Jeff Van Pelt

Is critical thinking a vanishing quality in the world?

Is critical thinking a vanishing quality in the world?

By Jeff Van Pelt Common sense is not so common, to borrow a quote from Voltaire. Critical thinking, to use a more technical term, seems to be on the wane in the world. From Donald Trump’s lack of concern about, and failed response to, the coronavirus, to other governments’ heavy-handed, knee-jerk...

Make yourself a hard target for criminals

Make yourself a hard target for criminals

By Jeff Van Pelt People love to debate how much crime there is in their town, whether it is getting worse, and where it is the worst. A more profitable enterprise is to look at how to avoid being the target of crime wherever you are. The information in this article could save you from being the...

You have to be joking!

You have to be joking!

By Jeff Van Pelt “I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it's the thing I like most – to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It's probably the most important thing in a person.” ― Audrey Hepburn “If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane.” ― Robert Frost “With mirth and laughter let...

Firsthand accounts of the situation in Venezuela

Firsthand accounts of the situation in Venezuela

By Jeff Van Pelt On February 24, my wife and I attended a very moving presentation at Fishbon del Sur, given by a panel of 3 Venezuelan refugees, one a spinal surgeon now practicing at Monte Sinai Hospital here in Cuenca. Eight or ten refugees, who have opened three Venezuelan restaurants, sold...

Rebels, respect and the lack thereof

Rebels, respect and the lack thereof

I was a rebel in high school. The year was 1970 and Virginia Beach had largely avoided the upheavals of the 1960s, but we were making up for lost time. We grew our hair long, wore tattered jeans with American flags sewn on the butt, and talked in lingo: a cool guy was a freak or a head. If you...

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