Commentary

Thu
09
May
Edgar's picture

A Note on Motherhood

Stray Thoughts

Thu
09
May
Edgar's picture

Why I hope to become just like my ma

GUEST COLUMN

I hope to be just like my mother one day.

Now in her eighth decade, my ma has arrived at a coveted place: Her "filter" is pretty much gone, and she has no problem telling anyone what's on her mind.

"Ma, please don't tell us any more details," my five sisters and I beg her, when she shares "way too much personal information" about her 63 years of marriage to my father.

"Cowards," she says with a snort.

My ma's passion is to teach the youngest members of her large clan the most important things in life (family, charity, doing unto others as you would have them do unto you) and to waste as little time as possible on the least important things (money, selfishness, giving too much weight to what others think of you).

 

 

Thu
02
May
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U.S. Supreme Court hears freedom of information case from South Dakota

GUEST COLUMN

To sit in the courtroom of the Supreme Court of the United States and watch the nine justices in action is one thing. To sit in the courtroom and watch the justices in action when the issue is about freedom of information and the public’s right to know in America is a privilege.

So it was on April 22 that I witnessed the Supreme Court hear oral arguments in the case of Food Marketing Institute v. Argus Leader Media. This case is about grocers and the federal government wanting to block the public release of information about government payments to businesses participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as the food stamps program.

Thu
25
Apr
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School and community team up

EDITORIAL

As I was interviewing Emily Reinbold Boden and Melissa Nehl Day for articles in our Health Outlook section (part of this week’s Topic) I was reminded of a quote from someone who said that when recruiting teachers, we should look within our own schools. Emily and Melissa are homegrown medical professionals, and there are many examples in the education field as well.

A quick count shows that of the 43 teachers currently working in the Timber Lake School, 21 went to high school at either Timber Lake or Isabel. That would seem to indicate that future recruits are right under our noses, perhaps in the seventh grade, waiting to be nurtured and invited into fulfilling careers in education, health care and other areas. Of course, they won’t all come home, and that’s okay; it’s good for communities to exchange talent with other towns.

Thu
18
Apr
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Why I feel sorry for Lori Loughlin’s daughters

GUEST COLUMN

Boy, do I feel sorry for Lori Loughlin’s daughters.

It’s been all over the news that Loughlin and her husband allegedly paid $500,000 in bribes to get their two girls into the University of Southern California. The fellow they allegedly bribed is said to have helped them falsely identify the girls as USC crew recruits, helping them gain admission, even though neither girl had ever been part of a crew team.

Their story reminds me of a quote, source unknown, that has long stuck with me: “Surviving poverty is one thing, but surviving wealth?”

While much of the country cannot imagine having enough dough to be able to spend $500,000 to get their kids into an elite college, no small number of people do have such money to spend on such things. I feel sorry for parents who use their money to game the system for their kids, though they should know better - and even sorrier for their kids.

Thu
18
Apr
Edgar's picture

Humanities and the physician

Prairie Doc

After 40 years as a doctor interacting with patients, in the last two and a half years the tables turned, and I’ve become the patient. Although most are good, I’ve found some doctors are detached, some are too quick, some would rather be somewhere else, some are even angry; but, when a physician who cares walks into the room, and I’m not exaggerating, the day becomes better, the pain becomes less, and hope fills my heart.

Scientific knowledge is important, but the ability to convey honest concern, human thoughtfulness and compassion is equal in importance in this healing profession. So, how do we select pre-med students for that, or teach compassion in medical school?

 

 

To read more please log in or subscribe to the digital edition https://www.etypeservices.com/Timber%20Lake%20TopicID443/

Thu
11
Apr
Edgar's picture

Americans not so good at STEM

What do most Americans know about science?

If a March 28 Pew Research Center poll is to be believed - not nearly enough. And at a time when knowledge and facts are under assault as they have not been in recent memory, that’s a problem.

On the upside, about eight in 10 respondents to the new Pew poll knew that increased resistance is one of the big concerns about the overuse of antibiotics. And more than threequarters know that an “incubation period” is the time when a person has an infection - but isn’t showing any visible signs of it.

But only about four in 10 people were able to correctly identify the main components of antacids. Those are “bases.” And I’ll admit, I’d forgotten that one.

Thu
04
Apr
Edgar's picture

War advances medicine

A.P. Kalem said, “War is never a lasting solution for any problem.” However, is that statement completely true? War, through the ages, has brought great advances and solutions in medicine.

Perhaps the first innovation in medicine that evolved during warring times came with drilling holes through the boney skulls of warriors whose heads were smashed in by clubs. Once a hole was made, one could insert a finger and pull out the caved-in skull bone with the added benefit of providing an escape hole for bleeding, releasing pressure off the brain. There are museums that have 7,000-year-old skulls with healed over burr holes, and this treatment called trephination, is still done today.

Thu
04
Apr
Edgar's picture

The Flavors of Life

Stray Thoughts

Have you ever seen a kid with an ice cream cone when the scoop falls off and onto the ground? There is an immediate feeling of loss, regret, and a sense that if only something had been done better, or differently, everything would be okay. But that is just ice cream. We tend to feel the same when we lose someone unexpectedly… like there was so much more left; there was much more goodness to be enjoyed. When something is good, savor it for all it is worth; hold on carefully, gently, for we may never enjoy the same flavor again.

 

To read more please log in or subscribe to the digital edition https://www.etypeservices.com/Timber%20Lake%20TopicID443/

Thu
04
Apr
Edgar's picture

Pain can be ally, educator

None of us want pain in our lives. We spend an enormous amount of time, energy and money trying to avoid it. And yet, have you ever considered that the pain you are experiencing could possibly be your greatest ally and educator?

This may sound strange, but if you think about it, all pain, be it psychological, emotional or physical, is pointing toward something which we need to change in our lives. If we can learn to be present with and curious about our pain, rather than running from it or ignoring it, we can discover a host of valuable information which can point us in a new direction.

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