This month Tennessee enacted a new Education Savings Account (ESA) law for its state’s K-12 students. The law creates the second ESA program that will operate in the Volunteer State.
Education options are widespread in America, unless a family can’t afford an alternative to their zoned public school. The Tennessee legislation provides families there with alternatives to low-performing public schools in the form of about $7,300 per student annually to spend on private school tuition, tutoring, or educational therapies.
Education Savings Accounts work like controlled-use debit cards. Parents can spend allocated funds on approved school expenses or educational services. ESAs put parents, rather than public school bureaucracies, in the “driver’s seat” of their kids’ education. Continue reading
I subscribe to an abundance of women’s magazines. Every month I am beset upon by women writing article after article on how to be themselves and claim what they have earned. I suspect I know where it all started – possibly in Hollywood, possibly in politics. Anyhow, it seems as if every article addresses, at some point, how women are losing ground and all the things we, as women, should be doing to maintain any sort of authority, ability, or authenticity. Honestly, I have discontinued two of these magazines because I can’t stand this ridiculous rhetoric anymore!
Since I have been on this earth 80 years in September, I have never felt inferior or looked down upon. I have always been the person I am. I just figure with the right equipment I can do anything I want to. I know for a fact I have made the world a better place – especially for dogs! I have a spoken up for my family when it was needed. Then there’s the whole self-esteem thing. Ladies, the only way you lose that is if you give it away! If it weren’t for women, the economy wouldn’t exist. Continue reading
The signs are everywhere at this time of year in the Pacific Northwest. The weather grows a little milder, the days’ lengthening is gradual but reliable, hardware stores and plant nurseries roll out their carts full of vegetable and flower starts, and buds and leaves emerge on winter–worn bare branches. It is spring and we are seeing green! Shades of green, that is.
I am a proponent of getting outside all year long, but isn’t it more enticing when you have spring’s “spring” in your step? This is an opportunity to take your children outside and invent activities simply not possible in the wind and rain of dismal winter. Following are some ideas that I have gleaned from various sources and friends over the past few years:
Jill Frankel Hauser has a great book out called Science Play that offers low–cost “discoveries” for the younger set. One idea from her book is to hand a box of crayons to your child and go on a walk. Ask your child to find as many things in nature as he can that match the colors of his crayons. The sky is truly the limit here—hopefully it offers you a chance to match to that blue to your Crayola. Continue reading
“The time has come,” the Walrus said,
“To talk of many things:
Of shoes—and ships—and sealing-wax—
Of cabbages—and kings—
And why the sea is boiling hot—
And whether pigs have wings.”
—Through the Looking-Glass
That is certainly wonderful nonsense from a bygone era (Louis Carroll, 1871), yet it foretells the not-so-wonderful nonsense of today where similar gibberish carries heavy political overtones.
I am thinking of the second episode of the new Netflix series called “Our Planet” that has gained widespread attention. It features the much loved 93 year old naturalist, Sir David Attenborough, narrating a disturbing scene where several walruses fall to their deaths over a steep cliff in Eastern Siberia along the Arctic Ocean. We are told that several hundred walruses perished in all, because they were forced to haulout in an area where Attenborough claims they never would have been if the sea ice had not retreated due to Global Warming:
“They do so out of desperation not choice. Continue reading
I am pleased to report that on May 1, the Appellate Court of the State of Oregon unanimously decided favorably on behalf of James De Young in his lawsuit, James De Young vs Governor Kate Brown, the State of Oregon, Clackamas County and the City of Damascus.
The Court has nullified the disincorporation vote of May, 2016. It determined that the state legislature violated state statutes when it (not the city) initiated a vote on disincorporation, when it placed the vote in the primary in May, 2016 (not the general election in Nov), and when it lowered the required number of votes to a simple majority of those who voted (not a majority of the electors–the registered voters). All of these matters violated existing state laws. The Court said that the State Legislature could not create a new law to empower only Damascus to change State Statutes while voting on its special law.
