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“Futility, futility,” says the speaker, “all is futility.” Thus begins the biblical work, Ecclesiastes. As an essay on the meaning of life, it is pessimistic about our knowing the answer, dismissing such things as power and wealth. A similar, more contemporary view is the French philosopher …

Most of us remember our favorite teachers. It may have been in kindergarten, grade school, high school or college. We may not remember why they were our favorites, but we remember them. They were special. They made us feel special, too. That’s because teachers make a difference in people’s l…

It is clear that the last year has taken a heavy toll on all of us: a virus that has hamstrung even the healthiest, tenured workers into isolating and relying on stimulus packages to provide for their families. We are living at the discretion of what passes the desks of legislators. And we c…

The Utah Republican Party says it has no plans to censure Sen. Mitt Romney for his vote to convict former President Donald Trump in his second impeachment trial. Some of the six other Republican senators who voted to convict the president have been censured by party officials in their home states.

Stereotypes and gender conflicts seem to be universal along with gender inequality. Gender-based discrimination is a problem that is widespread in the world, even in the most advanced and diverse countries such as the United States. People must realize the importance of gender equality becau…

I am extremely disappointed in our City Council. We Bakersfieldians support the chicken ordinance that allows residents to have a small number of backyard chickens. Our City Council allowed a handful of people who oppose it to stop the ordinance because they threaten to sue the city. Those w…

We are fast approaching the one-year mark of when we all went to an online modality. In this quick jaunt to becoming virtual, we all lost our daily routine, especially our ability to go to a gym in order to burn off excess energy or to ensure our well-being.

Barely awake and fumbling for the window, I peeked through the blinds to see the sunrise wrestling with the night. It was slowly wringing all the darkness out of an ancient sky. The entire landscape was being overrun by the new sun, which seemed to be laughing as it rose.

Ah, the irony of it all and the naivete. John Pryor (“COMMUNITY VOICES: Why progressives’ pronouncements are perpetually suspect on matters,” Feb. 5) sings the praises of small government and strives to limit all aspects of its inexorable growth, all the while we are borne along on the count…

Witnesses have attested to the hypnotic effect Hitler could have on an audience: one minute holding them in rapt attention, the next whipping them into an hysterical frenzy. His true knack was to demonize, inspire hatred and ultimately, war and genocide. He was never known to pull a trigger …

In a recent Community Voices ("COMMUNITY VOICES: Why progressives’ pronouncements are perpetually suspect on matters," Feb. 5), an argument was made that liberals/progressives may be well-intentioned on what they would like the national government to do regarding the current crises facing th…

With the election results of 2020 outwardly resolved and the trespassing in the Capitol past the news cycle, now what? I can verify that the combination of an invasion of the Capitol Building and/or congressional deliberations about the election circa Jan. 6 were of little importance beyond …

A full year on from the first COVID-19 case in California, the virus still represents a major concern for lawmakers and local leaders who are aiming to protect Californians while limiting the long-term damage of the pandemic. There is, however, reason for optimism now that Gov. Gavin Newsom …

In this time of COVID-19, access to Kern County’s parks and recreational opportunities are especially important — for our physical, mental and spiritual well-being. Sadly, there seems to be a lack of attention to some of Kern County’s parks and a lack of vision about their future in our grow…

It’s true, I am a registered Republican. But it is also true I don’t always vote straight party lines. And I haven’t always been a Republican.

It was years ago and we were living in the Bronx. It was a two-story house with the renters up above. They started off well and good. They picked up trash on the sidewalk. They occasionally did some gardening for us while we were gone. They even painted upstairs, though it really wasn’t need…

Joe Biden was inaugurated just a few weeks ago, and in the days since then, an old mantra has been revived and promulgated by political pundits and the White House. As of Jan. 20, the gauzy notion that Americans must seek “unity” has been deemed to be something that we must all care about — …

The miracle of science has exceeded, even the most ambitious expectations, in delivering highly efficacious vaccines utilizing both traditional and exciting new technologies. Vaccines give the world a hope to exorcise the curse of COVID-19.

