Wednesday, January 12, 2011

We must find our humanity

The account of Rep. Giffords assassination attempt in Tuscan, Arizona moved me to tears. I read with great interest about her passionate political positions that promoted individual liberties while showing compassion for people by supporting healthcare and immigration reforms. She knew you could have strong beliefs in individual liberties, while showing compassion for her fellow human being. In today’s political environment she is quite unique.

For her beliefs, she gained the political ire of the Tea Party and the Sara Palin PAC. What followed in Arizona and across the country was political rhetoric so frightful that many members of Congress began seeking personal protection when attending public events or town hall meetings. Good and dedicated public servants were fearful of being attacked by vigilantes. How could this happen in the United States?

It seems we can no longer have civil political discourse, but need to resort to name calling and insults to make our point. We have lost of the art of compromise and debate in the name of ideological purity.

Even at the local level we have seen this harsh political rhetoric cascade throughout many of the county councils, township supervisor boards, and local school boards meetings. For example, Northampton Council members have been called “mental midgets”, while township supervisors are being called “incompetent” or “idiots”. Do we really want to conduct the peoples’ business in this manner?

As we pray for the full recovery of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, I am hoping that every elected official at the local, county, and the state level will spend some time reflecting on the events in Arizona. Then we must figure out how to regain our civility and engage in an honest political debate.

Once we regain our civility, we will find our humanity.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

American Community Survey - Demographic


The median age of Forks Township is 39.4 years with the majority of the population between 35 to 44 years, with a significant portion of our population between 45 to 55 years old.

Total population 13,844
Male 6,511
Female 7,333
Under 5 years 1,024
5 to 9 years 1,163
10 to 14 years 1,034
15 to 19 years 808
20 to 24 years 369
25 to 34 years 1,245
35 to 44 years 2,808
45 to 54 years 2,148
55 to 59 years 929
60 to 64 years 700
65 to 74 years 941
75 to 84 years 534
85 years and over 141
Median age (years) 39.4


Total population 13,844
One race 13,539
Two or more races 305
One race 13,539
White 11,739
Black or African American 752
American Indian and Alaska Native 0
Cherokee tribal grouping 0
Chippewa tribal grouping 0
Navajo tribal grouping 0
Sioux tribal grouping 0
Asian 558
Asian Indian 223
Chinese 84
Filipino 168
Japanese 12
Korean 39
Vietnamese 18
Other Asian 14
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 0
Native Hawaiian 0
Guamanian or Chamorro 0
Samoan 0
Other Pacific Islander 0
Some other race 490
Two or more races 305
White and Black or African American 122
White and American Indian and Alaska Native 9
White and Asian 54
Black or African American and American Indian and Alaska Native 19