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One of the legendary figures in Alabama political lore is Floyd Mann.

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The temperature in Opelika today was 92, with a heat index of 425, but summer has ended. In case you are wondering about that heat index, it was baking. Fall has not fallen yet, but summer is unofficially over, because school has started.

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Homeless. Veteran. These two words don’t belong together. How could someone who is willing to die for our country wind up on the streets, kicked to the curb after their service?

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There are very few Alabamians left who remember the 1950’s story of Phenix City, Alabama. After World War II, a good many of the military soldiers, enlisted men, stayed on for a while. A host of them were stationed at Ft. Benning in Columbus, Georgia. As many of you know, Columbus, Georgia a…

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I love words. I especially enjoy hearing how we use words – most of the time. I must admit that sometimes I am annoyed by things people say, but I usually find them amusing. Sometimes we use the wrong words, or like Barney Fife used to do, we mispronounce words. Sometimes we contradict ourse…

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I left for vacation last Thursday and my first day back at the office was Wednesday. I had a wonderful time while I was gone, but I am glad to be getting back in the swing of things.

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Homeless. Veteran. These two words don’t belong together. How could someone who is willing to die for our country wind up on the streets, kicked to the curb after their service? How many homeless veterans are in Alabama? I want to draw them all - or as many as possible - and let them tell th…

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Throughout the week, I listen to a variety of podcasts.

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Governor Kay Ivey’s first legislative session of the quadrennium was very successful. Her prowess at getting things accomplished with this Legislature has been remarkable.

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My grandson Drew and I celebrated birthdays this week. Drew hit double digits and I hit double old! Our birthdays are only two days apart – plus several decades. We wanted to do something special for our birthdays this year. Drew had mentioned he wanted to go to Six Flags over Georgia. I’ve …

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The long hot summer has brought some crystallization to the 2020 U.S. Senate race. This seat is the Senate Seat held by Senator Jeff Sessions for almost two decades. He unwittingly made a strange and probably very regrettable decision to join President Donald J. Trump’s administration as att…

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This really has been no week at the beach, but we were close...about ten miles, to be exact. That’s about as close to seeing the white sands and blue water of the Gulf of Mexico as I have come this week. I’m sitting in the fellowship hall of Temple Baptist Church, in Lynn Haven, Florida. It …

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Homeless. Veteran. These two words don’t belong together. How could someone who is willing to die for our country wind up on the streets, kicked to the curb after their service?

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Everywhere you look now people and businesses are finding ways to be more eco-friendly. Anything that we can do to reduce our footprint on Mother Nature is very vital to our future.

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Twenty years ago, I saw a movie called “The Horse Whisperer.” Robert Redford played the lead role. The story was based on the real life of Dan “Buck” Brannaman. Brannaman was a cowboy who had a mystical ability to calm unruly horses by talking to them. He said he spoke the horse’s language.

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As the editor, I get to hear a lot of different opinions from a lot of different people.

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The 2020 Presidential Election year has already begun. It usually begins on Labor Day of the year prior to the Election. However, in recent decades the parade has started early. They really are four-year caravans. They begin the day after the president is sworn in.

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If you've ever considered stepping out of your ordinary go-to weekend activities, you may find my recent experience enjoyable.

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During the summer months, while Drew has been out of school, he has spent weekdays with his Gigi and me. I take off on Fridays and those are usually boy’s play-days for us, or boy’s day out. Our typical Fridays begin with a biscuit run. No, that is definitely not any kind of exercise. We dri…

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Folks, don’t look now, but the 2020 Presidential Election is upon us. Indeed, as many as 21 Democratic aspirants are already announced and campaigning.

