Opinion

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FIELD NOTES

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A COLUMN PUBLISHED IN OUR JUNE 4 edition, written by our ‘Good News’ reporter, Hannah Hegedus, included some inaccurate statistics that escaped our attention. We caught a little hell for them, too.
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Plain English

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To mask or not to mask? That is the question a lot of people are wrestling with as the coronavirus pandemic in Texas worsens. We as a culture have been here before. Americans have resisted seat belts, helmets, infant car seats, and other safety measures. They have also resented laws prohibiting driving while drunk, buzzed, or high. And for 60 years, Americans have been warned not to use tobacco. Laws now prohibit smoking in public places, but tobacco use persists in spite of overwhelming evidence that it is harmful. Most Americans go along with changes, but there is always a percentage of the population who are slow to comply. Now it’s wearing a protective face mask in a pandemic.

Truth-telling

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LIKE MANY OF YOU I watched yesterday’s events in front of the White House unfold in real time. It was a stage managed show of force, using law abiding citizens as expendable extras in a macho movie and the Bible as a prop for a macabre photo-op, as awkward and isolated an image as history has ever recorded. Every element was choreographed. The Attorney General coming out to review his troops. The timing of the charge into the crowd. The sound of explosions in the background of the get tough speech. The triumphant stroll with the dominator attended by his entourage. The pantomime at the church. I watched it all.

Mattis speaks

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Former Secretary of Defense James Mattis condemned President Trump for making a “mockery of our Constitution” in a statement to The Atlantic on Wednesday, saying he was “appalled” at the president’s response to mass protests in the wake of George Floyd’s killing.