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Columns, Perspective

  1. Perspective: That blue bin and recycling in America


    Tucked in the woods 30 miles north of Washington, D.C., is a plant packed with energy-guzzling machines that can make even an environmentalist's heart sing — giant conveyor belts, sorters and crushers saving a thousand tons of paper, plastic and other recyclables from reaching landfills each day.

    At Waste Management’s huge recycling facility in Maryland, the recycling stream is sometimes polluted with non-recyclable materials, and the big blue bins make it easy not to break down cardboard boxes, which is problematic.
  2. Column: Protecting the nation, protecting our liberty


    I used to believe there were flying saucers until I saw Ted Koppel interview "experts" on UFOs 19 years ago on his Nightline show. After hearing one of his guests spin a wide-ranging conspiracy theory that involved many high-level federal agencies in a purportedly monumental cover-up, Koppel, in his …

  3. Maxwell: South Africa, not America, directly confronts race issues


    As a graduate student, I visited South Africa for the first time in 1976, a year before Steve Biko, the charismatic leader of the Black Consciousness Movement, was tortured to death by the apartheid government in a prison cell.

  4. Perspective: Justice Roberts cites four historical examples of marriage that miss his point


    In his written dissent to the Supreme Court's decision to effectively legalize gay marriage, Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. made a conspicuous gesture to the rest of the world. He referred to the "social institution" that the majority of the court was "transforming" and anchored its legitimacy in the currents of …

  5. Perspective: My Southern heritage


    A few days ago, I got an earful from a reader for a Perspective piece I wrote for the Times back in 2008. I wrote then about the Confederate battle flag and the local group hell-bent on flying it high, contorting history both to put their ancestors, and mine, in an impossibly favorable light, and ignoring …

    The Slave Schedules of the 1860 U.S. Census inventory more than 50 human beings that my great-great-grandfather owned.
  6. Perspective: Who belongs on the pedestal?



    Ecclesiastes 44:1, 44:13

    Courtesy of St. Augustine Historical Society
  7. Perspective: Florida Democrats plot a road to relevance

    State Roundup

    The rallying cry was familiar at Democrat Eric Lynn's congressional campaign kickoff last month in St. Petersburg. Florida Democrats don't win elections with their wallets, said Pinellas party chair Susan McGrath. "We win elections on the ground."

  8. Perspective: Catholic teaching and gay marriage


    In the wake of the Supreme Court ruling recognizing gay marriage, a friend of mine linked to a post from the blog "Courageous Priest." In it, the archbishop of Detroit implied — and a theologian at a Detroit seminary stated — that Catholics who promote gay marriage should not try to take communion because …

  9. Dockery: State budget shortcomings clearer


    Now that some time has passed since the Florida Legislature produced a state budget and the governor cut $461 million from it, we're starting to see the results.

  10. Column: Could Biden be the anti-Hillary candidate?


    There seems to be a lot more talk in Washington and in political operative circles around the country about the prospect of Vice President Joe Biden running for president in 2016. Interesting.

    Vice President Joe Biden is uninhibited and impossible to script — which makes him seem authentic.
  11. Column: How crime affects the Supremes


    Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, never one to avoid a good fight, tried to undercut Justice Stephen Breyer by suggesting that federal judges don't face everyday violence.

    But wait …

  12. Ruth: Jolly draws opposition from both sides of Tampa Bay


    Perhaps former Tampa City Council member Mary Mulhern expected to arrive in Pinellas County with all the adoration and folderol of Elizabeth Taylor sitting upon a massive sedan chair atop the shoulders of slaves entering Rome in Cleopatra.

  13. Ruth: A curious pick for Hillsborough EPC chief


    With the arrival of Janet Dougherty to lead the Hillsborough County Environmental Protection Commission, Ronald Reagan's famous axiom about "trust, but verify" was never more timely —or relevant.

  14. When renewing vehicle tags, beware of third-party vendors and their fees


    One of the key functions of the Tax Collector's Office is to renew and provide related services for automobile tags. Each month, our office mails out renewal notices for tags that will expire on any given customer's date of birth in the following month. Customers have the option to renew tags either in person, online or …

    Mike Fasano
  15. Ruth: Surprise! Lindsey Graham and I are tied!


    Since I announced my candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination a few months ago, the groundswell of support has been overwhelming.

    Campaign manager Gracie the goldendoodle works on strategy.
  16. Retiring the rebel flag would be the Southern thing to do


    I proudly consider myself a child of the South. I've lived south of the Mason-Dixon Line nearly my entire life with a few exceptions, including a couple of months in Pennsylvania, where I was born. My parents were both born and reared in the South during the civil rights era. My father is from Jacksonville, and my …

  17. Column: The sunny side of greed


    In the dire prophecies of science fiction writers and the fevered warnings of left-wing activists, big corporations will soon rule the Earth — or already do.

    Fine with me.

  18. LeMieux: U.S. Supreme Court overreaches


    Is America giving up on our constitutional democracy?

  19. Column: The next few days will transform Greece and Europe


    As it turns out, the Greek crisis ends not with a bang, but with a referendum.

    Greeks line up at an ATM in Thessaloniki on Monday, the first day of a 60-euro daily withdrawal limit.
  20. Column: Heroes on the bench


    As time passes, we will see the Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage as the moment when we started to embrace the court as a leader in social progress, not as an institution to be feared because of the backlashes its more progressive decisions could supposedly generate.