Local Viewpoints

KRWG welcomes you to join our community discussion.  E-mail your comments to:  feedback @  Comments included here represent the views of the individual writers and do not necessarily represent the views of KRWG or New Mexico State University.

The View From The Grassroots

May 9, 2018

Commentary: I’ve come up for air after more than a year of intensive political work—and I'm not even running for office.  Now that voting has begun I can take a deep breath and look back on what seems to be a critical time in our nation’s history.  As with most people, my living-history perspective is purely local, and personal.

Report: State Should Use Extra Federal Funds to Improve Child Care Assistance

May 9, 2018

Commentary: Child advocates released an analysis of the child care assistance program that they hope will have an impact on how the Children, Youth and Families Department (CYFD) spends an additional $20 million in federal funding. The new funding will come through the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG), which was recently increased by Congress. As CYFD begins its public hearings this week on how best to utilize the funds, policy analysts have this recommendation: fix the cliff effect.

Rep. Raul M. Grijalva

Commentary:  Today, Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-Chairs Reps. Mark Pocan (D-WI) and Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ), along with Reps. Barbara Lee (D-CA), Keith Ellison (D-MN), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), and Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), released the following statement opposing President Trump’s announcement that the United States will violate the terms of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) by reinstating all sanctions on Iran that had been waived by the accord:

Pearce Applauds Trump's Withdraw From Iran Nuclear Agreement

May 8, 2018
Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

Commentary: Congressman Steve Pearce released the following statement after President Trump announced the United States will formally withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, or Iran Deal:

Don't Overlook The Public Regulation And Land Commissioner Races In New Mexico

May 8, 2018

Commentary: Every four years New Mexico voters get reacquainted with two positions that have way more authority than they have oversight or accountability – state land commissioner and Public Regulation Commission member.

To End Structural Racism, African History Must be Taught

May 7, 2018
Public Domain Photo (U.S. Government)

Commentary: Where did science, mathematics, philosophy, and religion begin? Where were the first instruments made? Where was medicine pioneered? Where did farming and agriculture start?  Where were the first human paintings created? Where were the first tools engineered? Where were the first roads and bridges designed?

It was Africa. That's where. Africa, the origin of human consciousness. 

Honoring Our Life-Givers

May 7, 2018

Commentary: Many years ago, our nation established a Sunday in May as a time to recognize mothers and our human maternal nature. We know this as Mother’s Day.

Commentary: Upon reading in the Sun News about the joint meeting with the City Council and School Board about safety in our schools, I am appalled about the 200 or so gun owners that showed up. 

From the comments quoted in the paper they do not seem to be concerned about the safety of our children and dedicated school staff.  Instead their concerns seem focused on their own safety and not feeling safe without their gun – how sad and very concerning for the rest of our community.

Lily Eskelsen García-President, NEA / NEA photo

Commentary:  Throughout National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 7-11, students, parents and communities across the country are expressing their gratitude to educators and acknowledging the crucial role they play in inspiring students’ curiosity and instilling a lifelong love of learning.  


  Commentary: Democratic State Representative and State Auditor candidate Bill McCamley released his first campaign TV spot that features him tearing down Trump’s wall with a sledgehammer in a spot called “Hammer Time”.  Here is a statement from the campaign:

Macron Delivers A Crucial Message To America

May 7, 2018

Commentary: On June 12, 1987, President Ronald Reagan spoke in West Berlin at the Brandenburg Gate and called for Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev to “Tear down this wall,” referring to the Berlin Wall, which had been erected by the Soviets to keep defectors from fleeing East Germany to the West. Subsequently recognized as one of Reagan’s greatest speeches, it has long been upheld as an example of the U.S. leading the western world in the effort to promote open borders and freedom.

Sheriff Enrique "Kiki" Vigil

Commentary: Last October 25, a woman told three DASO Deputies that then-Undersheriff Ken Roberts wouldn't leave her alone: he constantly texted her, even on weekends, often very personal messages. At work he acted possessive. He steered her into meetings with his hand on the small of her back and became angry if she chatted with someone else. 

Commentary: Another election is approaching.  It is imperative that we citizens know facts about candidates, their background and experience.  Those facts could reveal their fitness for the job.  It is not easy to find facts; facts that you the voter, will use to judge the character and integrity of a candidate. 

Texas AG Ken Paxton

Commentary:  The news that Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, along with the Attorneys General of six other Republican states, has filed a lawsuit seeking to end DACA is a disgusting reminder of the ongoing GOP assault against Dreamers and immigrants in America.

Commentary: The financial system plays a critical role in economic development, but can you have too much of a good thing? The evidence is growing that you can.

Banks and financial markets improve economic efficiency by allocating scarce financial capital to the highest value use. A well-functioning financial system is critical for a well-functioning economy. Don’t believe me. Just think back to the 2008 Financial Crisis. I rest my case.

Rubel: Bill Cosby Isn't Funny Anymore

May 1, 2018

Commentary: I’ve always argued that you have to separate the art from the artist.

Ted Nugent, for example, is clearly a racist, homophobic blowhard, and his 1975 song “Stranglehold” is an ode to domestic violence lyrically; but that bass line is irresistible. I was outraged by the things Nugent said, but never disappointed because I never saw him as anything more than a guitar player.

Bill Cosby is different.

Working Hard & Hardly Working

May 1, 2018

Commentary: Maybe you have noticed those big signs in storefront windows: Help Wanted.

