Commentary
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Census date will ensure fair representation for local communities

Detailed Census data released August 12 shows where Iowa’s 3.2 million residents lived as of April 1, 2020, and is available for communities down to the block level. These population numbers … more

Understanding the total cost of college

Before embarking on one of the most expensive journeys of a lifetime, your student should understand the complete cost to obtain the education needed for a specific career.   Why It … more

COVID responses should be local decisions

Back in May, I was asked by the publisher if I would continue to contribute articles on a volunteer basis once my contract with the Highland CSD was completed.  It was suggested that I should … more

Ernst reacts to exit in Afghanistan

U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) — the first female combat veteran to serve in the U.S. Senate, a veteran of the Global War on Terror, and a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee … more

Iowa celebrated in special “Field of Dreams” game

Last Thursday night Iowa was the center of the baseball world nationally and probably internationally when the Chicago White Sox played the New York Yankees in a stadium in the middle of a cornfield … more

Johnson County Supervisors deal with expanding cultural divides in Iowa

There are some deep cultural divides that have grown up between the rural and urban parts of this country. Unfortunately, these divides seem to be growing deeper. Also unfortunately, Johnson County … more

John Lewis Voting Rights Bill must pass

I believe that we are in the most important American political period since the Civil War. States have passed enough anti-democratic legislation to forever alter our country. Those things are already … more

Only in Washington, D.C. does the word “trillion” get thrown around so often

Only in Washington, D.C. does the word “trillion” get thrown around so often and so easily. Under the Biden Administration, there’s a lot of bad news coming out of Washington, … more

Remembering a trip to Israel right before COVID

Recently I have been working on identifying and placing photos in a Blurb picture book on the trip that Helen and I took to Israel the first week of March 2020 just before the COVID-19 pandemic … more

Iowa house addresses need for broadband

Iowa has among the slowest Internet speeds in the country, with some parts of the state having no meaningful service available at all. The pandemic has made us even more aware of the need for all … more

Thank you to community leaders for organizing summer festivals and events

We want to thank those involved with all the local summer festivals and for working hard to make them a success. Olivia Kahler (chair of Kalona Days), Heather Trimple (chair of Wellman’s July 3 … more

Forming and breaking bonds with animals

When I was 9 or 10, my parents decided I was physically able enough to manage the required operation of the rickety old iron pump located conveniently near the barnyard for livestock watering. I … more

Conspiracy theories harm democracy

Whether you love or hate Donald Trump you must agree that he is a masterful user of the conspiracy theory to manipulate public opinion. Before the 2016 election he was chirping about voter fraud … more

Thank you, Iowa DOT

With all the confusion and turmoil we experience in our land, we still have people who go above and beyond the call of duty. The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) has done a tremendous job … more

In Christ you are not alone

“None of us lives as his own master and none of us dies as his own master … both in life and in death we are the Lord’s,” St. Paul writes.  He is implying our lives do … more

Masking up for grass pollen this season

The masks are off. Yep, no question. If you are fully vaccinated for COVID-19, that is the guidance from federal officials, state officials, local officials. And if you are not vaccinated, … more

Highland continues to build influential STEM programs, improve reading

I was able to do an in-person audit for the Highland Community School District on March 30. I must admit it was nice to return to Iowa for the first time in over a year. This is one of my concluding … more

Communities need good, effective leaders to thrive

Leaders are the lifeblood of small towns and rural communities. The success or failure of community development efforts often rests with the degree of leadership local residents are willing to … more

Libraries are back with summer reading programs

I was finally able to return to my local public library for the first time since before the pandemic, and it felt amazing. I’m an avid reader and spending more than a year away from browsing … more

Federal election takeover should be rejected

Iowa has one of the best election systems in the country. We consistently rank among the top 10 states for voter registration and participation. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, we set turnout records … more
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