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We have been here before, this time of political division and turmoil. Yet, because we live in the present, we tend to think of it as unique, but it’s a recurring part of human history.

The column written by Bryant Baker (“Iconic landscapes threatened by drilling and fracking proposal,” Jan. 27) was in serious need of some “fact checking.” It was so far off base that I am surprised The Californian published it.

Peddling green works. After watching Budweiser's 2019 Superbowl commercial-- the Clydesdales racing through wheat fields on Tejon Ranch, with wind turbines turning serenely in the background--I couldn't help but think, "Maybe Bud isn't so bad after all."

I confess, except for a few items like the latest New York abortion law, I’m not paying much attention to the news these days. I’ve concluded, “Why make myself perpetually angry about things I can’t change or do much about?”

First, let me express my sincere congratulations to the excellent individuals that were selected to serve on the Bakersfield Citizens Oversight Committee for Measure N. There were so very many excellent applicants, it was difficult for the City Council to select among them.

After being led through Stefanie Daubert’s “critical analysis” of the oddly controversial Gillette commercial (“COMMUNITY VOICES: The disappearance of 'masculinity' is harmful to society," Jan. 28), I am convinced that her perception of toxic masculinity is not the best a master’s in social …

Building bridges. Building bridges between opposing groups. Building bridges between opposing groups who oppose and demonize the other group(s) because they don’t know the people in the other group. Building bridges between various disparate groups of people is what our nation so desperately…

My mother has said many times, “Air conditioning changed everything.” Socially, that is. Back in the day, there was a lot more front porch living. The heat of the day drove families out of the house for less stuffy air. Kids played with one another in the neighborhood. Adults often had conve…

Eight months ago in Bakersfield, a young woman and her boyfriend decided 30 weeks into her pregnancy that they didn’t want to be parents after all. The woman told police she instructed the baby’s father to punch her in the stomach to rid them of that responsibility. At least 10 gut punches l…

When I joined the Bakersfield College administrative team, the executive leadership team tasked me to build a robust outreach program in partnership with our local high schools. Five years later, we are reaching more students than ever before with a more than 35 percent increase in the numbe…

Every year I ask about the shameful exploitation of Martin Luther King — why do Americans love to disgrace his message so much? Why is it so popular that we see it year after year?

Bakersfield is home to two major institutions of higher education — Bakersfield College and Cal State Bakersfield. Each has a rich history and tradition of serving students and meeting the needs of the Bakersfield community. Since opening its doors to 13 students in 1913, BC has grown to ser…

Beliefs matter. They are the soul-garments that keep us warm in life’s cold winds. They are our guides on life’s twisting trails. They are the hands that unify a community. They are our conscience.

A new year is here. My prediction is clear skies with a chance of sunshine. America’s economy will continue to boom along with the one-way trade of stock and real estate markets always going up. President Trump will continue to foil the “deep state” and drain the swamp.

I was at my desk last Wednesday in Room 504 (Supervisor David Couch's office) on the fifth floor of the Kern County Administration Building when our office phone rang. I picked up. A lady named Miriam asked me, in a soft voice, to help her. She recently moved here from Los Angeles County bec…

Why are there so many homeless out on the streets these days? I often wonder what can be done to help alleviate this problem in Kern County. As a Kern County resident for more than 30 years, I want to be able to assist this vulnerable population by advocating for it.

The passage of Measure N, the city of Bakersfield’s Public Safety and Vital Services 1-cent sales tax, begins a new era for the citizens of Bakersfield. The passage is one more example of a long list of positive changes to the Bakersfield community.

In the Jan. 5 Community Voice piece “Can PG&E be considered a person?” is the author, Bob Schwartz, attempting to condemn PG&E for its role in the forest fires of 2017 and 2018, or is he condemning the Supreme Court for its definition of personhood in such decisions as Citizens Unite…

Sixteen years — that’s how long it’s been since my first encounter with virtual reality occurred on the arcade-room floor of John’s Incredible Pizza on Rosedale Highway. It’s a moment that I’ll never forget as it was compelling enough to persuade my 10-year-old self to put down that deliciou…

A recent letter (“Letter to the Editor: Fix the immigration problem,” Jan. 1) illustrates the danger of reading too quickly, or accepting in good faith as true what turns out to be misleading.

It shouldn’t have to be this way. Life’s lessons need not be taught at the School of Hard Knocks. If I wasn’t so stubborn, perhaps I could have read a book or two and been just the wiser. But some folks just got to learn the hard way.

I spent 15 years in public education working for the Delano Joint Union High School District’s business office so I understand how families need to feel assured that the local K-12 schools are safe, especially when it comes to the water they drink everyday while in class.

We have a lot of young people in Shafter. I was reminded of this again watching my kids and their classmates perform Christmas music to standing room crowds of proud parents and squirmy siblings. These crowded cafeterias embody the demographic fact of Kern County’s youthfulness.

It’s hard not to think about Christmas and not connect it to the late Bob Hope, the beloved comedian, who for more than 50 years gave up his comfy Christmas at home to travel around the globe with a USO troupe to bring holiday cheer to American sailors and soldiers fighting our wars and post…

This month, federal officials representing Kern and Tulare counties made history when both our senators and congressional leaders passed the Building Our Largest Dementia (BOLD) Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act, which would create a nationwide Alzheimer’s public health infrastructure to im…

Every school day, Kern County teachers are expected to accomplish the seemingly impossible. We strive to prepare today’s students for the best jobs of the future. Our goal is to build a skilled workforce that is prepared to meet business and societal needs in a global marketplace. However, m…

There have recently been attempts to restrict the acquisition and distribution of firearms. These have been rooted in a sane and reasonable desire to curb senseless killings. While entirely reasonable, they are continually thwarted by appealing to the Second Amendment of the Constitution.

Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the United States and second leading cause of death for teenagers, and rates have slowly been increasing over time. Now, this is not meant to put fear in you, but to better inform you that suicide is real and is not going away anytime soon, as mu…