February 15, 2020

 Saipan — So far, the news headlines here are about the Public School System’s funding woes; unhappy teachers who are on the verge of staging protest actions; lawmakers critical of the governor; government-funded travels; a federal investigation involving a casino; and corruption allegations.

As usual, those who believe that we are living in the worst of times are unaware of what actually happened in the past.

Forty years ago, t...

Frightened voices cry into a quiet city darkened by the fear of coronavirus. Lonely, searching voices meet across the black urban canyons formed by high-rise skyscrapers that now serve as quarantine prisons.

“Wuhan jiayou!” A child-like voice whimpers from a balcony into the somber starless night.

“Wuhan jiayou!” one voice first calls back, “Don’t give up!” Then another, “Hang in there!” And another “Stay strong!” Then, the whol...

At first glance, FestPac may be perceived as dances and chants, but it is much more than that. It’s an international gathering of Pacific governments and communities they represent. That is why the invitation is sent to the head of state, our governor. It’s a means for Pacific Island leaders to come together to deal with the challenges that are facing our communities in a fast-paced, modernizing world where an Indigenous langu...

February 12, 2020

In five years, the government stands to lose a large part of its workforce due to retirement, according to Sen. Sabina Perez, who is proposing “long-term solutions through successional planning” that will be incorporated into school curriculum.

 The goal is to provide long-term and stable careers—and perhaps, promotion —  for civil servants, who are typically shut out of the opportunities to climb up the ladder because merit-ba...

February 11, 2020

Guam’s future is 17 months old, 27 inches tall and living large. Her mother watches patiently as “Future” wanders around the reception area introducing herself confidently to perfect strangers.

Make no mistake; mom may only be about 5 feet 4 inches tall and very petite, but the aura she projects is that of a 9-foot tall, 2,000-pound mother grizzly bear on guard duty.

 “Future” is the next generation of Guam’s children, who have...

February 10, 2020

This is a column about menstrual cups. If you are a father, husband, boyfriend, brother, friend, distant relative, co-worker, etc., of someone who menstruates, you may find this information helpful just from an empathy standpoint. Because guys who are understanding of menstruation are generally more cool than guys who just brush it off as “a woman’s thing.”

Remember guys: any female who does what you do, whether it is at work,...

February 5, 2020

 The first wave of a powerful tsunami has already reached Guam, and the second and third waves are on their way with exponentially increasing force. Specifically, I’m addressing the Very Senior Demographic Tsunami. 

Let me explain.

The 2010 U.S. census of Guam shows that between 2000 and 2010 the total population increased by 2.9 percent. When the upcoming 2020 census is completed and published, the overall population in Guam wi...

January 28, 2020

According to ancient Chinese legend, there was a monster named Nián (年) that lives at the bottom of the sea and comes up once a year to feast on humans. The sights and sounds of the traditional New Year’s Lion Dance are based on the knowledge that the monster is afraid of loud noises, fire, and the color red. 

During the Lion Dance, the performers scare away the monster by making loud bright noises...

January 10, 2020

 Recently, I read a press release from the Federated States of Micronesia that gave me hope for my Chuukese families. Noting that it takes its citizens’ concerns seriously, the FSM national government said it would look into alleged fraud and mail-mishandling at the Chuuk Post Office.

“It is indeed the duty of every employee of the FSM Postal Service to protect every piece of mail—whether it’s flat rate, registered, c...

January 7, 2020

Saipan— Some of the Northern Marianas’ high school seniors were asked recently if they plan to return to the islands after graduating from college.

I don’t see the point of that question.

We’re talking about asking teenagers what they plan to do four years down the road. Most adults can’t even say in the morning what they’ll be doing in the evening. Many of us can’t be certain that what we feel and believe about a certain issue...

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