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Opinion

Me and cigars

I like a cigar every so often.

I smoke Te-Amo cigars, a relatively cheap Mexican brand that the cigar reviewers says has an “earthy” flavor. They taste a little like dirt, is what they taste like, but cigar reviewers write in a style that begs to be read in a leather chair, so they’re not gonna write “tastes like dirt.”

I like bacon with breakfast, not too crisp. I like my coffee black. I like my whiskey straight.

Sometimes, I like a scone for breakfast, a scone with orange marmalade. Sometimes, I like a really expensive cigar. Every now and then, I like to go to Starbucks for a vanilla latte. I don’t watch football, basketball or baseball. I do watch boxing.

I don’t own a motorcycle. I don’t want a motorcycle. I would like a really big pickup truck. I drive a midsized truck.

I think the world needs poets and plumbers. I have never been able to really make up my mind how I feel about abortion. I think everyone has the right to own a gun. I’ve owned guns myself. I think gun laws should be federalized, and I don’t think any civilian needs any gun that fires more than six shots.

I support the police, but I’ve driven drunk.

I don’t see anything wrong with legalizing marijuana, though I don’t smoke marijuana. I don’t think gambling should be legal, because every gambling game is rigged in favor of the house, and I don’t like to see people cheated.

I’m working class enough to dislike rich people and bosses, but I invest in the stock market.

I like a low unemployment rate, but I think what the jobs pay is more important than how many jobs are available. I believe in labor unions, not because union jobs pay more, but because unions make sure there’s one little piece of power that doesn’t belong to the boss.

I think no-fault divorce and out-of-wedlock birth shattered the America I knew, but I think a lot of men could do more to stand up for the children they create.

I believe in Jesus Christ, but I try not to say it too often because I don’t think Jesus wanted me to talk about him too much. Some things should be kept mostly in your heart.

I think people who are in the country illegally should be deported, but I’m not so sure about people whose parents brought them here illegally when they were 5 years old. I think any employer who knowingly hires people here illegally should be fined until his business goes bankrupt. He’s the one who is stealing American jobs, not the people he hires.

I think statues of Confederate generals should be taken down because the Confederacy killed more Americans than any Islamic terrorists.

I think kids should say the Pledge of Allegiance in school, but I don’t know that it will make them good Americans. As a reporter, I’ve covered hundreds of government meetings, and every one of them began with the Pledge of Allegiance, and some of the people who said the pledge at those meetings would steal anything that wasn’t red-hot and nailed down.

I don’t believe in easy solutions: The death penalty is a hell of an idea until you execute the wrong guy. Don’t “slash the budget;” trim it wisely and carefully.

Every age is an age of certainty. People who kept slaves did it because they KNEW it was right to keep slaves. They had no doubt.

America needs a little more indecision, a little less certainty. Murder starts with the belief that you are right.

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