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Darts and laurels

Laurels to the donation of land to the Faithful Friends Animal Sanctuary. David Clark donated more than 10 acres to the nonprofit group in memory of his wife, Connie, this week. The couple had talked to Faithful Friends about such a donation earlier, just weeks before Connie Clark died in January. It’s fitting and thoughtful for David Clark to follow through and make the gift in her memory. The gift is also great encouragement to Faithful Friends, a grassroots group that wants to establish a no-kill shelter. The county has an over-abundance of unwanted animals, unfortunately, and thousands are euthanized each year at the county animal shelter. Providing a no-kill shelter is a compassionate and ambitious undertaking. It will take many acts of generosity to get the shelter off the ground and keep it going. This is a good start.
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Dart to sending text messages while driving a car ó or worse, a train. California regulators jumped to it this week and banned cell phones for train operators after 25 people died in a train crash that resulted from the operator’s inattention. Investigators say the engineer was sending text messages on his cell phone while on duty that day. The engineer died in the crash, so his side of the story has been silenced forever. It’s a shame this crash will be his legacy. People have long lamented drivers distracted by talking on cell phones while speeding along the highway ó yet they do it anyway. Now the advanced technology of text messaging has taken public safety another step back. Imagine trying to punch in messages on those little keys while behind the wheel or guiding a train. There ought to be more laws against such practices ó but it will still happen. You can’t legislate common sense.
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Laurels to the city for coming up with a plan to increase access to Salisbury Community Park. One of the concerns when the park was being established on Hurley School Road was its distance from the city. It is not on any city bus routes. Most users would have to get there by car, and the people who need parks the most may be the least likely to have a car. The Summer Outdoor Camp being discussed would solve that problem by offering transportation. For 15 kids per week over eight weeks, that could be a great opportunity. Activities being considered include nature scavenger hunts, bird study, fishing, outdoor exercise, plant science and wildlife survival, among others. This is a step in the right direction, if indeed the city follows through with it. The park is meant to be a place for family activities, not just a service to keep children busy. Let’s hope introducing youngsters to the park in this positive way will encourage more parents to make family trips to Salisbury Community Park, too.

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