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Old Old Mexico -- Culture and content -7/28/2014, 9:03 AM

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Funding DHDC -7/27/2014, 1:18 PM

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Do blacks need favors? -7/25/2014, 4:23 PM

Vote Huelskamp out -7/25/2014, 4:23 PM

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Learning experience valuable -7/24/2014, 8:06 AM

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Measles' scary comeback -7/23/2014, 1:27 PM

The 'big data' deal -7/23/2014, 10:07 AM

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Avoiding taxes -7/22/2014, 8:10 AM

Take the win in Iran -7/21/2014, 8:57 AM

The high court's high-handedness -7/21/2014, 8:57 AM

Up in arms in the Capitol -7/20/2014, 4:52 PM

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Backpacks for Kids -7/20/2014, 4:52 PM

Our unwillingness to defend ourselves -7/18/2014, 10:51 AM

Remembering a man who championed freedom -7/18/2014, 10:51 AM

GOP split -7/17/2014, 8:38 AM

New Kansas senator -7/17/2014, 8:37 AM

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Reagan: In or out? -7/16/2014, 2:45 PM

'Unbroken' WWII vet more than a hero -7/16/2014, 2:44 PM

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Erasing candidate's standards -7/15/2014, 11:36 AM

Returning to Trail Wood -7/15/2014, 10:13 AM

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Strangers in a remarkable land -7/14/2014, 9:11 AM

Courageous or spineless? Our actions decide -7/14/2014, 9:11 AM

Ambition: An unlikely gift to Kansas voters -7/13/2014, 11:16 AM

Beyond the outrage -7/13/2014, 11:16 AM

Water watch -7/13/2014, 11:16 AM

Scenic outlooks -7/11/2014, 9:18 AM

China's research trumps teaching -7/11/2014, 9:17 AM

Important slow news -7/10/2014, 9:42 AM

We've got a promise to keep -7/10/2014, 9:33 AM

The white combine calls -7/9/2014, 10:02 AM

Vote for family values -7/9/2014, 10:02 AM

Politicians making a mockery of my faith -7/9/2014, 10:02 AM

Missing tribute -7/9/2014, 10:02 AM

Rural students deserve 21st Century education -7/8/2014, 9:10 AM

The education table dance -7/8/2014, 9:10 AM

A new virus -7/8/2014, 9:10 AM

Government as God -7/7/2014, 9:38 AM

EPA affecting others -7/7/2014, 9:38 AM

'Narrow' decision from the narrow-minded -7/7/2014, 9:38 AM

The tax trap -7/6/2014, 4:35 PM

Rulings produce 'First Amendment fireworks' -7/6/2014, 4:35 PM

Firefighter salaries -7/6/2014, 4:35 PM

Economic freedom -7/4/2014, 11:54 AM

Protecting our independence -7/4/2014, 11:54 AM

Dan Johnson, 1936-2014 -7/3/2014, 7:12 AM

New Iraq offensive backfires -7/3/2014, 7:11 AM

Setting things straight -7/3/2014, 7:11 AM

'Crapitalism' -7/3/2014, 7:11 AM

Feeding peace throughout the world -7/2/2014, 9:01 AM

Half way is still only half way -7/2/2014, 9:01 AM

Sherow a better choice -7/2/2014, 9:01 AM

Fireworks, part II -7/2/2014, 9:01 AM

Reality show made in Topeka -7/1/2014, 8:53 AM

The justices and their cellphones -7/1/2014, 8:53 AM

LOB defeated -7/1/2014, 8:53 AM

Tragedy explored in 'Broken Heart Land' -6/30/2014, 9:14 AM

Mexico City: The adventure continues -6/30/2014, 9:14 AM

Even our youngest Americans are citizens -6/29/2014, 12:58 PM

Ban on fireworks -6/29/2014, 12:58 PM

It's time to teach active citizenship -6/29/2014, 12:57 PM

The education establishment's success -6/27/2014, 10:39 AM

Piecework professors -6/27/2014, 10:39 AM

Marriage for all -6/27/2014, 10:39 AM

Prairie chicken madness -6/26/2014, 4:17 PM

Omission control -6/26/2014, 10:12 AM

Equal in the eyes of the law -6/26/2014, 10:12 AM

Help wanted -6/26/2014, 10:12 AM

The old red barn -6/25/2014, 9:19 AM

Beware the unimaginable -6/25/2014, 9:19 AM

Early critic of school testing was right -6/24/2014, 8:53 AM

Finding something 'different' in Topeka -6/24/2014, 8:53 AM

Shopping small -6/24/2014, 8:53 AM

Into the classroom -6/23/2014, 8:55 AM

Wow! And thanks to you -6/23/2014, 8:55 AM

Fireworks double-standard -6/23/2014, 8:55 AM

Glass half full -6/22/2014, 5:57 PM

myTown Calendar

SPOTLIGHT
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This vacation, remember agriculture

Published on -6/4/2014, 11:03 AM

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All across our country, Americans are checking their automobiles, studying road maps and adding another item to their "to do" lists in preparation for long-awaited summer vacations.

Anticipation will soar and expectations will rise as husband and wife teams take to this country's highways and byways in search of rest, peace and tranquility. Children will ensure this dream remains only partially fulfilled with road questions like: "I'm hungry; I want a hamburger and fries." "Mommy, Billy is teasing me." "Are we there yet?" and "I don't want to go on vacation; I want to go back home."

Regardless of such comments, mom and dad will remain true to their plans -- determined as the Griswolds heading to "Wally World" -- and push ahead. After all, the money spent for the family vacation usually represents cash left after paying for the family's food, clothing and other necessities. Oftentimes, money to pay for vacations goes on plastic and is paid for later with interest.

Parents will think to themselves and comment, "We worked hard for this time off. We deserve it, and we're going to enjoy it."

Americans remain the luckiest, most pampered people in the world. Try to imagine what it would be like if we had to be self-sufficient. What would happen to leisure time if others did not produce the many things families need?

Although we all work throughout the year, we should not forget those people who also work hard and help us free up time so we can vacation with loved ones. One such group is the Kansas farmer and rancher. They help meet our food, fuel and fiber needs. These needs are met without worry of availability.

The next time you walk into your local supermarket, remember milk comes from carefully cared for dairy cows on someone's Kansas farm. Remember the butcher performs a service in cutting and packaging the hamburger, chops and steak you and your family eat.

But, don't forget the Kansas farmer and rancher cares for and produces that pork and beef. Styrofoam cartons only hold the eggs laid by hens on the farm.

No other nation of people on this planet enjoys the amount of free time we do. No other country can claim so few people feed so many.

Today, less than 2 percent of our nation's population is farmers. They are capable of supplying the other 98 percent with most of our food and fiber.

Remember as you plot your vacation course this summer, and as you motor through the state's highways, notice the fields of corn, soybeans, milo and alfalfa. Take a look at the cattle, hogs and sheep grazing in the many pastures. Don't forget Kansas farmers and ranchers help fulfill our food and fiber needs. These professionals also care for the livestock and crops you see as you drive by. They do so with as much care as they possibly can.

John Schlageck is a leading commentator on agriculture and rural Kansas. Born and raised on a diversified farm in northwest

Kansas, his writing reflects a lifetime of experience, knowledge and passion.

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