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Columns

  • Just a Thought - The wisdom of Lincoln

    Abraham Lincoln’s name has been in the news lately with the release of the Steven Spielberg produced  film “Lincoln.” As is portrayed in the movie, President Lincoln led our country through a low point in our history at a time when we killed over 600,000 of our own citizens during our Civil War.  He had to carry the weight of a divided country on his shoulders each day of his presidency.  

  • Nuestra Historia - The dream vanished in frost, hail and drought

    Famed sociologist Clark Knowlton would later observe: “The rosy dreams of the Las Vegas Anglo American businessmen, lawyers and politicians who seized control of the Las Vegas Land Grant, hoping to populate it with thriving Anglo American farming communities, expired in frost, hail, drought, and high transportation costs.”

  • Work of Art - Including the kitchen sink ...

    A comic strip I remember from my childhood showed Dagwood helping Blondie with the Thanksgiving dishes. He broke one, causing Blondie to say, “If you break one more plate, I won’t let you help me with the dishes any more.” And a light bulb went on in Dagwood’s speech balloon.

    Would a Spanish version of the same comic strip have used a slightly different word with a slightly different meaning?

    Let me explain:

  • Editor's Note - Ripple effect

    Note: A version of this column first ran in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette on Sept. 10, four days after Charles McDonald died in North Little Rock, Ark., at age 86.

    One really can’t frame the modern Civil Rights Movement between two specific events. There’s no one day that launched the movement, nor a single moment that brought it to an end.

    For my family, however, events that took place between 1957 and 1968 made all the difference in the world.

  • Another Perspective - Bullish on the state’s GOP

    Election Day was a tough one for Republicans. It was tough for our candidates, our volunteers and Gov. Martinez. Despite an investment of nearly $3 million by the governor and her related political action committees, a well-funded U.S. Senate race and an active GOP Victory operation, let’s not fool ourselves; the Republican Party frankly got wiped out.

    Although Republicans had a net gain of three seats in the state Senate, we experienced a net loss of at least two in the House of Representatives, thus dashing our hopes of taking control of this chamber.  

  • Nuestra Historia - ... sometimes go awry: Raynolds, Long and Storrie

    He helped rebuild San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake, and had just completed the famed Rock Mile tunnel in that city, when he heard he might be needed in Las Vegas, New Mexico.

    He was told the land grant board in that faraway city was having trouble with its plans for a mammoth reservoir and irrigation project, which was at a standstill after D.A. Camfield gave up in frustration and abandoned the project in 1912.

  • Another Perspective - Overcoming New Mexico’s challenges

    The 2012 election season was one of the most divisive, partisan and personal that New Mexico has faced. It will be hard and it will take time to heal the wounds, but it is critical that we do so and move away from campaigning and toward governing as fast as possible if we are to make any progress overcoming the tremendous challenges facing New Mexico.

  • Work of Art - Ultima, ultimately

    The first time many of us saw Rudolfo Anaya was when he spoke to Highlands students and staff in a packed Sala de Madrid, around 1972.

    He had just completed his first — and in my opinion, his best — novel, “Bless Me, Ultima,” now a movie that my family and I saw at a multi-screen theater in Santa Fe last weekend.

  • Editor's Note - Home and family

    Eight years.

    That’s how long I’ve lived in Las Vegas. Long enough to have become familiar with the community and its people, but not nearly long enough to become anything other than an outsider, at least to some people.

    I guess I don’t mind. I was born and raised in Arkansas, and yet I’ve always felt sort of different there too.

    Unless I’m with my family. There, I belong.

  • Nuestra Historia - The best laid plans of mice and men ...

    When the territorial legislature yanked the Las Vegas Land Grant from the Hispanic community in 1903, and placed it under the control of Judge William J. Mills, he immediately appointed an Anglo-dominated board of trustees to oversee the immense land grant.
    Headed by banker Jefferson Raynolds and former New Mexico chief justice Elisha V. Long, the “trustees” quickly decided the grant should be developed in earnest — to attract both outside investment and settlement.