Readers' Hotline 3/12/14

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Shutting down
About the Kroger store closing: everybody knows when a Walmart store comes to town, it shuts down all the other little grocery stores.
Editor’s note: That’s true, but Kroger is hardly “little.” It’s one of the largest retail chains in the world, with billions in annual sales.

Drain on economy
I’m calling in regard to the water park Carroll County is taking a look at. I certainly hope they do not do this. I can’t imagine the county losing over $122,000 the first year, just on the water park and then it would go down to maybe $40,000 a year. If Carroll County has that much excess money, they ought to take a look at helping out the sheriff’s department and lowering our tax base. That would put it to good use instead of something silly as a water park.

Local heroes
As a follow up to the story in the weekend edition, Feb. 28-March 2, we have two other heroes to thank. Stanley Widener of Fancy Gap and David Sizemore of Woodlawn who came after the neighbor on Showcase Lane was transported to the hospital. They plowed the road out so the patient’s family could get to the hospital. They worked for hours in frigid temperatures to help us get out. We are very grateful and want everyone to know about their kindness in extreme situation.

Weirdos don’t like pets
I have heard about people that have property houses for rent will not rent to people that have pets. I’m thankful I own my own property and I don’t have to mess with renting to those weirdos that don’t like pets. On the other hand, I believe that people that don’t like pets, down deeply, they don’t like people either.

Water park needed
I hope the people in this community can really see the value of a water park in Carroll County. I really appreciate the supervisors who have tried to find out more about having a water park in our community. I think it will be a great asset. It is important for our children to have a place to go where they are supervised and can have fun and there is nothing to do here for those kids. There is also so little to do for our families. If we want businesses to come to our community, we have to have things that are attractive to those families that come with the people that bring the business to our community. We need to go for something really good here so we can have something in our county to be proud of.

Do your job
After reading the Feb. 5 and Feb. 24 articles on delinquent taxes in Carroll County, I believe we need more concerned citizens like Steve Gregson to demand answers on what goes on in the county offices. Seems like the treasurer and county attorney don’t want to do their job of collecting these delinquent taxes. The latest list of delinquent tax payers was published in the local paper in the late fall of 2013. Some went as far back as 1994. This could not have gone on for so long if the treasurer was doing their job. Makes you wonder why not. More and more advertising of property sales for unpaid taxes would bring in more bidders and more revenue for the county. Whatever they collect is better than nothing. They are too busy raising taxes and non-user water fees for the people who do pay instead of doing their job.

Don’t interfere
Many young men and women in the armed forces have been killed because our government sent them to places like Iraq and Afghanistan. These are places where we had no business being in. Now, our government is complaining about Russian troops being in the Ukrane, a land that actually borders Russia. This is none of our government’s business. Think of the money we could have used wisely helping people in our own country, rather than throwing it away going to places we had no business being in. Someone please explain this to me.

This is in reference to several things in the Hotline March 3 and 4. First one, talking about disgracing their body. Whoever it is, if they go to church and they aren’t a Christian, they better get right or one of these days they are going straight to hell. And, what’s wrong with all year school? They claim that the students will learn more and retain more and it will help them further down the line in their life. So, these know-it-alls that think it’s wrong, what can you say about those type people? And, talking about the individual that is telling this person in Pipers Gap about crossing a dangerous road and their suggestion is they could solve it if they go to the post office and get a post office box. Okay, what if this individual does not own a vehicle or what if they are like me – on social security and don’t’ have enough money per month to pay for a post office box. What an idiot. They just sit back and are know-it-alls.

Impeding firefighters
I was just wondering how many people saw the video of the California State Highway Patrol giving the fireman a ticket – putting him in handcuffs. I guess they gave him a ticket. They arrested him for not moving his fire truck off the highway and what he was doing with that fire truck was protecting the men that were out there working to keep traffic from running over it. They arrested him. I heard later by the news media that he was reprimanded. That’s like the incident in Galax where a fireman was followed and given a ticket for driving too fast on the four lane [on his way to responding to a fire call], which impeded him from answering his call. I don’t know what ever happened on that deal, but they ought to be thinking about some of this stuff when they are slowing down a fireman.
Editor’s note: Galax Fire Chief David Hankley confirmed that two firefighters recently were stopped by Galax police on seperate occasions for speeding while responding to fire calls. In both cases, being stopped by police kept the firefighters from responding to the calls.

