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The caller dialed 211. He was trying to find some legal assistance. It turns out that he needed much more. In the initial demographic questions to the caller, the 211 specialist discovered he was a veteran. So she transferred his call to a veterans specialist, who himself had served in the Marines.

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I recently sorted through a shelf of three-ring binders filled with four years of college work, tossing most of those papers into a large black garbage bag. Assignments from double majors of communications and English produced hundreds of papers that were once so critical, and now ... just t…

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As a graduate of the Utah School System, I recall taking Utah history in seventh grade. In this class, we learned about the Mormon Trail, the Great Salt Lake and Peter Skene Ogden — a trapper with the Hudson Bay Co. We also learned about all 29 counties, our state flower the sego lily and th…

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I am an American “success story” that almost wasn’t. While raised in a wonderful family that did its best to shield me from harm, I became an unfortunate statistic of early childhood trauma. The trauma itself is not my focus here, but it did have a significant impact that changed my life. My…

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The final entry in my father’s final journal, written in my mother’s handwriting, shared how glad he was to come home that day. He said it was “a whole lot quieter here” and he could “catch up on seven winks of sleep.” Too weak to hold the pen himself, Dad also had Mom write, “It was nice to…

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In some position or another, I have been involved in public service for over 50 years. Politics fascinates me. I’ve hungered for political news and studied in depth the pros and cons of major issues. Recently, however, during the impeachment hearings I’ve been sickened by the petty put-downs…

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I love Black History month because it allows so many conversations to come to the surface. These are conversations that happen far too infrequently in my book, so I celebrate them with extra joy when they do. For example, while the focus of this month is on voting (something I am also passio…

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Yesterday I looked down at my dashboard and suddenly realized I might have to go fill up — in a few months. I’ve been driving a Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid since the summer, and I’ve yet to put in any gasoline. Of course, that fill-up time will arrive. Less obvious? When an electric vehicle (E…

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Does peace exist anymore? Don’t most of us want at least one moment in each day when we can pause, detach from the weight of everything pressing in on us, ponder something quiet, and then pull ourselves back together? But the chaotic clamor of this world seems determined to snatch any chance…

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The Washington Post’s exclusive story on David Nielsen’s whistleblower complaint to the IRS with respect to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints “saving its excess surplus donations instead of using them for charitable works” deserves a more technical explanation of the law surrou…

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A friend of mine was recently released from prison. It’s been a joy to watch him get out and jump back into society. I kind of got to relive the excitement of what it was like for me.

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Recently, Ogden City voted to pursue HB 411, a commitment to carbon-neutral production of electricity for the city in 10 years. I’m encouraged by the vote but even more by the energy and dedication of the youth who lobbied for HB 411. We need to harness their energy to ensure the commitment …

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Politicians’ rhetoric suggests that they are interested in fairness and efficiency in economic policies that are good for the society as a whole. However, they end up implementing economic policies that might please a selective group of voters or sectors. The book “Advice and Dissent” by Pro…

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On Sept. 19, I gave the keynote at the Utah High School Activities Association (UHSAA) meeting. With approximately 250 high school and district administrators in attendance, I talked about how to build inclusivity and community in an education-based sports environment.

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At a recent local grade school’s Veterans Day celebration, I watched grandkids hold up American flags with squiggly red lines on a white sheet of paper and their blue handprint for the field of stars while they enthusiastically sang “God Bless America!” I realized, yes, God has, indeed, bles…

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In last week’s general election rejection of Weber County’s Proposition 3 (the question of studying alternative forms of county government), there were two implicit messages. One was the voters’ sound approval of the compatibility and teamwork of the three current county commissioners. The s…

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Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of the year. I love the chill in the air, the smell of pumpkin (pie, latte, cookies) and enjoy spending extra time with people I care about. I love knowing my family table will include people I am related to, as well as those who have become family by…

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This column sounds like a public service announcement. It’s coming to you from a woman who just crawled out of Flu-ville, back to the land of the living (barely) with shaky legs, unsteady mind and bad memories — but standing upright. Not far from the bathroom.

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One of the most important roles I see myself fulfilling as a weekly columnist for the local newspaper is attempting to bridge the gap between two disparate groups that often find themselves at odds here in the Beehive State.

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The 50th anniversary of the first communication on what essentially would become the internet occurred this week, Oct. 29, 1969. The University of Utah was one of the four locations in that original network. It was enthusiastic, forward-thinking research and development that led to the inter…

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My husband and I recently took an extraordinary journey to Southern Utah. True, that part of the state is already magical in a thousand ways. But it wasn’t the red rocks or blue skies or wildlife that made the excursion remarkable. It was the people we met along the way.

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In 1980, Ronald Reagan was elected president at age 69. At that time, Reagan was the oldest person to be elected president. During the campaign, some made an issue of Reagan’s age. The concern over Reagan’s age was warranted. Before he left office, he was showing obvious signs of dementia an…

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When we hear the words, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” we know Andy Williams’ cheerful voice is singing about Christmas. Only he shouldn’t. Because the most wonderful time of the year is right now — fall time.

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If you open a newspaper or turn on the television news, there is a good chance that you will hear someone use the word socialism. In some cases, Bernie Sanders describes himself as a democratic socialist. In other cases, the term is used simply to smear a person or program. If a Republican c…

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Stereotypes. Our brains are hardwired to jump to conclusions about situations and people based on our prior experience, regardless of how genuinely applicable that experience is. It’s a survival trait that’s helped our species avoid danger by assuming that the rustling of leaves in the woods…