Community Voices

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  1. MING CHEN: A bipartisan, human rights issue that Congress needs to address

    Sunday, Nov 23 2014 11:01 PM

    When this month's elections gave the Republican Party control of Congress, both President Obama and incoming congressional leaders pledged themselves to try and find ways to work together despite their political differences. But an opportunity to demonstrate that kind of leadership doesn't need to wait until the next Congress is sworn in; in fact, that will be too late.

    House Resolution 281 condemns a little-known but brutal practice in the People's Republic of China known as "forced organ harvesting": transplant organs are taken, without consent, from inmates in Chinese prisons, typically from people imprisoned for their political or religious beliefs.

    This practice, which began 30 years ago and has continued despite dissembling and...

  2. KERRY McGILL: Don't bring down the 1 percent; instead, build up the bottom 99

    Let's tax the rich. Wait. What? Why? Oh, that's right, because they are making too much money or because they have too much wealth. They are the top 1 percent and they can afford it. That's a good reason. Better yet, what do they need all...

  3. JOHN PRYOR: Cybersecurity needs action, but there is a bigger threat

    Everything The Washington Post recommends ("Cyberthreats: Act now and shut the door," Nov. 17) for government, business, and individuals do to protect individual personal and confidential data is correct. However, their recommendation...

  4. JEFF HEINLE: When we needed to speak up, so many of us remained silent

    Recently my son came to my wife and me to initiate a discussion on a topic he clearly considered serious. Was he on drugs? Were we about to be grandparents? I looked at my wife with the sort of telepathic stare that only intimate married...

  5. KELLY KULZER-REYES: Pass ABLE Act and help families whose children have disabilities

    There is nothing a mother wants more for her children than for them to reach their potential. Right now, it is difficult for me to prepare a strong foundation for my daughter's future. My 2-year-old daughter, Amelia, has Down syndrome,...

  6. PAUL EISMAN: Facts about our refinery's future in Bakersfield

    The Nov. 9 article "Alon backs off plan to reopen refinery" certainly came as a surprise to many people, not the least of whom were myself and my colleagues in Bakersfield. Frankly, we are disappointed that facts from our recent quarterly...

  7. DENA MURPHY: Open enrollment is almost here: Here's what you need to know

    One year ago, we journeyed into new territory as California implemented the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare or health care reform. The journey has been interesting and challenging -- but at the same time rewarding -- as we...

  8. ETHAN McENROE: Kern will need veterinarians to take care of its future herds

    Growing up in Bakersfield as the son of a food-animal veterinarian, I had no delusions about the hard work the job required. Accompanying my father to work and listening to him read bedtime stories by famous veterinary author James Herriot...

  9. BRIK McDILL: Take a lesson from our children: Let's learn how not to be greedy

    Halloween night provided a wonderful lesson in the generosity of children. My son and daughter-in-law escorted their Cinderella daughter in her neighborhood rounds of trick-or-treating. So that kids were not shorted for candy at their now...

  10. PAM SCHALLOCK: Common sense takes back seat to political correctness again

    While we must find a way to live with life's little ironies, this is driving me crazy. Join me in considering these two recent articles from The Californian ("Biologists identify pot gardens as salmon threat," Oct.1, and "Judge upholds...

  11. SANDRA FIGUEROA: Preventative measures should be taken to avoid pesticide exposure

    Did you kill your wife and kids?Can you imagine feeling guilty for your wife's death? Feeling guilty for all of your kids' health conditions? As you sit in the hospital waiting room, you begin to realize your very own job is the one to...

  12. CAROLYN BELLI: Criticism about the preserve's restoration project unfounded

    It was distressing to read the blog in "Bakersfield Observed" of The Californian on Oct. 31 entitled "Preserve." Misconceptions and misinformation are inexcusable and irresponsible and can do a lot of thoughtless and needless damage. There...

  13. ANDRAE GONZALES: Here's what can be done to help prepare future workforce

    I grew up in Kern County and am proud to call Bakersfield my home. Over the years, I have watched our local economy grow -- with new jobs, companies and innovation emerging in our own backyards. As the current president of the Bakersfield...

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