Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Tobacco incentives
defy comprehension
I read recently in your paper about General Tobacco building a manufacturing facility in Mayodan. While I think the 199 good-paying jobs are wonderful, I cannot for the life of me understand the rationale behind giving them $3.4 million of taxpayer money for incentives. Did we not just spend years suing the industry for billions of dollars for killing us and costing us billions in medical expenses? I guess tobacco is no longer a health problem.
ó David Norton
Trouble-free event
Being a local business owner, I would like to take this time to thank our county leaders for driving off a group of bikers who, like everybody else, like to have a little fun. They were all over town Friday and Saturday, spending their money at will. I didn’t notice any trouble, and I wasn’t looking for any, either.
Maybe I should have been at a furniture store trying out high-priced chairs or something. That’s probably where the commissioners were at ó hope they behaved, or the furniture stores will be next to go. Maybe Arnold and the gang will be the next Little Rascals.
ó Cary Gordy
Dollars up in smoke
The final Smoke Out for Rowan County has come and gone, and once again it has brought some huge dollars and some colorful scenery to our town. The roar of the bikes is over, for now.
It is time now for the people of Rowan County to wake up and get rid of the county commission that got rid of the Smoke Out.
After all, Rowan, these are your dollars that they are taking away from you.
ó Dan Jensen
Anguishing situation
In response to the June 21 editorial “Fatal lesson in food safety”:
After reading about the E. coli incident at the Captain’s Galley, not only was I deeply saddened, I was also morally anguished that this was allowed to happen at this restaurant, or any restaurant.
I did not know the lady that died, but extend my heart-felt sorrow to her family for the actions and stupidity that led to her death.
I feel the owner of the restaurant should be held responsible for monetary damages to her family. And as for the ones who participated in the stupidity of butchering this goat and allegedly contaminating the restaurant, they should be held legally responsible for her death.
ó M.R. Simms
A worrisome bill
A bill in Congress could make it a crime for pastors and churches to speak against homosexuality.
The message of this bill is for pastors and other Christians: Just keep your mouth shut.
If pastors and other Christians don’t aggressively oppose a bill now in Congress, in the near future they could be subject to huge fines and prison terms if they say anything negative about homosexuality.
The proposed law could make it a crime to preach on Romans Chapter 1 or I Corinthians Chapter 6. Or even to discuss them in a Sunday School class. If churches and individuals want to keep the government from telling them what they can and cannot preach and teach about homosexuality, they better get involved now!
Senate bill 1105 could make negative statements concerning homosexuality, such as calling the practice of homosexuality a sin from the pulpit, a “hate crime” punishable by law. This dangerous legislation could take away your freedom of speech and your freedom of religion. Consider what has already happened:
A California lawsuit which is headed to the U.S. Supreme Court would make the use of the words “natural family,” “marriage” and “union of a man and a woman” a “hate speech” crime in government workplaces. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has already ruled in favor of the plaintiffs!
CNN and The Washington Post both reported that General Peter Pace, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was fired because he publicly expressed moral opposition to homosexual behavior.
For more info, go to
ó Mike Tickle
Editor’s note: While critics of S. 1105 say it would have a chilling effect on clergy who preach against homosexual behavior, sponsors of the hate-crimes bill note that it applies to acts of violence, not speech, and that it specifically addresses freedom-of-speech issues. Readers can find the text of S. 1105 online at