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Nov. 9 marked the 30th anniversary of the Berlin Wall’s collapse. Its ruin would pave the way for the end of the Cold War and mark the abject failure of communism.

When I served as chairman of the Texas House Energy Resources Committee, we heard hundreds of hours of testimony on the need to increase our ability to safely and effectively move oil and gas from the Permian Basin, Eagle Ford and Barnett to our Gulf ports for export.

Mom worked at both the T&P and Terminal Cafés when I was a kid in the 1950s and 1960s. Her brother, Uncle Vernon, was a driller in the oilfields. As a soldier, he experienced the horrors of war on Saipan and Okinawa.

Now that America is deep into the bowels of football season, I’m experiencing my yearly gastrointestinal angst about my Texas A&M Aggies. I call them “my” Texas A&M Aggies because I spent an untold amount of my parents’ cash in College Station on textbooks, apartment rent and DoubleD…

It’s been 18 months since I lost my husband Byron to early onset Alzheimer’s disease. I will never forget what he went through as well as what our family went through during the seven years of his illness. It changes you, and you can’t look away anymore. You want to do something.

As Donald Trump circles the wagons around his administration to ward off impeachment proceedings in the U.S. House of Representatives, more information is coming to light about how Trump is earning a new title in Washington — King of the Grifters.

This morning I was reading a column by Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times (Opinion, Oct. 27). He was referring to new data on young people who do not identify as Christians: only 49 percent of millennials do. This compares with 84 percent among Americans in their mid-70s.

Fall has always been my favorite time of year, not due to the splendor of the colorful foliage, the crisp breezes heralding a new season or the savory scents of autumn that inspire us to get our pumpkin-spice freak on. Instead, what I love most about the fall is that it kicks off a series of…

When Rocio Castillo’s kids and other Texas children are healthy, they are more likely to make it to school each day and focus in the classroom. When children in Longview are able to go to regular checkups, they can get immunizations to keep them healthy. When children attend those appointmen…

I grew up in the pre-Katrina New Orleans in the 1980s and 90s. The city was impoverished and crime-ridden, but it was home. The diverse cultures that permeated New Orleans, its friendliness and music, were potent enough to make it one of the most amazing places in the world to live. The big …

Poverty affects hundreds of millions of people around the globe despite centuries of efforts to alleviate it by myriad individuals, organizations, and programs. A primary issue is the complexity of the problem.

Garage sales are a little ridiculous if you think about it. As a society we spend untold millions trying to protect the sanctity of our homes from intrusion, and then we have garage sales, where the entire point is to lure nosy strangers onto our property to rummage through our personal belongings.

Donald Trump has richly deserved his reputation for cheating employees and small business owners who have worked on his properties over the years. Now we have evidence that he’s a total hypocrite dealing with immigrant workers at his properties.

Have you ever run a relay where batons were passed? There’s been a crew that dreamed the vision for the Longview Arboretum, a team that kept the aspiration alive during tumultuous times, and a group that caught the second wind and grew the concept into reality.

The 21st century splintering of America into a million little pieces is an ever-present source of despair. Is our homeland akin to Humpty Dumpty, its restoration futile despite all the efforts of the powers that be? The answer will not be forthcoming unless and until we have a firmer grip on…

Very seldom do one man’s actions, faith, and determination shape people’s lives beyond his own locality and circle of friends. However, the Roman Emperor Constantine was an exceptional man whose legacy is still shaping our lives today.

More than 60 percent of Texas high school seniors report they have had sex. Most say they didn’t use a condom the last time they did. Those facts alone make it no surprise Texas has long had one of the highest teen birth rates in the nation. And that’s despite being the nation’s virtual post…

Summer tends to hang around in East Texas like a lingering house guest who should have taken the hint when you started freely walking around the living room in your underwear. In fact, our hottest weather often rears its glistening, blistered head right about the time we all start to go pump…

The old saying is, “You can’t go home again.” Well, I discovered there is more truth to that than I knew.

As president and CEO of the Longview Chamber of Commerce, I have had several East Texas employers come to me with concerns regarding attracting and retaining a workforce. While our population has grown about 2% over the past decade, we haven’t kept pace with the growth seen in the urban area…

There is a whole lot that goes on in our city and you may be surprised to learn that most of it is good. The sense that the exact opposite appears to be the case can be contributed to something we all share.

