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Today's Opinions

  • Public wins beach access court case

    The state Supreme Court’s dismissal of the Nies v. Emerald Isle case Dec. 14 appears to have ended a five-year legal battle over beach access.

    Emerald Isle beachfront property owners Gregory and Diane Nies first sued the town in 2011 over access to beach property in the “dry sand,” or between the highwater mark and the dunes. When the property owners lost in Carteret County Superior Court and then the state Court of Appeals, they took the case to the state Supreme Court. Neither the Nieses nor the town requested the Supreme Court’s dismissal.

  • Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus

    Eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York’s Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history’s most reprinted newspaper editorial.

    “DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.

    “Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.

    “Papa says, ‘If you see it in THE SUN it’s so.’

    “Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

  • Cabana use comes down to awareness

    It seems all who visit the Sunset Beach island want to call a piece of it their own, even if only for a few hours.

    Beach goers typically stake their claim with towels, chairs, umbrellas and, in Sunset Beach, cabanas or large tent-like canvas-and-metal canopies.

    More often than not, the strand has room for them all, even on a first-come, first served basis on holidays like July 4.

  • Time to prepare for winter

    Based on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s seasonal forecast, Brunswick County is likely to have a drier and warmer winter than normal — the opposite of what we experienced last year.

  • Service provides important reminder during holidays

    The roster of people who die as a result of violence inflicted upon them grows longer each year. This year in Brunswick County, the number increased with a fatal stabbing, an alleged patricide and an apparent murder-suicide. A handful of other cases also bear a connection — by victim or perpetrator — to our community.

    For 21 years, residents of Brunswick, Bladen, Columbus, New Hanover and Pender counties have gathered for a candlelight memorial service organized by the 13th and Fifth District Attorneys’ Offices to honor homicide victims.

  • Give many thanks for generosity

    As we prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving, we need to recognize how many of our neighbors are struggling here and across the state.

    The Brunswick County Homeless Coalition’s recent fifth annual Hunger and Homeless Banquet called attention to the number of people in our community, including children, who have no stable residence.

  • BFA remains critical to county

    After a successful distribution of U.S. Department of Agriculture commodities from the former pressroom at the Beacon last Thursday, Brunswick Family Assistance and its new executive director, Stephanie Bowen, are preparing for perhaps its busiest event of the year: its annual Christmas distribution.

    The abrupt, dramatic departure of Bowen’s predecessor, Lou Nistler, who resigned Aug. 19 after 48 days on the job, seems like a distant memory. It may be one we would rather forget, but the resulting lesson is something we cannot.

  • No need to hunt gators for now

    The North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission and the North Carolina Alligator Task Force led a meeting in Leland last week as part of a three-meeting series along the coast to get public input on an alligator management plan and whether the plan should include alligator hunting.

    The commission earlier this year proposed a limited alligator hunting season. After receiving public comment and reviewing available up-to-date data, however, the commission opted not to establish an alligator hunting season in the state but decided to develop the task force.