Commentary

Wed
27
Jun

Pride of the ‘socialist’

Jerry Marsh
Political Bites

I regularly exchange views on contemporary issues with friends. For the most part, we are a thick-skinned lot and the exchanges can border on rude and crude.

Recently, one called me a socialist, an intended insult directed at my views on issues. My first thought was to call him a fascist, but I thought again and took a gentler approach in my reply, which follows, albeit expanded somewhat and edited for public consumption:

I am proud to be a socialist if it means ...

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Wed
20
Jun

The Last Survivor

By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray
THE WAY WEST

In his 85th year, Tom Murphy’s thoughts turned to times gone by.

He had seen and lived a life that few men in the year of 1929 had known. With that in mind his daughter, Dorothy Murphy, served as his secretary, recording his memories for future generations. A companion memoir was fittingly recorded by Tom’s wife, Nancy Jane and placed in a folder of family information. From the two documents, frontier Kansas lives once more as the Murphys lived it in the days of their youth.

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Wed
20
Jun

Decision hurts workers

By Alan S. Blinder
Special to the I-R

It has been a tough several decades for American labor, and now the Trump administration, Congress and the Supreme Court are all piling on. The latest blow was the high court’s 5-4 decision last month in Epic Systems v. Lewis.

The justices held that employers may use mandatory arbitration clauses to prevent workers from banding together to pursue their legal rights in a class-action suit against the company. The message was clear: Workers of the United States, don’t try to unite. You’re on your own.

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Wed
13
Jun

Pedro Vial, Trail Blazer

By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray
THE WAY WEST

Pedro Vial wandered the plains long before well-known famous explorers made their reputations from the endless sea of grass. Vial was born in Lyons, France, in the approximate year of 1747. Little is known of his earliest years in North America. By the 1770s he had traversed the Missouri River, trapping and interacting with the native tribes that lived there.

His reputation reached all the way to Texas where in 1786 he was commissioned by Texas Gov. Domingo Cebello to blaze a trail from San Antonio to Santa Fe, N.M.

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Wed
13
Jun

Welcome to a new world

Lisa Miller Kijowski
Bits and Pieces

Who could ever believe that school age children would have to deal with fear of attending school?

Not so long ago, the only things to be weary of were the wrath of the strictest teacher piling on homework or — even worse — the threat of “wait until your father comes home” after breaking a school rule. Times change and for some reason, one change now is fear of your fellow student shooting you.

Students have staged “walk outs”, marched in Washington D.C. and had speeches televised. They have sparked a “never again” campaign.

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Wed
06
Jun

A thousand thrilling stories

By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray
THE WAY WEST

Joseph Lehman (pronounced “Lemon”) was only 12 years old when he set out from New York state for Kansas Territory in the mid- 1850s.

Lehman was big for his age and had “shifted for himself ” at an early age. On the way to Kansas, Lehman fell in with Daniel Hussey Page, a studious young man from Rochester, N.H.

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Wed
06
Jun

A sense of place

John Schlageck
Insight

Reflection is a good thing. It allows you to see where you’ve been and hopefully chart a better course on where you’re going. While on vacation recently I had a chance to think about the small community where I grew up.

Located in northwestern Kansas, Seguin was a small farm/ranch community of approximately 50 hearty souls. Located in Sheridan County, three miles south of Highway 24, the Union Pacific railroad used to run through our small town.

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Wed
30
May

Showdown at Council Grove

By "The Cowboy" Jim Gray

 

Throughout the later part of the summer of 1867, negotiations were made between frontiersmen and plains Indians. Groups of Comanche, Cheyenne, and others met at Jesse Chisholm’s trading post at the mouth of the Little Arkansas River (Wichita). There was quite a bit of movement between that post and Chisholm’s post on the North Canadian River in Indian Territory. The object of all that activity was a peace treaty between the United States government and all the plains tribes, especially in relation to the use of traditional hunting lands in Kansas.

George Bent described the scene in his book, Life of George Bent: “The great camp was in a beautiful hollow through which flowed Medicine Lodge Creek, with its lovely wooded banks. This was a favorite place for the summer medicine- making of the Indians and also for their winter camps.”

 

Wed
30
May

America’s gifts

Editor’s Note — These are two of the essays in the recent Veterans of Foreign Wars Auxiliary’s Patriot Pen contest.

By Grace Bohnen
First Place

America’s gift to our generation is what it has taught me. Although what they taught us may not all be great, there are some good things too. America has taught us to stand up for what we believe in and has allowed us to honor and give back to our Veterans.

When we were younger, we were taught to always listen to adults and do what they say. Yet as we get older, we start to disagree with adults. We start to stand up for what we believe in because we don’t agree with someone.

Wed
23
May

Rich beyond measure

By John Schlageck
Insight

Grandma and Grandpa Becker were people of action rather than words. Not that they didn’t have much to say.

They just chose their words well and needed only a few to convey much. As their oldest grandson, I visited them during the summer when I was growing up in the late ‘50s. I always talked Grandma into letting me sleep in the screened-in porch on the east side of their home.

Shaded by tall elm trees, this was the coolest place to slumber on those warm summer nights before air conditioning. More importantly, the porch was right next to my grandparent’s room where I felt safe and slept like a log each night

 

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