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On Thursday, April 29 the FDA announced its intention to ban menthol cigarettes and flavored cigars. The move is an effort to improve the health of individuals most likely to smoke these products. The primary demographic of these consumers are people of color, LGBTQ individuals, and resident…

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I’m sure that Texans have been watching the on-going battle in Washington over H.R. 51, a House bill to bestow statehood on 66 of the 68 square miles now comprising of the District of Columbia. This effort by Democrats is being touted as a move to “ensure the citizens of the District are giv…

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As our spring semester winds to a close, we are busy planning for our fall reopening and excited to contemplate a busier campus with more residential students, most classes again taught in person, fall and spring athletics seasons, and many more campus activities throughout the year. As our …

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The other day we caught a news story about a bunch of goats that were running loose in a suburban neighborhood. They were all over the lawn, eating through the pittosporum and other assorted shrubs like a gang of toddlers set loose in a room full of glitter containers.

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As I stated when I wrote the first of these columns, the U.S. medical system is needlessly complex, and nowhere is this more apparent than the medical coding and billing system. Most countries, the U.S. included, use what is known as the ICD 10 (the 10th revision of the International Statist…

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I spent Saturday in Zapata County. Many might ask where Zapata County is. My answer would be on the Texas-Mexico border about an hour south of Laredo; on the edge of the Chihuahuan Desert; in a long historic area of Texas; an area of predominately hard-working, God-fearing, family-loving His…

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Authoring or co-authoring a bill indicates either it’s important enough to the representative that they’ve put in time and resources to draft a bill or they’ve accepted a bill written by a lobbyist or other source and put their stamp of approval on it. Sometimes legislators submit a bill wit…

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In the mid-1850s, Seguin was still being attacked by Indian raiders, mainly in search of horses, but to also drive the settlers back from what they considered their land. In 1855, more than a dozen horses were stolen on the west side of Seguin from Judge James McKee and his neighbors. As mor…

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For some reason that I can’t fully recall, Mireya and I talked about the day she was born. Since she’s the youngest, we probably talked about it vaguely at one point. But there we were in the burger drive-thru, which, when you think about it, is the perfect place to discuss how things go in …

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A century ago, an influential man convinced the leader of a great nation that his pseudo-scientific notions about agriculture were valid and used his influence to reject the findings of thousands of biologists. That nation outlawed teaching genetics and Darwinian evolution and disallowed pla…

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Expanding further on how the government distorts the cost of healthcare, I would like to talk about how health insurance regulations drive up the cost of care. When politicians and pundits talk about healthcare, they invariably use the metric of insurance coverage as their benchmark for a st…

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Q. There are tiny worms hanging on our live oak and Mexican white oak trees. I think they are eating the new growth leaves. What should we spray? Both trees are over 30 feet tall and made it through the Valentine’s Week freeze. 

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The 87th Texas Legislature is coming into its final month and time is running short to get things done. Legislation not passed will have to wait until January 2023 to maybe resurrect. As many of you now know, the RPT has eight legislative priorities with a ninth priority from our chairman, A…

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Exciting things are happening in the heart of our city. Here’s an update on new businesses making their home in downtown Seguin and other retail areas:

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A businessman, who knew nothing about feeding hungry Texans, and his behind-the-scenes partner, also new to the restaurant business, opened the first Pig Stand on the outskirts of Dallas on April 15, 1922.

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Marion residents and surrounding communities, it saddens me to report that we lost former Mayor Roger Scheffel this week and he will definitely be missed in the community. I have ordered the flags in Veterans Park across from the City Hall to be flown at half staff. This is to honor his many…

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A page one story in the Gazette (April 14, 2021) by Dalondo Moultrie was devoted to a topic of considerable interest to residents of Guadalupe County just north of Geronimo. In “Residents see water supply drop during new construction,” Moultrie reported how excavation for a sewer line to con…

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In the 1840s and 1850s, the danger of Indian attacks was ever present in the Guadalupe River Valley and Seguin. Homes, and sometimes entire settlements would be destroyed in raids. Some settlers, such as the Umphries Branch family, would give up during the “Run Away Scrape” and move back eas…

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The use of fear to drive votes and actions is a common tactic employed by Republicans to divert attention from real issues or to distort the conversation in order to achieve their ends even when it isn’t in the best interests of the average American. As usual, Republicans are doing their bes…

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Once upon a time, politics in America was about America, what was perceived as good for America, both fiscally and morally. Sure, mistakes were made. Our country adjusted and moved forward, pulling our pants up, putting on our boots and going to work making our homeland an industrial giant, …

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As voters in 10 Texas counties went to the polls on April 10, 1937, to pick a new congressman, the youngest candidate on the ballot spent the day in a hospital bed.

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There are so many people who move into a community, live there all their lives, work, raise their families, then pass away, soon all but forgotten except by family members. Many of these people have an impact in the positive growth of the community, but are often not recognized in our histor…

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Recently, my husband Adam has been on a documentary kick. I like an occasional documentary, but I lean toward topics involving the hard sciences while he’s more intrigued with primates. But we found one documentary topic we both enjoyed — robots.

