Opinion: Columnists

Jul. 25, 2015 @ 11:58 PM

Today's editorial cartoon, July 26

Jul. 24, 2015 @ 02:24 PM

America needs a justice system worthy of the name

The United States does not have a justice system.

If we define a justice system as a system designed for the production of justice, then it seems obvious that term cannot reasonably be applied to a system that countenances the mass incarceration by race and class of hundreds of thousands of nonviolent offenders

Jul. 24, 2015 @ 12:47 PM

Taxing nonprofits is an exercise in shortsightedness

Businesses, including charitable nonprofits, are a powerful and efficient force for positive social change - and we need their services now more than ever. 

Jul. 22, 2015 @ 12:01 PM

North Carolina’s primary could be pivotal

After months of debate, North Carolina seems finally to have set a date for its 2016 presidential primaries. It won’t be in February, right after the South Carolina primary, as originally scheduled. It won’t even be during the first week of March, when more than a dozen states will hold primaries or caucuses.

Jul. 21, 2015 @ 08:34 AM

Finding food and human fellowship at the Haymont Grill

What is more important than politics and books?

These two are often the topics of my weekly column, but many things are more important.

Including food, and the human fellowship that accompanies it.

Jul. 20, 2015 @ 08:16 AM

Donald Trump is number one?

He's number one?!

Yes, it's an early poll and, as such, pretty near useless.

Jul. 19, 2015 @ 02:54 PM

Don't overreach on rules

Should regulators require child-safety locks on stepladders?

Such a rule would have been a real problem at the Hood abode years ago when my boys were little. At the time, there were a couple of different folding ladders that got transported from room to room throughout the day, allowing the Little Rascals access to videotapes (remember those?), action figures, model cannons, Pop Tarts and other essentials of modern life.

Jul. 18, 2015 @ 10:36 PM

Atticus Finch’s deceptive ‘patrician calm’ hardly unusual

How to react to the revelation that Atticus Finch, that revered model of integrity and parental devotion in “To Kill a Mockingbird?” had a darker side.

Jul. 17, 2015 @ 11:51 AM

Pope should stick to religion?

"A new command I give you: Love one another."

-- John 13:34

So said a troubled rabbi named Jesus 2,000 years ago in his Last Supper with his disciples. Shortly afterward he was captured, tortured and executed. The Bible says that three days later, he rose from death. The faith founded upon that resurrection claims, according to the Pew Research Center, upwards of 2 billion adherents worldwide.

Jul. 16, 2015 @ 01:58 PM

Judges’ mandatory retirement serves state poorly

We expect an announcement soon that Superior Court Judge Howard “Howdy” Manning Jr. will be retiring upon reaching the mandatory judicial retirement age. Our state will lose a dedicated and effective judge because of an arbitrary codicil in what is already a bad system for judicial selection and retention.

Jul. 14, 2015 @ 01:38 PM

Martin: Donald Trump and Buncombe County

Would North Carolinians ever vote to elect Donald Trump or somebody like him?

Jul. 13, 2015 @ 08:06 AM

Bill Cosby, public moralist, silenced

You might have missed the irony.

If so, it would be easy to understand. Last week's bulletin about accused serial rapist Bill Cosby was sensational enough that one might be forgiven for failing to notice one of its more subtle facets.

Jul. 11, 2015 @ 10:17 PM

‘One more candle and a trip around the sun’

A few weeks ago, at a meeting of non-profit board I’m on, I glanced around the room and was struck by a vaguely unsettling realization. A few board members’ terms had just ended and now I was the oldest person in the group.

Jul. 10, 2015 @ 11:22 AM

Trump proves GOP proclamations of mortal affront untrue

In 2006, then-Arizona State Sen. Russell Pearce advocated the return of a 1954 program for the mass deportation of undocumented immigrants. It was called "Operation Wetback."

Jul. 09, 2015 @ 08:32 AM

Is North Carolina’s economic rebound stumbling?

Some troubling news about North Carolina’s economy made the headlines recently. Numbers for an economic concept called “gross domestic product,” or GDP, were released for 2014. While North Carolina’s GDP increased in 2014, it rose much less than in the nation. The comparison was a 1.4 percent gain for the state versus a 2.2 percent improvement for the nation. Does this mean it’s time to worry about the state’s economic rebound?