The people's voice of reason

Articles from the December 1, 2017 edition


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  • A Political Witch Hunt Influencing an Election

    Marcia Chambliss|Dec 1, 2017

    Entering the month of December, all I really want is to focus on the celebration of God's gift of the birth of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Not politics. And certainly not an incredibly nasty U.S. Senate race that is bringing unwanted attention to our beloved state. Yet, here we are and we have a decision to make - one that will have a tremendous impact on our state and nation, and speculation of all manner is rampant about the message that will be sent with the election of either...

  • Savior

    Dec 1, 2017

    For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6...

  • Potpourri for December

    Judge Peggy Givhan|Dec 1, 2017

  • 5 Ways Social Security Protects you and your Family

    Kylle McKinney|Dec 1, 2017

    Next payday, when you see a portion of your wages go toward FICA taxes, rest easier knowing that your investment in Social Security brings a lifetime of protections for you and your family. From your first job and throughout your career, we track your earnings and give you credits for the contributions you’ve made through payroll taxes. Those credits can translate into important future benefits. As you prepare for a financially secure future, you should know about these five benefits that...

  • Tears and Laughter: Twice as many Alabamians die each year from suicide as homicide

    Amanda Walker|Dec 1, 2017

    Very early in the morning on November 6, child in Etowah County notified Hokes Bluff police that a murder/suicide had taken place at her home. On November 1, in the middle of an ordinary day, a Vestavia Hills police officer stepped behind the Metro Diner, located next to the Vintage Barber Shop, and took his own life. Sunday, November 5, a group of about 1500 people participated in the Birmingham Out of the Darkness Walk at Heardmont Park in Hoover. Everyone participating walked in honor of a...

  • "The Greatest Gift of Love"

    Trisston Wright Burrows|Dec 1, 2017

    With the most popular holiday just around the corner, it seems like everyone is getting into the Christmas spirit. Stores are lining their aisles with Christmas goodies and decor, TV shows have switched to the theme of giving and love, and radio stations are playing beloved Christmas music. And why shouldn't they? After all, it is that time of year…the meaning of the season, right? This thought makes me think about the true meaning of Christmas. Christmas isn't just about giving or feeling...

  • "You Are Being Played"

    Thomas Ertl|Dec 1, 2017

    Dear Alabama Christians, In my 50 years of following national political races I don't know if I've ever seen one as strange as the current U.S. Senate race in your state. First, we had the national Republican Party in the September Senate run-off working against the state's more popular candidate Judge Roy Moore in favor of their establishment candidate, and former D.C. lobbyist, Luther Strange. The D.C. Republicans flooded Strange with money only to see him lose by a significant 9-point...

  • Joy of Christmas

    Lester Spencer|Dec 1, 2017

    Did you know that 63% of Americans think that the Christmas season should include participating in a Christmas worship experience in a church? And have you heard another very interesting statistic, 7 in 10 Americans believe that Christmas would be a better experience if it had a more Christian focus? Those stats do not surprise me at all. Why? Because deep down, I believe, that most folks know that there is something very beautiful, hopeful and mysterious about Christmas. They sense that this...

  • AUBURN HAS GEORGIA ON ITS MIND

    Ed Jones|Dec 1, 2017

    PLEASE NOTE THIS WAS WRITTEN BEFORE THE AUBURN/GEORGIA GAME. HISTORY CONTINUES TO UNFOLD IN NATIONAL COLLEGE FOOTBALL. IT IS NEVER ENDING...ESPECIALLY WITH THE NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP UPCOMING. Auburn has a direct line to the 2017 National Championship. But, the path goes through the state of Georgia. First there is the SEC Championship in Atlanta’s brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Saturday, December 2nd. Another win over the Georgia Bulldogs locks up a date for Auburn in the NCAA top four foo...

  • Fishing Cat

    Ron VanHerwyn|Dec 1, 2017

    The Fishing cat is yet another example of a cat that disproves the misconception that cats don't like water. The Fishing Cat is a small to medium sized feline that is natively found throughout a number of countries in south-east Asia. Unlike other cat species found around the world (with the notable exception of the Jaguar) the Fishing Cat spends most of its life in areas of dense vegetation close to water and is an excellent swimmer. However, despite its water-loving lifestyle, the Fishing Cat...

  • Bow Season ... tracking a deer after it's been stuck with an arrow.

    Steve Long|Dec 1, 2017

    This month, I want to talk about how to anticipate tracking a deer after it's been stuck with an arrow. There are some tell-tale signs to keep an eye out for when the arrow hits that can give you a good idea of where you hit it and how long you need to wait before tracking it. Of course, I can right out tell you that shots to the head and neck aren't really what you want. Sure, they're pretty vital, but with all the bone, skin, muscle, and fur in the way, you're more likely than not just going...

  • "… a decree from Caesar Augustus for all to be taxed"

    John Sophocleus|Dec 1, 2017

    My first Gazette Christmas column contemplated how many were still haunted by Miss Greer Garson’s voice in the opening narration of the 1958 animated version of “The Little Drummer Boy,” one of the few indelible remaining memories of my youth from Christmases long past. The King James Version of Luke 2:1 reads: “And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.” Her narration continued with, “To disobey the Roman...

