Soliciting Opinions

Recently, the local newspaper printed two, what I consider, outstanding articles on their Editorial Page. One is by Kathleen Parker (“It’s time for the old guard to step aside”) and the other by Ruth Marcus (“The Supreme Court just made corruption a little easier”). Both writers are with the Washington Post.

Since I believe both of these articles are extremely powerful, I wanted to share them with my blog visitors; however, as many of you have discovered, the Washington Post has a paywall. 😠 Fortunately, I was able to get around this by downloading the page from the online version of the newspaper.

You will notice the download includes a couple of letters submitted to the newspaper’s “Public Forum.” One of them is related to a local issue, but the other one is more politically-oriented — and may actually be of interest.

In any event, here is the link. I’ll be anxiously awaiting your reactions/opinions on either or both write-ups.

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I Needed This …

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Confession time.

Regrettably, I must admit I’ve been swayed by the several negative news items surrounding many (and often, most) of President Biden’s actions and decisions over the past year. So much so that I’ve expressed my disappointment in him “out loud.”

Then I read Heather’s most recent newsletter.

As she so carefully and thoroughly went down the list of his accomplishments throughout 2021, I was a bit ashamed that I had allowed myself to be so influenced by the media and their seemingly incessant desire to focus on the negative.

I am not saying that Biden has been a perfect leader.

There are definitely areas where I think he could have handled things better. As an example, I personally feel he (or perhaps the news media?) put far too much focus on trying to rein in the virus. Naturally we all want it to “just go away,” but it is not a country or a personality that can be fought and overcome. Rather, it is a pernicious and invisible enemy that tends to defy all manner of attack.

And to that point, there’s really only so much we can do …

In any case, this was just one of the reasons why I needed to read what Heather outlined in her newsletter about President Biden. I needed to be reminded of his several accomplishments, rather than allowing myself to be so influenced by the (seemingly innate) negativism of the media.

As well as the ongoing criticism by various Republicans!

I trust you will gain as much benefit as I did from Heather’s excellent synopsis of President Biden’s first year in office.

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Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

The News and Its Sources

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Every so often I see discussions on various blogs related to news sources. One person will adamantly claim a particular source is biased a certain way, while another person will just as adamantly claim the opposite.

Occasionally such dialogues can get rather “heated” as each person offers “proof” that their assessment of a particular news publication is the CORRECT one.

Much of one’s value judgement in these discussions is based on personal bias … although we tend to deny this and tell ourselves we’re viewing the topic from a purely neutral perspective. 😉

In any case, I came across this website awhile back and for me, it clearly lays out where the various news sources stand. I invite you to take a look. (I tend to think some of you may be a bit surprised.)

And don’t stop at just the listings … read on to the section: “How to Recognize Biased News Source” where it lists the characteristics that will help you make an informed determination.

Finally, this from the article’s closing:

Finding an unbiased newspaper or news source may seem like an impossible task. In part because humans are seldom able to have an open mind about something. 

And, most importantly, this …

Therefore, it is up to the public to read multiple news sources and different viewpoints before forming a judgment. 

What Do You Think?

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If you haven’t already heard/read about the actions of Kyle Rittenhouse, then I suggest you do some Google-type research. 

For those of you who ARE familiar with the name and the associated offenses … this post is for you.

As a refresher: Rittenhouse faces five felony charges and a misdemeanor weapons charge for killing two individuals and wounding a third during a protest in Wisconsin. If he is convicted of the most serious charge against him, he faces a mandatory sentence of life in prison. 

Closing arguments are scheduled for Monday, the 15th. The final jury members will be selected and will, most likely, begin deliberations on Tuesday. (Added note: there is still some discussion related to some lesser charges which the judge is considering over the weekend and will announce his decision on Monday.)

So where do you stand? Should Kyle Rittenhouse be found Guilty or Not Guilty? Do you see him as an armed vigilante who should definitely be sent to prison? Or was he simply a misguided kid trying to defend himself? Or perhaps something in-between?

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My personal opinion? No matter the circumstances, two people DIED at the hands of a 17-year-old kid using a semi-automatic AR-15 style rifle. While I hesitate condemning him to life in prison because of his age, I do not feel he should be allowed to walk away scot-free.

How Does This Make You Feel?

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Forbes has reported that Elon Musk’s net worth just reached $225.2 BILLION — very likely making him “the richest person to ever walk the planet.”

He has passed both Google co-founder Larry Page (#6), as well as Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg (#7) — and widened the gap between him and Jeff Bezos of Amazon fame.