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Columnists

Collectively achieve greatness

Our nation wasn’t built by the people whose names you see in the history books. It was the invention of your great-times-six grandmother who raised children in a wilderness, the great-times-four grandfather who died preserving the Union, the elderly uncle who worked in the steel mill and the ...

Leonhardt shares 2021 goals

The last year has been one of the roughest in recent memory. Mainly due to the pandemic, we as Americans have experienced loss, hardship and new challenges that haven’t been seen in several decades. As many of us try to leave 2020 behind, we can look towards the hope the new year will bring. ...

Our educators are essential workers

The COVID-19 pandemic has made us realize many things that should have been obvious years ago, but we tend to ignore inconvenient truth as long as possible. The fact is that teachers and most school personnel are essential workers because schools are designated places where all other workers ...

Religion and politics

Often, I use this column to write about politics. But this is Christmas week. What on earth does Jesus Christ have to do with politics? Quite a lot, actually. We Americans have a tradition more than two centuries long of bare-knuckle politics. Too often it seems that winning office and ...

Christmas odds and ends

Last week, I pointed out an angle of attack the Democrats could use in 2022 against Republican lawmakers and 2020 candidates who stood on the steps of the Capitol and pledged $1 billion for broadband expansion. Again, they got to that $1 billion number by including the up to $766 million the ...

Holidays bring return of light and hope

By Dr. Heather Biola Kump Corner This Sunday will be the fourth and last Sunday in Advent, and many Christians will celebrate by lighting four candles on an Advent wreath. The candles often represent Hope, Love, Joy, and Peace. In 2020 we need these signs of hope during the Covid-19 ...

Will charities suffer this year?

I met Santa Claus on Saturday. Not the Santa’s helper who sits in some stores, posing for pictures at a safe distance, but the real one. My wife and I, with our two grandchildren, were Christmas shopping in a local store. During a couple of trips up and down the aisles, I’d noticed a ...

Broadband funding raises issues

Republicans might have swept the state legislative races, but they may have just handed Democrats some easy campaign ads for the 2022 midterm election. Last week, the Federal Communications Commission selected nine companies as winning bidders for broadband expansion projects as part of the ...

Festivals of Light inspire universal hope

The Winter Solstice is the astronomical event that has inspired ancient festivals of light all over the world. At the end of the shortest day and longest night of the year, ancient people could conquer their fears of the darkness because they knew warmer weather would come again. ...

It’s a very Bezos Christmas

Here’s an idea: Let’s call billionaire Jeff Bezos at his Beverly Hills, California, home and ask him to hire a couple of Wheeling residents to work remotely for his online Amazon empire. While we’re at it, let’s ask Jeff for a donation to the youth baseball program in St. Clairsville. ...

Simple math with the state budget

It’s the job of a reporter to explain why things are happening, but sometimes in our effort to simplify something we lose a bit in the explaining Take the state budget, for example. West Virginia released the November General Revenue Fund tax collections, which once again came in above ...

Slowing the pendulum swing

I normally steer clear of national politics in this space. I’m paid to pay more attention to West Virginia government and politics. But it doesn’t mean I don’t observe the national scene since actions by our federal government trickle down to the state. In two weeks, the Electoral ...

Catching the wave

I’ve now had a week to digest all the elections results and what they mean, and man, I’m still flabbergasted. It’s not that I didn’t think Republican candidates would do well. I don’t do predictions, at least not in print. I do sometimes privately talk to people about who I think ...

Thankfulness and hopefulness this holiday season

The best thing about this Thanksgiving is that it helps us to avoid thinking of all the doom and gloom that comes through the media and remember the good things we enjoy here and now. We are fortunate to be alive at this time and in this place with so many good people who work honestly to do ...

Don’t help the virus this holiday

No one wants to spoil the party. For that reason, Thanksgiving Day and the ensuing weekend will include big, traditional family get-togethers, just as they have for many years. Thanksgiving rivals Christmas as their favorite time of the year. It’s easy to understand. Christmas Day can be a ...

Like no other

Lacking a crystal ball to know the future, important decisions at a college are ideally based on all knowable facts, sound reasoning, and laser focus on what is best for the mission of the institution. During the summer of 2020, the administration of Davis & Elkins College worked ...

‘An Apple for the Teacher Tree’ program beginning

Kump Education Center is starting a new program called “An Apple for the Teacher Tree” to honor beloved school teachers. Beginning this fall anyone who donates $500 will be able to add a red wooden apple to our teacher tree in the learning lab at KEC. This red, four-inch apple will ...

Dangers of COVID-19 in nursing homes

We just can’t seem to keep COVID-19 out of our nursing homes, where men and women most vulnerable to the disease live. As of Tuesday, 19 nursing homes in West Virginia and 258 in Ohio were reporting COVID cases among residents. Most of the outbreaks were relatively minor. A few, such as ...

Women W.Va. voters trust can get elected

Female voters have been a major force in politics for many years. By some estimates, 53% of the votes for Joe Biden came from women. But what about real power? A century after women’s suffrage was adopted, what about running the show instead of merely picking the men who do so? In 2016, ...

Why words matter, especially in 2020

Listening to 2020 campaign rhetoric has made me think about the power of words to heal hurt feelings and develop understand so that people can work together to solve shared problems. I was listening Wednesday when Joe Biden was gaining electoral votes, and he said something that made me think: ...