To pull off a single Honor Flight or Freedom Flight is quite the undertaking. It requires a massive amount of fundraising, the coordination of a hundred volunteers or more, and the cooperation of airlines, bus companies and local, state and federal agencies.
The final gavel fell on the 2013 Iowa legislative session about an hour ago. We were scheduled for 110 days but went three weeks into overtime. In the final week, two of my proposals passed the legislature and will now be considered by the Governor. It was an exciting end-of-session.
How many 10- to 12-year-olds do you know? They are quite delightful and highly skilled individuals. They are often very agile and nimble at this age, as more than two-thirds of accidents occur before age 10. By age 4, 50 percent of our brain is developed, and 80 percent by age 8. By age 12 to 13, brains are 100-percent developed. So, it is a little scary, but these 10- to 12-year-olds have nearly developed brains. The people around them have done much imputing; now, they are using the information.
As much as I love my job, I freely admit there are stories I would much rather not have to cover.
My doctor and dear friend Larry calls it “an exciting gateway of genetics, for it is leading to specific therapy to specific subsets of a given disease.” Some of the folks writing comments call it a conspiracy by drug companies and medical establishment motivated by greed.
With my columns, I usually prefer to talk about my life and the random adventures that transpire in the life of a 20-something Kansas City transplant in Newton, Iowa.
As a continuation of last week’s column on budgeting, I want to cover entertainment. I was asked by several people, “Don’t you have to miss out on a lot of fun opportunities because you’re worried about your budget?”
Eleven years into No Child Left Behind, requiring schools to stop the practice of considering students defective and educate them up to grade level, Iowa remains stuck on the pathetic 41st national percentile as the student proficiency level (when the 65th national percentile is grade level for this country – and our 95th national percentile is grade level for international standards).
This time of year, as college students return home for the summer, many parents may notice how many politically correct ideas they have acquired on campus. Some of those parents may wonder how they can undo some of the brainwashing that has become so common in what are supposed to be institutions of higher learning.
One year ago, on May 19, 2012, four young adults, Jacob Boyd, Caitlyn Atchley, Blake Eakins, and Matthew House, drowned in the Mississippi River after two jon boats collided. One year later, Zach Boyd, Jacob (Jake) Boyd’s brother, decided to walk across Iowa, wearing a life jacket, in memory of the four victims and to promote boating safety. It was a daunting task, but Zach was determined that if he could get the message across to just one person about the importance of wearing life preservers and following safety rules of the river, his trip would be worth it.
My 8-month-old is a terrible gift giver. I don’t mean to embarrass him on his first try at this whole Mother’s Day thing, but really, I expected better.