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Coppens: Retiring the stigma; my 26-year journey from incarceration to C-suite

Reflecting on my 26-year journey with Televerde and Televerde Foundation, I am amazed by how society has evolved to embrace the concept of second chances. It’s nothing short of remarkable. …

Grady: Why I disagreed with changing Pinal County open space, trails commission name

A candidate is detrimental to our community. We, as citizens, should challenge our elected representatives, when we disagree and when we see something detrimental to our freedom, to our …

Van Luven: The importance of self-care

It is human nature to do for others. Being part of a community means we help one another. But when we help others more than we help ourselves, we may end up not being able to help anyone at all. …

Rains: Summer home upgrades for East Valley homeowners

Arizona summer is upon us, and as the temperatures rise, people are spending more time indoors and seeking ways to enhance their living space to make hanging out at home more bearable. As a …

Reveles: We have equal justice under the law

The following remarks were made at the Pinal County Board of Supervisors meeting on July 3: I’m glad to be here in celebration of our democratic republic. Today we celebrate the 60th …

Kraus: Arizona’s lawmakers must take the issue of PBM reform seriously

Managing a chronic condition brings forth a lot of challenges, but I’d never expect there to be so many hoops to jump through when it comes to getting my medication. I suffer from a severe form …

Herzog: Independence Day celebration safety tips

The Fourth of July is a time for families and communities to come together to celebrate the birth of the United States. Community firework celebrations occur across the country to celebrate a night …

Robinson: Consider these 3 components when purchasing a new front door

When it comes to buying a new front door for your home, the decision goes much beyond just the way it looks. A front door serves many purposes from being a focal point of the home to security and …

Mills: Celebrating Postal Service's community commitment this Fourth of July

As the postmaster of Apache Junction, I am writing to express the unwavering commitment of our postal staff to serving our wonderful community. With the Fourth of July approaching, a time when we …

Mardis: 3 tips for painting your stucco surface home

Throughout Arizona stucco is a popular home design material that makes houses fit in with the desert surroundings. It is recognizable by its rough exterior and natural paint colors. Stucco is known …
Take the Civility Pledge

Civility Checklist

How to engage in respectful, honest & civil dialogue about public issues.

Checkmark Take the high road.  Respond to the topic — not the person. Refrain from demonizing others for their opinions. Assume those you disagree with are, like you, genuinely interested in improving the community.

Checkmark Be respectful. Bullying, public humiliation, insults, name-calling, harassment, and threats directed at another person — or that person's race, gender, religion, ethnicity, etc. — have no place in civil discussions. Find ways to respectfully disagree without questioning someone's character or motives.

Checkmark Be truthful. Base your opinions/arguments on facts. Value honesty. Make only accurate statements when making your point and avoid exaggeration and stereotypes. When appropriate, cite your sources of information that others may question. 

Checkmark Don't misrepresent. Always identify your opinions as opinions (not stating opinions as facts). Never misrepresent the views of others or falsely claim your opinions represent someone else. If quoting the words of others, identify and credit the source.

Checkmark Listen  & learn. It's both polite and respectful to listen to those we disagree with (as well as those we support) and be genuine in our attempts to understand their point of view. Expand your mind by thoughtfully seeking out views that don't agree with your own.

CheckmarkLook for common ground. When disagreeing with others, look for even small areas of agreement — which can be the gateway to working together for the greater good.

Checkmark Respect privacy. Keep private things private — whether it involves your own information or those with whom you disagree. Revealing private information about someone else is rude, unethical, potentially harmful and, in many cases, illegal.

Checkmark Set a good example. Practice civil behavior online as well as in public and in your interaction with others. Encourage others to practice these civil behaviors. And it's OK to challenge disrespectful behavior — but be courteous, respectful and helpful in your approach.

Now that you've read the checklist, take the Civility Pledge. 

