In the movies, in-laws are bad news.
The Senate's repeal Saturday night of the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" (DADT) policy in the United States military, implemented under President Clinton in 1993 as a compromise between allowing men and women to serve openly and downright banning them from service, is much more of a milestone achievement from a symbolic standpoint rather than on-the-ground efficiency. But repeal's symbolism is striking, nonetheless. It symbolizes, simply, that our politicians are still capable of doing the work they were elected to do.
NEW YORK -- Words matter.
For whatever reason, while I was doing yard work during the Thanksgiving weekend, I started thinking about my favorite Christmas memories from my own school days. (This probably qualifies as ancient history for most people.) The daydreaming made the raking and mulch-spreading a lot more pleasant.
WASHINGTON -- I could write more about the tax deal, but you're probably tired of hearing about it, and, to be honest, I've been too busy playing iPad Scrabble.
When President Barack Obama turned over his news conference to President Clinton like a tag-team wrestler and left the room to attend a Christmas party -- leaving Clinton to take questions from reporters about Obama's tax-cut deal -- he gave the astonished chattering classes plenty to chatter about:
To so many people here in Kershaw County he is "Vincent."
Gift wrapping -- is it a man's or woman's job?
Andy Denton was recently helping his mother Miriam move some furniture when they came across a bulletin from the First Baptist Church which was distributed on Father's Day in 1945. The bulletin was arranged in newsletter form and filled with information concerning events surrounding the end of the war and updates on many of your friends and neighbors who were serving in the military.
I have a number of favorite Christmas stories which I have told you over the years. This is one of my favorites; I related it to you long ago, but it is worth repeating as Christendom's most holy day approaches.
As I watched the sad sight of Rep. Charles Rangel, a decorated Korean War veteran, stand in the well of the House to be humiliated by Speaker Nancy Pelosi with resounding censure like a misbehaving schoolboy, I was reminded of a joke I once heard about a critic's review of a singing cat: "It is not that the song was done well that mattered, but that it was done at all."
His name is David Underwood. His call sign is "Stevie." His face is the face of American freedom. His face is the face of American power.
NEW YORK -- Thanks to WikiLeaks, even Vlad the Putin can raise an eyebrow and presume to know more about founding American principles, democracy and free speech.
Given I've had my coffee in the morning and wine in the evening, I'm quite the happy-go-lucky character. It takes a powerful event, one with a lasting impact, to grip my mood. Stoic, not quite; let's just say I'm indifferent to most of the daily world, and I mean that in a positive sense. Too often, I believe, indifference is seen as a negative.
I used to see those people who catered shamelessly to their dogs and snidely chuckle into my sleeve.
WASHINGTON -- So unpopular is President Obama these days that the (D) following Democratic candidates' names might stand for Denial.
Growing up, I had a hand full of career goals. My parents signed me up for basketball in 3rd grade, which put the idea of playing for the WNBA in my head.
Ah, Prince, how we've missed you. Prince Rogers Nelson has finally "Kiss"-ed and made up with Warner Bros. Records, regaining control of his original catalog of music and put out not one, but two albums worth of new music on the same day.
It's a funny thing. That's what Mama used to say when something baffled her. Like Mama, I prefer that things make common sense. Otherwise, I'll ponder, figure, study, and try to decipher that funny thing until it's somewhat sensible.
In early September, I attended a meeting of superintendents in Greenville. A major area of discussion was the development of a workforce that would attract sustainable industry to South Carolina and how K-12 education fits into this puzzle. To underscore this discussion, the meeting included a tour of the BMW plant in Spartanburg. Wow! This facility absolutely reflects what a 21st century workplace looks like and what many of our students will need to be prepared to enter. I talk a lot about preparing students for their future and not our past. The BMW tour reminded me why this is ...
On Nov. 4, Kershaw County citizens will have the opportunity to vote on the Kershaw County School District facilities referendum. Because of legislation passed by the South Carolina General Assembly in 2014, voters will be able to decide whether or not a penny sales tax that would be collected for 15 years could be imposed in the county and used by the school district to fund the projects in the referendum.
I was in Boston recently and just down from our hotel, in the heart of the Back Bay, is the Berklee College of Music.
WASHINGTON -- Now, now, let's not panic.
I obviously enjoy sharing stories from my childhood and other eras of my life in this column. I've told you about the time my pony took me on a crazy ride through a shed with a low ceiling and the time I got "lost" at the New York World's Fair. This week I'm going to tell you about a very special place that was the scene of many of my happiest childhood memories.
Hollywood's most recent spate of pirate movies, the Pirates of the Caribbean series starring Johnny Depp, illustrates the age-old stereotype of "the pirate." Depp is the perfect swaggering pirate, his full head of dreadlocks wrapped in a cloth, waistcoat belted with heavy leather, on occasion an 18th century skirted frock coat and a tricorn hat. Pistols and swords in his belt within easy reach for a fight. Soft leather boots folded down at the top. Swashbuckling at its best. Depp embodies the definitive pirate style.
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