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Columnists
Colley: Here comes the Silent Majority

How does a fellow grow to 6 feet 8 inches without a spine? A fair question when talking about former FBI Director James Comey. St. James of the Potomac offered during his testimony last week before a committee of U.S. senators he was intimidated by Donald Trump and Loretta Lynch. Leftist mainstream media mainly ignored the latter in its attempt to continue the battering of the president. What we now know after the hearing is what Mr. Trump claimed all along. He had no relationship with Russia before Election Day. He instructed Comey to find anyone in the Trump campaign working in collusion with Russia. And Mr. Comey followed Lynch’s instructions to downplay the “matter” of Hillary Clinton’s emails. This is the smoking gun Democrats have been seeking?

Comey appears to have choreographed a performance designed to make himself an aggrieved and assaulted law enforcer. By tossing out red meat on the Clinton campaign and the former liberal Attorney General he believes his battle with Trump doesn’t look ideological. No wonder the director got canned. He’s a snake in the grass! As the hearing ended and the spinning opened it was clear reactions are based on team colors.

At a Republican dinner in February the chairman of the Idaho GOP reminded us things have been worse in this country. He cited the late 1960s when cities and campuses burned. A student of history can also cite 1778, 1863, 1932 and early 1942 as being particularly dark days for the United States. The country survived earlier challenges it would seem sometimes miraculously (1778) and in 1942 because of a greater outside threat. The scars from the other two dates still linger in opposing worldviews. Statues are being toppled by dark of night to avoid demonstrations, and the debate continues over the role of government in daily life. “We’ve survived before,” is a comfort but I’m not sure every time we flip a coin the result is heads. Unlike previous ages the expansion of the United Sates is complete and there are few opportunities to flee neighborhood disagreements. People are showing up at protests armed with bricks, brass knuckles and pistols. As the cities burned 50 years ago members of Richard Nixon’s Silent Majority watched the pictures in their living rooms. It was distant. The race riots weren’t a direct threat and the rioters were often simply demanding a slice of the pie. Many watching in silence were horrified by the flames but had empathy for the hunger. Today we’ve got one side demanding everyone else live by its dictates. Christians are ordered to bake cakes, take pictures and print T-shirts against their will and interpretation of the Almighty. Just last week Bernie Sanders upbraided an evangelical Christian at a Senate hearing. Sanders, Jewish by race but otherwise godless, is angry some Christians believe Jews and Muslims aren’t going to heaven. Dear Bernie, why are you so worried? You don’t believe in an afterlife. Since the only Christians Sanders is acquainted with are Unitarians gobbling granola in Vermont he may not know the majority of Christian churches make it clear: Jesus is God incarnate. If you don’t believe it then we aren’t worshipping the same God. Apparently this disqualifies a fellow for counting federal tax revenue!

College faculty lounges believe they’ve got the only enlightened truth and Sanders allows a pass. Anyone who deviates from the snowflake faith is vilified and need not apply for work. It permeates mainstream media as well. A reporter in North Carolina covering a weekend demonstration against sharia considered the protesters evil. Liberals say it can’t happen here and we shouldn’t hurt the feelings of the Mohammedans. Meanwhile on a weekly basis there are stories of genital mutilation in Mohammedan communities across America and imams at some of the nation’s largest mosques predict sharia is coming and they pray for haste.

Thirty-five years ago a neighbor of mine launched a large brush fire. He had been attempting a small controlled burn on a windy evening when things got out of control. He told firefighters he never expected the mess he created because he had a small water tank on his back. He was knee-walking drunk that night. Are liberals sober when they make their self-congratulatory pronouncements about tolerance? How come Lefty can’t look in the mirror and see the useful idiot? Please, Winston, be nice to Mr. Hitler or you’ll make him angry. A writer at the Wall Street Journal last week told the story of a grand church in Spain. Mohammedans are demanding they be allowed to also worship under the roof. There was a building prior on the site. Invading Saracens burned it and then constructed a mosque. When the invaders were repelled some 800 years ago the Roman Church occupied the new building on old church property. Coming to a neighborhood near you!

