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Opinion

  • In an era in which the true meaning of Christmas takes more punches to the jaw than Muhammad Ali landed on Joe Frazier in their third fight, I offer you the biggest, most powerful haymaker ever to be thrown:

    Black Friday.

    Is there anything that says less about the spirit of Christmas than Black Friday?

    Even the coined name is repugnantly ruinous to that spirit: Black Friday.

  • The plea for pieces of information that law enforcement officials owe Shelby Countians has become sadly and amazingly more complex these past few weeks.

    We want to know answers to our questions, and we want to know them now – although we now understand that such demands aren’t always simple.

    First, there was the horrible beating of Denisse Escareno, found by the side of Mount Eden Road in the middle of a Saturday afternoon.

  • It was another banner season of fall high school sports in Shelby County, and our congratulatory notes have to be delivered first to the person who finished first.

    Last year we praised the accomplishment of Caterina Karas to bring the first state title to Collins High School, and now we have to offer the same plaudits for the performance that brought the schools’ second: her sister, Gabbie, who beat Caterina to win the Kentucky Class AA Girls Cross-Country Meet earlier this month in Lexington.

  • The agonizing pain of a tragic situation is eating at Shelbyville today, sending a corrosiveness coursing through the bloodstream that connects a tight-knit community and a strong family.

    The death on Saturday of Trey F. Williams, 18, during an altercation with two Shelbyville Police officers that went horribly wrong has created a open wound of pain that threatens to seep beyond the aggrieved in this horrible situation and into all our relationships.

  • The continued consideration by the Shelby County School Board of expanding to all elementary- and middle-school students a pilot program for learning Spanish appears to us to be a waste of time.

    Because there should be no pause in implementing this expansion.

    Shelby County’s increasing diversity, the role of Spanish in the world’s culture and the opportunity for students to be immersed in its intricacies at an early age make this a simple decision.

  • I saw the front-page headline in The Sentinel-Newson Friday (Nov. 18), and I was deeply troubled.

    PROBLEM 1: The front page is misleading.

    What was the overt message of Friday’s front page? There are several ways to read that page.

  • What will you say on Thursday? What will cross your heart and your lips and spill out from your soul onto the dinner table like so much runaway gravy?

    Thanksgiving is the day when more of us express their truest, innermost feelings more openly and freely than at any other time of the year.

    We may express surprise and elation at Christmas, love on Valentine’s Day, reverence on Easter and respect on a parental day, but Thanksgiving…well, isn’t it built on our best emotions?

  • Congress has an opportunity this week to make a historic decision that would permanently change the culture of spending in Washington. Our nearly $15 trillion of accumulated debt is a threat to our nation’s economic recovery, our national security and the welfare of future generations.

    We have already succeeded in changing the debate in Washington from “How much can we spend?” to “How much can we cut?” Now, we must go even further and pass a Balanced Budget Amendment.

  • They gathered there, at midfield of a football stadium, before more than 100,000 witnesses. They joined hands, oversized men in black, white and red. Their loyalties and potential animosity had been deposited on their sidelines.

    Their heads were bowed, and they were praying.

  • We now know that Steve Beshear gets another four years to run Kentucky. An overwhelming plurality of statewide voters thought he had done a good enough job to deserve an encore.

    And there also was a strong endorsement in Shelby County, which was a small surprise considering that Republicans have dominated the top-of-the-ticket races among our voters for the past few elections.

  • We love the holiday season and all that it represents. We are glad so many in our county embrace that season and present many wonderful opportunities to celebrate. But we have a suggestion:

    The Celebration of Lights is celebrated too early.

    This community festival, the county’s largest, is a wonderful event to bring the public to downtown Shelbyville, to erect the city’s Christmas tree and to light up the season.

    But we think its scheduling nearly two weeks before Thanksgiving is out of perspective.

  • ne of my favorite movie quotes comes at the end of Robert Redford’s A River Runs Through It– based on the book by Norman Maclean – “The river was cut by the world's great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs. I am haunted by waters.”

  • From A to Z, or perhaps Antiques to Zebrafish, you can find gifts in Shelby County for nearly everyone on your holiday shopping list. A wide variety of items that are sure to please and surprise a friend or relative are yours for the looking.

    And the looking is just part of the fun of shopping Shelby County businesses.

    Unique gifts can be found in businesses housed in intimate historical downtown buildings as well as large modern businesses that have sprung up throughout the county.

  • The footing on the course for repairing the multipurpose athletic field at Collins High School appears to be as unsure as it would be for an athlete or band member who might try to play on its ineffective and dangerous artificial surface.

    In fact, the plan for that repair seems to be changing so rapidly, we aren’t sure that the contractor, Whittenberg Construction, and Shelby County Public Schools are reading from the same page at the same time.

  • Veterans Day took on a new meaning for me a few years ago.

    As a child of the Vietnam Era, I admired and feared for those who took up arms for our country, but being a timid little country boy, I shamefully admit that I wasn’t real keen on participating.

    Perhaps admiration and guilt combine to form my odd interest in fiction and films about World War II, maybe they are  why I’ve read The Winds of War/War & Remembrance six times and watched the miniseries of the latter nearly that many times.

  • In October, LST 325 (Landing Ship Tanks) was docked at the Fourth Street wharf in Louisville.

    With an old Coast Guard buddy of mine, Don White, I got a chance to visit again the type of ship on which I served in World War II. In celebration of Veterans Day, it seems like a  good time to look back at those ships.

    LST 325 is the last of more than 1,000 LSTs constructed in World War II by the United States. It was purchased by Greece after the war and used as a cargo and spy ship.

  • When I think of “oozing, bothersome blemishes,” I get a bit nauseous. Is this “bothersome blemish” referring to the folks that hire undocumented workers? I doubt it. Rather, I believe that the reference is aimed at the workers themselves. The people who since the mid-1990s have come to Kentucky, harvested crops, worked with horses, helped keep prices down and worked for very low wages in dangerous conditions for long hours.

  • Shelby County residents are having to say good-bye to two of the good guys.

    Charlie Frazee, the county’s first head of the Emergency Management Agency, and Frank Chuppe, longtime city attorney for the City of Shelbyville, are moving on to the next phases of their lives.

    For Mr. Frazee, that happened on Halloween, and it was certainly a trick and no treat.

    Under his leadership Shelby County became a much safer place to live, with more planning, coordination among protective agencies and expansion of alert processes, systems and capabilities.

  • That was a double dose of good news last week for the so-called City Centre project that would bring a much-needed enhancement to downtown Shelbyville, a theater/conference center project to be built on the block surrounding the Shelby County Community Theatre.

    This is the inspired brainchild of educator Leon Mooneyhan, who has been working methodically with a small group of partners to pull together all the plans and funding needed for such a facility.

    And now he has received two early Christmas gifts.

  • We are concerned about projections we are hearing that most of you are planning to skip your appointment at your polling precinct on Tuesday.

    Statewide projections are that barely more than one in four registered voters will exercise that right and duty in choosing our next governor and other state leaders.

    We don’t really understand. We can’t grasp why any person 18 years and older would not register to vote and then do so at the appropriate times.