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Bill Vargo

Freedom of speech is here to stay thanks to the U.S. Constitution

“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

September 14, 2014 12:00 am

It looks like it's going to be a great school year - so far

When you sign up to be a parent, you sign up for all sorts of things. First, there is the diaper changing and the late nights praying for sleep between feedings and more diaper changing.

September 07, 2014 12:00 am

Whether you see the results or not, all work is important

In this age of specialization, the meaning of work gets harder to explain. I know that sounds like a bunch of drivel, but think about conversations that you have with people outside of work and you will have a clearer understanding of what I mean by the meaning of work.

August 31, 2014 12:00 am

Human contact is the key to good winning over evil

For more than a week we have witnessed unspeakable hatred and pain, from our own heartland to the Middle East. From Ferguson, Mo. we have watched in horror scenes and images that appear to be straight out of the 1960s, while from Syria those with a stronger stomach than mine could watch the …

August 24, 2014 12:00 am

Those who look so happy might just be so sad

When I was much younger and had a lot more free time, I used to stay up late to watch standup comedy on cable TV channels. The 1980s were a golden age for that art form with Sam Kinison, Gallagher, Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, George Carlin, Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, Bobcat Goldthwait …

August 17, 2014 12:00 am

School starts soon, but summer's not over yet

The calendar shows that we are in the final weeks of summer. Many children go back to school this week, with teachers and students diving into math equations, diagramming sentences, dissecting worms and trying to get a grasp on the impact of Columbus discovering the Americas.

August 10, 2014 12:00 am

Doughboy stands in tribute to U.S. soldiers of WWI and beyond

“The muffled tongue of Big Ben tolled nine by the clock as the cortege left the palace, but on history's clock it was sunset, and the sun of the old world was setting in a dying blaze of splendor never to be seen again.”

August 03, 2014 12:00 am

Interest young children in reading and you have a reader for life

By any measure, we know that to do well in school, reading is fundamental. That is not just a catchy phrase, but a fact that teachers will talk at great lengths about, no matter the subject area.

July 27, 2014 12:00 am

Giving blood is an important service, and you can do it today

Being a writer does have its perks. For one thing, I get at least a couple of interesting emails a week.

July 20, 2014 12:00 am

Building the region one family, one home and one community at a time

I read a newspaper story about 20 years ago with a statistic that struck a chord. It said that in New Jersey, the average age of the buildings was 50 years. This, of course, factors in homes, businesses, schools and other structures.

July 13, 2014 12:00 am

We celebrate and reflect the independence of our forefathers

The story is familiar to us all. A gaggle of white men in powdered wigs sat around a table voted to declare our independence from the British Empire. There was Thomas Jefferson, the planter intellectual, John Adams, in many ways the man behind the scenes, and old Benjamin Franklin, the homes…

July 06, 2014 12:00 am

The arc of history bent 50 years ago with passage of Civil Rights Act

Fifty years ago, the landmark legislation known as the U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1964 became the law of the land. It's very passage was the culmination of a century worth of sweat and struggle to codify the gains made during the Civil War.

June 29, 2014 12:00 am

Taking stock after five decades in the Calumet Region

"And I would like to thank those that were there to ensure that I am standing here before you today. Let’s start with my family, principally mom and dad. (The camera pans the audience in search of the proud parents; they are looking down at their programs), and my fifth grade teacher, for le…

June 22, 2014 12:00 am

One generation shares with the next for "a new bag of coins"

“Why do men like me want sons?" he wondered. "It must be because they hope in their poor beaten souls that these new men, who are their blood, will do the things they were not strong enough nor wise enough nor brave enough to do. It is rather like another chance at life; like a new bag of co…

June 15, 2014 12:00 am

Red poppies are an annual reminder of those who served and sacrificed

Last week I received an email from a longtime reader who has moved out to California, but occasionally sends me emails about things on his mind. Since he is older than me and has seen more of the world, I tend to take his missives to heart a little more.

June 08, 2014 12:00 am

D-Day soldiers knew they faced long odds to do what was right

Friday marks the 70th anniversary of WWII's Normandy landing. On the morning of June 6, 1944 Lt. Colonel Robert Lee Wolverton, commander of the 3rd Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Divisio,n gathered his men for a final prayer before they went off to battle off the coast of…

June 01, 2014 12:00 am

It's bike riding season, let's all be careful no matter the vehicle

I don’t recall at what age I learned to ride a bike. It was probably when I was 5 or 6, a pretty normal age for a skill that gave me a way out of the little world that I inhabited.

May 25, 2014 12:00 am

We the People gives students a chance to explore government

Every year, sometimes more often, I sit in as a judge at the district level for the We the People competition. This offers a great opportunity to think about the foundation of our nation and its guiding principles.

May 18, 2014 12:00 am

Today's the day to show mothers how our love has grown

One of the great pleasures of this column appearing on a Sunday is that every once in a while the date coincides with something great, like Mother’s Day.

May 11, 2014 12:00 am

Political signs, hand shaking and door-to-door canvassing end Tuesday

Sometime in early April the signs started popping up like mushrooms in yards all across the region. Campaign season will do that to most any disciplined political organization.

May 04, 2014 12:00 am
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