The basic thrust of their decision is that you have to follow the law until you change the law. While the defendants tried to find another path to disincorporation besides the one in statutory law, the Appellate Court found that “the” describing the present path meant “the” and not “a.” Continue reading
Oil companies give billions to climate alarmists, but hardly a dime to climate realists
Climate alarmists often accuse skeptics, like myself and independent groups like the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow and Heartland Institute, of being in the pay of Big Oil. This is completely false – the Big Lie repeated so often that people eventually believe it. We do not receive even a dime from Big Oil. It’s part of the green fairy tale that skepticism exists only because the oil companies are funding it.
For the record, none of us skeptics – climate realists – doubt or deny climate change. We all recognize that Earth’s climate is in nearly constant turmoil and fluctuation, locally, regionally or globally. Continue reading
Spring weather is making waves in Portland this week, and so is zoo elephant family
Spring has finally sprung at the Oregon Zoo, and one resident in particular is diving in headfirst — trunk and all. Samson, the 20-year-old male of the Asian elephant family, made a splash this week in the pool at Elephant Lands.
With the sun shining down and temperatures reaching a warm 70 degrees, the 9,900-pound pachyderm was eager to hit the pool. He dove for treats of apple and honeydew melon, and playfully splashed with his feet and trunk. After a quick break in the sun, Samson plunged back into the 160,000-gallon pool for another swim.
To see a video, go to bit.ly/SamsonSwim
“He loves to play in the water,” said Bob Lee, who oversees the zoo elephant program. “Now that spring is here, I think Samson and the rest of the family will be spending a lot of time poolside.” Continue reading
The Bible is full of stories of real people who faced real challenges. One such account is that of a young Jewish girl named Esther. After her parents died she was raised by her cousin, Mordecai [more-dah-kye]. She lived in the Persian capital city of Susa about 500 years before Christ. Hers is a remarkable story of God’s intervention, mixed with her winsomeness and boldness.
At a state party, King Xerxes (some versions use his other name – Ahasuerus),became furious with his queen and, with a wave of his hand, deposed her. His advisors suggested he hold something like a Miss Universe pageant to select a new queen. Liking this idea, he ordered all the attractive young unmarried women throughout his empire to be brought to his palace. Esther is among those rounded up for the competition.
I’m assuming Esther was looking forward to marrying a Jewish man some day and raising a family. All of a sudden, these plans were dashed. If she didn’t become the queen, all her future held was a single life surrounded by other women in the king’s harem. Continue reading
Zoo teams up with Safe Kids Portland Metro to educate kids, families on safe play
For kids, summer is traditionally a time for play, with activities like swimming, skateboarding and riding bikes. To make sure the risk of injuries doesn’t rise with the temperatures, some simple safety measures can help.
On Saturday, May 4, the Oregon Zoo will team up with Safe Kids Portland Metro, led by American Medical Response, to host its 21st annual Safe Kids Day at the zoo. Activities will focus on simple actions that can save lives — like wearing bicycle helmets, life jackets and seat belts. Safe Kids Day activities run from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and are free with zoo admission.
Multnomah County Commissioner Sharon Meieran and Portland Police bike officers will be on hand to help raffle off bicycles at 12:30 and 3:30 p.m., respectively. Continue reading
Over 1.5 million families have pledged to stop shopping at Target since it announced it would allow men to enter women’s dressing rooms and bathrooms, putting women and children in danger of sexual assault.
AFA has made it clear since the boycott began that our worries do not stem from fear of the transgender community, but rather from the very real threat that predators and voyeurs, or anyone with evil intentions, would take advantage of the Target bathroom policy to harm women and children. And they have.
Now Target has gone on public record stating they fully and wholeheartedly support the passage of the Equality Act now before Congress, meaning it supports government-sanctioned discrimination against churches and Christian business owners. Continue reading