The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys: North Carolina's Scott Family and the Era of Progressive Politics; By Rob Christensen; University of North Carolina Press; 2019; 322 pages. In today's polarized political environment it is almost impossible to imagine a time when elected leaders worked to solve the day-to-day problems of average people struggling … Continue reading Review: ‘The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys’ the story of an N.C. political dynasty
UPDATE: I first posted this on Jan. 28 after learning that U.S. Rep. Walter Jones of North Carolina was placed in Hospice care. Today he passed away, his family announced. Rest in peace Walter. My condolences to the family and friends of Rep. Jones. Peace to you all. ------------------------- I saw over the weekend that … Continue reading UPDATE: Congressman Walter Jones: Humility in a town of arrogance
I wrote this two years ago for publication in the Burlington Times-News on Nov. 8 2016 -- the date of the last presidential election. I think most know what happened there. And the folks who don't know haven't paid attention to much of anything in a long time anyway -- print, TV, online, family, friends, … Continue reading Checks and balances, balances and checks: Just where are the adults?
The thing about working as a volunteer at the polls, especially during early voting, is that you get to meet and talk to a lot of people. Many of them are people who don't all think alike. Some in fact, are very different. So you converse with them, learn about their families, jobs and lives. … Continue reading Volunteering at the polls: Yes we can get along and (hopefully) accomplish things
This is about men. This is about Brett Kavanaugh. This is about beer. This is about judgment, or a lack of it. This is about temperament. This is about honesty. This is about privilege and college and the moral compass or gyroscope that keeps polite society functional. This is about different times in our history, … Continue reading My college years, Brett Kavanaugh, beer, misbehavior and ‘Animal House’
How old are the schools in Alamance County? Let's start with very, very old and work from there. In fact, at least one is far older than most would believe and the others aren't all that far behind. Think pre-World War I, old. That's old. The last high school was built here 48 years ago. … Continue reading How old are schools in Alamance County?
Update: on Nov. 3, 2018 the UNC Board of Trustees took this action concerning the Silent Sam statue. Citing the state law mentioned in the post below, the board said its hands were tied concerning moving the statue to a museum or memorial park. In order to keep it on campus and relatively safe, the … Continue reading Silencing Sam (updated to reflect UNC response)
Do a quick search on Google under the keywords Alamance 12. You'll find a few stories right away about what has become a notorious and politically charged (what isn't these days) case involving illegal voting in the county I call home. Most of the stories are from the local newspaper, the Burlington Times-News, where I … Continue reading The case of the Alamance 12
A couple of weeks ago I was having a conversation by phone with my 86-year-old mother. At some point, and I'm not exactly sure how we got there, I told her bluntly, "Mom, people just aren't worth talking to anymore." I was only joking -- in part. She was probably appalled, even though she's known … Continue reading Playing referee for the ‘national psychosis’
A couple of weeks ago, Alamance-Burlington Board of Education member Brian Feeley made this observation on his political Facebook page: One penny. A one-cent raise to the property tax rate will avoid forced school budget cuts at a time when our county is growing. Someone I respect recently joked that “political leadership” is an oxymoron. … Continue reading The leadership to make Alamance County competitive in the modern world