Michael Snyder – July 4, 2018
Firefighters all over the western part of the country are talking about an unprecedented wildfire season, and we are only in early July. It is going to get a lot hotter and a lot drier as we move deeper into the summer, and the wildfires are likely to get a whole lot worse. At this moment, more than 600,000 acres of land are on fire in America. From California to Colorado and from Alaska to Arizona, extremely violent wildfires are raging out of control as firefighters battle relentlessly to save homes and lives. Rain is desperately needed, but right now much of the Southwest is experiencing a historic drought. In fact, things have gotten so bad that some experts are already comparing this drought to the Dust Bowl conditions of the 1930s. If very high temperatures and extreme drought persist, that is going to continue to create ideal conditions for more wildfires.
Bob Unruh – June 7, 2018
Three judges in an Arizona court, Lawrence Winthrop, Jennifer Campbell, and Paul McMurdie, have announced they are comfortable with the city of Phoenix forcing Christian artists to violate their faith and endorse same-sex marriage.
The announcement came in their decision, from their Arizona Court of Appeals, affirming a Phoenix ordinance that mandates that Christian company owners must support and endorse same-sex marriage with their products and artistry.
The same issue was before the U.S. Supreme Court just this week, and that court ruled in favor of a Colorado Christian baker who refused to lend his artistry to a cake for a homosexual duo. But the court did that on the grounds that the state of Colorado exhibited bias against the baker.
So multiple fights over the issue, by a florist in Washington State and others, continue.
Grace Carr – February 23, 2018
Arizona lawmakers approved a bill Thursday that will mandate abortion providers and physicians request information from women undergoing abortions about their reasons to abort and provide them with comprehensive information about the risks of abortion.
“What this bill does, it upgrades and updates the way we ask these questions in order to make sure that we’re getting accurate information,” the bill’s sponsor, Republican Sen. Nancy Barto, said, according to US News. “It’s important in order for us to really understand policy making going forward and how to better serve women in the policies that go to protecting the unborn when they choose abortion,” she added.
The bill — Senate Bill 1394 — lists 11 potential reasons, including questions about the woman’s emotional and physical health, according to the Arizona Central. Reasons include not being able to afford a child, not wanting a child, being raped, a husband having an extramarital affair, abuse and others.
The bill passed 16-12, with only one Republican and one Democrat breaking ranks.
Michael Edison Hayden – August 12, 2017
Officials in two Arizona counties are warning the public after fleas in the region tested positive for the plague, the infamous infectious disease that killed millions during the Middle Ages.
Navajo County Public Health officials confirmed on Friday that fleas in the area have tested positive for the rare disease. The public health warning follows a similar notice from Coconino County Public Health Services District in Arizona warning of the presence of plague in fleas found there too.
Both counties are situated in the northern part of Arizona.
“Navajo County Health Department is urging the public to take precautions to reduce their risk of exposure to this serious disease, which can be present in fleas, rodents, rabbits and predators that feed upon these animals,” the public health warning states.
Mike Maharrey – February 2, 2017
An Arizona bill that would eliminate state capital gains taxes on gold and silver specie, and encourage its use as currency, passed an important House committee today. Final approval of the legislation would help undermine the Federal Reserve’s monopoly on money.
Rep. Mark Finchem (R-Tucson) introduced House Bill 2014 (HB2014) on Jan. 9. The legislation would eliminate state capital gains taxes on income “derived from the exchange of one kind of legal tender for another kind of legal tender.” The bill defines legal tender as “a medium of exchange, including specie, that is authorized by the United States Constitution or Congress for the payment of debts, public charges, taxes and dues.” “Specie” means coins having precious metal content.
In effect, passage of the bill would “legalize the Constitution” by treating gold and silver specie as money.
HB2014 passed the House Ways and Means Committee by a 5-0 vote, with four members abstaining.
Billy Hallowell – August 30, 2016
An atheist organization that has asked private hotels and publicly funded university-owned hotels to remove Bibles from their guest rooms has reportedly convinced the Thunderbird Executive Inn in Glendale, Arizona, to do just that.
According to a press release from The Freedom From Religion Foundation, an atheist activist group, rooms at the hotel “are now Bible free” after the organization requested their removal.
The sticking point for atheists is that the Thunderbird Executive Inn is located on the premises of the Thunderbird School of Global Management, which recently became a “unit” of Arizona State University, a public college.
With the hotel standing on public land and having an affiliation with the college, the Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter dated March 4, 2016, to Allen J. Morrison, CEO and director general of Thunderbird school, urging the removal of the Bibles.
Staff Writers – June 16, 2016
Firefighters struggled Thursday to contain infernos across the western United States as experts warned that drought-striken California should prepare for an unusually intense wildfire season.
Forest fires are a fact of life in much of California but have become far worse because of bone-dry conditions, with the Golden State gripped in its fifth year of drought.