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Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To those who called in tips that led Parkersburg police to the whereabouts of Karen Yeager’s vehicle and the person driving it earlier this week. Because the 17-year-old driving the vehicle was found, police were able to locate Yeager’s body, and eventually make another arrest in the case. Though the past few days have been excruciating for Yeager’s loved ones, it might have been unthinkably worse without at least the sense of closure made possible by those who stepped up to call police.

DOWN: To officials within Nashville’s St. Edward Catholic School –particularly the Rev. Dan Reehil — who had J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books removed from the school’s library after he decided the books could cause a reader to conjure evil spirits. One guesses Reehil has never actually read the books himself, as he maintains “The curses and spells used in the books are actual curses and spells; which when read by a human being risk conjuring evil spirits into the presence of the person reading the text.” To be clear, the books are still on the shelves at other schools within the Catholic Diocese of Nashville, despite Reehil’s claim that he consulted with exorcists in the U.S. and Rome who recommended removing the books. Perhaps, if Reehil HAS read the books, he took a liking to the reprehensible character of Dolores Umbridge. He is mimicking her outlook rather perfectly, which means the only evil being conjured in his school’s library is the result of his removal of a series of books that has been helping kids fall in love with reading for more than 20 years.

UP: To projects such as Edison Middle School’s monarch butterfly garden, which give kids more than a simple science lesson. They are learning that nature thrives when we give it half a chance — and that when we actually take care of it, it will wow us with its variety and beauty.

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