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For about as long as I can remember, I have loved the Fourth of July. It has never been my favorite holiday, for reasons I will discuss, but it is certainly among my top three or four. Honestly, Christmas has always been my favorite, but not always for the right reason. As a kid, I loved Chr…

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State Senator, Jabo Waggoner (R-Vestavia), has been in the Alabama House and Alabama Senate for over 40 years. That is a record in Alabama history and definitely a record of longevity for any Jefferson County legislator in history. Jabo Waggoner has had a significant impact on behalf of the …

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One of my favorite things to eat is ice cream. I don’t have a favorite flavor because I love all kinds. The temperature is not a factor for me either when it comes to the classic dessert. I enjoy ice cream in the dead of winter and in the scorching hot summer. Every day is a good day to eat …

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I have a serious problem. Well, serious might be an overstatement, but it is as least an uncomfortable situation. I live in the deep-south, summer has arrived, and my home’s air-conditioner keeps going out. The breaker keeps tripping. The first time this happened, I didn’t realize the proble…

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This month has proven to be a milestone achieving month for me. A few weekends ago I ran my first 5K at Collinsville's "Hallin Up the Gap 5k Run.”

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Now, before you call a game warden or get yourself all worked up in a lather (without being in the shower), please read on. I’m not advocating any unlawful activity. Night hunting is illegal in Alabama, except I think for hunting coyotes. Hunting season is over anyway, but there are a few th…

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Some of us who were former legislators, who served our counties in the legislature a long time, were considered by many to always be their legislator. A good many of my former constituents still call me with questions or problems. Some ask me how to get in touch with their congressman or sen…

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My earliest memories center around one man who has been a permanent presence in my life. I remember looking forward to his calls, to his visits and our small adventures.

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The 2019 legislative session is now in the books. As each session is observed, it is apparent that primary, powerful, state senators control the flow and outcome of any and all legislative sessions.

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Through my various writings, most of you have gotten to know my mother, Anna Graham, pretty well by now, but you are probably less familiar with my dad, Dr. William Hardin Graham.

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I wondered why I had not gone the other way. I saw the train up ahead, but it was moving along at a pretty good clip. Opelika is called “A Railroad Town,” so waiting on trains happens often. I figured this one wouldn’t be long, and since I needed to stop at the chicken-finger place on the ot…

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For almost 100 years one of, if not the best annual event for young Alabama High School leaders in Alabama has been the Alabama Boys State and the Alabama Girls State programs.

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June in Alabama seems like a momentous time of the year to me. We always focus our seasonal adoration on spring or fall, due to the pleasing temperatures, but June holds a unique place in our yearly cycle.

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The summer sizzle seems to have shown up early in Alabama this year. Our family pool is open and they tell me the water is fine. Everyone, as well as everything it seems, except me, has jumped in. My family loves our pool, but so do all kinds of critters... especially frogs. Each summer, I f…

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To all my struggling English majors who thought they had it all figured out, I too was there. I was there for those late nights of reading Hamlet, Poe, Servantes, and Coleridge. I was there through all the all-nighters writing essays and papers. I was there for multiple trips to the coffee s…

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There is a story on the front page today about the opening day of the DeKalb County Farmers Market at the VFW Fairgrounds. The market opens Tuesday afternoon at 3 and market manager Grady Dalton said he is expecting at least 10 to 12 local growers to show up. I had the pleasure of meeting Gr…

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A good many people wonder why simple, straightforward, no nonsense, good- government legislation fails to pass even though it appears to have universal and overwhelming support and appeal for many voters and legislators.

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Last week I had the opportunity to speak to a group of students at Northeast Alabama Community College for career day. I was supposed to tell the students all about journalism and what to expect if they decided to follow that career path. I started by talking about the state of journalism to…

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I didn’t care much for it when I was a child. My parents ate it quite often, but I found its taste too strong for my liking. Now, all these years later, I could eat it every day. It is an old southern treat that was actually a staple a generation or two ago. It is called sorghum. It is a typ…

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The five day Special Legislative Session that addressed the increase in the gas tax to fund an Infrastructure Rebuilding Program for the state was a remarkable success. I still marvel at the adroitness, efficiency and expediency in which the governor accomplished this monumental initiative. …

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My mother was named Sophia. She was born in Philadelphia in 1927. She and dad married in 1944 and they spent most of her life in Miami, Florida. In the early 70s when dad retired, they moved to Fort Payne, Alabama, and lived out the rest of their lives and died on the top of Lookout Mountain…