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Columns

  • District 17 House update

    By Rep. Frank Iler

    Guest Columnist

    Last week in the North Carolina House of Representatives, we filed many more bills, now up to about 200; we passed a key education bill; we had more visitors from back home and across the state; and I chaired two different transportation committees.

  • You decide: Is farming a high-tech industry?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    My paternal grandfather was a farmer in Ohio. He raised a variety of crops, but his “bread and butter” was hogs.

    In southwestern Ohio, hogs were big business a century ago. In fact, at one time, Cincinnati (where I was born) was known as “Porkopolis.” Farmers like my grandfather drove their hogs from outlying farms to the packing houses in the city.

  • A little kindness still goes a long way

    One of my favorite things about being a community newspaper editor is getting great response from readers about what we publish and the community we serve.

  • My view on the Hill during the Bowling Green Massacre

    It’s still vivid in my mind despite it being nearly six years later. Memories like that just sear in your mind, no matter how hard you try to forget.

    But as a former Western Kentucky University student who resided in Bowling Green, Ky., for nearly five years from fall 2009 to spring 2014, it’s time to for me to finally talk about what happened in May 2011 on the Hill.

  • District 17 House update

    By Rep. Frank Iler

    Guest Columnist

    Last week in the North Carolina House of Representatives more of our policy committees began meeting to handle bills, we passed several key bills and we filed up to 120 bills so far, some of which I sponsored.

  • Whether in an ad or a letter, freedom of speech rules

    The news department and the advertising department are two separate departments at the Beacon, just as they are at any other newspaper, but that sure didn’t stop several people from contacting me about the “impeach Trump” ad we published in last week’s edition.

    Since they did, I’m happy to answer these questions I received about it:

  • Thanking God for the gift of Linus Torok

    My mom brought me back to my home in Darlington, S.C., from my parents’ house in the Triad where they’d taken me so I could lay my beloved cat Kobi to rest about two weeks after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

    As soon as I unlocked the front door to my home and felt Kobi’s absence, I’d burst into tears.

    “Let’s get back in the car and you can tell me where the animal shelter is,” Mom said. “You need a kitty.”

  • Driving in Brunswick County is slowly driving me mad

    Dear lady driving the red SUV, you drive like a crazy person. You have me wondering if Brunswick County attracts crazy person drivers or if this place turns people crazy once they get behind the wheel.

    Because I think it might be getting to me, too.

    This happened recently: I was headed back to the Beacon one evening, driving along White Street toward the stop sign at Smith Avenue.

    As I have mentioned in the past, there is something about stop signs — really any type of intersection — in Brunswick County that makes people lose their minds.

  • Council should try to preserve natural beauty of Sunset Beach

    To the editor:

    In response to Sunset Beach Town Councilman Peter Larkin’s comments to “muzzle” the Environmental Resources Committee (ERC), the committee is working on the issue of dredging in the tidal marsh on the east end of the island and the canals on the mainland.

    It should be noted Larkin is one of three council members who were appointed by the council instead of being elected by Sunset Beach residents. That is two too many appointees. There should have been an election.

  • How can we get to 4 percent economic growth?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    One of the major goals of the new Trump Administration is to increase the rate of economic growth in the country. The objective is to move from the 2 percent annual growth rate of recent years to 4 percent.

    What exactly does this mean? Technically, the national economic growth rate is measured by the annual change in “real gross domestic product.” Translated from economic jargon, this is the growth in the country’s production of both goods and services.