One in the White House and the other in me

I was out sick much of last week with what I’m assuming was the flu—chills, fever, head and body aches, cough, congestion, exhaustion. Somehow, I think Donald Trump had something to do with it—my plague-like symptoms started the weekend after Inauguration Day. Sarcasm aside, it’s hard to believe the new president has been in office (as I write this) for less than two weeks.

It feels like an eternity. I know I’m not alone when I wonder how I’m going to get through the next 3 years and 50 weeks. As the editor of an alternative paper that goes to press every seven days, the best course of action, I suppose, is to take it one week at a time. Speaking of which, to counter Trump’s shock-and-awe tactics, we’re working on coming up with a regular feature that keeps readers abreast of what POTUS and his accomplices in Congress are up to. Stay tuned.

This week, one only has to look through these op-ed pages to get an idea of what the nation thinks about Trump, especially his unconstitutional efforts to bar Muslims from entering the United States. CN&R has expanded its letters section this week to print the deluge of submissions. We still couldn’t fit all of them into the space, so you’ll have to go online to read the lot.

People have strong opinions about Trump—mostly negative—and I want to encourage readers to keep up the letter writing. Just a word of caution: We do our best to fact-check each of them, and we won’t print anything that isn’t easily verifiable through reputable sources. Those go into the round file. Sorry, conspiracy theorists.

Speaking of editing, I want to give a big shout out to CN&R’s editorial team. Each member of my small but stellar crew had his or her hands fuller than normal while I was ill. Managing Editor Meredith J. Cooper curated last week’s letters section and wrote the solid watchdogging editorial—if that unbylined piece read a little differently, now you know why. She also cranked out two stories, in addition to her regular business column. Whew.

Reporter Ken Smith rounded out the news coverage, but he also spent hours covering the local inauguration protests on Friday and the Women’s March on Saturday for last week’s cover story. He snapped the majority of the photos and interviewed dozens of the thousands who demonstrated in Chico in opposition to the new administration.

Meanwhile, Assistant News Editor Howard Hardee kept his head down working on this week’s excellent cover story on a local doctor’s efforts to help chronic-pain sufferers who’ve found themselves reliant on dangerous prescription medications.

I made it back into the office on Thursday and was well enough to attend Saturday evening’s Keep Chico Weird Talent Show at the El Rey Theatre. Major props to Arts Editor Jason Cassidy (aka Arts DEVO) for keeping the event on track despite some technical difficulties. Big thanks to all of the judges, contestants and featured performers who made the show lively and, as always, super weird.

And finally, I’m sorry to report that this is Calendar Editor Daniel Taylor’s last week with CN&R. He got a full-time gig elsewhere. We’re going to miss Taylor and his excellent work. We wish him well.