Government overstep

Leaders can use crises to push political agendas, some unrelated to the emergency cited, and executive power can expand substantially. That’s true historically, when unilateral changes might have been somewhat logical but still disturbing, from Lincoln’s suspension of habeas corpus…

10 recent moves leaders claim COVID-19 makes necessary

President Trump refused to reopen enrollment for the Affordable Care Act for the dozens of states where people unemployed because of the pandemic also lost company-provided health insurance. Trump increased anti-drug patrols, saying last month, “This will impact the coronavirus…

Straight Talk | Bel-wood / Heddington Oaks to close

Peoria County’s nursing home, founded in 1848, is closing. County board chairman Andrew Rand and administrator Scott Sorrel made the announcement Friday, April 17. While it was a surprise to most taxpayers, county board members have been quietly evaluating the…

Bill Knight | Trump’s virtual campaign rallies

Sixteen years before Jonathan Swift published “Gulliver’s Travels,” the essayist and clergyman wrote, “Falsehood flies, and the truth comes limping after it.” Now, every afternoon, the world is awash in nonstop nonsense from a mental Lilliputian who sees himself as…

Letter to the Editor | Victory for Standing Rock

U.S. District Judge James Boasberg has revoked the permits for the Dakota Access pipeline pending a full environmental review. DAPL has been an ongoing battle to protect tribal lands and tribal rights to hunt, fish and participate in traditional ceremonies.…

OpEd | CAFOs — the ideal disease incubators

BY KAREN HUDSON It has long been known that animals and humans readily trade disease by “species jumping” in a process called zoonosis. Zoonotic diseases are caused by harmful germs like viruses, bacteria, parasites and fungi. Zoonotic diseases are very…

Peorian Betty Friedan and TV “Mrs. America”

BY ELAINE HOPKINS A new television series, “Mrs. America,” explores the people involved in the fight for the Equal Rights Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, a battle that continues to this day. The series streams on Wednesdays on Hulu. The…

The Watch | Public meetings during the pandemic

At every government level — from Washington D.C. to Springfield to Peoria — COVID-19 is changing the subject, the format and the outcome of public meetings. When the Peoria County Board held its March 12 meeting, for example, Chairman Andrew…

Nature Rambles | Solace in nature

Bend but don’t break

During this unprecedented time, when everything we seem to know is turned upside down, there are still many steadfast harbingers of reality in the natural world. The chorus of Robins and Cardinals still begin at daybreak even if we are…

Inland Art | John Phillips

John Phillips

John Phillips began painting in earnest about the time that the medium was relinquishing its preeminent avant-garde station, leaving painters with the task of buttressing and re-defining the practice. Its formal contours had been turned inside out or neglected in…

Serendipity | Appreciation Through Challenges

Countless examples exist of inspiration, kindness and generosity among people learning about improvising and compromising as circumstances surrounding them suddenly changed. Pandemic was an unfamiliar word to many, and even those knowing the meaning, found its presence difficult to accept.…

West Peoria News | Cancellations

Cancellations due to the “stay at home” mandate include Neighborhood Watch, May 13; West Peoria Book Club no May meeting; West Peoria Township Clean Up Day will be rescheduled. Boy Scout Troop 11 members are selling 30-gallon trash bags. To…

Labor Roundup | May 2020

NY Mayor Bill de Blasio orders probe of Amazon firing protesting worker Christian Smalls, who organized a walkout to demand greater protections against coronavirus for warehouse workers. About 15 workers participated in the walkout at Amazon’s Staten Island warehouse after…