  • FLOOD INSURANCE

    John Martin|Dec 1, 2017

    Catastrophic destruction wrought by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma this year, we have witnessed a great deal of wailing and gnashing of teeth in response to the failure of our National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to provide enough funding to repair the damage. Why can’t our government settle the claims? For anybody with even a mediocre understanding of how insurance works, the answer is simple: The cost of covering the damage far exceeds the premiums that have been collected. The money is just...

  • Repair or Replace - "My Thingamajig Done Got Slow"

    Darnell Hughley|Dec 1, 2017

    “Why can’t I update my iTunes® software?” “My old Quicken® software that I’ve used for years now is no longer working?” “Where can I find this old type of cable that once connected my ancient printer?” “Hey! How on earth am I supposed to plug this new-fangled cable into my aged computer?” “What on earth is this ‘thingamajiggy’ supposed to be connected to now?” Yep! We’ve all heard someone with an older computer system asking these questions. In fact, as the owner...

  • Southern Cuisine for December

    David Spooner|Dec 1, 2017

    Being Southern I read a column in a local paper a couple weeks back titled "What being Southern means to this ol' gal" written by Jaine Treadwell. It is a touching piece and since part of the story was about food in the South, I want to share some of the column with you. She writes, "Being Southern is hog killings, chitlin' suppers, cane grindings and syrup makings. It's pulling corn and picking velvet beans. It's shelling peas on the front porch and drying peaches on the tin roof of the barn....

  • Thoughts of Christmas

    Dr. John Bitter|Dec 1, 2017

    It's that time of the year when the thoughts of most of us turn to the celebration of Christmas. It's also the time of the year when the squirrels come out of the woodwork and we're inundated with more nonsense than we want to endure as it relates to the holiday: it's principal characters, and its celebration. From this person's viewpoint there are two tales that best represent Christmas and all it stands for; these being: O. Henry's The gift of the Magi, and Charles dickens' A Christmas Carol....

  • NEW YEAR PREP

    Buddy Hicks|Dec 1, 2017

    Well, it’s that time of year again. Time to start thinking about your resolutions for the New Year and making your plans and goals for the New Year. I’m sure most of you, like myself, will have the usual resolutions of exercising more and eating better but what we need to add to that are resolutions concerning our finances. First, you’ll want to work out your budget for the year and then determine where there are holes in your financial design. Let’s start with your insurance needs. Make...

  • I Am Thankful

    Commissioner Chris Beeker Jr|Dec 1, 2017

    In November we celebrate two holidays that cause us to reflect on our history and the need to remember the sacrifice of so many. Those holidays are Veterans Day and Thanksgiving. The month of November also reflects fall in its full array of colors, which serves to remind us of the need to be thankful for things we mostly take for granted every day. I hope that you paused on Veterans Day to give thanks for those men and women who were brave and selfless enough to fight for our freedom. My...

  • Montgomery County Law

    Sheriff Derrick Cunningham|Dec 1, 2017

    Christmas Safety Christmas time is “open season” for burglars! Please make sure you dispose of boxes discreetly. Don’t put your boxes out by the curb for garbage pickup; instead, make sure they are folded as small as possible so they fit in your garbage can. Burglars don’t necessarily see this as the homeowner having a new TV but if they bought a new TV, they can probably afford another one. Together we can help reduce the number of burglaries occurring in our communities. Anti-Bullying...

  • Autauga County Law

    Sheriff Joe Sedinger|Dec 1, 2017

    Church Safety The Autauga County Sheriff's Office giving a presentation on Church Security to 9 local churches. Sheriff Sedinger and Lt. Campbell gave the presentation. This presentation was requested by several local pastors following the church shooting in Texas a few weeks ago. We are glad to assist our local pastors and churches as needed....

  • The Crisis We Face Today: And the Only Solution

    Bobbie Ames|Dec 1, 2017

    We have heard the 13th Century called The Age of Faith, the 18th Century called the Age of Reason, and the 20th Century called The Atomic Age. Our current age has rightly been called The Age of Irrationalism....

  • Can you make a "case" for celebrating Christmas on December 25th?

    Ron Holtsford|Dec 1, 2017

    The Bible does not tell us the date of Jesus's birth nor does it tell us to celebrate His birth. A celebration of Jesus's resurrection following His death on the cross is a more appropriate celebration for Christians than His birth. That is because Jesus' resurrection from the dead is the proof of the deity of the Son and the real hope for those that believe on Him that their soul will reside with God forever. Society however would much rather celebrate a birth rather than a death. I remember...

  • U-n-g-r-a-t-e-f-u-l

    Robert Tate|Dec 1, 2017

    By now, all of us have heard about the three UCLA freshmen basketball players who were caught shoplifting in China a couple of weeks ago. Yeah, that is a pretty bad thing. Stealing is bad enough but to do it on foreign soil is taking theft to a new level. Haven’t these guys seen the 1978 movie, “Midnight Express” where the guy was trying to sneak heroin out of Turkey but got caught at the airport? Or maybe they have seen a couple of episodes of the series titled, “Locked Up Abroad?...