Folks, if you’ve doubted Donald Trump’s mental stability, look no further than the furor over his fixation on Hurricane Dorian. He spent more than a week defending his crackpot statement that Alabama was in the crosshairs of that storm while saying little about the actual hurricane damage as…

I was born and raised in Texas to parents who were high school sweethearts at a rural Texas high school. I went to Texas public schools. When I was a kid, I had a horse. I attended UT Austin. My drink was Dr Pepper. I spend holidays on a ranch. I am a Texan through and through, and I can tel…

It’s hard to believe 45 years have passed since I attended my first (and only) world’s fair in Spokane, Washington. I was then almost 11 years old. It was somewhat ironic: I attended a world’s fair even before I attended a state fair, county fair, or even community fair.

On the Aug. 31 Forum page, Sophie Phillips , CEO of TexProtects, the Texas chapter for Prevent Child Abuse America, stresses the need to address serious issues in childhood that will show up as violence-related in later childhood. “Prevention is within our means to address, and childhood is …

My family is currently experiencing an outbreak of a condition most parents dread. No, I don’t mean the 24-hour stomach bug — although it sometimes lasts about as long and has similarly repulsive symptoms. Instead, my two older daughters have come down with a serious case of the boyfriends.

Labor Day has become so engrained in American consciousness as an end-of-summer holiday that we have forgotten its original purpose of honoring workers. Few people appreciate that Labor Day originated from bitter strife between industrial companies and their employees, who had to work long h…

Anyone who has studied notable Texans of the past is aware that early Texans traveled. In the early years, it was often done on foot or horseback. Thank heavens Longview and environs now are blessed with good, modern transportation.

To visitors from all over the world, the city of San Antonio is a salsa-infused melting pot of Texas history, art and culture. To the delight of my three daughters, however, it is so much more.

At some point, I figured, even Trump supporters would get tired of all the lies and exaggerations uttered by their fearless leader. But I was wrong. There’s no shame in the White House or in the 35% of the American population who support him regardless of the issue.

In response to the News-Journal editorial published Wednesday, I wanted to outline the many steps that the City of Longview and the Longview Fire Department have taken as partners to improve the status (and lower the unfunded liability) of the Fire Pension Fund. It is not accurate to say tha…

When was the last time you sang the song below in church? Did you really think about the words, or was it just a beautiful song to you? We sang it in our church this past Sunday. I believe the words should be sung, believed, and practiced by everyone. It was written by Peter Scholtes.

Harsh poverty plagues our country despite its great wealth. More than 33 million Americans are poor, by any reasonable standard. Another 20 million to 30 million are needy. Poverty is increasing in the United States, not decreasing.

Carnage and horror disrupted the lives of Americans on the first weekend of August as lone gunmen committed senseless acts of mass murder. Sadly, we’ve been through this many times before; the mass shooting haunts the postmodern psyche.

Jim Ross Lightfoot recently wrote on this page (July 20) that disrespecting the American flag is “an affront to everyone who held up their right hand and took an oath to protect this country from all enemies domestic and foreign.” Interesting.

About 50 years ago, the first human stepped onto the surface of the moon. President John F. Kennedy set the goal of a moon landing in 1961, and eight years later on July 20, 1969, the Apollo 11 crew successfully performed lunar landing and return to Earth.

At Manchester Place Care Homes and Cambridge Caregivers, two senior care businesses that I co-own and operate in Dallas, we are aggressively hiring new employees. Business is up 75% year-over-year, which is fantastic, but our growth has created a big problem: There just aren’t enough job see…

When I was dating my wife (and still pretending to be charming), I once suggested we grab an old blanket, purchase a generous supply of processed lunch meat and go on a picnic. In my romantic desperation, I had apparently forgotten that we live in East Texas, where being outside anytime betw…

Earlier this month, we as a nation celebrated our 243rd birthday, the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Perhaps you celebrated with fireworks or a day out with your family. As many of you did, I sang with others our national anthem and the words about our flag flying “o’er the land…

Today's Bible verse

“Fools give full vent to their rage, but the wise bring calm in the end.”

Proverbs 29:11

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