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Let deputies cruise to class

Laurels to a proposal that would allow Rowan Sheriff’s deputies to use their patrol cars to transport their children to and from school as a way to add law-enforcement visibility on campuses. While it’s a small step, it’s one that wouldn’t require new resources or reduce the time deputies would spend on their regular duties. Although concerns about shootings or other violence on campus are the main driving force behind the idea, there’s another potential benefit. Having more cruisers on school routes could help deter young and inexperienced drivers from speeding — a primary cause of crashes that claim far too many young lives. The legislature should give quick approval to Sheriff Kevin Auten’s request and let cruiser-driving deputies make the school commute.

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Dart to the end of Rowan Regional Medical Center. Don’t panic — the hospital is still there and operating as usual. Only it’s now officially Novant Health Rowan Medical Center, reflecting its corporate ownership. Novant is perfectly within its rights to rename its properties, of course, and it has followed a similar renaming formula with other facilities. But even with Rowan still a part of the name, corporate branding inevitably dilutes the “hometown” identity of an institution that generations of local residents have used and supported. So long as patients can continue to rely on the hospital’s care, however, that’s what matters most. And regardless of what the sign out front says, a lot of folks will continue to call it Rowan Regional.

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Laurels to the Livingstone College men’s basketball team for giving Blue Bear fans reason to hoop it up this season. The cagers made history, capturing the college’s first Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) division title and then defeating St. Augustine’s in the CIAA tournament to advance to Friday night’s semifinal against Elizabeth City State. (Check our sports section for the outcome, which had not been determined when the opinion page went to press.) However far Livingstone advances in the CIAA championship, the team and school can celebrate a winning season that generated a lot of excitement both on campus and among Livingstone alumni.

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