Thomas, Th.D. Clinton S.

Thomas, Th.D. Clinton S.

A published writer of  poetry, fiction and non-fiction in both the digital age and the pre-digital age of publishing.  Currently serving as editor and writer for the Four States News all while living life across the four states region from Texarkana, USA.

Recent Articles

Miller County Conducting Water Drive for Dierks

Miller County Arkansas is currently conducting a water drive today for the community of Dierks, Arkansas. Dierks was recently hit by major storms and several people are without water. Those that have access to water, are currently under boil orders through next week. Community members from the four states area are being encouraged to drop off bottled water by the case, individually or by the gallon in front of the Miller County Courthouse today. The drive is officially between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m. today; however, if for some reason you can not make it during that time, please contact the Miller County Courthouse. Continue Reading →

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Ruby Tuesday Garden Bar Falls Flat

Ruby Tuesday is usually one of my preferred restaurants in town. I love their food, the atmosphere, the staff, and I love that Garden Bar. You know the Garden Bar, right? It’s that long bar just as you want into the Texarkana Ruby Tuesday location and glance to your right. It has over 50 wonderful garden fresh, their words not mine, items on it. Continue Reading →

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Texarkana Loses a Friend, Ross Perot

Ross Perot at Scout-O-Rama

The Texarkana area lost a famous native son and a friend
this morning with the passing of Ross Perot. 
Long before Perot would gain the spotlight by running for President of
the United States on a third party ticket, he was well known and loved in
Texarkana.  While some grow up in
Texarkana, leave, make it big, and never look back, Perot was not this way with
his success.  Ross Perot always knew his
roots, respected his roots, and held tightly to those roots and those roots
were firmly grounded in Texarkana. 

The Texarkana region came alive on social media around 10
a.m. as news of Perot’s passing spread online. 
The national reports stated that the 89 year old had suffered from Leukemia
and passed away, but here in Perot’s hometown stories, pictures, and memories
were already spreading like wildfire.  People
posted pictures of Perot in his Scout Uniform along with other young men at the
local Scouting events.   Texarkana
College, where Perot was a graduate, immediately sent out urgent notices to the
press and scheduled a special press conference. 
Others talked about how nice the man was, how friendly he was, and how
generous he was to his hometown.  Several
comments were made about how Perot partnered with Texarkana College and helped
pull the college through some difficult financial times.  It seemed like everywhere you looked on
Facebook, Twitter and other outlets, there were positive stories and many “thank
you” messages to Perot. 

The national news has called Perot a “Presidential Candidate,” a “Patriot”, a “Billionaire” a “Boy Scout” a “Businessman,” and dozens of other titles.  They have talked about his two presidential runs, they have commented that he may be the reason Bill Clinton was elected, and they have talked about the company he built.  As I listened to the national news and compared it to the local comments, one thing came shining through in the Texarkana area.   There was one type of comment that seemed to rise above all the national news and reports when it came to Texarkana.  The people in the area did not call him the same fancy titles the national news seemed to cling to, what the rest of the world knew Perot to be, but instead, the overwhelming local comments called Ross Perot a “Friend of Texarkana.”  Here in Texarkana Ross Perot was loved for his devotion to the area, his help with Scouts, his work with Texarkana College, and perhaps most importantly and above all for simply remaining a “Friend” to his hometown long after many others would have left Texarkana behind in the dust of success.  Ross Perot will be a footnote on the world and national stage as history goes, but in Texarkana, he will be an inspiration and lost a friend for generations to come. Continue Reading →

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Sitterley to Speak to Miller County Republicans

The Miller County Republican Committee (MCRC) will hold their monthly meeting Tuesday July 9, at Big Jakes on Arkansas Blvd in Texarkana, Arkansas. The meeting will start at 6:30 p.m. and open with guest speaker Rob Sitterley, the President and CEO of AR-TX Redi. Sitterley’s presentation and the meeting are open to the public and everyone is encouraged to attend. Sitterley will speak first and a short recess will be held before the business meeting portion. Those wishing to attend Sitterley’s appearance and not attend the business meeting, may leave during the recess. Continue Reading →

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Confederate History, Heritage and Jefferson, Texas

The history of the Confederate States of America is augmentabley
 one of the most complicated histories of
a nation in the world.  The nation sprung
up on the basis of a rebellion, lived through an entire lifespan of war, and
died at the end of the war.  The story is
as old as the ages.  A group of people
become disillusioned with taxes or overreach of the government.  That group of people decide it’s time to
stand up to the leaders because they do not feel their voices are being heard,
and that stand takes the form of armed rebellion.  The Jewish nation did it against Rome,
African nations did it against England, the Americans did it against England
and more recently Texas for example did it against Mexico.  When the rebellion is successful, the leaders
become heroes and the stories spread of the great victory.  You hear names like Washington, Franklin,
Jefferson, and Travis, Bowie and Crockett once a rebellion has been
successful.  But what happens when a
rebellion fails?  Who for example remembers
the names of those who rebelled against Rome in Israel?  For the most part the winners write the
history and the rebellion is soon regulated to a few pages of history and only
by luck does a few of the rebellion’s leaders get mentioned. 

