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Thumbs up to former Gov. Robert Ray, a man whose dignity stands in stark contrast with the politics of today.

Ray died this week at the age of 89. He rested in state Thursday at the Iowa Capitol. His funeral was Friday.

A bipartisan chorus sang Ray's praises throughout the week, and rightly so. The five-term governor was especially known for his controversial embrace of Vietnamese refugees fleeing the war-torn country.

This country could use more Bob Rays. 

Thumbs down to the striking myopia on display this week at Davenport Civil Rights Commission.

Director Latrice Lacey, who already earns $115,000 a year, clearly wants her 2 percent cost-of-living raise, and commissioners were more than happy to listen. Now, we could quibble all day about doling out annual raises to well-paid department heads at taxpayers' expense. But that would be a government-wide issue.

No, the real head-turner is the fact that Lacey faces four misdemeanor assault charges after allegedly attacking a man with a sledgehammer. She's pleaded not guilty and court proceedings are slated to resume on Aug. 8.

Now, to be clear, as it stands, Lacey is innocent. She's been convicted of nothing. And it's on the prosecution to prove guilt.

But the allegations against her are troubling, to say the least. And, acting as if tax dollars were free money, at least one commission member wondered out loud if the $2,300 a year Lacey would receive was actually enough. Ultimately, the commission tabled the discussion. 

That statement went a long way in showing how little commission members consider themselves stewards of tax dollars.

We digress, Lacey faces charges after police allege she attacked a man with a tool intended to break concrete.

Yeah, now might not be the time for that raise. 

Thumbs up to John Deere Classic, one of the Quad-Cities' premier annual events.

Not only is the PGA tour stop a chance to see some world-class golf, but it also pumps huge sums of cash into local businesses and non-profits, the latter through the well regarded charity arm.

Enjoying golf isn't a prerequisite for appreciating the JDC. 

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