Your Community Your Voice
Sara VanFleet

VanFleet: Questions to ask when hiring a water delivery service for your pool

Owning a swimming pool is a great addition to any home. It provides fun for the entire family, exercise opportunities and entertainment value. The first key step to any home pool is the water. When …
Gina Van Luven

Van Luven: 5 tips to eat healthy on vacation

Over the years, I have heard many people come home from vacation and complain about how much weight they gained or how terrible they feel. Vacation seems to be synonymous with poor eating habits, …
Dr. Lawrence Presant.

Presant: Understanding spider veins and how to treat them

Spider veins are a common issue that affect many people in a variety of ages. While they often do not pose any serious health issues, they can be a source of discomfort and may make the person feel …

Fugate: Letter writer made incorrect statements about Mining Camp Restaurant

Respectfully, we would like to set the record straight about the statement Todd House made about the Mining Camp Restaurant in the response to the opinion in the June 2024 issue. It’s …

Reveles: Beginning of the end for the ‘big lie’

The following statement was given at the June 5, 2024, meeting of the Pinal County Board of Supervisors: In the spirit of transparency, I want to say I’m a previous president of the …

Bryce: Storage space desperately needed for Zao Theatre

Dear friend of Centerstage Church/Zao Theatre. We need your help. We received word yesterday that our storage facility has asked us to move. We are now looking for a space of almost any type. We …

House: Former supervisor worked to keep Mining Camp restaurant

This is in response to a letter to the editor rebuttal from last month (“Opinion was full of misinformation, contradictions” on page 12 of the June 2024 issue). Supervisor Serdy claimed …

Schuett: AJUSD bonds should be voted on for each individual project

Concerning “$15M bond election considered for school district” on the front page of the June 2024 issue: Bonds should be voted on for each individual project, not a group of projects. …

Everything you wanted to know about the World Series … but were afraid to ask

Imagine you’re at an outdoor dinner party (yes, COVID-friendly). It’s October, and the conversation steers towards the World Series. While you are generally culturally literate, you know …

Christensen: Health literacy more important than ever for Arizonans in ongoing COVID-19 crisis

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has impacted millions across the country, and Arizona has not been spared. This virus and its resulting economic fallout have put a harsh spotlight on rising health care …
Latest regional, state and national issues

Rivero: Payne stood up for small businesses

Small businesses are the backbone of Arizona’s economy, but skyrocketing prescription drug prices are making it difficult for employers to offer their employees flexible and affordable health …
Frank Knapp Jr.

Knapp Jr.: How to bring civility back to politics

Immediately after the assassination attempt on former president Donald Trump, we have heard Republicans and Democrats calling for a change in campaign rhetoric.

Lynch: Opposes chair of labor relations board

I am writing to express my deep concern regarding the renomination of Lauren McFerran as chair of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). This decision poses a significant threat to …
By Dr. Alicia Iniguez, assistant vice president, outreach at Arizona State University

Iniguez: Fighting brain drain is a critical component of a well-spent summer break

Summer is here, which means popsicles, camp, vacation and some quality family time with the kids.
Henry I. Miller

Miller: Is Biden presidential material?

As a longtime baseball fan and an observer of politics, I often hark back to Yogi Berra’s memorable quip, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”

Versagi: We should take all shootings seriously, not just Trump’s

Yes, it is extraordinarily sad and disturbing that past-President Trump was shot.

Goncalves: Debating the right to vote

The Republicans in the House passed the Save Act which requires voters to provide documentary proof of citizenship at the time of registration. What is wrong with that? One hundred ninety-eight …
Laura Page is a candidate for the Peoria City Council representing the Mesquite District.

Page: Just say 'no' at Peoria's planning commission meeting July 18

As a candidate for city council representing Peoria's Mesquite District, let’s pump the brakes on this fast paced development. I don’t understand what the rush is all about!

James: Political signs are fine when they come down on time

Some folks complain about the proliferation of political signs; not me. I am happy to see the large number of different campaign signs come up during the election season. The various campaign …
Brenda Kalivianakis

Kalivianakis: Political culture festering with hate is unacceptable

I recently penned two letters regarding how “aggressive politics are infecting our small towns” and “the impact of PACs on government.” Both pieces suggested that the process …

Loschiavo: On gun ownership

It’s a terrible shame. People that say others should not have a gun — they should be out. It’s not the guns. If people wanna harm themselves they’ll find other ways …
Tom Patterson

Patterson: Peace through weakness a really bad idea

The warning signs can no longer be ignored. America’s future as a world power is fading.

