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Editorials

North Korea: Easing sanctions would be a mistake

Some things never change. North Korean dictators’ determination to stay in power by keeping the rest of the world off balance is one of them. For a time, it seemed as if North Korean strongman Kim Jong Un might be altering course from that pursued by his father and grandfather. Kim and U.S. ...

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To Williamstown Mayor Jean Ford, who, after more than 23 years passed the baton last week to incoming Mayor Paul Jordan. In signing off, Ford said “This has been a wonderful 23 years and the city is blessed with a wonderful council.” We would guess there are plenty in Williamstown who ...

West Virginia Day: Mountaineers have rich heritage to celebrate

Saturday is West Virginia Day, the birthday of this wild and wonderful state we call home; and a chance to remember who we are. We celebrate that 157 years ago we were admitted to the Union as our own state, after breaking away from the state at the heart of a fight for an institution we ...

Bureaucracy: Treasury must simplify PPP loan forms

U.S. Sens. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., have joined 42 other senators in a battle against addiction in Washington, D.C. No, not addiction to drugs. Addiction to serving King Bureaucracy. Federal officials often seem unable to do anything without bogging the process ...

COVID-19: Do not let down your guard just yet

Gov. Jim Justice and Dr. Clay Marsh have told West Virginians over and over the time for caution regarding the spread of COVID-19 has NOT passed. Monday the pair announced the state Department of Health and Human Resources has identified at least five churches that appear to be the source of ...

Elections: Incompetence can look like malice

Complaints about voter disenfranchisement often have more to do with incompetence than partisan scheming, we suspect. This year’s primary election in Georgia appears to be a case in point. Voters reported lengthy delays and other problems in many of the state’s 159 counties last Tuesday. ...

COVID-19: It’s up to us to keep outbreak contained

As the process of “reopening” America picks up speed, some states are reporting disturbing upswings in COVID-19 activity. Thus far, the signs remain good in West Virginia — but we have to be ready for a change. Generalizations can be risky, but West Virginians have grown accustomed to ...

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To the energy and drive displayed by 5-year-old RayLee Townsend, who decided on her own to start a small business (a lemonade and Kool-Aid stand) to earn enough money to buy herself a special toy, after her surgery to remove a mass from her hip. RayLee has been through a lot lately — ...

Education: New West Virginia superintendent has challenge ahead

Newly named West Virginia Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch has an enormous job on his hands as public school officials try to figure out how to get kids back to school in a not-quite-post COVID-19 world. In fact, preparation for a possible second wave of the virus has factored in to the ...

Parks Fund: Congress should pass recreation legislation

Problems with the way federal government handles funding for both local recreation projects and national parks would be resolved, at least partially, by a bill awaiting action in the U.S. Senate — the Great American Outdoors Act (S3422). Perhaps the most important federal initiative aiding ...

Fraud: Identity thieves should be caught, prosecuted

State officials have had to deal with an avalanche of West Virginians seeking unemployment compensation during the past several weeks, because of business restrictions linked to the COVID-19 epidemic. Our already sluggish economy is being thrown for a loop (again), and it appears a number of ...

Bureaucracy: We can’t afford repeat of flood relief fiasco

Among the heroes of the COVID-19 epidemic in West Virginia are the men and women of the state’s National Guard. Many have worked tirelessly at great sacrifice to themselves and their families, sometimes risking their own health to aid fellow Mountain State residents. They have been busy on ...

Education: New West Virginia superintendent must meet challenges

West Virginia Board of Education members plan to select a new state superintendent of schools Wednesday. In many ways, it will be the most important decision made in our state this summer. Yes, the upheaval caused by COVID-19 will continue to have dramatic effects on every Mountain State ...

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To the American Red Cross finding a way to continue its incredibly valuable free swim classes at Southwood Pool this summer. “In an effort to continue the traditional free Learn to Swim lessons this year, we have reorganized how we will observe signups for this year,” said Sharon ...

Safeguards: Returning WVU students must play it safe

West Virginia University officials have announced that fall classes — with students on campus — will, indeed, begin Aug. 19. Their plan for doing so relies largely on students taking personal responsibility for doing the right thing to limit the spread of COVID-19. Those past college age ...

Vote! Primary election must not be ignored

Tuesday is primary election day in West Virginia. Given the numbers Wood County Clerk Mark Rhodes told us he is seeing, it seems as though quite a few people are either unaware or do not care. “In 2016 we were averaging 445 voters a day; we are averaging 177 a day right now,” Rhodes said ...

Safety: Bad police make job harder for good ones

West Virginia National Guard and Winfield, W.Va., Police Department Officials have a bit of a problem on their hands. One of their own showed his true colors a few days ago. Guardsman and Winfield police officer Noah Garcelon posted on social media that he would “start firing live rounds” ...

COVID-19: Testing campaign for prisons is vital

It appears nearly all the COVID-19 cases in Randolph County are at the state prison in Huttonsville. Keeping it that way — that is, preventing the disease from spreading into communities around the corrections center — must still be a priority for Gov. Jim Justice and other state officials ...

Healthcare: Hospital closures need legislators’ attention

Last week, Bluefield Regional Medical Center became a shell of its former self as officials announced it would close down all inpatient and ancillary services by July 30. It will, for now, continue to offer an emergency department, a lab and x-rays. That is quite a blow to the area, though ...

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

UP: To Dr. Clay Marsh who has served so well as West Virginia’s Coronavirus Czar, but is now transitioning back into his role as Vice President and Executive Dean of West Virginia University’s Health Sciences department. Marsh has been a calm, steady, well-informed voice of reason during ...