Author: Tom Laurent

Opinion Siskiyou

One nation under guns

In 2023 there were 340 school shootings, 656 mass shootings and 42,987-gun deaths in our country. The basic truth about guns is that more guns equal more gun deaths  The American gun culture is the story of how the 2nd Amendment has been manipulated by a culture of acceptable gun […]

Opinion Yreka

Opinion: Was Jesus telling us to be woke?

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines woke as being aware of important facts and issues, especially regarding racial and social justice. This tells us that “woke” people are informed people who are compassionate, committed to getting rid of all forms of discrimination, and making the world a better place for all. Would the messages Jesus preached qualify as being […]

Opinion Siskiyou

California’s Racist Past

Racism has been alive in California since the arrival of the Spanish in 1769.  Prior to the arrival of the Spanish, California was home to an Indigenous population of around 300,000 people.   Spanish and Mexican rule (1769-1848) was devastating for California’s Indigenous population. It has been estimated that the pre-contact […]


Opinion: To whom does Palestine belong?

Why did Hamas kill 1,300 and wound 3,300 Israelis on October 7th?  Hamas said it was motivated to launch the attack because of long-term anger over Israeli treatment of Palestinians, expansion of Jewish settlements in the West Bank and recent violent encounters at Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque ( Israel’s deliberate policies […]

Gardening Siskiyou

Soil is life

As a soil scientist for 33 years, I never really thought about the long history of soils on earth. I just focused on Siskiyou County’s forest soils. Siskiyou County has the most soil diversity compared to anywhere else in the United States. This is because our soil forming factors are […]

Opinion Siskiyou

Rural vs Urban Voters

What motivates rural people to choose to be a Democrat or a Republican?  Is it based on their beliefs, values and attitudes that formed primarily by family, friends, culture, and life experiences? Beliefs are ideas that we accept as true without any supporting facts. Values are a set of principles, […]

Opinion Siskiyou

The Real 4th of July

We celebrate July 4th because it was the day that the Continental Congress finally approved all the changes and edits to the July 2nd draft Declaration of Independence. Officially, the Continental Congress declared its freedom from Great Britain on July 2, 1776, when it voted to approve a resolution of […]


Who am I?

What am I? My brain tells me I am a boy but my body tells me I am a girl. I’ve known since I was seven that I was a boy. I didn’t ask to be this way. Why can’t I be like other kids? Why can’t I be normal?  […]