Unheralded

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Don’t Give Up

I’ve been quiet for a while. Not because I haven’t been paying attention but because work has been overwhelming and I haven’t had the time to digest what has been an unbelievably painful week. These are just a few of the things that happened. There was an abhorrent Mideast “peace accord” that essentially endorsed apartheid for Palestinians and a destruction …


Unheralded

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Standing In The Gap

This is the final blog about Paula Mehmel’s trip to the southern border of the U.S. with Abriendo Fronteras/Opening Borders delegation, which spent six days in El Paso, Texas, and Juarez, Mexico, exploring issues related to immigration. Who are the people who are willing to stand in the gap? In the midst of the attack on the people of Juarez from …


PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Remembering The Dead

If I were at home, I would probably take the day off. I woke up achy and miserable, after hacking all night with a cold our group seems to be sharing. At first, I was feeling sorry for myself knowing I couldn’t take a bread. I needed to charge through. But then I thought of all of the people we …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — When I Was A Stranger, You Welcomed Me

What would you do if, all of a sudden,  your city was overwhelmed with desperate people? They gave everything they had to get to your city  to legally claim asylum, fleeing violence and government oppression and starvation due to climate change. But after claiming asylum and being held in the “ice box” detention center for up to to 30 days …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — A Broken Immigration System

Nothing about the current immigration crisis in our country is simple or easy. After one day as part of the Abriendo Fronteras/Opening Borders delegation, spending six days in El Paso, Texas, and Juarez, Mexico, exploring issues related to immigration, that is my greatest take away. Our morning began early, at 6 am. The group of 16 — which includes our two …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Beneath Human Dignity

I cannot show you any photos of the women whose stories we heard today because their lives are at risk. But it broke me. We heard from five of the six women living in a safe house in Juarez, Mexico. They all fled their native Central American countries with their children  because they were facing death threats from the police …

RON SCHALOW: The Cowards Of The Country

Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., second chair apologist for sexual predators, proposed a bill that would restrict federal funding for health care facilities that “don’t respect human life and patient rights.” Cramer gives no mention of the evil human rights abuses that President Trump has inflicted on brown children, who are unfortunately dependent on his care since the orange stain was …

RON SCHALOW: Cramer Goes Into Full Trump Racist Mode

Aristotle wasn’t privy to modern science, but he contended that people from nations outside of Greece were inferior in a number of ways to the native Greeks. Many of the outsiders ended up as slaves, so I doubt their opinions were taken into much consideration. And don’t get me started on the whole mess with the Moors, Sephardic Jews and …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — A Country Ruled In Anger

My word for the week is “vindictive.” The word is an adjective that means “one who has a strong and unreasonable desire for revenge.” This week, the president went off the charts in his desire to seek revenge. He is the first president in history to demand that security clearance be revoked for the intelligence and law enforcement chiefs of …

RON SCHALOW: The Traitor, Tariffs And Toddlers

“SHUT UP, Stan, or I’ll do something drastic, you meathead” screams Orville. “Another one, bartender.” Stan stands by a stool for a minute, to let his eyes adjust to the low bar lighting. He sits and says, “I like where your head’s at, Orv. Preventative attacks never turn out bad. I’ll take your spasm under advisement. How many quarts of …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Survival In Turbulent Times

It’s hard not to be depressed these days. Images of babies screaming as they are ripped away from their mothers breasts and 3-year-olds brought into court alone to face charges haunt my dreams, along with the cries of children who are lost, confused and alone. Social media posts from young men I knew in a kinder, gentler time, whose worst …

RON SCHALOW: The Land With Two Brains

If Donald Trump had walked into a Minot working man’s bar before he became a fancy pants, popular stream of consciousness screamer, he would have ended up in the dumpster, with appropriate discoloration, in under 30 minutes. No self-respecting patron of the bar arts in the Magic City, would suffer a loudmouth, self-aggrandizing, lying dick for very long. Experienced drinkers …

TIM MADIGAN: Anything Mentionable — My Journey With Central American Refugees

On a winter afternoon in 1989, I climbed into the cargo hold of a crowded Ryder rental truck, finding my place amid 49 Central American refugees. Over the next 11 hours, on a journey from the Texas border town of Harlingen to Houston, I listened to the stories of the men, women and children, people who in some cases had …

