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Opinion

  • Law enforcement officials are forced to make split-second life or death decisions every day.

    In the moments they have to make decisions to protect themselves and innocent bystanders, they must also figure out ways to effectively and safely subdue perpetrators. While experience gives officers valuable tools to deal with these uncertain situations, frequent, comprehensive training is a vital component in making sure good, safe decisions are made.

  • Long before gas topped $4 a gallon and the price of just about everything we need to live and entertain ourselves increased, we heard tales of struggling senior citizens and working-class families.

    Many, not making enough money to pay bills and get appropriate medical care, were left deciding which they needed more—food or healthcare and prescription medicine.

  • For many petty criminals, life on the wrong side of the law is often spurred by bad choices directly associated with drug and alcohol addiction.

    Sending those violators directly to jail, without rehabilitation plans, including a strong drug and alcohol recovery program, can do little to help many who, when out on the streets again, return to the same behaviors that put them in jail.

  • In 1999, five years after 18-year-old Amy Frink was violently murdered by John Paul Counts, her family readied to move on, grieve and heal from the horrific ordeal.

    Counts, who had been found guilty of beating, stabbing and running Frink over with her own car, had been sentenced to 30 years in prison. John Gamble was also charged for a role in her murder. He remains in prison.

  • Why not? He has been a Democrat, and then a Republican, and now he is a Libertarian.

    Mr. Gilbert’s decision to run in the general election as a libertarian is a legal, albeit sneaky, way to circumvent being tossed out of office.

  • Last week Brunswick County residents showed they care—and are motivated to do something—about quality, affordable housing in this community.

  • According to the Consumer Price Index, in the last year, the cost of living has increased more than 4 percent. A leading factor in that increase has been the cost of gas. We’re seeing the rising cost of fuel affecting most areas of our lives—from travel and energy to food prices.

  • When Calabash Mayor Anthony Clemmons ran for election last year, he said, “The citizens of Calabash are calling for a ‘better today’ as well as a ‘better tomorrow.’ They want to see leadership, integrity and confidence restored to the office of mayor, and I fully support their goals.”

    When a Beacon reporter called him on deadline for a brief pre-election interview over the telephone, Clemmons spoke off-the-cuff and apparently voiced what was in his mind and heart without a prepared script.

  • As one of the fastest growing counties in the nation, Brunswick County experiences a lot of boom and bust from its growing population.

    While its impact on roads and other infrastructure can be negative, growth also brings a number of positive things.

    For example, many new businesses, stores and restaurants that would have previously overlooked Brunswick are stopping to set up shop here. That means more jobs for area workers. In some cases, it also means bringing more workers into the area, which in turn spurs on increased home building and sales.

  • It only takes one person to make a change in our community. When that person gets support of family, friends and others, a good idea can quickly grow into an important project.

  • The time has never been better to get out and enjoy events and places in Brunswick County. Whether you’re a full-time resident, a part-time resident, or a vacationer, you’ll quickly see there is much to do in our community.

    While a number of businesses and entertainment groups put on some outstanding productions, some of the very best things to see and do here are events put on by a broad base of community volunteers. From theater productions and musicals to art shows and weekend festivals, from May until October, Brunswick County is hopping.

  • As Americans, we’re accustomed to waiting in lines. We wait in line to eat. We wait in line to shop. We wait in line to catch the bus and to pay our bills. In most cases, waiting in line is an everyday annoyance, something we deal with because we have to.

    But on Tuesday, many Brunswick County residents found a good reason to stand in line—for a chance to vote in this year’s primary election.

  • Congratulations go out to all the Brunswick County Schools teachers honored recently at the annual Teacher of the Year banquet.

    Outstanding educators, representing each school in the county, were honored as teachers of the year for their individual schools. Friday, they joined together with other educators, administrators and education advocates to celebrate their honors and to single out the district’s top teacher for 2008.

  • In the coming weeks, representatives from the Republican and Democratic parties here in Brunswick County have some very important decisions to make.

    The Republican Party will be looking for someone to fill the shoes of David Sandifer, a longtime county commissioner and commissioners’ chair, who died after a battle with cancer.

  • While the bid for Democratic and Republican spots for the next president of the United States has dominated national media, local voters also have some important races to decide this May much closer to home.

    In addition to determining who’ll be on the November ballot for county commissioner, school board and other races, Brunswick County voters will have the chance to select nominees for North Carolina’s next governor.

  • Since 1996, David Sandifer had been serving the people of Brunswick County as a county commissioner. While it may have been one of his more high profile positions, it was only one of many hats he wore while serving the people of this community.

  • Warm weather has arrived in Brunswick County, and this weekend is projected to bring even warmer temperatures that will move lots of people outdoors and into the sunshine.

    As Brunswick County residents head outside to enjoy the spring weather, so will others. Starting with the Easter weekend, residents get ready to share the roads and beaches with the countless travelers that will make their way into our community. The bustle traditionally lasts through the Labor Day weekend.

  • The Beacon’s recent adventure into examining how local agencies respond to open records requests was eye-opening.

    On our part, we learned the value of understanding, in very specific terms, exactly what it is we are looking for. Because wording among agencies may vary, we learned how important it is to clearly explain what it is we need.

    We learned it’s important to have a good understanding of the public records law before going into an agency and to be prepared, at any time, to explain that to the individuals who have the records we want.

  • Being a teacher is often a thankless job.

    Long gone are the days where teachers were respected by parents and the students they taught. We no longer see boys and girls coming to school in their Sunday best.

  • Change is often difficult. It’s especially hard when you have to tell someone you care about goodbye. It’s even harder when that person is someone you have grown to respect and admire.

    Such is the case this week as the staff at The Brunswick Beacon prepares to say farewell to a community icon—sports editor Doug Rutter.