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Readers' Hotline 3/26/12

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Made us proud
The special section of The Gazette on March 16 was a great recognition of local high school sports teams, coaches and support staff. The honors are certainly deserved as the teams have worked long, hard hours on the court. But also, in the classroom, as most of these students are also listed on the honor roll page for Galax High School. You make us proud. Congratulations to all.

Take a stand
This is in response to “too many positions.” You seem well spoken. You seem to know what is going on over there in Grayson County. You seem to know the economics of too many positions. Instead of calling the Hotline and expecting The Gazette to do more than what is their job to do — and that is to report the news — take what you know, take your passion and combine the two and go to Grayson County and start filing letters of complaint. Speak up at public hearings and meetings. Do your part as a civic duty and go have an active hand in it. Don’t sit at home and get mad and expect someone else to handle it. That’s why the situation is the way it is, because everybody is sitting at home getting mad and not doing anything and expecting someone else to do it for them.

Thanks for the meal
I’m calling from Harmony Village Apartments in Galax and I would like to thank the First Baptist Church in Galax for the wonderful meal they provided for us here today. It was very much appreciated. May God bless each of you.

Teach the children
I’m calling about the article on the front page about the $2 million shortage for Carroll County’s budget. It lists some of salaries that the teachers, office personnel, different people are receiving, and says they are going to have to cut 43 jobs. They ought to cut more than 43. The salaries these people are making are ridiculous for this area. No wonder they are wanting so much money, paying these salaries. They need to cut more because all they are interested in is Standards of Learning tests. You’ve got to pass SOLs, otherwise I don’t care whether I teach you anything or not. So, just pass the SOLs so these school systems can get more money. Look into the teachers. If they are not teaching the children, fire them. If I don’t do my job, I get fired. This tenure business about being a teacher for so many years and then you don’t get fired. You cannot do your job and not get fired. You need to do your job and teach these children, not just for SOLs.
Editor's note: The figures listed for potential personnel cuts are for salaries and benefits.

And there he was
This is for the “just pull over” caller in Wednesday’s Hotline. I’m the one that called “between the ditches” and it was my child in my truck with me. This was [a deputy driving outside of his county]. He came around a curve on me. No warning. You don’t pull over like that. You just hope you can get out of their way. Surely there was a deputy closer to where he wanted to go. I don’t know. But, maybe it will happen to you one day and maybe you won’t feel like I should take my child and get off my side of the road. I will pull over for them coming behind me but when they are coming toward me, they have no more right to run me off the road than I have to run you off the road. I wasn’t reluctant to pull over. I was in a curve, coming around a bend, no warning. There he was, my side of the road. Get your facts straight. You don’t understand how it happened or where it happened or anything else about it. Maybe you are one of those Yankees that’s been transplanted down here that doesn’t know to learn before you speak.

Public record
What happened that we don’t see the divorce listings for Carroll County and I’m not sure about the marriages? It would be good to see those in the paper.
Editor’s note: Court listings are extracted online through a proprietary information network from area court systems for publication in The Gazette. It varies by locality which records are available. Divorces and marriages for Carroll are not available through the network, although records such as land transfers and convictions are available. We are told the marriage licenses may eventually be added but there is no projected date.

Fearing attack
I believe radical Islam is a real danger to America. I am concerned over the increasing Islamic homegrown terrorists. Plots discovered and attacks carried out on our own soil since Obama became president. I am afraid that Islamic terrorists are planning a new large-scale attack like those of 9-11. Obama says all cultures are equal and they are not.

Time to go
One of these days Obama will get smart and get us out of Afghanistan. If he had done this earlier, he could not only have saved a lot of American lives but also saved us a lot of embarrassment.

Comment was out of line
Responding to the person that wrote, “sitting ducks.” President Obama did not send the troops to Afghanistan or to Iraq, but he is trying his best to get them out. You are condoning a person who went on a rampage and killed 16 innocent people, nine of which were children. Where is the justice behind this? Are you saying it’s okay for them to go out and kill innocent children? Our soldiers, when they went, knew their lives were at risk. That’s why they call them soldiers. That’s why they are over there trying to defend our interest — I don’t know what our interest is in Afghanistan other than keeping the Taliban and the terrorists out of our nation. If every one of them went AWOL, then we can welcome in the terrorists and the Taliban and whatever nut from that region to our back yard. Your comment was absolutely stupid.

Responsibility questioned
That soldier [accused of the killings in Afghanistan] had a brain injury and part of a foot missing. Yet they passed him on through to Afghanistan on a fourth tour of duty. He is probably not responsible for what he did due to that. As for the person wanting Obama and saying he is not going to do anything, I guess they want George Bush back in or someone like him to finish destroying the rest of the country. That’s what it sounds like.
Editor’s note: The lawyer for the army staff sergeant who is a suspect in the shootings says that his client did not want to deploy to Afghanistan in December, had experienced post-traumatic stress disorder stemming from past deployments and had suffered a head injury during a deployment in Iraq. We have not found independent confirmation of this stated by the military.

It’s a job
This is an answer to the “sitting ducks” call in the Hotline. The soldiers over in Afghanistan and Iraq are no more sitting ducks than they were in Korea or Vietnam. Those boys are all volunteers. They did it for a job. The soldier who went on a rampage in Afghanistan, he went AWOL, according to the news. He was out with his buddies drinking and went back and put on his gear and went in and allegedly shot those 16 people. I’m not going to uphold for him or not but please go back and blame George Bush for all this.