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Letters home ...

Traveling abroad for personal, educational or professional reasons?

Why not share your impressions — and those of residents of foreign countries about the United States — with Trib readers in 150 words?

The world's a big place. Bring it home with Letters Home.

Contact Colin McNickle (412-320-7836 or cmcnickle@tribweb.com).

Daily Photo Galleries

'American Coyotes' Series

Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

Saturday, June 8, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
 

Samantha Power, President Obama's nominee to be the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, once promoted a foreign policy referred to as the “Mea Culpa Doctrine,” running around the world apologizing for just about anything the United States ever did to offend anybody else. Mr. Obama bows, Ms. Power curtsies. What a pair. ... FBI statistics show that more than 73 million background checks for gun purchases have been made since Barack Obama assumed the presidency in January 2009. And they've increased markedly each year he's been in office. Gee, wonder why. Ahem. ... The first rule of thumb if you're filing for workers' comp injury relief and claiming you can't stand, sit, kneel, squat, climb, bend, reach or grasp is not to appear on “The Price is Right” and, before millions of viewers, lift your arms high and spin the big wheel not once but twice — or to go ziplining on a cruise. Cathy Wrench Cashwell, a North Carolina postal carrier, did just that. She was convicted of fraud Monday last. She'll likely still be able to watch “The Price is Right” in prison. But we're sure she'll have to forgo the ziplining. ... The Heritage Foundation reports that a Christmas tree tax has made its way back into the abomination that is the farm bill. A new tax of up to 20 cents per fresh-cut tree will pay for a federal Christmas Tree Promotion Board, whose goal will be “to enhance the image of Christmas trees and the Christmas tree industry in the United States.” Count us among those shocked to learn that Christmas trees have an image problem.

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