When we are blessed to live in a nation like ours, it can be natural to take for granted the privilege of living in peace – until a day like September 11.

On that morning in 2001, thousands of innocent lives were lost in a diabolical attack on our homeland. We are now graduating a generation without first hand knowledge of the events of that tragic day.

As we remember that day, let us renew our commitment to be the shining beacon of hope and freedom to the world — and pass on to the next generation an appreciation for the blessings we have inherited with a resolve to securing the peace through strength.

SURVEY: Bill to Decriminalize Marijuana Headed to the House Floor

Under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970, marijuana is a Schedule I substance, representing what the Drug Enforcement Administration calls the most potential for abuse. But at the state level, there is conflicting legislation in terms of marijuana’s legality. House leadership announced the legislation that we will be voting on during the September session, and one bill, H.R. 3884 – Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, would remove marijuana from the list of scheduled substances, decriminalizing it at the federal level.

Do you think this bill should become law?

All across Texas and throughout the country, the COVID-19 pandemic hit our farmers particularly hard, from unexpected price changes to labor reduction to regulation changes. These unprecedented challenges shrunk margins and increased costs, especially for small farms in our region.

Talking with farmers in our part of Texas

I recently visited with family farmers at J Welch Farms, a family-owned olive ranch and farm outside Victoria. Their olive orchard is made up of 86,000 Arbequina and Koroneiki olive trees on 120 acres. Their trees produce premium first harvest cold-pressed olive oil for families to enjoy all over the United States. They also grow cotton, which is being harvested now. I met with them to discuss their experiences with federal COVID relief programs and the unique situation they have faced as a small farm in our part of Texas. God bless our farmers!

Michael Cloud (R-Victoria) is the U.S. Representative of the 27th District, which includes Wharton County. More information on this and other topics can be found at his website: www.cloud.house.gov.

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