Re-elect Speaker Mattiello

By Edward Achorn

For more than 20 years, I was an editorial-pages editor at The Providence Journal. I worked hard to maintain the newspaper’s great tradition of service to the public, which dated back to 1829, as a responsible voice advocating for the people of Rhode Island.

That voice has been eliminated as part of the newspaper industry’s reaction to dire financial problems. As former longtime publisher Howard Sutton noted, Rhode Island has suffered a painful blow in losing the Journal’s ability to speak out boldly and offer informed perspective on issues confronting the state. Separated from news coverage, we weighed in on sustaining good government, combating political corruption, promoting the welfare of the people, and defending the First Amendment and other constitutional rights.

The Journal for well over a century also made important endorsements. Over the last two elections, it urged the re-election of House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello, a Democrat from Cranston.

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Abraham Lincoln facedown

By Edward Achorn

Abraham Lincoln’s statues dot the landscape for a reason that is well-understood: He is a symbol of wisdom, decency, sacrifice, and perseverance in defeating slavery and liberating millions of black Americans.

Antifa rioters knocked down his statue in Portland during a self-proclaimed “Day of Rage” on the eve of Columbus Day.

They also trashed the Oregon Historical Society, which preserves treasures of the past so that people of succeeding generations may understand their culture and history.

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Don’t let COVID-19 dominate your life

By Edward Achorn

I was happy to hear President Trump speak out against fear Monday. Panic has been the worst thing about our response to deadly COVID-19.

As he was preparing to leave the Walter Reed Medical Center after being treated for a COVID-19 infection, the president tweeted this: “Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life.”

Back at the White House, he put out a video message: “I learned so much about coronavirus. And one thing that’s for certain: Don’t let it dominate you. Don’t be afraid of it.”

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The news on COVID-19 is good

By Edward Achorn

My friends in the news media, evidently determined to promote a panic narrative all the way to the end, are not publicizing this information widely. So I thought I would.

The overall mortality rates in America — deaths from all factors — have, since Labor Day, sunk below the baseline of expected deaths. See the charts above, based on CDC data.

That means COVID-19 is no longer killing more people than could be expected to die in a normal year. This is true even for people 85 and older. The spike of last April is long over.

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History says Democrats have a weak hand

By Edward Achorn

Moments after news broke that 87-year-old Ruth Bader Ginsburg had died Friday, the threats and posturing commenced.

We were told that the Democratic justice’s dying wish was that the open seat on the Supreme Court be left vacant until next year, when a new president takes over (possibly a Democrat with a Democratic Senate).

Democratic leaders promised to retaliate if the Republican president nominated a successor and the Republican-controlled Senate confirmed her before the election. Or, as the media put it, if Republicans “jam through” a nomination.

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The outrage of the week

By Edward Achorn

I appear from time to time on a public television show in Rhode Island called “A Lively Experiment.” Each episode concludes with an outrage or kudo of the week from each guest.

My outrage this week was the attempted assassination of two Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies in Compton, California. A suspect approached their car and shot them in the face.

Outside the hospital where they were taken, protesters (how quickly they are dispatched!) chanted, “Let them die!”

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Children pay cruel price for adult fears

By Edward Achorn

This has been a terrible year for America’s children. Adults have put their fears ahead of children’s interests, closing schools while other countries kept them open. Now there is even talk of canceling Halloween.

One of the saddest developments is the requirement that children wear masks in school all day. Given how unsanitary and unpleasant that is, that seems close to child abuse. It’s cruel.

I feel sorry for kids who are bound in a stifling mask all day, suffering oxygen deprivation and worse.

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Two presidents accused of disrespect

By Edward Achorn

Does this sound familiar? A Republican president is attacked relentlessly by the Democratic press for four years as a crass, crude man — and a tyrant and bully unworthy of his high office.

When his re-election becomes a distinct possibility after months of expectations that he is headed for defeat, a pro-Democrat publication — without naming its sources — unleashes a brutal new assault on his character. It reports that the president displayed disdain for the nation’s dead soldiers.

Donald Trump, right?

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A hairy week for Nancy Pelosi

By Edward Achorn

It seems a small matter: breaking the rules at a hair salon. But such incidents often have sticking power. They are packed with symbolism.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi often lectures the public about wearing masks. She supports locking down small businesses. But this week Americans could see that she did not practice what she preaches.

A security tape Monday captured Ms. Pelosi during a VIP visit to a shuttered hair salon in San Francisco, ESalonSF, for a wash and a blow-out. The politicians in her home city of San Francisco have imposed lockdown dictates that bar clients from being served indoors.

Not only did the 80-year-old politician violate the rules, she declined to wear a mask indoors.

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I condemn the mob

By Edward Achorn

Attacks on Americans, such as we saw Thursday night, will not play well with most voters. I condemn such actions and call on the government to protect our civil liberties.

I wish Democratic leaders would, too.

America is not America without free speech. Each of us has a right to engage in political activity without being violently assaulted or targeted for politicized prosecution by the other side.

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