Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To renewed calls for Wood County Schools to adopt a social media policy — any policy — for employees. Even if only a very few of the adults employed by the school system have trouble remembering they are role models for students, and must act responsibly and professionally when they know their words can become publicly available, there must be measures in place to remind them. Frankly, it seems as though some of them might need to be reminded, as much as the students in their charge, that their social media posts ARE essentially public and can quickly get much more exposure, and do much more damage, than they anticipated.

UP: To the reopening of the Parkersburg and Wood County Public Library, after it was closed to allow time to return books to shelves in renovated sections. Relocation of the young readers area and circulation desk, and creation of a new entrance from the parking lot are complete, though there are still a few details to wrap up. We look forward to the anticipated grand opening in February.

DOWN: To news that drug-overdose suicides may not be included as part of the number of overall suicides in the U.S. — and that number is rising. Detecting suicides by drug intoxication depends on authenticated suicide notes and psychiatric histories, according to a report, which notes such evidence if often missing even in more apparent suicides by shooting and hanging. The undercounting of suicides, and the continued separation of drug addiction from other mental health crises must be addressed by the medical community, law enforcement and educators.