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John M. Crisp: Brother, can you spare a dime?

My neighborhood is natural habitat for beggars and panhandlers. The freeway is only a few blocks away, and its overpasses often harbor bedraggled men with cardboard signs asking for a handout. Garbage cans and recycling bins are regularly gleaned for aluminum and other valuables before the city picks them up.

The climate president?

In his first term, President Obama put his political muscle behind passing health-care reform and financial regulations instead of a global warming bill, missing the best opportunity ever to establish a comprehensive national climate program. Then he hardly mentioned global warming.

RedBlueAmerica: How important is voting?

The midterm elections are just a few weeks away, and one of the traditional democratic virtues — voting — suddenly seems under fire. “Girls” star Lena Dunham offered a treatise urging voter turnout: “When you vote, you feel so, so good.”

Better late than never: Expect a high court OK on marriage rights soon

Over the last year, lower federal court judges have removed most of the suspense from the questions of whether and when the Supreme Court might rule marriage equality to be a federal constitutional right. In case after case, in red states and blue, judges have ruled that same-sex marriage bans are unconstitutional. This makes it very likely that the Supreme Court will grant review in such a case this year, and even more likely, assuming it does, that it will rule that the Constitution requires states to extend marriage equality to gay couples.

Jay Ambrose: Keeping cool about warming

Addressing a United Nations summit on global warming, President Barack Obama said that here was “the one issue that will define the contours of this century.” And, yes, it could, especially if the politicians insist on remedies that aren’t remedies, ignore remedies that actually fix things, confuse speculation with certainty and show the climate a thing or two about ways to hurt people.

Vickie Raines — Public Input Needed on Flood Damage Reduction Proposals

December 2007 and January 2009 brought epic floods to our Chehalis River watershed. Communities throughout the Basin were impacted significantly, many forever. Floods of the scale experienced in 2007 and 2009, do permanent and lasting damage. Floods damage infrastructure. Floods damage homes, schools, communities and families. Floods destroy jobs and businesses. Floods also sear indelible memories into those of us who’ve experienced them, memories we do not want to repeat.

To fight ebola, create a health workforce reserve force

A recent projection of the West Africa Ebola outbreak is that it now may take 12 to 18 months to control and will infect 100,000 people. President Obama announced the deployment of 3,000 military troops, more than a hundred Centers for Disease Control and Prevention personnel and millions of dollars to help stem the tide.