Columns/Opinions

Thu
23
Apr

"Helping Class of 2020 students, teachers tell their story" by: Betsy Monico

   This week is for the seniors. If you do not live local, no big deal, because these thoughts apply to every member of the Class of 2020. 
   The first one is from Coach Sally Whitaker. She coaches our girls’ basketball team and coached them all the way to a state championship this year! 
   “Alright, I’ll go ahead and offer my insight for this group of seniors. Yes, this sucks. Yes, you can be sad, angry, disappointed, and frustrated. 
   “But when you are done with all that, think about this. About a month ago, we all witnessed a town pull together like a family and accomplish something great in a way that is better than we could have imagined. 
   “We showed our faith in each other and our faith in God. So maybe, just maybe, God has something better in mind for you now. 

Thu
23
Apr

"Gospel of Mark shows there’s always more to everyone’s story" by: Caleb Gibson

   Easter is one of my favorite days.
It’s a great time to remember the goodness of God. Now that Easter is over, what’s next? 
   We must continue to seek the Lord. C. S. Lewis once said, “Look for Christ and you will find Him. And with Him, everything else.” 
   The gospel of Mark shows God’s amazing grace. 
   The book of Matthew ends with the great commission. He tells them, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,” (Matthew 28:19). 
   What a poetic ending. The book of Luke ends with the Emmaus Road. Jesus brings the Disciples up the hill of Bethany and is carried into Heaven. The disciples leave praising God. 
   The book of John ends with the restoration of Peter. He denied Jesus three times and Jesus reminded him that there was still a purpose for him. 

Thu
23
Apr

"Reel Reviews: ‘Little Women’ has fresh faces but same old story" by: Jessica Shepard

   While my memory of the last time I read “Little Women” is a few decades old, there’s fresh faces in this movie adaptation and I was excited when it hit Redbox. 
   To be fair, I also saw the 90s flick, but, again at a young age and decided that seeing it from an adult perspective might change the fondness I have for it. 
   And it did! 
   I don’t think I’ve ever disliked a childhood favorite-turned-movie more – and that includes the Harry Potter series. 
   Plus, the bouncing between the past and present isn’t smoothly done and it takes several moments when a scene shifts before you know which time you’re watching – mostly. 
   Little Women is an American coming-of-age period drama film written and directed by Greta Gerwig. 
   It is the seventh film adaptation of the 1868 novel of the same name by Louisa May Alcott. 

Thu
16
Apr

"Ladycat softballers’ video a nice touch to quarantine" by: Mike Reddell

   There have been so many clever, humorous and creative responses I’ve seen about life in COVID-19 quarantine land.
   One of the most enjoyable to me was a video featuring the Bay City High School Ladycat softball team.
      The overall theme was their dedication to softball – in compliance with the stay-at-home strictures – and despite the abbreviated season that athletes at all levels encountered this strange year.
   So, clad in their Ladycat uniform, the video shows several cuts of a Ladycat infielder scooping up a grounder at her home and throwing the ball seemingly 

Thu
16
Apr

"Stay home to protect everyone not just yourself" by: Jessica Shepard

   So, it’s been a week since the whole household was diagnosed with a combination of bronchitis and sinus infections and we’re still recuperating.
   It was hard to spend Easter short one sibling.
   My brother came home just in time to make Easter dinner decisions, but, my sister is still in Bryan with her boyfriend and scared to travel.
   And I totally understand that sort of fear with plenty of police being reported on the road.
   It’s all part of this social distancing and stay-at-home orders we’re seeing span the country – not just other surrounding counties in our backyard.
   It also really ticks me off when I see people posting on social media sites like Facebook or Twitter that they believe the COVID-19 pandemic is just a conspiracy or hoax.
   I get tired of reading comments about how “the flu kills more people,” or that “it isn’t even that serious.”
   It really is serious!

Thu
16
Apr

"Is there a place between optimism and pessimism called reality?" by: John Sample

   First, I hope you had a spectacular Easter weekend.
   Many shared time with family through the use of Zoom on their computers or Facetime on their phones.
   The world is changing whether we like it or not. Just last week, holiday shortened to four days, the S&P 500 stock-index had the biggest weekly gain since 1974. 
   For those of you late to the game, that was in the times of 20% CDs and a real bear market that took years to recover.
   We are now at that point in this recent setback where the debate is focusing on whether the worst is behind us.
   I have said for the last two months that April 15 would be the low-water mark.
   I may have been a week late.
   Some contend that nothing positive can happen until there is a vaccine to protect those who have not contracted the disease.
   That could take months.

Thu
16
Apr

Put tax-smart investing moves to work

   The tax return deadline has been extended, but you may have already filed your taxes.
   If you were not entirely happy with the results, you might start seeking ways to change the outcome for next year.
   And one area to look at may be your investment-related taxes.
   So, for example, are you contributing as much as you can afford to tax-deferred vehicles, such as your traditional IRA and your 401(k) or similar retirement plan?
   If not, see if you can ramp up your contributions this year.
   And if you can afford to invest outside your retirement accounts, try to follow a “buy and hold” strategy.
   By holding investments for years before selling them, you’ll be taxed at the long-term capital gains rate, which may be lower than your personal income tax rate.
   Taxes should be a consideration when you invest.

Thu
16
Apr

"Christ overcame the world and the cause for celebration" by: Betsy Monico

   Today is Easter Sunday. One of my favorite things about Easter is how we all say “He has risen, He has risen indeed.” 
   My mother in law started it with us when the kids were little. Since we were not able to get together today, we just called her and said it in unison. 
   Every Easter out here has been different. We have attended various churches and hosted several massive egg hunts. 
   I have eaten my weight in Reece’s Peanut Butter eggs yearly. This year sure is different because of Covid-19. 
   Christians all over the world though have done their best to celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. I found myself yesterday missing our traditions. 
   The Lord encouraged me with a boat my son is repairing and the Bible story about Noah building the ark.
   Here is the background scoop. My oldest son 
   works 7-5 daily. He is a senior, keeping up with his school work, and making great money. 

Thu
16
Apr

"God was repeating miracles yesterday as he does today" by: Caleb Gibson

   After Resurrection Sunday, something amazing took place. Jesus appeared to the disciple two times and would visit them again. 
   Peter decides to go fishing and the other disciples said, “We will also come with you.” (John 21:1-25). They went out that night and caught nothing. The sun was rising and they see a man standing on the beach. 
   The man asks them if they caught anything. They tell him they haven’t. He tells them, “Cast the net on the right side of the boat and you will find a catch.” 
   When they threw their net on the right side of the boat, they were barely able to haul it in. It was full of fish. 
   John looked to Peter and said, “It is the Lord!” How often is God right there when we are unaware? John was aware of the love of God. In John’s Gospel, he did not include his name, instead he called himself, “the Disciple whom Jesus loved.” 

Thu
16
Apr

"Reel Reviews: ‘Dolittle’ features a fresh look at classic children’s story" by: Jessica Shepard

   When “Dolittle” came to theaters, I missed it and have been eagerly waiting for it to hit streaming and rental services.
   Luckily, I scored a copy last week and was able to finally catch up with the film’s hype – or lack thereof.
   Dolittle is a fantasy adventure film laced with a bit of comedy and directed by Stephen Gaghan from a screenplay by Gaghan, Dan Gregor, and Doug Mand, based on a story by Thomas Shepherd.
   As a reboot of the original Doctor Dolittle film and its modern comedy counterparts, the film is based on the titular character created by Hugh Lofting, and primarily inspired by The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle, the author’s second Doctor Dolittle book.

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