Just last week, I was at Wrigley Field in Chicago taking in a ballgame. Before the game started, a mother and two boys, elementary school aged, took a seat in the row in front of me. Right after sitting down, the two boys each pulled out a smartphone and started playing games. I thought mayb…

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Wednesday, June 05, 2019

Suppose for some reason you were to cast your mind back to your high school English class and the classic conflicts in literature. I know ... I can’t think of a reason either. Maybe you’re getting a root canal and the TV on the ceiling of the dentist’s office is tuned to “Jeopardy.” Man vs. …

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Sen. Kim LaSata has had her share of front-page news lately, most recently in response to her Michigan Senate testimony regarding late-term abortion, including her own painful experience of a failed therapeutic abortion for a fetus with serious medical issues, then, in her words, “letting Go…

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

If you’ve ever taken a physics or chemistry class, you have likely heard of the law of conservation of energy. This law says that energy remains invariable and is maintained over time, so while energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can be altered or transmitted.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

I recently was privileged to attend a workshop for leaders of nonprofits. The two-day workshop was designed to help leaders better understand their role and to work on crafting a plan for the future. This was a wonderful workshop and I want to share three items from our time together.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Okay gang, we’re well into the month of May and you know what that means; We’re on the threshold of true summer. Time to plan on getting outta Dodge and carving out some rest and relaxation from that hard-charging career you’re pursuing.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Let me tell you a story. I was driving along on Interstate 94 the other day when flashing colored lights appeared in my mirror. The kind gentleman(?) who approached my car asked if I knew why he stopped me. My answer, of course was, I have no idea.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Now that tax season is over, except for the lost souls who filed extensions and their accountants who have not gotten over hangovers yet, it is time to re-visit tax fairness and simplification. Let’s start with Michigan taxes.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

There are several moments in your life when you realize you’re not a child anymore, when you take on more responsibility and go through another rite of passage into adulthood. Getting your first job. Earning your driver’s license. Going off to college. Getting married. Becoming a parent.

Friday, April 05, 2019
Wednesday, April 03, 2019

The other evening our cruel and unfeeling daughter-in-law ruined our grandson’s life. She cut up his pizza into bite-sized pieces. Presented with this unspeakable calamity on a plate, his bones immediately dissolved and he commenced howling “My pi-i-i-iz-za” with all the pathos of the last w…

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

With the world twisting and turning from one extreme to another environmentally, politically and culturally, I find myself reflecting upon the credos that helped form the character of modern generations. People of various faiths as well as many who do not consider themselves religious will r…

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

If you’ve been paying attention to the news at all in the past few weeks, you’ve seen that several seemingly intelligent, professional, successful adults have been indicted on various charges involving college admissions fraud. There are many factors at play here, but the one that is most al…

Wednesday, March 13, 2019
Wednesday, March 06, 2019

It’s remarkable how economic development, and the process of locating a new facility, has changed in the past decade. Just 10 years ago, with a national unemployment rate of 10 percent, companies had little problem finding available employees, and most site-location decisions were based on a…

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Do you wonder sometimes whether or not the politicians in Washington or Lansing are really trying to solve the problems our country or state faces? I do. Or are our political leaders simply trying to get re-elected by pandering to their base of support? Do you turn on the television at night…

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Kipling promised respect to those who “can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you.” He was talking to me. And he was talking about the Marie Kondo tidying movement. (We won’t talk about who’s doing the blaming. And we won’t talk about Swedish Death Cleaning…

Sunday, January 27, 2019

When The New York Times last week put a spotlight on Southwest Michigan for a story about the 2020 presidential race, it provided a good example of what is wrong with politics in America.

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

2018 was a great year. It was great because no matter how much went wrong, much more went right. That does not necessarily mean that more actions, circumstances or events were better than bad. It means that through it all, I never lost the love of God in my life. There were days when it was …

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

How often does the financing of facilities and infrastructure for Michigan schools and local governments make news in The Washington Post? Rhetorical question.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

I really didn’t say everything I said!”

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

In case you were wondering in the clamor of contentious midterm election runoffs, endless and increasingly devastating California wildfires plus daily gun violence perpetrated by homegrown terrorists in schools, workplaces and faith communities, there are signs of hope. One recent example: t…

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

My friend Zoe died on Sunday. She was 10, and she is irreplaceable. If you knew Zoe, you know exactly what I mean, and you’re one of the lucky ones. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, and all I keep thinking about is how lucky I am that I got to spend some of the precious time Zoe had here in this wo…

Wednesday, November 07, 2018

As a note of introduction, I am a middle-class, middle aged, white male living in South Haven. I am fully aware that because of those aspects of myself, I am a person of privilege.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

New data released over the recent months from the National Endowment for the Arts’ 2017 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts (SPPA) confirms that 11.7 percent of adults read poetry last year. That’s roughly 28 million adults. You know, big people who have the freedom to decide what the…

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Life is full of uncertainties. You can never be sure what each day will bring. We can only control so much and so much is out of our control. But one thing we can control, and that is our reaction to the circumstances each day brings. Others may play a huge role in our lives, but they should…

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Much of the world next month will celebrate an important 100-year anniversary. One hundred years ago on the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918, the armistice that ended World War I was signed. At the time, World War I was labeled the “war to end all wars.” Clea…

