Editorials

Recognize real potential of Cuba to export terror

It has been said and written that horror stories about the 1980 Mariel Boatlift were exaggerated. Of the about 125,000 Cubans who left their island and came here then, only a small percentage were criminals set free from jails and patients released from mental hospitals by then-Cuban dictator ...

Performance of gas industry outlasting negative party lines

It’s unsafe. It’s an unsustainable fad. It’s operated by people who don’t care about the environment using questionable technology. They will ravage our landscape and then leave at the first better opportunity. Those were the negative party lines regarding the natural gas industry ...

Consequential races deserve large turnout at the polls Tuesday

When it comes to primary elections, sometimes the ballot appears to hold few reasons for residents to turn out and vote. That, quite dramatically, is not the case this year. For starters, not only is it the primary election in which party nominations are made, but also a special election to ...

In trade war, U.S. must not surrender to China’s tactics

So, you’re sitting at your kitchen table one evening when a brainstorm hits: You’ve come up with a new way to manufacture a much-used product. Your technology is cheaper than anything currently in use. You’ll patent it, open a factory and be rich beyond your wildest dreams. Unless the ...

Heroism at the ready

Once again we have been reminded of the commonplace heroism that so many people hold quietly at the ready out of their compassion for others. Two armed teenagers bent on carrying out a massacre recently invaded STEM School Highlands Ranch in Colorado. Life-saving courage enough was shown by ...

Overspending takes state tax collections triggered by economy

For years state government in Pennsylvania has struggled on both ends of its budget process with tax collections lagging behind projections. Either the collections are lower than expected in an existing budget, leaving a deficit, or they are so iffy for the future that they create revenue ...

Firefighters: Human hearts beat behind shields of courage

We think of firefighters as being pretty heroic people. Our image of them is of strength and courage, of compassion and caring. They are the ones who run into burning buildings to rescue us, or extricate us from cars after motor vehicle accidents; they are role models for our children. But ...

‘Bernie’ Schelb leaves a legacy of civic dedication

Every small municipality in America needs a J. Bernard “Bernie” Schelb. That’s the best way to sum up the legacy of the man synonymous with South Williamsport who died recently. Mr. Schelb actually was quite involved with helping others in a variety of ways and was an active member of ...

Altering human behavior may be in our best interest

It is inevitable that some of the 8 million or so species of plant and animals on our Earth will go extinct within the next few decades. Some will die out this year. In many ways, nature is no guardian of biodiversity. Human activity is accelerating the rate of die-offs, scientists warn. They ...

The most difficult decisions in public school systems

School administrators and school boards have hefty loads to carry. They are caught in the middle of a tug of war between the needs of taxpayers and the needs of our local youths who are growing up in a difficult world. The struggle is real, from all sides, and there are many. Witness South ...

Regional districts, merit selection for state judges long overdue

Over the past 50 years, 53 of 96 seats in statewide judicial races have been won be candidates from Philadelphia and Allegheny County, which includes Pittsburgh. That makes sense, given the trappings of a statewide judicial election. Most of the information about judicial candidates is ...

Vacant properties cost taxpayers, merit penalties

If you are a Williamsport taxpayer, $28,000 worth of your hard-earned tax dollars is designated to keep 15 abandoned, vacant properties cleaned up. The cleanup may keep a structural problem from becoming worse. It may mean clearing unsightly, overgrown brush. It may mean mowing the lawn. The ...

Limit to nation’s patience may be tested by Iran

Some wars are ignited not because they were planned, but because what could have been contained confrontations blew up in everyone’s faces. That should not — cannot — be permitted to happen between the United States and Iran. Since President Donald Trump pulled this country out of the ...

Congress must rethink statutes, define ‘violence’

Juveniles who support terrorist groups actively can escape serious prosecution under federal law because of a 2018 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, The Associated Press reported this week. Already, that has prompted federal prosecutors to skip proceedings against some minors, allowing state courts ...

Suit dismissed over turnpike toll increases

It’s fair to wish a lawsuit over Pennsylvania Turnpike toll increases to fund the state’s transit agencies had been successful. But realistically, the ruling by U.S. District Judge Yvette Kane is hard to argue with. The judge ruled against the lead plaintiff, a Missouri-based trucking ...

River Walk expansion would answer future local needs, priorities

The Susquehanna River Walk is one of the treasures of our area. There is little or no disagreement on that. So why not expand it? Local leaders met recently with state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources officials at Susquehanna State Park to discuss the possibility of extending ...

Gateway project plan may meet lofty expectations

Economic development and revitalization projects have a checkered track record, whether the plan is for New York City or Williamsport. Oftentimes, they are long on flashy ideas but short on tangible results for a variety of reasons: an inability to secure funding, costs that outdistance plans ...

Remember the hero but not gunman

Let us hope the name of the man who shot two people to death and wounded two others at the University of North Carolina in Charlotte fades quickly from the public’s consciousness. If notoriety was part of his goal, it ought to be denied to him. Riley Howell should be remembered. When the ...

Pa. should not legalize use of marijuana for ‘recreation’

While some states are legalizing the recreational use of marijuana — all but one through voter referendums — Pennsylvania should not. The reasons are sound: Legalizing pot for open use creates a health risk, puts the public at risk on the roads and in the workplace. In addition, what ...

Barr was right not to participate when rule changed

Congressional hearings often have far less to do with getting information than with giving lawmakers public platforms on which to advance their own interests. Witness the number of times celebrities rather than genuine experts are called to testify. They draw more attention from the press. At ...