The Saturday newspaper is usually thin on material, but you can find engaging human-interest stories on the op-ed page.
Shawn Hornbeck, Ben Ownby found
Four years ago, Shawn Hornbeck disappeared at age 11. Police shockingly found him Saturday after successfully tracking down a second boy, Ben Ownby, who was abducted several weeks ago.
Prostitutes and beggars in China
I find Post-Gazette reporter Dan Fitzpatrick's civic boosterism nauseating but his recent series on Chinese-Pittsburgh connections was very very cool. Today, he published his observations on Shanghai - from the incredible carnival of consumerism to the Victorian poverty of modern China.
Sgt. Thomas Vandling obituary, by April Johnston
On January 1, Sgt. Thomas Vandling was killed in the Babil province, south of Baghdad. The manner of his death - a roadside bomb - was not valiant. Sgt. Vandling was an ordinary victim, which is to say a loving friend and consummate patriot. April Johnston eloquently memorializes her friend, Tommy Vandling in this story published by the Fayetteville-Observer and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
It's become too easy for my generation to argue the politics and strategy without personally feeling the impact of war. Since this war is fought by an all-volunteer army certain groups bear the burden more heavily than others.
Another reason we ignore the personal loss is because we don't see it. Today, community is ephemeral. Never before has one generation had so many opportunities in education and the pursuit of wealth yet the technology to stay connected. We leave our hometown and frequently do not return, choosing to forge new bonds with people we are closer to in ideology and temperament. We are physically farther from the sacrifice made by people still living in the places we grew up in.
War will always punish one generation, one class, one sect, or one family more than another. It behooves no one - pro or anti-war - to ignore that.