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  1. SYLVIA ALAJAJI: The day I found out that my grandparents had survived a genocide

    Sunday, Apr 26 2015 10:00 PM

    I remember when I first learned about the bad thing that happened long ago. It was in the mid-1980s in Tulsa, Okla., where my parents moved to from Beirut shortly before I was born.

    I became used to falling asleep to the sounds of CNN, our lifeline to a Beirut ravaged by civil war. My parents' worries were palpable. Those awful nights when the phone would ring, a chill would run down my spine as I tried to make out my parents' voices, all the while praying that our relatives were OK.

    Back then, it hardly ever occurred to me there was something else -- something that happened somewhere else, long ago -- that had touched my family in ways I could hardly begin to understand.

  2. B.J. MITCHELL: System helps libraries improve service -- and reduce costs

    The article "Survey skips privatization issue" (April 18) asks the question "are officials asking the right questions?" The answer to that is "no." The real question is "how can we improve service while at the same time reducing costs?" A...

  3. COMMUNITY VOICES: Armenian genocide is a lesson we must all remember today

    April 24 is the 100th anniversary of the Armenian genocide in Turkey. I'm not Armenian. My daughter-in-law is -- so I have more than ample data of that perspective from her family. I've also visited Turkey where these atrocities occurred....

  4. PATSY OUELLETTE: With cancer, stop living in fear and start living with strength

    The "Big C" has been on our minds lately. There was Angelina Jolie's second bout of surgery, and then there was the Ken Burns' special on PBS documenting cancer's long history. In six hours of viewing, fear is the biggest response, as...

  5. RICHARD YOUNG: Until news media put away their agenda, they'll remain incredible

    The "news" has become incredible. Not "incredible" as a slang synonym for awesome. Incredible as in "not worthy of belief." The most recent big example was the appalling collection of falsehoods published in The Rolling Stone's article...

  6. JOE MATHEWS: Should California become old like Florida?

    Florida Gov. Rick Scott travels to California this weekend to steal away some of our state's businesses. So why don't we return the favor by developing plans to steal away some of Florida's greatest assets -- old people? Californians like...

  7. SHERRY BEBITCH JEFFE & DOUGLAS JEFFE: Why Jerry Brown's second drought may leave his greatest legacy

    California Governor Jerry Brown subscribes to the "canoe theory of politics" -- paddle a little to the left, a little to the right and then glide down the middle. He is using this approach to get through the roiling politics created by...

  8. OTHER VIEWS: Rolling Stone failure hurts effort to reform reporting of on-campus rape

    The thoroughly discredited story about an alleged University of Virginia gang rape passed off by Rolling Stone magazine as investigative journalism was neither investigative nor journalism. That was clear even before the 12,000-word...

  9. CATHY YOUNG: Rape, lies and political correctness

    Does the cause of combating rape on college campuses require a willful blindness to false allegations? That's the question raised by some reactions to last week's police report on the inquiry into shocking -- and discredited -- claims of...

  10. OTHER VIEWS: California's farmers need no help deciding what to plant

    Farms are not exaggerated lawns. Corn, melons and almonds have more value than, say, geraniums. We found a recent reader suggestion to that effect, uh, perplexing. It could only have been written by someone with virtually no knowledge of...

  11. B.J. MITCHELL: Free public libraries are essential to a truly functioning democracy

    I have just finished reading James Burger's article, "Documents show library privatization talks in 2014," just when I thought I couldn't be shocked any more than I had already been. Our Supervisors made the decision to pander to the rich...

  12. GENE TACKETT: Here's to strong memories of the real McFarland USA

    I walked across the raised area in front of the McFarland High School gym in June 1961 to receive my High School diploma, the same gym in the movie "McFarland USA." I recently watched the movie for the second time. What pride in the fact...

  13. RICHARD GEARHART: How do high oil prices increase Kern dropout rate? Here's how

    High oil prices are a boon for Kern County. They spur significant capital investment to tap into profits. These rigs, wells, and machines are not the only investments altered by high oil prices. Human capital, investment in oneself, is...

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