Does government have a right to your backyard? Should it dictate what happens in it? I say NO! This Wednesday, the Bakersfield City Council will decide whether responsible property owners in Bakersfield have the right to raise a few chickens on their own property.

As the COVID-19 vaccine coordinator at Kern Medical, I have a front-row seat for the hopeful light at the end of the tunnel that is the coronavirus pandemic. After months of overwhelmed hospitals, stay-at-home orders and devastating losses, vaccines are here. Though they are a welcome develo…

To quote the main character in the film “There Will Be Blood,” “I’m an oil man.” However, I’m a geologist first and love studying the earth and solving problems using the natural materials I’ve been taught to find. I won’t address global warming or the merits of petroleum in this article as …

California is nearing the one-year mark of the proclaimed state of emergency by Gov. Gavin Newsom. The resilient people of California have endured absolute upheaval of their lives and means of earning a living in order to combat this pandemic. However, the public is rightfully frustrated as …

My only interaction with the city of Bakersfield had been mainly driving through the 99 or 5 freeways, perhaps a quick stop for some food or to fill up the gas tank. But I never really thought about living here, let alone having the responsibility to launch and coach a collegiate soccer prog…

In response to a recent op-ed piece by Washington, D.C., lobbyist Christopher Neiweem (“Bakersfield City Council should reject new VA clinic,” Jan. 22): At the center of the issue is a proposal approved by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to construct a new VA Community-Based Outpatie…

The Bakersfield Californian headline on Jan. 21 read “A call for unity,” just above a photo of Joe Biden being sworn into office. I must say, I was a little miffed. Believe me, a call for unity is the last thing on Biden’s mind.

Over the course of President Trump's term in office, I was repeatedly surprised — and pleasantly so — when his policy decisions failed to live up to my fears about how he would govern. At the same time, I was repeatedly disappointed in how he stirred things up on Twitter. Though I didn't vot…

I’m well aware that the overwhelming feeling many parents have felt about their children’s education this past year is frustration. Yet in our house, the best word to describe how we feel is grateful. We are grateful for having the opportunity to choose our children's schools, and this past …

There are several lenses through which we can view our polarization. In a recent Community Voices column, the author argues that populist theory drills down to the roots, enabling us to truly understand what is going on ("COMMUNITY VOICES: The true thought leaders in today’s political battle…

He could have been great. Well, maybe not great, but certainly pretty good and a man who would have been remembered as a president who got things done. But that will not be his legacy. Instead, it will be the memory of crazies desecrating the greatest building of the republic because they li…

So another year has passed. And they do swiftly, like roadside signs, it seems. What beyond the usual resolutions to lose some weight, thin that waist, get some exercise by walking a few thousand more steps a day, wear a trendy mask and watch less TV do we think about? Well, if you’re a seni…

I would like to take exception to Robert Price’s column ("ROBERT PRICE: Can Biden’s inaugural words soar the way predecessors’ have in times of division and crisis?" Jan. 17).

Recently, a letter writer claimed that white privilege and systemic racism, “… don’t hold up under scrutiny” ("Letter to the Editor: These terms don’t help," Jan. 13). However, it is clear that the letter writer lacked an understanding of the concepts they were criticizing.

These past four years, President Trump has given us powerful lessons about the character qualities most desirable in a president.

When taken seriously, jury duty can be an immense burden on one's conscience, especially in a criminal case where someone’s freedom is at stake. This is why we need serious and mature people who take the juror's oath seriously to decide cases.

As we continue to see the increase in cases and deaths in California, it is hard to see the “end of the tunnel” for this pandemic. Part of the reason is that there appears to be no plan, at any level, to vaccinate sufficient people to both stem the pandemic and re-open the economy. The conce…

The death of Kaylie Corbella, a 14-year-old girl crossing the street, in November has made me question my complacent acceptance of pedestrian fatalities in Bakersfield as an ordinary fact of life. As I contemplated writing this opinion piece, another Bakersfield pedestrian was struck and kil…

Conservatism is fast becoming a disgrace ideology. On Jan. 6, we saw so called “conservative patriots” responding to encouragement by President Trump, invading and pillaging congressional chambers and offices of the United States.