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Columns

  • Just a Thought - A special thank you to mom, dad

    By Rick Kraft

    As the holiday season approaches, we all have so much to be thankful for. At the top of the list is family. What a blessing it is to be able to spend time with family members.

    Between my wife, my children, my brother and sisters, my wife’s parents, and my extended family including in-laws, aunts, uncles, nephews, and nieces, I am most fortunate to be related to the entire clan. But in today’s column I want to share my thankfulness for my parents.

  • Nuestra Historia: The Highlands revolution of 1970

    By Jesus L. Lopez

    For the Optic

    The decennium between 1965 and 1975, as already noted, was a time of great change in Las Vegas, and even our tale of two cities culminated with consolidation in 1970. In the same year, the ever-spinning wheels of change also overtook Highlands University, and we now begin the stirring tale of the titanic struggle that occurred at Highlands 43 years ago.

  • Dulcey Amargo - Country lost its innocence

    It was beyond belief! It happened 50 years ago, Nov. 22, 1963, but in my mind, the images are as vivid as though it happened just yesterday.

    It was lunch hour at Sacred Heart Cathedral High School, a closed campus parochial school in Gallup, and the whole student body was assembled in the gym/cafeteria. As was our mode, all females sat at the south end tables, while the males sat across the gym floor at their stations. Our teachers, mostly Franciscan nuns and priests, circulated as we unpacked our lunch or brought our cafeteria trays to the tables where we socialized.

  • Work of Art — A super-heated topic

    We were leaving a high school play that I had directed, “The Lottery,” by Shirley Jackson. It was exactly this time of year, and the weather conditions were identical to what’s happening tonight: chimneys blowing over, fences being uprooted, animals shivering.

  • Another Perspective — Fund schools adequately

    By Felix Alderete

    For the Optic

  • Nuestra Historia: It was a rocky start for one Las Vegas

    When the first officials of the consolidated city gathered in 1970 for their inaugural meeting following the March 3 election, the new City Council was evenly divided. Four had been elected from the “all Chicano” slate, and four from the slate headed by new Mayor Fidel “Chief” Gonzales — resulting in an acrimonious and inauspicious beginning.

  • Another Perspective — Who has the silver bullet?

    By Feliz Alderete

    For the Optic

    Editor’s note: This is part one of two. The second installment will run in Monday’s edition.

    How important is public education and how does it affect our lives? Those two questions can be easily answered by going to the local market and interacting with a store clerk, calling a service provider with a problem on a bill, or getting information over the telephone about a service.

  • Work of Art — Some people are so nice

    Ah, jeez, some people can be so nice. Please don’t overlook the irony to that statement. “Can be so nice” is almost like saying, “You’re so much help!”

    I’ve gone over these expressions, orally, a dozen times, and there’s no way I can make them seem sincere. In my experience “So much help” always comes out sarcastically, regardless of who’s uttering it.

    Now that we’re experts on irony, let’s get to the point:

  • Another Perspective — Let’s serve veterans as well as they have served us

    During the recent government shutdown many numbers were thrown around. But there is one number that stands out and it has nothing to do with the debate over the federal budget.

    More than one a day. That is how many members of our active-duty military, National Guard and Reserve forces have committed suicide over the last year. Simply put, we are losing more servicemembers by their own hands than we are by the enemy in Afghanistan.

  • Another Perspective — Remembering a true believer

    People here still remember my parents. I know because they still ask about them. They may not have lived here long, but they were adored by those they served.

    Well, technically, only my father, the Rev. Charles P. McDonald Jr., “served” the church. For nearly two years in 2005-2007 he was interim pastor for First United Methodist Church here in Las Vegas. But my mother, Lois Lee King McDonald, also served — brightening up the congregation with her inextinguishable optimism and belief, always, in the goodness of everyone she met.