Community Columnists

Stop throwing pies

In this moment of American politics we spend little time debating actual policy. For the politicians and pundits, policy has become merely an excuse for a protracted national soap opera. A thin veneer over what is little more than a pie throwing contest. Take state Rep. Mary Adams, a ...

Bill’s rejection disappointing for N.D. cities

By the end of the 2019 North Dakota Legislature, lawmakers will have discussed, debated, and voted on more than 950 bills and resolutions. One bill that had great potential to positively impact the future of North Dakota is Senate Bill 2275. Unfortunately, the bill was given a Do Not Pass ...

We can’t love God and hate Muslims

Hate caught up with New Zealand last week when a white supremacist slaughtered 50 Muslims at prayer in two mosques. With a lapse in memory of history, we’re looking at evil hopes of a new Aryan race. White nationalism is sweeping the western world, casting hate wherever minorities appear. ...

When will they do the right thing?

History unfolds before us daily, and when this stained chapter is put to rest, history will not view kindly those who failed to stand up for American ideals and against this dangerous presidency. That’s not political rhetoric. It’s fact. President Trump, amidst a swirl of investigations, ...

We are too deferential to law enforcement

America’s vast military might resides under civilian control. The commander-in-chief of our armed forces is the President of the United States, and for good reason. Law enforcement, too, is under civilian control. Or it’s supposed to be anyway. Given the deference shown toward cops it can ...

Vaccination of children pays: Let’s do it!

The editors of the March 7, 2019, MMWR, the Centers for Disease Control’s flagship weekly on disease outbreaks in the U.S. and around the world, did something unusual. The same MMWR that alerted the world to HIV/AIDS in the 1980s or the go-to report on the outbreaks of swine flu, bird flu and ...

Look! History is repeating itself again

The old adage that history repeats itself because no one was listening the first time is playing out for us again in Washington, D.C., and Bismarck. In Washington, we are hearing a chorus from the new left to impeach President Trump – and do it now. Now these folks have good reason for ...

Those nanny state blue laws

Last week, Sen. Oley Larsen, R-Minot, did a victory lap celebrating the North Dakota House’s rejection of a primary seat belt bill. For those unfamiliar, a quick introduction... Oley’s the guy who tried to force Bible studies into the curriculum. Oley doesn’t believe in separation of ...

Completion of NAWS finally on the horizon

One of the most important projects in our City’s history is the Northwest Area Water Supply project. The State Water Commission began construction on NAWS in April 2002. Minot has long been a regional leader on water issues, and a key element of NAWS’ success is the City’s commitment to ...

Recreational marijuana coming in back door

All states in the Union except four, including North Dakota, have annual legislative sessions. But we wait until we have enough business for a session or problems go to Washington to be solved. By the time the biennial crowd hits Bismarck, conflicts have multiplied and the Legislature takes ...

Republicans and their fear of socialism

If there’s anything that terrifies North Dakota Republicans, it’s socialism. That, and democracy, judging from the plethora of bills in Bismarck aimed at thwarting “the mob’s” vote on constitutional measures. The fear of socialism has been amplified—to adapt a tired phrase — by ...

If we’re already socialists, why are the socialist activists so angry?

Modern proponents of socialism have become so desperate to divorce their ideology from its ugly realities — North Korea under the Kims, Cuba under the Castros, Venezuela under Chavez and Maduro — they’ve taken to a sort of white washing through dilution. They’re defining anyone in ...

Keeping a close eye on legislative issues

The North Dakota Legislature is a busy place, where for up to 80 days, lawmakers from across the state debate, discuss, and decide the fate of hundreds of bills. The decisions made by our elected legislators have the potential to negatively or positively impact not only the lives of our ...

States joining plot to bypass Electoral College

In case you hadn’t noticed, there’s a national movement to bypass the Electoral College in favor of direct election of the president. A compact has been drawn for states to agree to cast their electoral votes for the presidential candidate garnering the most votes in the general election ...

Are they representing you?

Theoretically, in a representative form of government, elected representatives actually represent our wishes. If that’s the case, apparently we want ourselves to shut up and look the other way. At least that’s how numerous Republicans read your vote on Measure 1 for transparency and ...

Much progress made; opportunities for bold investment remain

As the halls of the state Capitol turn quiet for a few days during the Legislature’s mid-session break, it’s a good time to share a quick progress report with North Dakota citizens. We entered this session with a forward-looking plan that addressed North Dakota’s workforce challenges, ...

The Legislature still doesn’t get it

The people of North Dakota don’t trust the Legislature. As a matter of fact, they never did. In the first place, the Legislature has shown little respect for the people. When the people enact legislation through the initiative, the Legislature spends considerable time at subverting the ...

My visit to Minot Air Force Base

Today I will continue my statewide military tour in Minot, where I’ll tour the 5th Bomb Wing and 91st Missile Wing at Minot Air Force Base. As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee and the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee, this is all part of an effort to learn how I can support ...