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Christmas 2016: Pray for Peace

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You don’t have to be a Christian, or person of faith, to make a joyful noise this Christmas. You just have to be someone who has hope and someone who believes that humankind is capable of rising above basic instincts, and making Gallup and McKinley County, and the world, better places to live.

Christmas is the...

Local buying gets boost from internet platform

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Bill Foster is a digital marketing master. The serial entrepreneur developed keyword and search-engine ad revenue for pioneering companies such as Infoseek and Excite and now wants to use his experience and knowledge to help local businesses compete with national chains and internet behemoths.

Foster is a founder of yellCast, a New Mexico startup that connects buyers with local merchants by providing search-engine results that go a step beyond Yelp, Google and Bing and offer an interactive portal where buyers and sellers communicate directly.  With this service, consumers who want to shop locally don’t need to call multiple merchants to find a specific product; yellCast provides the...

Stiffing the panhandlers

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The problem of panhandling in Gallup probably isn’t going to go away anytime soon. The Gallup Police Department does what it can to tackle the problem, but when you throw in intoxication and alcohol-related problems it becomes a bit much.

The best that anybody can do is treat the symptoms of panhandling and we are all thankful for what NCI offers in the form of treatment plans. Addressing the root causes of panhandling and homelessness means battling some age-old enemies: alcoholism, drug addiction, mental illness, the lack of job skills and anti-social behavior. That means fighting the battle on a variety of fronts and now simply with badges and uniforms.

The police, however...

Use caution when lending startup money to family

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It can cost tens of thousands of dollars to start even a small business, and raising that kind of startup capital is challenging to someone with little savings, a blemished or nonexistent credit history or a loan rejection from a bank. If that someone is a relative, there’s a good chance you’ll be approached for a loan.

If you have the means, it’s hard to refuse such a request — especially if you believe your family member has the potential to build a successful, profitable business.

The trick to lending money to a relative is to approach it as a business deal — with generosity and encouragement but also a sober, unemotional understanding of the financial and personal risks...

Our public lands must reflect the diversity of our people

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My father and mother raised my four siblings and me to appreciate the beauty of our environment by hiking, mountain climbing, and visiting parks and other natural sites. At the time I didn’t think much about it but when I reflect back on those outings I realize that there weren’t that many people who looked like us visiting or working in the parks. One of the reasons was that the Hispanic population in Oregon was pretty small back then, but another reason was likely that Hispanics didn’t feel the same connection to our public lands that my family did. The good news is that this has changed somewhat but during recent visits to some national parks my wife and I noticed that the...

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