RON SCHALOW: The Congressman With The Chain-Link Head

When I was a youngster, chain-link fencing started to pop up on a few yards on south hill in Minot. I remember thinking, “Gosh, I hope no kids get trapped in there.” Then I saw the gate. They all had gates. What a relief. Easy egress. These were a noncage fences. Now, when I was at the zoo in Roosevelt …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — Rules Of Engagement

As a blogger and Facebook presence, I use my forum to give my opinions but have always steered away from engaging in debate with others online, especially people I don’t know … until now. Perhaps it is because my posts and blogs are shared a lot and I get tagged in them, but in the past week, I have been …

RON SCHALOW: Cramer’s Caging Of The Lambs & Silence Of The Trump Cult

That rumble of keystrokes you hear on horizon is the sound of every North Dakota GOP official pounding out a condemnation of President Trump’s new barbaric policy of taking children from their parents and securing the tykes in cages. You won’t see that use in the chain-link fence catalog. Wait, nope. It’s just that stupid building climbing raccoon. Gawd. I …

NANCY EDMONDS HANSON: After Thought — In Search Of The Phantom Workforce

The governor and the Greater North Dakota Chamber of Commerce are spending $4,000 this month to ask 1,000 businesses what they need to grow and prosper. I wish they’d talked to me first. I know they’re awfully keen to pinch those budgetary pennies. I’d have been happy to tell them for the price of a cup of coffee: People. North …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — There Is No Moral Defense Of Evil Acts

I will never forget the first time I visited the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., because by the time it was over, I wanted to crawl out of it in shame. I was a young pastor, serving as the keynote speaker and Bible study leader at a continuing ed event for people who worked with youth, and part of our …

RON SCHALOW: Of Course, He Did

Well, at least he didn’t kiss the brutal dictator on the lips and/or grab him by his small organ. That’s something, I suppose. He didn’t sniff Kim’s butt, as far as we know. The action is tough to translate. Instead, our president just slobbered up a storm and beamed radiantly like a teen dork picking up his best girl. This …

RON SCHALOW: When Comes The Last Straw?

Personally, I am unable to speak to very many people, from the moral ground. I won’t put a percentage to it. It might be in the teens. I can usually spot my few lessers, if they still go out in public. I’m like Trump in that respect. As he said,“I think within the first minute, I’ll know. Just, my touch, …

PAULA MEHMEL: Shoot the Rapids — The Truth About Dreamers

Given all of the things I have seen and heard about DACA in the past few days, I thought it might be helpful to lay out a few facts in the midst of so much misinformation. We are entitled to our own opinions, but not our own facts. For the record … DACA recipients are ineligible for Medicaid. Food stamps. SSI. Welfare. …

TERRY DULLUM: The Dullum File — Ernesto

The other day, I met a very nice young man who is immigrating to the U.S. Let’s just call him Ernesto. Because that’s his name. I’ve run into him at least a dozen times on the Greenway this summer. We’ve struck up a couple of nice conversations. He’s getting a little bored. He’s been waiting for his green card so …

TONY J BENDER: That’s Life — Searching For Humor

What the hell. What am I supposed to do with this mess? I try. I look out at the world, read the news and try to find the bright side. When someone pees in my cornflakes I say, “That’s all right, I don’t like cornflakes, anyway.” But when in Russia, do as the Russians do. I don’t actually hate cornflakes. …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — So You Want Our Country To Be Secure?

The president of these United States, in violation of the emoluments clause of the Constitution, wined and dined Japanese Prime Minister Abe at his own “Winter White House” in Florida. It’s bad enough he personally profits from his wholly owned country club with these state visits, but now he has also compromised the security of the country. While having dinner, …

TOM DAVIES: The Verdict — Lessons Of The Past Teach Us To Help Syrian Refugees Now

I was pondering what to write for the Thanksgiving when I saw the picture of the little Syrian boy who had drowned when his refugee boat sank. A rubber boat full of refugees trying to escape the horrors of war … and this little fella lost his life. I then saw a picture of a few bombed-out, literally uninhabitable cities …

JIM FUGLIE: View From The Prairie — ‘He Is Already An American’

Note: I posted this on my blog more than five years ago, in August 2010, when immigration was in the news every day. It seems appropriate to repeat it now. Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who, from all I can tell, is generally not a wacko, has joined forces, or actually taken leadership of, a group of wackos who …