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Donald Trump’s presidency has been a four-year stress test of America’s constitutional system. Trump’s belligerent governance has weakened the bipartisan fabric — rooted in prudence, decency and comity — that ties our multi-branch system of government together.

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The small table offering masks and hand sanitizer just inside our front door was the unlikely greeting to our Thanksgiving Day guests this year. It was symbolic of this year of COVID. The younger cousins wore their masks more naturally than the rest of us — most likely because they wear them…

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There is an old saying, the baseball rule: “Never change a winning game, always change a losing one.” Is the COVID fight a losing game? Some states, and some nations, have done lockdowns and others have not. Some mandate mask wearing, others do not. The rate of infection is rising rapidly re…

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About one year ago, the Utah Legislature was presented with “A Plan to Elevate Utah’s Economic Success” by the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED). This plan was the outcome of a comprehensive effort to tap Utah’s best minds with respect to economic development in order to help …

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This year, 2020, has truly been a rather terrifying roller-coaster ride so far, not just for me but for my family, friends, neighbors, community and, indeed, the entire world. My young grandchildren are now growing up with memories of masked faces and eyes filled with fear and frustration.

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Back when I attended journalism school in the early 1990s, we were frequently exhorted to “find the drama” in whatever we were covering. Drama sold papers, and if you wanted your precious byline on the exalted front page, you needed to write stories that elevated conflict and emotion. Even i…

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A small, boxy turkey roosts on my kitchen table. It’s a long-ago homemade item (that alone makes it priceless since I rarely hand make anything) and is, therefore, minimally adequate. It’s definitely not Pinterest-quality level, but then, that never was my goal. (The turkey is, in fact, olde…

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With the tragedy of the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the nation in the spring of 2020 and continuing to this day, we know this year has been tough for Weber County residents and especially Weber County businesses and nonprofit organizations. Uncertainty and instability are not easy feelings to…

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As the Constitutional Convention was wrapping up in 1787, a woman accosted Pennsylvania delegate Benjamin Franklin outside the doors of Independence Hall. She asked him, “Well, doctor, what have we got? A republic or a monarchy?” Franklin replied, “A republic, madam, if you can keep it.”

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Funerals and mortuaries are not my favorite things. In the last week, I have been to a funeral and two viewings. Depressing week, and I wasn’t part of the immediate family grieving for these loved ones. Being on the fringe of these tragedies made me reflect some on grieving, loss, mortuaries…

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I will never forget receiving a phone call from my grandparents on my 18th birthday. As social justice warriors, my grandparents were always on the move, engaged in civil rights work and social justice causes. In my mind’s eye, I saw them doing work for the greater good. Knowing they loved m…

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I once watched a volleyball tournament of young women battling for a state championship. The contest was brutal; each set seemed to last forever. The scores stayed close, right to the end. When the last ball was lobbed, the player dove and missed, and the ball flew out of bounds, the winning…

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American politics have become criminalized. A steady drum beat of words and deeds — from “lock her up” chants, to prosecutions of President Trump’s associates, to Trump pushing for Joe Biden’s indictment — has eroded the bright line between politics and the criminal law.

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Weber County always has interesting political races and this year’s presidential election is more energized than usual in Northern Utah. Whether Donald Trump will knock out Joe Biden is questionable. Statewide, the race is Trump at 51%. Biden is at 40%. I hear a few Latter-day Saints referen…

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A recent joint public service announcement and subsequent interviews with Chris Peterson and Spencer Cox, both running for governor of Utah, argued for civility during this upcoming election. In doing so, both essentially are appealing to the center of the electorate. However, party-affiliat…

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As the White House Proclamation stated earlier this month, “On National Manufacturing Day, we celebrate our dedicated American workers who carry on this legacy, recognizing that manufacturing is a cornerstone of our economic prosperity and national security.” Manufacturing businesses are ess…

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Normally in the workforce, employees who are not meeting expectations should not be promoted, especially when there is an exceptional candidate available for the position. Spencer Cox has not met expectations. But, the good news is that there is an outstanding candidate available to fill the…

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The Utah Legislature proposed major tax reforms during the last several legislative sessions. Tax reform proposals collapsed and were abandoned or rescinded due in large measure to widespread public resistance. One element of the tax reform effort remains, namely amending the Utah Constituti…

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I feel a bit guilty. Voting in Utah is so easy compared to so many other states in the U.S. I received my ballot in the mail, did a little research and walked my dog to the secure Weber County drop box that I have been using for years. Done.

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During the 2020 legislative session, we were part of a broad group of legislative leaders and education stakeholders who joined Gov. Herbert to announce a bold plan that provides protection for education funding, allows the use of income tax for the health needs of at-risk, school-aged child…

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Addressing mental health and substance abuse in the state of Utah is a growing concern. The Davis Behavioral Health Receiving Center is a new program in Davis County that is focusing solely on the initial assessment and recommendation of people in this population.

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I will never forget where I was when President Trump said, “Proud Boys, stand back and stand by.” I was sitting on the couch in my living room, watching the first presidential televised debates of 2020. It felt surreal to see the president utter that phrase in response to the request he deno…

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About 10 years ago, Brené Brown gave one of the most popular TED Talks ever given on that platform. She spoke on the power of vulnerability. Ironically, immediately after her talk, she was overwhelmed by her own excruciating vulnerability — she was embarrassed to have given the talk and wish…

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On Oct. 28, four years ago, former director of the FBI James Comey resumed the investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails — something only possible through computer technology. Could technology again help create an October surprise in deciding the next president? Some argue it could be the …

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With all the disruptions of 2020, you may have missed the good news: Ogden City has finalized a plan to reduce energy costs, improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and create stronger, more resilient municipal operations, businesses and residential areas.

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Since my dissertation nearly 20 years ago, I have kept up with the research on work-life and telecommuting. I have read research on the pros and cons of what we all now refer to simply as “working from home” or working remotely, which has shown to be linked to (at least in past years) greate…

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The winds that blew through the Wasatch Front a couple of weeks ago were destructive. And unnerving. And loud. Where I live, they hit at about 4 o’clock in the morning. I was already awake, anticipating them, wondering if we’d lose another tree like we did in the last round of high-powered gusts.

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This month, I learned the president of the United States of America thinks the work I do is anti-American. He indicated that racial sensitivity training is divisive and promotes anti-American propaganda. I couldn’t disagree more. I think it helps us to see the world from multiple vantage poi…