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Facebook announced earlier this year that it was seeing a decrease in the amount of website usage. For years, the website was growing because of all the positive traits it brings to our society. But after a while, we started to figure out the downsides of Facebook, and though it’s too early …

Wednesday, October 03, 2018

On the TV screen an armor-clad Alice wields the vorpal sword as tall as she is against the massive dragon beast of the Jabberwock. The beast smashes through stone pillars without pause as it streams toward her across the dark checkerboard battlefield of Wonderland. The playing-card soldiers …

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

The phrase “thinking outside the box” has become somewhat worn, but it is worth consideration as we approach the midterm elections. Inside the box thinking differs for each person, based on standards we were brought up to believe or experienced first-hand in earlier years, often internalized…

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Most of us would agree that there is at least one thing we do every day that we don’t particularly look forward to. It may be getting up early, it may be wearing pants, it may be following a diet for medically necessary reasons, or it may be working at a job we merely tolerate. These things …

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

A couple of years ago I had the good fortune to meet retired Marine Corps Lt. Gen. John Sattler through a common business associate. John is a 37-year veteran of the Semper Fi branch of our military, with an exceptional leadership record. His military career took him around the globe, to the…

Sunday, September 09, 2018

Berrien County Sheriff Paul Bailey stepped into presidential politics last week after a visit to the White House, and we didn’t like what we saw.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

Recently, our family enjoyed a day at the beach. On a hot and steaming day, going to the beach along Lake Michigan can be just what is needed.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Remember freshman English when we all learned what a metaphor was and how it enhanced writing and contributed to the figurative language of literature? Me neither. I tended to be the one foolin’ around in the back of the room.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Most everyone will admit that racism is bad. With that being the case, we should properly define what racism is. If bad behavior is not identified as bad behavior, then it will never stop because it becomes acceptable and normal.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

The economic recovery from the Great Recession, which ended in 2009, is now the second longest economic expansion in United States history. This is longer than the economic growth of the Kennedy/Johnson presidencies of the 1960s. If the economy continues to grow through next July, the curren…

Sunday, August 12, 2018

When I read the recent HP article regarding the Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra and the Reeds, I couldn’t help but be puzzled by the statement given by some of the SMSO leadership, and it made me curious as to what was behind it. What I learned was surprising.

When I read the recent HP article regarding the Southwest Michigan Symphony Orchestra and the Reeds, I couldn’t help but be puzzled by the statement given by some of the SMSO leadership, and it made me curious as to what was behind it. What I learned was surprising.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

When there is something wrong with our bodies, we take it seriously. We go to the doctor to try to figure out what is wrong and find a solution. Our friends and family come to our aid and offer support. Physical illnesses, as difficult as they are, can grow our mental strength and bring out …

Wednesday, August 01, 2018

The Germans have a word for it. (Of course they do – they’re the ones who brought us Schadenfreude.) Today’s word is zugunruhe: the restless or anxious behavior exhibited by animals preparing to migrate. The get-ready urge, if you will. I can totally relate. I just finished three weeks of pa…

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Let’s think about the right to life for a moment, specifically the right every living human has to receive adequate care: food, shelter, safety and some level of affection, the sense that she or he is wanted, even loved – throughout childhood and beyond.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Let’s talk about what every parent of a school-aged child is going to be thinking about during the remainder of the summer: school supplies. Some parents lament the chore of actually taking the time to pick up items requested on the supplies lists circulated by schools and teachers, some bem…

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

I have reached the negativity saturation point! The constant 24/7 bombardment of far right versus far left in the media has become so tiresome I decided to make a change. I started listening to that communication relic called the radio. My personal rebellion has taken me to oldies stations, …

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

Happy Fourth of July! Many will celebrate this day watching a parade or a fireworks display. Others will gather with family and friends for a picnic or a day at the beach. Ballgames will be enjoyed, and some might even sing a patriotic song. There are countless ways to give thanks for the fr…

Sunday, July 01, 2018

Residents of Annapolis, Md., are reading their morning newspaper today, just like they did yesterday and, incredibly, the day before, less than 24 hours after a gunman bolted into the paper’s newsroom and killed five people.

I’m told I earned a few laughs at a New York public relations firm when I suggested its client was attacking a tsunami with a squeegee.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Another June is rapidly passing, so hooray and congratulations to the dudes and dudettes of the graduating class of 2018. Take pride in and honor this accomplishment. It is real and it is your first significant milestone in life that contributes to springboarding you into true adulthood.

Monday, June 25, 2018

The sad drama along the U.S.-Mexico border of migrant children separated from their parents was riveting and upsetting, earning deserved and widespread condemnation. Even though President Donald Trump’s executive order apparently ends this separation policy, it can’t end the trauma that many…

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Recently, an organization called the Below the Bluff Neighborhood Association was formed. I, myself, a below the bluff neighbor working at the Silver Beach Center/Shadowland on Silver Beach, was unaware of this group. Their main focus at this time seems to relate to the activities, visitors,…

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

What is “fake news”? It is not necessarily news that is factually wrong. It is news that may even be fairly accurate, but is reported with such a bias as to give a fake impression. For instance let me describe a reporter two ways and you decide if you will believe him based solely on the des…