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FRAN ALEXANDER: A watershed moment

Illinois River organization works to change behaviors

Subscriber only"We look beyond the river banks and see the future and how the Illinois River will support our lives into the next centuries." Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Trusting the land

Organization devoted to preservation in midst of growth

Subscriber onlyHave you ever had a special place, a little spot where you maybe have gone to put your feet in the creek, to smell the pine trees, to listen to the birds or the frogs and crickets, or to just be alone? Or, do particular experiences depend on particular places? For example, the short county road to our home is a tunnel of trees, but driving it can change a rough day into a more peaceful one, similar to a shower that washes away stress. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Parks and the future

‘Imagine Tomorrow’s Parks’ designed to influence Fayetteville’s course

Subscriber onlyIf I had my way, Fayetteville would stop promoting itself, stop winning national awards and hide from the rest of the world. But, I don't have much of a success record in getting my way. So all I, or any of us, can do is tell local elected officials and their staff how we think things should be in our town and region and hope for the best. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Making climate progress

Organizations harness energy of people who care

Subscriber onlySometimes you just have to do what you have to do, try to change what needs changing and say to hell with the roadblocks. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Should we avoid chemical soup?

Forest Service ponders ways to deal with invasive plants

Subscriber onlySometimes things just get out of hand. The U.S. Forest Service has some housekeeping, or rather forest-keeping, to do, and recently made an effort "to gauge public interest and input" about their tidying-up plans. There have been meetings in Deer, Hector and Cass to take questions and discuss the "Roadside Vegetation Management and Non-Native Invasive Plant Species Control Project," among other things. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: The youth speak loudly

Parkland students passionate in response to shooting

Subscriber only"These adults, these politicians, these lawmakers, these legislators, they were supposed to protect us. And they didn't." Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Salamanders, pterodactyls and earmuffs

Process of electing U.S. leaders has gotten out of whack

Subscriber onlySuccessfully raising five sons to adulthood qualifies a mother for sainthood, and my husband's mom certainly earned her heavenly stars. She wisely knew how to keep her boys playing fairly, thereby limiting injuries, I assume, especially when navigating the constant feeding of her growing herd. When it came to pies, for example, one got to cut and another got to choose. And, when the remainder of the food was passed around the table, if there was enough for one more serving, the last person holding the dish had to ask if anyone wanted any more. It taught them long-term civility over momentary gluttony. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: The land speaks

Ex-agency deputy fights on to preserve forest lands

Subscriber only"There is no right way to do the wrong thing." Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: The perilous lives of girls

Men do damage with sexually incorrect actions against women

Subscriber onlyIt starts in childhood. Not wanting to frighten, but still trying to explain, parents begin gently, if they are smart, to let a child know there is a limit to trust. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Smoke gets in their eyes

House passes Westerman’s forest bill; Senate should say no

Subscriber onlyThis upside-down world we're living in leaves us questioning not only what we are told, but distrustful that our facts might actually be fallacies. Up is down, right is left, black is white and right is wrong. Under these conditions, scrutinizing all laws for their true intent, in spite of their titles, is vital. Continue reading...

FRAN ALEXANDER: Lost down the river

Organization calls on Tyson to do more

Subscriber onlyIf we follow the Mississippi River's watershed to its terminus, we reach the Gulf of Mexico. Cradled by five states, this water has long suffered body blows from humankind. Oil spills, pipeline breaks, chemical leaks, wetland depletion, wildlife habitat destruction, shipping waste and traffic, and runoff from sewers, parking lots, golf courses, industries, lawns, farms and the crunched remains of hurricane-demolished cities have all happened to the Gulf. Continue reading...

At War with Ourselves

Subscriber only"We all have a responsibility to figure a better path forward. This is not a liberal or conservative issue; this is about the fabric of our humanity. It is not a time to argue or politicize, but a time to act."-- Singer/songwriter Brian Kalinec Continue reading...

Fran Alexander: The lost year

Shutdown of Little Rock schools has lasting impact for all

Subscriber onlyThe "Lost Year" Continue reading...

Fran Alexander: National treasures in peril

Americans cannot afford erosion of park lands

Subscriber onlyWith our country up to its nose holes in water in the east and fires burning everything in their paths in the west, to say we are distracted right now is putting it mildly. Quietly, however, disorienting political maneuvers, many in the form of executive orders, have also been barreling down on everything environmental. From shrinking or dismantling the EPA's work force to the elimination of projects, reports, and especially regulations created for environmental protections, the ruling party in Congress is eviscerating decades of science and policy work. Continue reading...

Fran Alexander: Art of a different deal

Exhibit at Walton Arts Center digs into climate change impacts

Subscriber only"Artists, in a sense, are the antibodies of the cultural bloodstream. They sense trouble early, and rally to isolate and expose and defeat it, to bring to bear the human power for love and beauty and meaning against the worst results of carelessness and greed and stupidity. " Continue reading...

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