Focus on care
The [March 3 guest editorial by Twin County Regional Healthcare CEO Jon Applebaum] spoke very encouragingly of the availability of insurance coverage through the healthcare availability act. I hope TCRH does finally get reimbursement for the care it delivers to our citizens. It would benefit TCRH for those in leadership positions to use their time and resources wisely returning quality patient care by stopping the use of cell phones, group talks in hallways and other behaviors by staff that distract from the one-on-one care that patients deserve. TCRH can do better.

Don’t judge me
I can’t understand why people are wasting their time worrying over who is smoking and who has tattoos. They are not the judge, God is. Time would be better well spent helping people doing some good in the community instead of wondering what sin someone is doing. I have been a Christian over 50 years but I am trying to take care of my own self instead of worrying about what someone else is doing.

Be useful
I would like to challenge our state senator [Bill] Carrico to help his constituents out. Please, don’t propose bills that are only grandstanding. Kids already have the right to pray in school and will continue to have. Instead, try proposing a bill that would help us all. Maybe you could be the first in your party to propose legalization of marijuana. Imagine how much income that could bring to our area. That stuff loves to grow in the mountains. Please senator, prove to us that progressive Republican is not an oxymoron.

Who you know
I see two big issues in the City of Galax. Number one, lack of community involvement in decisions with city council and Galax City School Board. Number two, lots and lots of nepotism. Lots of hiring of husbands, wives, sons, daughters, etc. That runs the gamut – Galax City Schools, police departments, maybe other city offices. This should be looked in to. It’s getting to be too much “good ole boys club.”

No confirmation
Just wondered why the editor could not confirm a caller’s claims when it is all over the news – CNN, MSNBC, HLN, where else would you go? Certainly not Fox News. They are not going to tell the fact about anything.
Editor’s note: Without knowing which topic the caller asked for confirmation about, it’s hard to say why we didn’t address their claims. Can you provide more details?

Leash law needed
Carroll County needs a leash law like Galax has because some dog owners have no regard for their neighbors, letting their dogs run all over the neighborhood and if you report growling and aggressive ones, nothing is done about it. Dog warden says, “nothing can do until the dog bites.” Too late then. No one likes dogs running out and growling at them. I know I don’t.

Mail call
Carroll County, Galax especially, it is unreal how stupid people are. I cannot believe that people would expect to get their mail on time when there has been 20 inches of snow over there. You are lucky to get it any time. I can remember in 1960 when we didn’t get no mail or no food either until the helicopter came and dropped it out. So, don’t be so stupid. Carroll County has really good supervisors. They are really smart. They know what they are doing and don’t need the help of this stupid talk y’all have all the time. I tell you another thing. Everybody needs to get down on their knees to pray for this governor we have. If he won’t sign that bill, he is in bad shape. He is in worse shape than the ones that just left that stole everything he could get his hands on.

Recommended reading
Everyone should read Pastor John Hagee’s new book, “Four Blood Moons” available at www.jhm.org. It’s subject is a series of eclipses of the moon and sun with very unusual timing beginning this April and continuing through September of 2015. They might be connected to Bible passages such as Joel 2:31, Luke 21:25, Act 2:20.

Need a break
I think it is crazy to send these kids to school all year around. They need a break. They are not college students. I would like to go on vacation when I have it scheduled, not when they want me to schedule it. Give these kids a break. You are brain deading them now. You are pushing them too hard. They would like to get a break from school.
Editor’s note: The proposed changes to the school calendar would still include a summer vacation, and other breaks throughout the year.

Stay out of Russia
Here we go again. The Sochi Olympics were so beautiful and well run. The young people were a credit to their countries. To be airborne over snow and ice takes lots of practice and it was amazing to watch. So see everyone getting along and possibly making friends forever. No shootings, no killings. It warmed my heart. Now, here come our rich politicians, the war mongers: “Let’s go to war. Be aggressive. Let’s put our young men and women in uniform and send them in harm’s way.” Especially where we are not wanted. And don’t forget, just forget them when they come home injured. Oh no, not my kid. That’s the way them politicians think. You will never see their kids going. We have to stop pushing ourselves into these other countries when they are having civil wars.

Tired of paying
Here is a message for the CEO of Twin County Hospital. I read his opinion piece about how good the healthcare insurance marketplace is. Well, that little law cost several of my relatives their health insurance and I don’t think it is so good and I don’t think it looks very positive on his hospital that he has stuff like that in the paper. Tells me a lot about where the hospital’s real concern is about – whether they are really interested in the people in this community or something else. Is it going to help this community with all the people who are going to lose their healthcare over this ridiculous law? No. I am tired of paying for other people’s healthcare.

