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If You Ask Me

Melancholy mounts in race for governor

I’ve been voting since I filled out an an absentee ballot for Dwight Eisenhower at Fort Knox in 1956 and in all those years, I can’t remember an election with candidates less appealing than the pair running for governor of Connecticut in November—except for the pair who ran for president two years ago. 

I still hope to do my civic duty and vote for someone for governor but at the moment, a month before Election Day, I can’t cast that vote for either of the major party candidates, Ned Lamont or Bob Stefanowski.  

An American disease for centuries

Xenophobia, an intense or irrational fear of things foreign, especially people, has been an American disease since some natives of this continent took an instant dislike for the white people in funny clothes landing on their shores 400 years ago.

Once those white people proved the natives’ suspicions were warranted by kicking them off their lands, the first white, Anglo Saxon Protestants had things pretty much to themselves for centuries.  

Dull debate ended early enough to see Red Sox make history

The best thing about the debate between Ned Lamont and Bob Stefanowski was its conclusion — early enough to allow us serious students of history to see the Boston Red Sox win their 100th game of the season. That hasn’t happened since 1946.

Party bases pick poor candidates in their closed primaries

While celebrating Tom Foley’s victory over veteran legislator John McKinney in the Republican gubernatorial primary four years ago, the party chairman predicted “our base will turn out in big numbers this November to overturn Malloy and his failed economic policies.”

Hoping my first newspaper lives to be 100

My high school yearbook had a section devoted to predictions on the future of graduating seniors — who would be president or maybe a star of stage, screen and radio. Mine predicted I would be “bylining in the Daily News.”

It didn’t happen, but I truly would have welcomed the experience. The Daily News was the paper I grew up with, the first paper I read or had read to me, starting with my grandfather reading the Sunday funnies, as the comic strips were then known, somewhere around 1937.

What do we know about the candidates for governor?

Depressing, isn’t it?

In a few days, a very small number of Connecticut voters will look over a field of not particularly well-known candidates and pick two of them to run for governor in November.

I suspect an even smaller number of voters can name all seven of the men whose names will appear on the Democratic and Republican primary ballots next Tuesday.

Don’t know much about history

There are certain qualities we once thought every president should have. He should never lie to us. He should try to unite us, be the president of all the people. He should know a lot about the U.S. Constitution and all of its amendments. 

And he should know history, especially ours. But this president neither seems to know or care much about what happened before his election.

What caused Trump to side with the enemy?

The headline on the column that appeared in this space on Feb. 8 asked, “What does Putin have on Trump?” Not a bad question, as things turned out.

After Helsinki, we should amend the question to read, “What does Putin have on Trump that caused the president of the United States to side with the enemy?”

Supreme Court won’t ignore public opinion

More than a century ago, Mr. Dooley, the Chicago Irish bartender created by journalist Peter Finley Dunne, sagely observed that, “the Soopreme Court follows the illiction returns.”

Today, the observation still stands, though it might be more accurate to say the 21st century Court follows the public opinion polls, which can be an even more reliable measurement of the nation’s will than the election returns.

A death in the family: Doing the work they believe in on a small newspaper

‘It’s like being a teacher or a nurse,” one reporter called his job after five colleagues were massacred in the newsroom of their small daily newspaper. “You get paid an honest wage to do work that you believe matters.” 

Since the tragedy, there have been many eloquent responses like this one, along with long overdue recognition of the role smaller newspapers like the Capital Gazette of Annapolis, Md., play in the life of the community and the nation.