Opinion

The culture in words II

03/13/2014
It is difficult for even an advanced student of language to understand that although language is a universal human expression, individual ones can vary a great deal, depending on the culture of the group or person that speaks it. It is a mistake to believe that all the words, expressions...

The culture in words

02/27/2014
Upon seeing the boy entering her office, the doctor smiled at his mother and said, “How adorable!” The mother didn’t know how to respond; the young, blonde American doctor’s Spanish, while friendly, sounded unnatural and took her by surprise. The word “adorable” seemed strange when directed toward her son. She...

The future and integration of immigrants

02/13/2014
In my last column I dealt with the constant uncertainty with which many Latino immigrants live in this country as a result of their precarious immigration status that prevents them from traveling freely and could at any time divide families by deportation. This uncertainty is exacerbated by the difficulty they...

Sixty-two copies and nothing on the shelf: Library policy reduces choice

02/13/2014
I’m a regular and extremely grateful patron of the Marin Free Library’s branches in Bolinas, Stinson Beach and Point Reyes. The staffs of all three are stellar, and I feel lucky to live in a community with such a vibrant library system and such committed local librarians. Yet I’d like...

Guns in the morning

01/30/2014
As another hunting season ends, I would like to add my voice to those who will not miss being awakened to the sound of booming death. I proudly admit to complete ignorance of the joy and bonding that comes from killing defenseless creatures for sport. I understand it is currently...

Desperate immigrants

01/23/2014
Like other immigrants who have come to this country, their goal is to work at whatever job is available: in agriculture, manufacturing, ranching, restaurant work, sales, house or business cleaning, childcare, gardening, construction or repairing houses or other buildings, or any other unspecialized job. They live where they can: under...

Inmigrantes desesperados

01/16/2014
Como otros inmigrantes llegados a este país, su meta es trabajar en cualquier actividad posible: agricultura, fábricas, ranchos, restaurantes, tiendas, limpiando casas o negocios, cuidando niños, arreglando jardines, en construcción y arreglo de casas y edificios y trabajos que requieran poca especialización. Viven primero donde pueden, bajo puentes, con parientes,...

Mexico in 2013

01/09/2014
At first sight, everything appears to be normal: people coming and going on foot, in cars, buses, motorcycles or bicycles, a grand bustle in the stores, shopping centers, markets and restaurants, wanderers in the city center, parks, churches, museums and other places of interest. All packed into the great spiral...

The plan to get rid of the ranchers

01/09/2014
A few years ago, Don Neubacher, at the time the superintendent of Point Reyes National Seashore, provided a troubling story to one of us—Phyllis Faber, who was then a board member of the Point Reyes National Seashore Association—saying the National Park Service had a “plan” to rid the seashore of...

West Marin’s own community foundation

01/03/2014
This is the first in a series of columns discussing the West Marin Fund, a community foundation formed in 2010 to address the significant and unmet needs of coastal Marin communities and the nonprofits that serve them. What follows is an overview of the foundation; subsequent columns will look more...

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