Strange weather
Well, with all the bad weather, I have just been sitting around wondering. I see the Kroger store is closing. We should had supported them better. Wonder where I am going to get my ice cream and cheese – probably Radford. Been wondering about these Republicans calling the hotline about ignorant Democrats and bad president. Wonder who is driving the Republican clown car? Sure hope they parked it. Don’t want those folks doing too much multi-tasking. That brings us back to the weather. Been wondering about that. Strange weather. Guess it is global warming caused by [greenhouse] gas emissions. Or, maybe it’s the Islamic-Jewish-Christian God of creation giving us a warning to stop messing with his handiwork. Just been wondering about that.

Doing his best
To you people that don’t know what a dictator is, it is a person or persons that control a nation. No if’s, and’s, but’s about it. They take orders from that person. They don’t have a congress that will control whatever is going on. They control. Hitler was a dictator. If you think President Obama is a dictator, then you all are wrong. If he could bring peace throughout the whole world; if he could solve the hungry in the whole world; if he could bring the unemployment down to one percent, would he be a dictator? But, you would still have something negative to say about this great man. The only reason all this is being said is because of the color of his skin. That is the only reason. I do believe that he is trying his best to bring stability to this ungodly world.

Praise for FDR
The greatest president we ever had in this country was Franklin D. Roosevelt and no other president can even come close to what Roosevelt did for the people.

Buddy system
I think it would be in the best interest of the people of Grayson County to get rid of the three supervisors who can’t seem to adjust themselves to go along with what the other two supervisors vote on each and every time. They always want to vote against them. Them three are buddy-buddy and I don’t know what it is going to take for the rest of the people of Grayson County to see that, but something definitely does need to be done. I guess it goes to show if you are in the buddy system, you get away with more.

More dangerous?
I was reading in the paper that they are going to put more restrictions on older drivers to try to make them go through more hoops to get their license and do it for a shorter period of time because they are supposedly more dangerous on the road. I don’t see how they could be more dangerous than these young kids because most of them don’t know how to drive and most of the older drivers don’t know how to text.

For the working man
I don’t know what is wrong with you people. You should be glad we have a president that is trying to help us. Obama watched his mother lay in the hospital with cancer on the phone fighting with insurance companies because they would refuse to pay and say pre-existing [conditions weren’t covered]. He was abandoned when he was like two or three years old by his father, leaving his mother, a single parent, to raise him. They lived hard back then, so he knows first hand what the working class is like so that’s why he tries to help us and this Republican congress is cutting food stamps, the governors in certain states are not accepting the insurance that millions need and they can’t afford and that would get your insurance to come down because you are paying for them to go to the emergency room. You need to quit watching that one station that is getting paid to say all that stuff that is negative. If we could get insurance and stuff like the countries overseas, even the mothers get a year off with pay with their new babies. School is free. I know because my son was in the military and he was stationed in Germany. He said he would love to live there. It is a lot better than here.

School issues
I find it most interesting that the year-round school meeting for the community is on March 18 at 6:30 p.m., but also the community input meeting about the proposed new school in Galax City Schools is also on March 18 at 6 p.m. Will people have enough time to attend both meetings, or is this a planned strategy of the school system to keep out parent and community input? Furthermore, what Galax city teacher has a mug shot on the Internet? That needs to be made public knowledge. Criminal records of all teachers, all school employees should be made public knowledge. We don’t want criminals teaching our children, especially if they are sex offenders or drug abusers.
Editor’s note: Galax City Schools Superintendent Bill Sturgill offered this statement on the meeting times: “Galax City Schools set the date and time of our community meeting for the balanced calendar to provide the community with general information and an opportunity to comment. The city zoning committee set the date for the zoning request on a parcel of property that Galax City Schools has an interest in. I expect to be at the zoning meeting and back to the calendar meeting on time. The zoning meeting is a request to change the zoning on the parcel of property, not a discussion of what type of school would be constructed or when construction might start. I would expect only property owners that have a vested interest in how development of said property might impact them personally to have a desire to attend the zoning meeting.” Also, for a zoning hearing, the city would have notified adjacent property owners directly about the hearing. Sturgill also resonded to the caller’s questions about criminal records of teachers: “All potential employees of Galax City Schools must pass a background check. Any individual with the kind of charges referenced in the Hotline comment would not be hired by any public school division in Virginia, including Galax City Schools.”