Commentary

Thu
31
Jan
Edgar's picture

Revitalizing rural South Dakota

Hometowns are the heartbeat of South Dakota. I’m proud to be from a rural hometown. It’s where I learned the values of hard work and self-reliance, where Bryon and I chose to raise our kids, where we started an insurance business and hunting lodge, and where my family has farmed and ranched for a century. But many small towns like ours are struggling today.

In South Dakota, according to our most recent statistics, we have 15,363 job openings and 13,500 people actively looking for work. Unfortunately, what we have is a skills gap – those unemployed workers don’t have the skills necessarily to fill the open jobs.

Thu
24
Jan
Edgar's picture

It’s up to us to realize Dr. King’s dream

By Tom Purcell

 

As we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday and legacy, in these angry and divisive times, we all could benefit by reminding ourselves of his words’ truth, civility and wisdom.

Too many of us are consumed with hatred and anger, which have reared their ugly heads in our public discourse lately. Dr. King, who endured hatred so ugly and excessive that it led to his assassination, spoke often of the futility of hating anyone or anything - of how hating harms the hater more than the hated:

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: Only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: Only love can do that.” “I have decided to stick to love ... . Hate is too great a burden to bear.”

“Let no man pull you so low as to hate him.”

Thu
17
Jan
Edgar's picture

Prairie Doc Lies, myths, and the Alligator Woman

It was June 10, Old Settler’s Day in De Smet, SD, and the carnival was in town. As a fifth grader, I had been doing odd jobs for a month to save up money for that day. For the price of 25 cents, I filed through a trailer to see a “real alligator woman, half human, half alligator.” Of course, it was fake. Sitting there on a table was a dried-up, stuffed, alligator body connected to a live human woman’s head (who was chatting with us). The table had mirrors to cover the hollow box that held the woman’s body underneath. It was an amusing ruse, a trick, an intentional untruth that benefited the marketer exactly 25 cents per viewer. That was, by definition, disinformation.

Thu
17
Jan
Edgar's picture

Chairman voices outrage at President’s remarks

LETTER

The President of the United States has decided to make comments regarding Pocahontas, “Big Horn” and “Wounded Knee” in an attempt to denigrate someone else. I ask you, America, when are you going to come to your senses regarding this president?

Thu
10
Jan
Edgar's picture

Excerpts from Kristi Noem’s inaugural address

Newly elected South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem delivered an address at her inauguration on January 5. Here is an extended excerpt:

The oath that I just took is a promise and a commitment to everyone in this state. I promise to govern in a manner that will benefit all South Dakotans. From Rapid City to Sioux Falls. From Buffalo to North Sioux City. From Pine Ridge to Sisseton. My door will always be open to listen. I believe I have a good sense of where we need to go as a state but that doesn’t mean I won’t keep the dialogue open. I’ve always believed it takes courage to stand up and speak, but it also takes courage to sit down and listen.

Thu
03
Jan
Edgar's picture

Governor says thank you and good-bye

By Gov. Dennis Daugaard

This is the last column I will write as Governor of South Dakota, and I want to say “thank you.”

Thank you to the people of South Dakota. It was a great honor when you placed your confidence in me. Over these past eight years, I have always tried to work hard to make our state better. Whenever times were tough, your strength encouraged me.

I first saw that strength during the Missouri River floods of 2011. Releases from the Oahe Dam were nearly triple the previous record. Large portions of Pierre, and nearly all of Fort Pierre and Dakota Dunes, were threatened by the flooding. In a matter of days, we filled hundreds of thousands of sandbags and we built emergency levies that saved most of Pierre, Fort Pierre and Dakota Dunes. Thousands of South Dakotans stepped up – National Guard, law enforcement, first responders, bus loads of volunteers, hundreds of truckers, and even prison inmates.

Thu
03
Jan
Edgar's picture

A new year, a new you? The journey is the point

In some ways, we use holidays as a collective reminder of attitudes which help us live a happy, healthy life. We take a day to be thankful, a day to celebrate freedom and a day to focus on giving. We have a day for remembering those we’ve lost and a day to honor the miracles in our lives. The holidays can remind us how good it feels to bring these attitudes into our day to day experiences.

This time of year, it’s the New Year season. New Year’s is about honoring the passage of time. It’s about reviewing where you’ve been so that you may consciously choose where you’re headed. It’s no coincidence that we celebrate this holiday when we do, nor that it’s focus is on things we’d like to shift in our lives. Julius Caesar set the date in 46 B.C., in part to honor January’s namesake: Janus, the Roman god of beginnings. Janus has two faces, one face which looks into the past and the other which looks into the future.

Thu
20
Dec
Edgar's picture

Come before Him with adoration

One of our favorite things to do as pastors is to hold and cradle new little babies. Babies are so easy to adore – we love to watch every little coo or yawn and make over how precious they are. In the events of the first Christmas, the shepherds came to worship and adore baby Jesus as they were directed by a host of angels. As the shepherds saw Jesus, you would think they talked about how cute He was. However, more than just admiring a new baby, they chose to adore who He was and the reason He was born. They worshipped Him and gave honor to Him even before He could do anything for them. They understood the significance and importance of who He was and they did not let that moment escape them without their praise.

Thu
20
Dec
Edgar's picture

Tradition

I don’t feel the spirit of Christmas in Walmart.

Sure, the music is playing from the ceiling speakers overhead and there are thousands of brightly colored boxes on shelves for nearly every conceivable need, wish, and want for anyone, from three to one hundred and three… but all of this has me thinking of the old times and wondering if the real Christmas still exists out there.

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Thu
06
Dec
Edgar's picture

President Bush’s thousand points of light

“A thousand points of light.” The phrase was used by George H.W. Bush in his speech accepting the presidential nomination at the 1988 Republican National Convention in New Orleans. Written for Bush by Peggy Noonan and Craig R. Smith, the address likened America's clubs and volunteer organizations to “a brilliant diversity spread like stars, like a thousand points of light in a broad and peaceful sky.”

He repeated the phrase in his inaugural address on January 20, 1989:

 

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