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Today's Opinions

  • Gazette should drop arrest report feature

    I write to express my disapproval of your paper’s ongoing publication of the names and mugshots of individuals arrested in the area.
    Your snapshot synopses of these people’s lives, condensed from one brief moment of misfortune, bad timing or stupidity in public serves no other purpose than to play into the smarmy politics of fear and sensationalism.
    A trend which, sadly, is rapidly replacing objective intelligent reporting of issues of some use to the public in their everyday affairs.

  • Modified foods are troubling

    I am experiencing a growing concern about genetically modified foods in the food chain.
    I have come to the conclusion that genetically modified foods are dangerous: they have been linked to immune disorders, endocrine disruption, sterility, birth defects, accelerated aging, allergies, and organ damage to name a few of the 65 different health risks involved.

  • Buckle up before you start car

    Taking two seconds to strap on a seat belt indisputably saves lives.
    Yet researchers from a Virginia university found that more than a fifth of drivers still refuse to make that life-saving click.
    Fortunately, the research can help guide law enforcement and education efforts to persuade more people to buckle up.
    Researchers at Old Dominion University used a low-tech method to capture data. They stood at the side of roads throughout the state, clad in orange vests, clipboards in hand to eyeball passing drivers, making note of who was wearing a seat belt.

  • K12 and Virtual Academy put students first

    An editorial in The Gazette about the online public school Virginia Virtual Academy makes a number of wrong claims. It is children, not online learning provider K12 Inc., who benefitted most from the academy.
    K12 Inc. was disappointed in Carroll County’s decision to no longer offer the academy, but it was not because of K12.  In fact, K12’s academy program boasts high parent satisfaction and a long waiting list.

  • HoustonFest was a success

    HoustonFest Organizers would like to extend sincere gratitude for the splendid work that took place leading up to and during the presentation of HoustonFest 2013.
    We will continue to talk about the wonderful weekend for years to come. This celebration of song and service was an outstanding success in so many ways, primarily due to the incredible organization, creativity and enthusiasm of hundreds of caring citizens.  

  • Virtual school took advantage of Carroll

    When Virginia’s first statewide virtual school opened in 2009, it looked to be a good deal for the private operator and its host, Carroll County, but a bad deal for state taxpayers.
    Now the Carroll County School Board has concluded it’s getting a raw deal, too, and voted to end its contract with the for-profit K12 Inc.

  • Concerns about class move

    I am writing to express concerns about moving sixth and seventh grades from St. Paul School to Carroll County Middle School in Hillsville.
    Each parent has an opportunity to select the school for their children, and as their former school board representative, I strongly urge everyone to leave their children at St. Paul for 2013‑2014.
    St. Paul is one of the best schools in Carroll County, with modern facilities and a great faculty and staff.
    If you desire that your children play sports, transportation can be provided for after-school activities.

  • Removing obstacles to higher education

    A higher education for residents of Galax, Carroll County and Grayson County used to entail a lot of mileage and time away from work and family, not to mention unthinkable amounts of gas money.
    Today, that’s no longer the case.
    After Crossroads Institute opened in 2005, locals were able to take distance learning classes through Wytheville Community College, which offers an assortment of two-year degrees and the opportunity to transfer to even higher institutions of learning.