When NPR shut down its user comment line in 2016 it missed a major opportunity

Summary NPR’s comment line was obviously troubled when it was shut down in 2016. But there had been no  guidelines for contributions to it. Nor were significant corrections made when abuses began clogging the system. As the premier U.S. public radio news network I suggest that NPR should have taken on a generic problem facing […]

The real story under the controversy over offshore drilling

On January 4 2018 Interior Secretary Zinke announced a plan to open up 90% of the U.S.’s offshore Exclusive Economic Zone, equivalent to more than three quarters of the land area of the United States to commercial recovery of oil and gas. The report (https://www.doi.gov/pressreleases/secretary-zinke-announces-plan-unleashing-americas-offshore-oil-and-gas-potential) stated that current moratoria put 94% of the this area […]

Confederate Monuments, Road Signs, And School Names: Don’t Put Them Out Of Sight And Mind

Why I’m writing about this subject. Current actions to remove Confederate statues and change the names of schools are in the news in Virginia. I have special reasons for offering suggestions on these sensitive issues. In 2005 I had a “born-again African American experience”. An emeritus professor of chemistry at the University of Missouri, Kansas […]

A premature goodbye to Gwen Ifill, stellar journalist

I was shocked beyond words to lose Gwen Ifill so early, so prematurely at 61. Quite aside from being a pioneering African American Gwen was a towering presence among journalists. It was impossible to determine what her political views were, because she was equally perceptive, candid, gracious but no nonesense with people of various political […]

Open letter to moderators for the 2016 presidential debates

  Here are three suggested questions that bear on U.S. political polarization. They are rarely posed but U.S. voters deserve responses to them from the candidates. To both candidates: The United States now has the most extreme partisan polarization and gridlock since the Civil War. When either party takes power it seems willing to in […]