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As we head into a new administration, and policy shifts begin, it is probably a good idea to discuss how government policies affect the economic landscape we see around us. President Biden, as a Democrat, sees a strong role for government in managing the national economy. To be honest, so di…

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The Republican-controlled legislature in Georgia passed new voter suppression measures aimed at minority voters a few weeks ago under to the guise of protecting against voter fraud. If that’s really what it was about, they wouldn’t have included measures such as criminalizing handing out bot…

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During the first week of April 1829, Sam Houston sent his teenaged bride home to mother, decided to resign as governor of Tennessee and prepared for a self-imposed exile among his boyhood friends, the Cherokees.

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Although born in Switzerland slightly more than 200 years ago, and educated in Germany as a theologian and ecclesiastical scholar, Philip Schaff lived most of his life writing and teaching here in the United States. His countless essays, speeches and sermons are still widely quoted today all…

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One year ago last month, the first Texan died of complications related to COVID-19 in Matagorda County. Since then, coronavirus has taken more than 48,500 lives in Texas, out of 2.78 million confirmed cases, and almost 2.75 million have recovered from the virus. So far, more than 11 million …

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As we celebrate the return of spring and the commemoration of Easter, we are reminded of the importance of connections and community. As a community of faith and learning, Texas Lutheran University connects with the world beyond our campus in multiple ways every day, recognizing that communi…

We’ve taken a trip out of town for a few days, exploring a place outside the four walls we’ve been surrounded by for so long. We’ve all had our first COVID vaccination (finally all these pre-existing conditions are paying off), and while we know we aren’t anywhere near as invincible as we’d …

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Taking even the most cursory of glances at the political landscape today can lead to only one conclusion: America is the most divided it’s been since it went to war with itself over 100 years ago. Civil political discussion seems to be a thing of the past. It has gotten to the point where I …

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Due to COVID restrictions and obstruction by the big liberal city fathers, the Republican Party of Texas decided late last year that we would take our executive committee meetings to the smaller cities. We decided to go to cities that wanted our business and would work to meet our needs and …

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You know who really impresses me? The people who invented zip ties. I realize this sounds crazy, but hear me out.

Years ago, when I was a kid, zip ties were for one thing in our house and one thing only. Garbage bags. That was what zip ties were for, as far as I knew. These weren’t exactly like modern zip ties — they were flat strips with triangular cuts that you pulled one end of the strip through, but the principal was the same. I remember everyone was pretty excited to use them on garbage bags back then. You could finally toss your garbage into the trash can with some style and not accidentally redecorate the lawn.

Little did I know, these little plastic strips had a much more glamorous purpose when they were first invented. Zip ties, it turns out, were originally designed to hold wires together on aircraft. Thankfully, I never came across wires I needed to secure in an airplane. If there is one sign that your airline trip is not going well it’s that you suddenly see all the zip ties being used to hold things together.

Zip ties came up because the other day Mireya, our youngest, was visiting, and showed us her latest sewing project. She had handcrafted a beautiful corset complete with the stiff little bits that keep its shape.

“You know what they are?” she asked me as she spun around. “Usually you’d use boning, but these are …” she paused for dramatic effect, “zip ties!”

I couldn’t believe it. Turns out the rigidness of a zip tie was a perfect match for the more expensive and harder to come by traditional boning.

Before I knew it,, we started talking about zip ties and how you can use them for all kinds of things. I had an odd little crown that uses them. We used them on our fence when we were trying to thwart Archer from his frequent illegal departures from the yard. And these days they are used in law enforcement. Before long we made the very logical transition from “cool corset” to “how hard is it to break out of zip tie handcuffs, do you think?”

I try very hard to maintain a neutral expression when my children ask me these kinds of questions. I find that it’s the best approach.

A quick internet search gave us some plausible ways to escape and we moved on. As did the zip tie industry, having even developed a design that is used when surgeons are re-sectioning a kidney. A kidney!

So my hat’s off to you, zip tie industry. You didn’t rest on your laurels. You weren’t happy just keeping the planes in the air or garbage off the lawn. Now, if you could maybe address other problems, like how to keep the lights on in Texas when it gets cold or how to keep me from looking for my glasses when they are on my head, I would appreciate it.

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Kid Curry, the most dangerous member of the Wild Bunch, shot a total stranger and left him to die in the dust while passing through a West Texas town on March 27, 1901.

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After calling my name out loud at least three times, according to my wife, I finally responded from my chair on our patio. “Didn’t you hear me? I swear I believe you’re going deaf,” she announced to me clearly.

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Q. My nectar producing plants were basically flattened by the freezes in February. Do you have any ideas about meeting the needs of the Monarchs and other pollinators for nectar this spring? Is there any chance that the usual nectar sources such as milkweed and mistflower will recover in time?

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The U.S. House has passed H.R. 5 — the “Equality Act.” If this bill is passed into law, protections for men and women, the way God created them, will be eliminated. Men will not just be allowed, but protected by law, to use female restrooms and to compete in female sports in all public arena…

Seguin Magazine