In truth, the Confederate States of America should have
suffered the same outcome as almost all other rebellions.  They should have gone down as a footnote in
American history with a few references to the battles, the problems, and the
outcome.  Regardless of all the politics
that surround the Civil War, those on the losing side knew that history would
not likely be kind to them.  They knew that
there was a very good chance that their deeds, their battles, and the fact that
most of them fought only to defend their homes would be lost as the United
States wrote the history.  The fact is,
forgotten may well have happened to the Confederate soldiers if it was not for
their decedents.  In the late 1800’s sons
and daughters of those who fought for the south worked diligently to ensure the
names, history, and battles of the Civil War did not become a one-sided footnote
in American history.  They wrote books,
presented information to classes, toured battlefields, raised money for monuments
and had celebrations of the Confederate States of America.  Despite current critics, there is little to
no proof or evidence that any of these acts were done to put down people or elevate
white supremacy.   Some myths that are
going around today seem to be more glorified by the media than anything the
sons or daughters could have ever done in the late 1800’s and early 1900s.  In fact, many of the myths simply do not hold
up to history.   We will look clearly and
directly at some of these myths:

Myth – The Confederate States of America and everyone
associated with it was all traitors to the government. 

Truth – in the mid-1800s we were still very close to the
time of Washington, Jefferson and other founding fathers.  The original concept of the United States was
for the government to deal with foreign powers and for the states to take care
of their own business.  In other words, a
spirit of “States Rights” and “State Loyalty” was the norm for the time
period.  Everyone knew this and respected
this on both sides of the war.  Lincoln
for example, asked Robert E. Lee to lead the Union forces at the outbreak of
the war.  Lee waited to see where his home
state of Virginia would stand.  When
Virginia voted to join the Confederacy, Lincoln was informed by Lee that he
would be going home to Virginia and could not lead the Union forces against his
home state.  Lincoln, though he was not
happy about the decision, respected it and allowed Lee to leave.  Many other people chose to fight on the side
of their states because at the time loyalty to the state was more important
than loyalty to the nation.  Today,
society sees this as a problem since we have been conditioned and expected to
have loyalty now to the United States first. 
In fact, state loyalty is discussed very little since the end of the Civil
War. Myth – Those fighting for the Confederacy were fighting only
to keep slavery. 

Truth- certainly slavery was a part of the reason for the
war.  Lincoln was, after all, elected as
a Republican and the Republican Party’s main mission was always to abolish and
end slavery in the United States.  Only a
handful of states issued declarations as to why the left the Union.  Texas for example was one of them and it did
include slavery as the reason.  But it
must be remembered that the majority of the men fighting the war did not own
slaves.  A review of many of their
diaries not only indicates a disdain for slavery, they outright stated in many
cases that they were not fighting so that the rich could keep his slaves.  They were fighting for their homes.  Most did not have the money required to
purchase slaves and most had never owned slaves in their lives.  To further complicate this myth, if the
Confederacy was fighting to keep slavery, then no one in history has been able
to explain why five slave-holding states remained loyal to the Union.  They have also been unable to explain why
Lincoln’s famous proclamation to free slaves only freed them in the states in
rebellion.  The fact is, the United
States at Lincoln’s direction, freed slaves in the south and did not free them
in states in the north. 

Myth-The Confederate States of America’s soldiers were
racist. 

