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Today's word on journalism

May 8, 2009

The Last WORD

The Fat Lady Sings, Off-Key, Drools

At about this time every year, like the swallows to Capistrano or the buzzards to Hinckley, Ohio, the WORD migrates to its summer musing grounds at the sanitarium —St. Mumbles Home for the Terminally Verbose.

The reason is clear, and never moreso than as this season —the WORD's 13th —peters out.

It's been a fraught year of high palaver and eye-popping transition, both good and not-so-much. An interminable presidential campaign saga finally did end, and in extraordinary and historic fashion. Meanwhile, the bottom and everything that's below the bottom fell out of the economy, with families, homes, entire industries and —of particular interest to WORDsters and the civic-minded —dozens of daily newspapers ("I don't so much mind that newspapers are dying--it's watching them commit suicide that pisses me off." --Molly Ivins). . . all evaporating. What replaces them, from the individual to the institutional to the societal? Are we looking at a future of in-depth Tweeting?

As any newsperson or firehorse knows, it's hard to turn your back on day-to-day catastrophe --we just have to look at the car wreck. But even the most deranged and driven need a rest. As philosopher Lilly Tomlin once observed, "No matter how cynical you become, it's never enough to keep up."

So this morning, as a near-frost hovered over northern Utah, the unmarked van pulled into the driveway and the gentle, soft-spoken men in the white coats rolled the WORD out of bed and into a straitjacket for the usual summer trip to St. Mumbles, where the blathering one will be assigned a hammock and fed soothing, healthy foods --like tapioca, dog biscuits and salmon --while recharging the essential muscles of cynicism, outrage, sarcasm, social engagement and high-mindedness, in preparation for the next edition.
Summer well, friends.

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Feedback and suggestions --printable and otherwise --always welcome. "There are no false opinions."

Richmond declares April child abuse prevention month

By David Bowman

March 18, 2009 | RICHMOND -- The Richmond City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to make April Child Abuse Prevention month.

Cache County Sheriff Lynn Nelson gave a proclamation to the council against child abuse. He provided information on the private, non-profit organization, the Child & Family Support Center (CFSC). Nelson also showed a five-minute video on the center and the families and individuals that it has helped.

The video shown contained images of children that had suffered abuse and were brought into the care center. Images of abrasions, bruises and burns were shown in detail. The video left an impact on everyone in the meeting.

The CFSC helped 3,011 children and received 3,882 phone calls at its 24-hour crisis hotline last year.

To help promote the center the CFSC is holding a one-mile run/walk on April, 25. There will also be pirate themed blue ribbon benefit that will be held at the Coppermill.

The staff members at the CFSC are all volunteers, Nelson said. "The individuals that work there are incredibly dedicated." The CFSC appreciates donations and a wish list is provided by those receiving care in the shelter.

Last year the center suffered $20,000 in damages from flooding, Nelson said. Insurance covered $8,000 of it and the rest had to be paid from donations. The flood was caused from a pipe that broke.


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