lot of factual errors, and by not putting things in proper context, gets a lot of t…

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I recently interviewed Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos who claimed the president’s proposed $4.8 trillion budget includes “a significant step toward returning flexibility to the states through a proposal to block grant all of the elementary and secondary education funds ... and let (state…

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The modern three-color traffic light was invented 100 years ago. The inventor was a Michigander named William Potts. History does not reveal whether another traffic phenomenon, the pot hole, was named after Mr. Potts, as well. If it was his idea, no doubt he distanced himself from it the sam…

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I read an article the other day that talked about interruptions. It was very timely for me because I had just had my day’s agenda interrupted by someone who needed to see me. It couldn’t wait – that was evident by the tone of his voice.

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If Benjamin Franklin has taught us anything, there are two sure things in life: death and taxes. As tax season kicks into full gear, it’s a good time to also start planning for the inevitable.