Statewide Editorial Roundup for July 24-Aug. 4

Sorry for the complete lack of updating this. I was on vacation in July and then when I got back I forgot to update this and now I’m trying to find how it fits best into my schedule and my workflow with the newsletter. Anyway, here’s five editorials from the past two weeks around the state. I’m seeing a lot of themes lately — environmental concerns.  A lot of editorials from across the state have been about the GenX contamination first uncovered by the Wilmington StarNews (all the reporters there have been doing ah-mazing work lately). Anyway ….

So here’s the deal: Each week I’ll highlight five editorials from across the state — avoiding anything in major metropolitan areas like Wake or Mecklenburg counties. The roundup might not have what most of us call “timely” editorials because some papers are weekly or don’t publish a daily editorial. I’ll try to keep them timely though. I’ll focus on hitting at least one paper from each of the state’s regions (or try to at least).

Why in the world am I doing this?: It’s simple — so many of us get wrapped up in our own little bubbles in Raleigh or Charlotte or where ever we are that we forget that there are cities and towns and villages in our own state that are battling some of the same issues we are. We often forget about the small towns, or we write-off their ideas as “Podunk” or “redneck.” We shouldn’t. It’s important to consume ideas and opinions from outside of your comfort zone. And this is what I’m attempting to do.

Here’s the rundown for July 24-Aug. 4

The Daily Advance: “Voters, not council, should say attendance important”
From the editorial: “Horton, who filed for re-election last week, was asked during an interview about his spotty attendance at council meetings. He responded that he always checks the meeting agenda to ensure there are no important votes that will be required. Apparently, if he considers the business to be conducted unimportant, he feels free to skip the meeting.

“That, of course, is no way to serve the public. All meetings of council are important, and all votes are important, and all members of council should consider them as such. Often, important business and votes can arise that are not on the agenda — and one vote can be crucial. Attending meetings is, after all, one of the things you sign up for when you run for council. If you can’t attend the meetings, you shouldn’t run.”

The Rocky Mount Telegram: “Cooper rightly pans offshore drilling”
From the editorial: “Gov. Roy Cooper was right on the mark last week in declaring his staunch opposition to opening up North Carolina’s coast to offshore drilling.

“Cooper made the announcement Thursday on the beach at Fort Macon State Park in Cataret County, one day before the deadline for elected officials to submit comment on the Trump administration’s request for companies to perform seismic testing under the Atlantic Ocean.”

Richmond County Daily Journal: “Sunday hunting bans: Poor policy and bad theology”
From the editorial: “It should not be lawmakers’ job to encourage church attendance by mandating that all competing activities grind to a halt. Whether, where and when to attend a place of worship is a personal decision. Legislative interference here is no better than any other form of naked protectionism.”

The Sampson Independent: “Time to fully fund our environmental watchdog”
From the editorial: “Before the General Assembly approves Cooper’s request, legislators who in June delivered about $1.8 million in budget cuts for 2018-2019 to DEQ will have to perform the political equivalent of turning around an oil tanker in the Cape Fear. But it can be done. …

“They jointly advocated for answers and called for Chemours to stop all discharge. This has occurred and levels of the chemical have dropped below the goal established by NC DHHS.

“Legislators have loosened controls on businesses in recent years, in an attempt to stimulate economic growth. But at what cost? Legislators should swiftly approve Cooper’s request.”

The Times-News: “Why N.C. must keep its water safe”
From the editorial: “We’re especially pleased to see that Cooper and his cabinet recognize that this isn’t just a single problem limited to discharge from one chemical plant on one of the state’s rivers. As state regulators well know, the Cape Fear alone has other pollution problems, including the long-term release of the cancer-causing chemical 1,4-dioxane from somewhere in the Triad. That carcinogen is entering the water supply of every community that draws its water from the Cape Fear and Haw basins, from Greensboro down to Wilmington.”

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