Truth – maybe.  Maybe some of the men fighting, people leading, and others in the south were racist.  Not only is it possible, but it’s also very likely that some were.  We know from some Union diaries that when slavery was finally made an issue of the war in 1863 by Lincoln’s proclamation that many of them indicated a dislike for the idea that they were fighting for African-Americans.  Union soldiers overwhelming disliked the idea of serving with African-Americans or fighting beside anyone other than a white man.  The Confederate States, on the other hand, was highly outnumbered by the Union army from the start until the end of the war.  The Confederate States and the soldiers fighting for it had a different opinion on race relationships.  The Native American Indians, for example, fresh off the Trail of Tears and other atrocities, came out of Oklahoma in large numbers and joined the Confederate Army.  Hispanic people living throughout Texas at the time signed up to defend their home and joined the ranks alongside their Caucasian counterparts.  Some slaves were forced into conscription, but there was also free African American men who joined the ranks and fought for the Confederacy.   Certainly, no government or nation is perfect, but to state that all Confederate soldiers were racist is a gross overstatement and an outright false one.  In many cases, the Caucasian solder fighting for the Confederacy welcomed all the help he could get when facing armies of the Union twice the size of his own army.   The claim that all the south was racist fails to hold up to post-war pictures of Native American, African American, and even Hispanic Americans at their Confederate Reunions throughout the late 1800s and early 1900s. Continue Reading →

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Tom Cotton Book Signing Saturday Morning in Texarkana

Senator Tom Cotton will be in Texarkana Saturday morning
from 9:30 to 11:30 signing copies of his new book.  Cotton will be at Books-a-Million near
Central Mall with his book “Sacred Duty”.   
The book is described by Robert M. Gates as “An ode to excellence.  An inspiring read for every American.”  The description of the book states:

An
extraordinary journey behind the scenes of Arlington National Cemetery, Senator
Tom Cotton’s Sacred Duty offers an intimate and inspiring
portrait of “The Old Guard,” the revered U.S. Army unit whose mission is to
honor our country’s fallen heroes on the most hallowed ground in America. Cotton first won a seat to the House of Representatives in 2012.  He would later run for the U.S. Senate in 2014.  He has served as Senator for Arkansas since 2015.   Cotton is also a veteran of the United States Army and obtained the rank of Captain.    During Operation Iraqi Freedom, tom was awarded the Bronze Star and numerous other awards. 

Senator Cotton has been involved with the Texarkana area since 2012. He has hosted events, attended school functions, and promoted the area for both Texas and Arkansas across the nation. The public is encouraged to take this opportunity to obtain a signed copy of Tom’s new book. Continue Reading →

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Republicans to Live-Stream State Party Chair’s Visit

Arkansas Republican Party Chairman Doyle Webb

Miller County, AR: The Miller County Republican Committee (MCRC) will hold their monthly meeting Tuesday, June 11, 2019, at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at Big Jakes on Arkansas Blvd. The special guest for the meeting will be Arkansas State Party Chair Doyle Webb. Doyle has served as party chair for nine years and is the longest serving State Republican Party Chair in the United States. Doyle also serves as General Counsel to the Republican National Committee. The MCRC will live-stream Doyle Webb’s presentation on the committee’s Facebook page. Continue Reading →

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“Unbelievable Warriors” of June 6, 1944

DDay

D-day survivors are few and far between today as 75 years has
now slowly marched by since the June 6, 1944. 
If you have seen one, then you’ve seen a rare sight that keeps getting rarer
by the day.   Soon, and likely one day
very soon, we will have nothing left of the generation that stormed the beaches
in the name of freedom with a mission to save the world.  They stormed those beaches to stop the
greatest evil the world had ever known.  The
current generation has seen these men as old, feeble, weak, and sometimes
confined to wheelchairs or assisted by walkers. 
Generations today seeing these men have seen the final years as the old
soldiers have been gradually fading away. 
Maybe you’ve looked at a reunion picture, or a picture of a grandparent
and you’ve thought, “How did this old man save the world?  How did this old man break across those
bloody beaches of Normandy on June 6, 1944?” 
Well, for one thing, they were not always old and feeble.  Just like you, they were once young, full of
life, laughter, hopes and dreams.  But
those dreams were set aside for the call to arms.  That call would end some lives as young as 17
and 18, give some permanent disabilities, and leave others scared emotionally
and mentally for years to come.  But take
a moment and step back to June 6, 1944, and I’ll share with you how that old
man took those beaches that day…

That old man loaded up his pack, gathered his supplies and
sent what could be his final letters home. 
Perhaps he told a girlfriend of his love, a wife of his devotion, a
mother not to worry, or a father to be proud. 
He wrote out his letters and sent them home.  He loaded up, placed pictures close to his
heart in many cases, and joked nervously with buddies and fellow soldiers as
they prepared.  When the time came to
cross the waters, he may have puked, he may have been sick, he may have cried,
or he may have prayed, but he went forward. 
In the boats as they rocked through the waters, he heard the shells
landing around him, he heard the sound of bullets zipping through the air, and
maybe he saw the glow of tracer bullets guiding the German fire as it tore down
into his friends.  He saw men ripped
apart, he saw friends die, he saw men jump into the water too soon and
disappear beneath the tide as the weight of their gear pulled them down to
death.  As he reached the shore, he worked
his way through the blood soaked sand from men wounded and dead.  He learned quickly that to stay on the beach
was to die, so he moved forward. 

