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Readers' Hotline 1/16/13

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Temporary holdup
A single Republican tried to block the raise against the veterans of the United States of America. If there wasn’t any veterans, there wouldn’t be no America.
Editor’s note: You are referring to something that occurred more than four months ago and was quickly resolved and passed. The Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2012 took effect on Dec. 1. It was introduced by a Republican and had bipartisan support.

Follow the leader
Comment concerning “Congressman Griffith votes against fiscal cliff deal.” Mr. Griffith has never considered the short run or long run on anything. He votes the way [Majority Leader] Eric Cantor tells him to vote.

Season’s greetings
This is a reality check for all our fearless leaders at Grayson County High School. Thank you for all your hard work. Although we may never see your face or know your name, or even speak to you unless we need assistance, we forgot that you were a part of our school — not. Thank you to the ones that are there because they are there for our kids, not just to be in control or to get a paycheck. Couldn’t afford you a Christmas card or a pack of computer paper where I could make you one. Sorry, I forgot you didn’t have time. First time in 34 years no one even said Merry Christmas with the exception of one retired teacher who makes every day special for the whole school. She is a special lady. And about the cold weather, how can you learn in cold classrooms? The offices are so warm and cozy. Just right for chit-chatting. Come into our school and you will see. It is really cold. Save all this money from closing down the others schools and can’t heat the one that houses the most kids? Something is wrong in Grayson County. Happy New Year for all the working people at Grayson County High School.

Other needs
The Town of Fries needs to do some thinking before giving money for a birding trail. Some of the streets really need fixing and warning lights are important when it comes to a fire call. It could save more lives if people knew and get off the roads. No warning could take a life while trying to save one. So, I agree with the caller and if they want a bird trail, put it in the RV park instead of using town money. Town council needs to think before they act on a friend’s behalf.
Editor’s note: Though the trail could be funded with a transportation grant from VDOT, it’s not the same pool of money that would fix streets and traffic lights. The state grant money can only be used for a trail.

Debt and dogs
In response to the mounting debt caller, if people would consider when comparing Bush and Obama’s national debt that Bush went through the surplus Clinton left and then ran up a large deficit. Consider Clinton’s surplus, subtract that from Obama’s national debt and consider the shape things were in when he went in to office and it would look a lot better for Mr. Obama. Concerning the cruelty to dogs, I am an ex-military and police dog trainer and agree with most of what the caller said. I don’t know, however, that I believe this area is now backward and rural, after moving here. Some of the people appear to be ignorant, but you can find that anywhere. Yeah, I agree a stupid owner could have a stupid dog. I see so many dogs chained around here and wonder what they have done to deserve their sentence. More people need to consider this problem.

Waste of time?
Oh boy. If I pay $10, I can go to the Oracle Institute [event] and cut out magazine pictures of things I would like to change in 2013. What a waste of time and talent. Why not fill the food pantry or help a burned out family? Some people have more money than sense.
Editor’s note: The caller is referring to the institute’s “life mapping” class, that involves creating a collage of images and words related to goals for the new year.

Why allow both?
In reference to “pick and choose,” if people lead by example and homeschool parents are teaching children they can pick and choose and have the best of everything, then they need to make that choice. Pick and choose. Either do homeschool and homeschool teams or participate in public schools and have the opportunities to do public school athletics. My child is in public schools and was denied the opportunity to participate on a basketball homeschool team. So, there you go. That’s my point taken directly. It is about the children ultimately. No child should be denied the opportunity to play on any team. So, why should homeschoolers have the opportunity to do both their teams and public schools? How fair would that be to a public school child when it come to trying out for a sport and them not make it but the homeschool student did? I have a problem with it and it is going to be a problem if it is ever approved because it is just not going to be something that is going to work overall. So, pick and choose.

Not so considerate
The information provided Jan. 2 for the September sports headlines is not quite accurate. Carroll County High School did petition the Virginia High School League to move to the Mountain Empire District but was denied due to opposition from the community led by Galax High School. This is evidenced by the VHSL item 28 summons report R&R appeals and actions appendix A, dated Sept. 12; and item 23 appeals letters dated Sept. 5. Taken from page 1, “The MED expressed opposition to Carroll County’s request for placement in the Mountain Empire.” Page 9 shows tentative travel times for Pulaski and Carroll, submitted by Pulaski. Pages 13 and 14 submitted by CCHS, do in fact show conversations with the MED principals, mostly positive. But then, on page 15, Dr. Jody Ray uses enrollment comparison charts to show his opposition to CCHS joining the MED. Item 28 shows, “Mountain Empire schools voted unanimously to oppose this appeal.” To act as though the MED schools were being thoughtful and considerate to CCHS is wrong. They were bent on CCHS not joining the MED in any shape, fashion or form.
Editor’s note: The sports story  did not intend to imply that anyone was being thoughtful and/or considerate. Item numbers, page numbers and appendices aside, what the item in The Gazette accurately referred to was informal conversations between CCHS and MED schools which, as the caller himself points out, were initially positive.

Reasons why
I’m calling in regard to [a Hotline call about] blocking the sidewalk. I know the people that live there. The reason he parks on the sidewalk that way is because another vehicle he owned, not the one he has now, was side-swiped twice with nobody stopping. He was parking legally and the toolbox on his truck was [robbed]. The yard, if you notice, is wet all the time, so he can park in the yard and tear up his grass. The street that they are talking about parking on, the neighbor bought an extra vehicle and the only other way of parking would be halfway down the other street. You are not allowed to park in the back alley. People need to understand. If they knew exactly what was going on, they wouldn’t make comments such as this.