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Opinion

  • By now you’ve no doubt heard of South Carolina’s annual back-to-school tradition called the Sales Tax Holiday.

    Now in its 12th year, the first weekend in August event has become the time for savings-conscientious parents to stock up on all their children’s back-to-school needs from crayons to corsets.

    Locally, the sales and use tax holiday means a savings of 8 cents per dollar ... Wait a minute. Corsets? 

    Yes, corsets. You didn’t read that wrong. 

  • It doesn’t take a great deal of thinking to see these are not the best of times in Lancaster.
    Recently a longtime bypass restaurant closed its doors. Gas prices have soared since last year.
    As they say, we have to take the good with the bad. There has been some recent good that impacts our future.
    Big Thursday of Lancaster Inc., recently presented checks of $16,000 each to the University of South Carolina at Lancaster and Clemson University. The money is used for scholarships to deserving Lancaster County youth, who attend these schools.

  • After several recent dog-bite incidents, we’re glad to see that Lancaster County’s dangerous dog ordinance is back on County Council’s agenda.
    Three years ago, the county passed a dangerous dog ordinance. Lancaster County Animal Control Director Joel Hinson said, for the most part, a dog must first bite a person or other animal before it’s deemed dangerous.

  • Family Promise has had a drastic impact on Lancaster County. For nearly two years now, Lancaster area churches have reached out to homeless families in an effort to give them a lift.
    Family Promise is a pioneering nonprofit organization dedicated to helping America’s low-income families secure lasting independence. Some 161 affiliates and 130,000 volunteers spanning 41 states provide annual assistance to more than 45,000 citizens.
    In 1988, the program went national and moved into communities across the nation, including Lancaster.

  • Retiring Lancaster County Parks and Recreation Commission director Frank Overcash, in assessing his work over 28 years, was expectedly modest about the job he’s done.
    “All I did was keep something running,” Overcash said.
    He did keep it running, but in the right direction.
    There has been a lot of progress at the recreation commission during Overcash’s 28 years of service, including the last five as director.

  • The Lancaster County Parks and Recreation Commission youth soccer program has made a name for itself in all-star postseason play.
    The LCPRC all-stars teams’ recent stellar effort in state tournament play did nothing to tarnish that shining image.
    The county stars fielded teams in three age groups – 10 under, 12-under and 15-under.
    Two of those three teams brought home state crowns after competing in the elite field at the Manchester Meadows Complex in Rock Hill.

  • There is nothing like the glow of Christmas tree lights or a flickering candle to put you in the holiday spirit. But if you’re not careful, that glow could turn destructive – even deadly.
    We don’t mean to put a damper on this joyous season. However, fire officials say this time of the year is one of the most dangerous times for fires caused by holiday decorating.

  • “A true American hero.” That’s how Jim Moreland describes Jonathan Cook, a longtime Kershaw resident who is immensely respected and endeared by people who know him. Some people might describe Cook as a disabled Vietnam veteran. It’s an accurate description in the sense that Cook didn’t come back from Vietnam as the man he was when he got there in the mid-1960s.

  • It may be trite to say it’s better to give than to receive. But is it? Doesn’t it make you feel good when you give something that makes a loved one happy? And doesn’t it make you feel good when you give something that helps somebody else, especially somebody who is less fortunate than you are?
    Thanksgiving is a holiday when we traditionally gather with family and friends for a big feast. It’s a time when we Americans give thanks for what we have – our health, our family, the roof overheads, the job that pays the bills, etc.

  • Tis the season to be thankful and count our blessings. One blessing Lancaster folks can number was Joan Hall Williams, better known as Jo Williams, or simply “Aunt Jo.”
    She was a Lancaster treasure, something extra special about the Red Rose City.
    Williams, who died at age 79 earlier this month, loved her home and showed so in many ways.
    A history enthusiast, Williams was glad to share her knowledge about Lancaster. Often, she would provide history lessons about Lancaster and Lancaster County.

  • I wish I could go back to bagging food at the Winn Dixie in Kershaw in 1965. Yes, in 1965 we had the Vietnam War hanging over us like an angry cloud. But we knew if we didn’t go to college we could work at Springs in Lancaster or DuPont in Camden or many other manufacturing jobs in the area. We knew we could feed the kids and raise our families because there were so many options for employment in Lancaster, Kershaw and surrounding counties.

  • Several weeks ago, Lancaster County and City councils held a joint gathering at Charley’s Cafe in downtown Lancaster.

    Normally, The Lancaster News receives notification of such meetings within the 24-hour period outlined  under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA.) In this incident, special notification about the meeting was not sent to The Lancaster News, as is procedure before any public meetings. Instead, we received a telephone call from someone letting us know about the meeting just before it happened.

  • There were three articles published on the opinion page on Sept. 22 that deserve responses.

    Letter writer Christine Taylor is right about agreeing to disagree, but talking or writing something negative is not wrong if based on facts.

    Letter writer Philip Wright’s remarks are evidently from a man who has not, and cannot accept facts from a conservative.

  • Someone asked me several months ago would John Spratt get ugly in the Congressional campaign. I assured him that the John Spratt I knew was too much a gentleman and too principled to stoop to smear campaigns.

    After seeing his ad, aired in the Charlotte media market, attacking Mick Mulvaney on Lancaster County’s Edenmoor Development, I need to apologize to that man and correct the misinformation I’d left.

    The ad, while totally unjustified, is brutal. The scenes are every subdivision homeowner’s worst nightmare.

  • I found Rudy Schmidt’s Sept. 12 letter to the editor, “Know difference between right and wrong,” offensive and full of redneck rhetoric. He starts off by saying that’s it not about right or wrong, left or right, Democrat or Republican, then proceeds to denounce anyone who doesn’t buy into the bull being shoveled by the Republicans.

    He is basically calling me a godless heathen because I’m not from Planet Rudy. Let’s take a look at the statements he made about some people in America believing in the following:

  • You may be reading this editorial as a printed product held in your hand, sprawled across the kitchen table while drinking your morning coffee or while scrolling down your computer screen or smart phone.

    Today you have numerous methods of getting the news. And the dissemination of news has changed dramatically since the early years of smoke signals.

    National Newspaper Week begins today and it’s a good time to take a look at what your community newspaper means to you.

  • We need to take a reality check of the John Spratt Washington legacy. John Spratt voted for:

    - Federal control over almost every facet of our lives with a full assault on our core values

    - Failed incomprehensible bailouts

    - Health care debacle which Spratt admitted he did not even read

    - Cash for clunkers

    - Wasteful, expensive and non-productive stimulus programs that have failed

    - Cap and trade legislation

    - Financial regulation

    - Consumer protection

  • It’s National Newspaper Week, and it is a good time to put things in perspective.

    In a head-to-head test of public notice results, a newspaper recently won by a 7-to-1 margin over the Internet.

    People still read newspapers and are far more likely to see newspaper notices than those placed online.

    The test was done in Darlington County in July by Sheriff Wayne Byrd and his local paper.

  • The most important lesson to be learned from the last 20 years of American government is this: absolute power grows government absolutely.

  • It is unfortunate to think of John Spratt as a “friend” of our district. Friends do not let government spending spiral beyond imaginable numbers.

    Friends do not support ineffective legislation or inefficient government and then expect you, their “friend,” to pay for it all. Neither do friends support legislation that has the long term effect of eroding the support and structure that has permitted this country to prosper through private business and individual freedoms.