Goldberg: Real Intelligence (R.I.) starts early

With Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) taking center stage these days, it is important not to forget about Real Intelligence (R.I.). Remember the saying, “You are what you eat?” Now it …

Dime: Why politically charged unity can’t work

The confrontations between organic unity, the virtue of mutual acceptance, and politically charged unity, the concoction of equity that provokes social conflicts, are palpable. Organic unity, or …

Scott: Let’s rethink fireworks on Independence Day

Humans embrace their entertainment, but at what cost? With Independence Day again upon us, can we reimagine “patriotism?” Studies of fireworks shows indicate “sharp and …

Swoope: The Supreme Court has thrown out decades of precedence

Be afraid. Be very afraid. The Conservative six justices, having established an imperial Supreme Court, have now established an imperial presidency via the presidential immunity ruling. Only the …

Long: Who I am voting for

Like you, I am planning to vote soon and again in the fall. Though my choices are private, I can tell you who I am planning to vote for. Not by name, of course, but by character. I am planning …
Rhonda Carlson, President & CEO of Peoria Chamber of Commerce

Carlson: New reporting requirements for small businesses carry costly penalties

If you are a business with fewer that 20 employees and annual gross receipts of less that $5 million, chances are you will need to report your Beneficial Ownership Information to the Financial Crimes …
Donald B. Smith

Smith: Data points to heavier trucks making roads more dangerous

Recently released crash and fatality data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration underscores dangerous and deadly trends gripping the nation’s roads.
Peoria Mayor Jason Beck

Beck: Real-time crime center is in the works

In September, the Peoria City Council unanimously approved an intergovernmental agreement to utilize a $2.6 million state grant for the funding of a brand new, state-of-the-art Real-Time Crime Center.

Lincoln: Promising CD1 candidate

Neighbors, if you must vote early in the upcoming primary on July 30, do it, but not until you’ve done your legwork on Kim George. She’s the candidate for U.S. House of …

Popp: Add batteries to solar panels?

Is it possible to add batteries to the existing solar panels in our recreation centers parking lots? The objective, in the event of an extended power outage, is to have enough power to run the air …

Martin: Many factors to be considered regarding airport in Peoria

Although this study seems to make it sound like this airport project is the going to be a money machine for the city of Peoria there are other factors to be considered.

Werle: Doesn't agree with news removal

I agree with Bob Wuethrich that news stations should not be removed from the fitness center TVs. Put up a sign reminding folks of acceptable behavior. Do your job and ask someone to leave …

Hays: Must be careful what exactly we're teaching our children

 Family Values? The Future? The Loss of Humanity? What are we teaching our children and ourselves? What have we learned? Does turning back the clock or reversing our history really improve our …

Dime: Choose the best candidate based on performance

You can see it, you can feel it: hate, war, inflation, violent crime on the streets, all under Biden’s watch. Biden and his cohorts have done all the evildoings that fake news propagandists …

Roberts: Looking for truth in debate

The debate is coming! Personally, I’m not crazy about either one of the candidates, but you can bet your bottom dollar that either Trump or Biden will be our next president. I would prefer …

Williamson: Raising more questions than answers

The article “Airport feasibility study dissected” offers some basic information, yet raises more questions. Nice big round numbers like “$1 billion in revenue” and …

Colenso: The power of Independents in an election

Are you unhappy when your chosen candidate wins the primary, and then loses the general election? If so, read on.  Across the country, Republican registered voters are about 30% of the …

Stillman: Agrees with Smyth opinion

As a Paradise Valley resident, I read the opinion piece written by Joe Smyth in the June 19 edition of the Independent newspaper. Let me state clearly that I completely agree with Mr. Smyth’s …