Shells landed around that old man as he made his way across
the beaches.  Friends who had shared cigarettes,
exploded like bombs in front of him, the air was thick with smoke, and the
sound of men screaming.  Some called for
their loved ones and others simply cried out to God.  Still, through it all when that old man
thought he could not go any further, he pushed on toward the goal.  Eventually, through it all, that old man and
his fellow soldiers took the ground, they pushed out the Germans, and they
achieved what nobody had been able to do in that war in Europe  before…they beat back the Germans. The old man who had leaped out of the plane behind the lines floated like a target through the air.  He watched as his friends were shot while still seeking the ground below.  Eventually, he landed and fought the enemy all around.  That old man and his friends then dug in, watched the bullets fly, and fought as best they could with the hope that the beachhead would be taken and friendly troops would come in sight.   

So if you see that rare sight these days of the D-Day soldier or you glance at an old picture of some old man in a hospital bed wearing a D-Day hat, or with the history of having been there on June 6, 1944, do not see him as you see him today.  The man you see today or even in the photographs of recent years, is only the old solider that once was in 1944.  Remember him while he’s here and remember him when he’s gone as what and who he was on that day.  Remember him like the young Marine once said when meeting a group of D-Day warriors many years ago.  They were old, crippled and aged, but the Marine had read their stories, he had heard about how their fellow dead soldiers had fought and he had heard how they pushed on to secure freedom for the world in the grasp of Nazi fear.  The Marine did not see simply a group of old men. When looking at the pictures and hearing the stories, all the Marine could say through misty eyes was, “My God, what unbelievable warriors these men once were.” 

Friends, do not see those of D-Day as old, worn out, or even gone.  No, see those of D-Day as the Marine once saw them, and remember that those “Unbelievable Warriors” set in motion on June 6, 1944, the day that would save the world for you and for me.   
Continue Reading →

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Four States Rally

Benefiting Texarkana Fallen Bikers Memorial Wall

Texarkana will play host to the Four States Rally on June 7, 8 and 9 this year at the Texarkana Arkansas Convention Center. The public is welcome and encouraged to attend and enjoy this three day event. Registration is available online at tfbmw.org with single cost for a weekend pass being $60 and a couple $100. Singles receive a T-Shirt, patch and access to food and the live band. A couples registration receives 2 T-Shirts, 2 patches and access to food and the live bands. Continue Reading →

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City and County Comes Together…Finally

Texarkana, Arkansas donates fire truck to Miller County

Texarkana, Arkansas donated fire truck for Miller County

For years citizens have been frustrated by the lack of
cooperation and willingness to work together between Miller County, Arkansas
and Texarkana, Arkansas.  Both city
officials and county officials have promised time and again to work together to
help promote a unified area.  Until yesterday,
those promises always seemed to be preached during campaign seasons and soon
forgotten after the elections. 
Fortunately the city and the county now has officials prepared and dedicated
to fulfilling the “work together” promises. 

When Cathy Hardin-Harrison ran for County Judge, one of the
things she promised was to work closer with the city.  Allen Brown had similar visions when he
decided to run for Mayor of Texarkana.  Once
elected, these two did not waste time in looking for ways that both Texarkana
and the county could benefit from working together.  Yesterday citizens of the county and the city
saw some of the fruits of a partnership that may well help push the entire area
ahead. Texarkana, Arkansas was able to donate a fire truck to the
county.  As a result of the donation, the
area of Doddridge will have access to a newer model truck for the needs of
everyone in that area.  Judge Cathy Hardin-Harrison
was on social media yesterday afternoon thanking Mayor Brown, City Manager
Haskins, and Chief Fletcher for the truck. 
The judge noted that this was one example of the county and city working
together. When any two entities start off to work together, it can be
difficult in the beginning; however, both Texarkana, Arkansas and Miller
County, Arkansas, with the leadership of Mayor Brown and Judge Hardin-Harrison,
have proven it can be done.  If this
partnership can continue and thrive, there will be no limit to the potential
jobs, growth, and enhancements that we can see in the city and county.  Naturally, we all know that whenever Bowie,
Miller or either of the two Texarkanas benefit from something, the benefit can
be felt in the entire region.  This
evidence of the promise being kept is certainly a huge positive for our entire
area. Continue Reading →

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