It pays to listen to dad sometimes

New Mexico native Paul Modrich says his father, the local high school biology teacher in Raton, suggested when he was a junior in high school that he “should learn about this DNA stuff.” Modrich took his dad’s advice. On Wednesday he received a surprise email from a colleague congratulating him for being part of a […]

Sloan: Professor: Obama legacy looks promising

In a book titled “Interview with Professor Donald Elder: The Presidents of the United States,” Clovis resident Michael Shaughnessy recently interviewed the Portales resident about the 44 U.S. presidents. As we dripped sweat from noon-time basketball, Elder told me he put his personal opinions aside in answering Shaughnessy’s questions. I find it interesting most of […]

Wilson: Showing friend new movie worth trip

“What’s this? ‘The Iron Giant’ is playing? With two new scenes? Everybody I know is going to want to go see this. We should get at least a dozen people … how will they all fit in the car?” Yes, these are some of the thoughts I had when I saw one of my favorite […]

Prison staffing, officer pay must become priorities

When is the last time you put in a 72-hour workweek on any kind of job, much less a dangerous one? Probably never, if you are an average 40-hour-a-week worker. Unfortunately, due to difficulty in recruiting and retaining prison officers, New Mexico’s state-run prisons are seriously understaffed, and some officers are working those crushing workweeks. […]

McManigal: Out with the old, in with the new

When thinking of my favorite seasons, autumn is definitely in the top four. Just where it ranks depends on when you ask me. Some of the more heavily forested places in which I have lived offer more in the way of fall colors, but no matter where I am, I always feel a sense of […]

Render: Political correctness in driver’s seat

A story is told about Abraham Lincoln at a political campaign session when he asked one of his questioners: “How many legs would a dog have if we called the dog’s tail, a leg.” “Five,” the questioner answered. “No,” Lincoln responded. “Calling a dog’s tail a leg, doesn’t make it a leg.” Abe never met […]

Detective right for checking warrant status

If a police officer recognizes a convicted criminal, a man who has multiple aliases and convictions, and makes a phone call to see if that person has any outstanding federal warrants, it should go without saying that’s just good police work. Well, unless that man is an undocumented immigrant in a sanctuary city like Santa […]

McDonald: ‘Watchman’ historically insightful

Earlier this year, I wrote about the latest manuscript written by Harper Lee, author of the classic “To Kill a Mockingbird.” I was both excited and anxious about reading “Go Set a Watchman” since one of the central characters, Atticus Finch, reminds me of my own father. I wasn’t too excited about tarnishing the heroic […]

Sloan: Drug users need help, not prison

Along with human trafficking, including sexual slavery, drug cartels are among humanity’s most despicable enterprises. The simplest solution to dismantling them would be ending the demand for their products. With such enormous riches at stake, destroying the purveyors and their products is impossible. In my college and Navy hippie days, I experimented with pot and […]

Wilson: Best, worst found on football field

Some of the loudest experiences I’ve ever had in my life have come with covering high school football. • The crash of the cymbals on each high school band’s “Star Spangled Banner.” • The cannon that goes off at Leon Williams Stadium whenever a touchdown is scored. • The megaphone with the siren sound that […]

Clovis schools need to be transparent

So did you hear what Eric Roanhaus did this time? If you have any interest in Clovis High School football, you’ve probably heard a rumor or two by now that helps explain why the sometimes-colorful Wildcats football coach was mysteriously missing from the sidelines on Sept. 25 at Rio Rancho. What we don’t know is […]

Clean campaign field only way to earn trust

New Mexico Secretary of State Dianna Duran decided to show up for work at her $85,000-a-year-job, at least some of the time, and says it’s to do the job she was elected to do. Though she really should resign, at least in a misguided way she is honoring the will of New Mexico voters who […]

McManigal: Best solution for problem: Get rid of it

I am frequently confronted with people who wouldn’t want liberty if it fell in their lap. They crave totalitarianism of one type or another. They either love the idea of a theocracy based on their idea of God, or they want a nanny state making them feel safe from womb to tomb by taking away […]

Render: Shutdowns impact citizens most

Congress voted to continue funding the government on Wednesday by approving a stopgap spending bill and thus kicked the can down the road till Dec. 11 for the next impending government shutdown. Of course these shutdowns don’t really shut down government and only impact federal employees who are deemed “nonessential.” No one likes to find […]

UNM research vital to state’s health, economy

The University of New Mexico has landed another prestigious grant for medical research, this time in the form of $11.6 million in federal funding spread over five years to find new ways to help people recover from strokes and traumatic brain injuries. The award from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences will focus on […]

Francis new life, change for church

You probably know the nation —especially Catholics and the media — were enthralled over Pope Francis’ first visit to the U.S. last week. Though I’m not Catholic, I admire greatly this pope, who’s upset the status quo of his church, challenged the world’s economic and political powers that be, and shown nothing but love for […]

More children need to get HPV vaccine

In the ongoing life-or-death quest to find a cure for cancer, there are many bright spots. One of them is a vaccine that blocks the viruses that cause up to 70 percent of cervical cancer deaths. So why aren’t more of New Mexico’s adolescents — the target population for the human papillomavirus, or HPV, vaccine […]

Sloan: Sharing tidbits you should know

My book-of-the-month summary for September is “An Incomplete Education: 3,684 Things You Should Have Learned But Probably Didn’t,” (last copyright 2006) by Judy Jones and William Wilson. Here are nuggets from the 700-page work: • Benjamin Franklin had many detractors. His shrewdness, pettiness, hypocrisy and philandering embodied the worst traits of American character, capitalism and […]

Wilson: Life’s the same under martial law

My Friday? I slept in a little more than I’ll admit, saw some friends, grabbed a sandwich for lunch and went to work. I called to reserve some tickets for a Sunday play and watched a little bit of late-season baseball. I’m just going to say it: My life is pretty much the same under […]

All lawmakers should re-read campaign act

“In my years in our state Legislature I have never seen nor read our Campaign Reporting Act.” — Rep. James Roger Madalena, D-Jemez Pueblo If Rep. Madalena were employing sarcasm in the above email, it’s another example of incredibly bad judgment, not to mention that it was lost on this audience. For 30 years the […]