There are foundational attitudes that have been essential to our human survival. They can be found in most every culture and society. They are a vehicle to pass down essential concepts needed to insure the survival of a culture and social structure to future generations. One of these concepts is the notion of having a Good Work Ethic - and Working Hard.

To Reform Policing, We Must Use Our Brains

May 1, 2018

Commentary: Keen observers of the human condition notice that we are at a perilous disadvantage in the wild. Unlike numerous fungi, plants and trees, we do not exude toxins to ward off predators. Unlike animals like bears, lions, wolves, bats, and monkeys, we do not run all that fast, climb trees in seconds, see in the dark, or pick up a thousand scents at once. When caught by other predators, our flesh probably tastes pretty good, and unlike many reptiles, snails and sea creatures, we do not have bony plates with horns and hooks to defend ourselves.

Commentary: Trump and Republicans’ health care sabotage has left millions more Americans without insurance, will increase costs, and could cause even more insurers to leave the marketplace.

See for yourself:

Since Trump took office, the uninsured rate has increased and an estimated 4 million people lost their health care coverage.

peter goodman


Commentary:I like Sheriff Kiki Vigil's talk. I wish he walked that talk.

He recently wrote, “It is the federal government’s responsibility to enforce the immigration laws and not the duty or responsibility of the local governmental agencies. . . I don’t want undocumented immigrants to be victims of crime and unscrupulous exploitation. If local law enforcement becomes immigration agents, it will discourage this community from reporting crime, and they will in fact be targeted and preyed upon, as I have seen this happen in the past.”

SCRTD: A Successful Transit District

Apr 29, 2018
Sharon Thomas

Commentary: In a recent column published in the Las Cruces Sun News, questions were raised about South Central Regional Transit District (SCRTD) ridership numbers.  Unfortunately, those numbers were understated. The District transported over 18,800 riders last year. In the new Federal Fiscal Year, ridership numbers are already over 13,700 and with six months to go on the Federal Fiscal calendar (usually the months with the highest ridership), SCRTD should easily hit over 27,000 and will likely get to around 28,000.

Office of the Governor

Commentary:  On Jan. 5, a large group of New Mexico residents and community groups submitted comments to the New Mexico Environment Department laying out our concerns about its proposal for weaker construction-permit requirements for oil and gas facilities. The draft rule removed a requirement for a .25-mile setback requirement for oil and gas wells from schools and homes.

 The Environment Department has apparently disregarded those concerns, revealing on Friday afternoon its final rule, which constitutes some of the weakest oil and gas air-quality regulations in the country.  "What kind of environmental agency eliminates a quarter-mile setback from schools? As the parent of a 2-year-old, I find this action to be the latest evidence that the Martinez administration will cater to the oil and gas industry at any cost to New Mexicans' health and well-being," said Camilla Feibelman, director of the Rio Grande Chapter of the Sierra Club.

Finding Humor In A Hack

Apr 29, 2018

Commentary: I’ve been hacked…again.

Me and 150 million of my fellow calorie counting-OCD friends were notified that the app we use was hacked and our data might have compromised. Fortunately, little personally sensitive data is housed on that website, but now some Bulgarian hacker knows my body-mass index and is laughing his Bulgarian butt off about overweight Americans.

“Made in China 2025” justifies Trump trade actions

Apr 27, 2018

Commentary: “Made in China 2025” is Beijing’s strategy for transforming China into a hi-tech giant that dominates industries like robotics, avionics and electric vehicles. It is also a step back from the market forms, relying instead on a top down decision-making.

North Korean Summit Calls For A Hard Line From Trump

Apr 25, 2018

Commentary: With more freedom to maneuver on foreign than domestic affairs, and with their eyes focused squarely on their legacies, all modern U.S. presidents have sought to craft the elusive deal that will solve a protracted global conflict. So, with dismal prospects for Israeli-Palestinian peace, we shouldn't be surprised that President Trump is now pursuing a deal to end North Korea's nuclear program. 

Four Corners Power Plant. Photo courtesy of EcoFlight and San Juan Citizens Alliance

Commentary: As of yesterday at midnight over 400,000 people registered overwhelming opposition to the Trump Administration's evisceration of the BLM methane rules that would have drastically cut oil and gas waste and pollution.  New Mexicans first participated in national listening sessions in support of this rule, then in public hearings on the rule and then commented in support of the final rule.

Will Newspaper Endorsements Come To An End?

Apr 24, 2018

Commentary: A story by Business Insider in the days before the 2016 election reported that more than 240 newspapers in the country had endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, while only 19 endorsed Donald Trump. Several newspapers that had been solidly Republican every year since their founding broke from the party for the first time in history.

None of which mattered on election day.

United States Of Anger

Apr 23, 2018

Commentary: Do you notice it? Do you feel it? Have you become used to it? There are so many angry people. Our nation is becoming united in one thing: Anger. So many seem to be mad at someone or something else.

China Makes Its Move In Latin America

Apr 23, 2018

Commentary: When I was in graduate school, I had a professor in my Latin American Economics class who used to always say that when a void is left in a particular economic sector, a new element would step in to ‘sop up the gravy.’ I often think of this phrase when I see the reversal of the long-standing U.S. position of promoting free trade. While the U.S. has reversed course in fomenting trade ties in with the rest of the world, other nations are stepping in to fill the void.