President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump apparently agree on at least one item: This nation has no business being further involved in the "forever war" in Afghanistan.
After 20 years in that country, the United States-"bought" Afghanistan army continues to lose to a bunch of religious fanatics known as the Taliban. Why? In my opinion, the Afghan army is not very happy about fighting its own people despite being well-paid (by Afghan standards) with U.S. dollars.
How would we feel if we had another civil war here and Britain would offer to send 100,000 troops to help one side against the other? I believe we would unite and tell the British troops to stay home and let us settle our own problems.
Yes, the Afghan people who work for the U.S. government want us to stay forever so that they can continue to take home our U.S. dollars. Afghanistan has a reputation for corruption throughout its government and has done little to clean it up.
We have gone more than the extra mile for Afghanistan. Both Biden and Trump are right in that it is past time for Afghanistan to stand on its own feet.
If the majority of the Afghanistan people want it to be ruled by Taliban religious radicals, then so be it.
Open a dental school
The state of Arkansas has a budget surplus. The city of Little Rock will consider a one-cent sales tax to improve the city.
Arkansas has no dental school. Many of our dentists in the state are near retirement age. An expensive education out of state means many new dentists must locate in cities to finance their debt.
Establishing a dental school in state would benefit Arkansas citizens. If Little Rock were to offer seed money to collocate a dental school in Little Rock so that faculty and classes could be shared with existing facilities, then the Legislature might decide to use surplus money to establish a dental school rather than cutting taxes for the rich.
This would ultimately benefit all Arkansans and might be a wiser use of sales-tax revenue rather than a sports arena which would be closed and useless if something like a pandemic were to occur.
Concerns go deeper
I can't really say that I was able to make any sense out of John Brummett's attack directed at the "red-state right" regarding northwest Arkansas pro-life proclamation efforts. I will say that I have never read so many words put to a page that communicated such empty, meaningless, self-indulgent hogwash.
Those of us who are working toward the pro-life proclamations in Washington and Benton counties, as well as municipalities in northwest Arkansas, are operating under our personal and collective mission, vision, and values. Our mission is to save the lives of mothers and babies. Our vision is to bring hope to pregnant women who feel that they have none. Our values include a deeply held belief that every human life is priceless. A belief that worth and significance are not determined by whether a child is wanted, planned, or convenient. A conviction that a child in the womb is a life that is inherently human, and being inherently human, is worth saving.
Those of us who are working toward pro-life proclamations put action to our mission, to make a difference for as many mothers and babies as possible. We are volunteers who work with pregnant women, providing counseling, medical care, and basic personal needs such as food and shelter. Many of us are health-care professionals donating our time. Many more of us donate our money to care for women who are struggling to make decisions for themselves and their babies.
In summation, Mr. Brummett, we will continue to "have at it" because our concerns and efforts go much deeper than "what's for dinner."
A blind eye, deaf ear
Clearly, the Republicans have decided that they'll just ignore and bury the truth about the Trump-inspired bloody insurrection on Jan. 6, and they'll also turn a blind eye and deaf ear to the parts of our shared American history that make them uncomfortable.
That's not patriotic. It's not even remotely decent.
I'd suggest that they should be ashamed of themselves, but I'm beginning to realize that today's typical Republican possesses little to no capacity for feeling emotions like shame. Or compassion.
Sitting in the oral surgeon's office recently for a one-week follow-up, I observed a patient who had clearly suffered a previous stroke and had been waiting for a taxi to take him home. It was rush-hour time and he had been waiting a long time.
After prolonged waiting, one of the staff approached the man and said that they were going to give him a ride home. Truly an amazing example of human compassion, caring and taking responsibility for another human being.
The doctor was Hugh Burnett, DDS. My experience as a patient was exceptional, but that experience was subordinated by his tremendous care way above and beyond. Darned good doctor and even more darned good man.