We’re told immigrants and refugees are taking our jobs because we’re lazy, stupid and drug addicted and we’re told we deserve it because we voted for Trump. I’m thinking the Silent Majority is about ready to get off the couch and come out swinging. Election Day was more than a preview. Last week a Seattle newspaper reported a city councilwoman announced at a public meeting she had no Republican friends. The crowd cheered. I’m quickly divesting liberal acquaintances. Since they plan to destroy Christianity and traditional values of self-reliance in favor of a god-king along the lines of Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders or Kamala Harris then I want no part of the scheme. There are two solutions. Give them California, Massachusetts and Rhode Island as a separate nation and leave the rest of us alone. Option two is a massive Go Fund Me effort. We’ll buy the liberals one way tickets to any other country in the world. Or better yet, some place like Mars. A good place for the wigged out to launch their new civilization.


DREW NASH, TIMES-NEWS  

Columnist Bill Colley has his portrait taken Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2016, at the Times-News in downtown Twin Falls.


Columns
Other view: Let cities and states fight the illicit opioid crisis

The following editorial appears on Bloomberg View:

Desperate for more effective ways to confront the opioid crisis, cities and states are reining in doctors who prescribe too many opioid painkillers and suing drugmakers for downplaying how addictive their products are. But the epidemic has moved beyond prescription pills to illicit drugs, so it also makes sense to try an approach that’s more aggressive — and controversial: giving addicts a safe place to use drugs.

Opponents argue that this policy amounts to government sanction of unlawful and destructive behavior. But such centers, which are supervised by medical personnel, save lives and money and help draw addicts into treatment, a recent cost-benefit analysis shows. Like methadone clinics and needle-exchange programs, they are one way to directly confront a grim reality.

Deaths from fentanyl overdose rose more than 72 percent from 2014 to 2015, and show no signs of slowing down. The drug is 50 to 100 times more powerful than heroin, and its derivative carfentanil is 100 times stronger still. Users, who may believe they are taking heroin, can die within minutes of taking the drugs.

At supervised injection facilities — dozens exist outside the U.S. — nurses and other medical practitioners are on hand to administer naloxone to keep overdosing users alive. They also provide clean needles, advice about safe consumption practices, and referrals for treatment for substance abuse, mental health and other needed services.

The study examined the experience of such a center in Vancouver and projected the impact of a similar center in Baltimore — a city with an extraordinarily high, and rapidly rising, overdose fatality rate. In Baltimore, the researchers concluded, a supervised injection facility could prevent six deaths a year, 108 overdose-related ambulance calls, 78 emergency room visits and 27 hospitalizations. That would amount to a savings of $7.8 million a year — much more than the $1.8 million it would cost to run the place.

The city of Seattle plans to open the first safe-injection center in the U.S., though some state legislators oppose it. States and the federal government certainly have an interest in enforcing drug laws and policy. In this case, however, they should stand aside and let cities experiment responsibly. In the still-raging opioid crisis, all reasonable efforts to save lives should be given a chance to work.


Mailbag
Letter: Newspaper isn't being fair to Trump

Newspaper isn’t being fair to Trump

What in the world is wrong with you people at the Times-News? Don’t you like anything about our president? Doesn’t he do anything good for our country? Everyday, and especially on Sundays you publish negative article after negative article. It’s like getting the NY Times or Washington Post, in fact, it’s their articles you keep printing. We didn’t like our last president. We just sucked it up and hoped for the next election.

I’m 73 years old and I have never seen the hatred and anger in people today and your paper just helps feed it. Come on, President Trump won, and half the country loves it. No matter what you keep printing, you are not going to get us to change our opinion of him. Get over it, and start liking our country again. You probably get many letters like this complaining about your coverage of President Trump. I never see one, so that probably means I will never see this one either.

Jim Wahlgren

Albion