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Saying thanks is not enough

We say, “Thanks for your service,” when we meet veterans of the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq veterans.They can be forgiven if they think “Thanks for your service” is an incomplete thank you, an insincere and hollow expression, showing a lack of understanding and real appreciation of what these men and women had been through.So how can we appreciate what they have done, if we have no idea about their real experiences?There is help. In 12 ...

10 hours ago | | | Email

Even constituents agree: Washington spending is out of hand

This week, I heard from countless constituents concerned with Washington’s out-of-control spending and insurmountable debt. I’d like to share a letter I received from a constituent in Concord:“My wife and I are most concerned about the huge and growing debt the U.S. has accrued. I urge you and Congress to do what is necessary to cut government spending as necessary to get rid of the deficit. Ronald Reagan said it best when he said the problem with U.S. Government ...

10 hours ago | | | Email

Saluting our 911 Center employees

The third week of this month, April 13-19, will be National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week, a national salute to all of the men and women dedicated to serving 911 centers all across the nation. This was first established in 1991 by an act of Congress and has been an annual national event since.It is estimated that there are over 200,000 public safety dispatchers across our nation. These are highly trained and dedicated individuals who work long hours, nights and holidays to s...

7 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Rep. Brody shares March interim news

Rep. Mark Brody has shared news from his office for the month of March.Land Development CommitteeThe Committee on Land Development had its third meeting this month where members discussed a number of potential solutions to prevent the adverse situation caused by land development projects that become abandoned as the result of a defunct developer.Link: www.ncleg.net/gascripts/DocumentSites/browseDocSite.asp?nID=239Food Desert...

7 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

We need to improve programs to help working, impoverished Americans

This week I had the privilege of joining my colleague Rep. Jim McGovern (MA-02) for a panel discussion at the third Annual Poverty Summit led by Catholic Charities USA. The summit brings local community leaders and policy makers together for a discussion about ways to end poverty in the United States.

7 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Be proud of the way you talk

You sure do talk funny.Has anybody ever told you that?If you grew up in North Carolina and moved somewhere else for a while, you surely got that kind of question from folks who just had to laugh when they heard you talk.Or if you grew up somewhere else and moved here, folks may have told you that they know you are not from around here. They may have even said, “You talk like a Yankee.”Is there something special about the way we talk here...

14 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Obamacare anniversary is no cause for celebration

Anniversaries are usually supposed to be a cause for celebration. Unfortunately, this past week’s anniversary was more like a bad rendition of Groundhog Day than it was an excuse for balloons and streamers.

14 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Southern states can learn from North’s growing heroin problem

If the South cares to learn a “what not to do” lesson from the North, it will begin formulating a strategy to turn back heroin trafficking before the drug drives ol’ Dixie down.Interviews with local law enforcement and health officials by 35 Civitas Media newspapers in 12 states found big differences between heroin’s addictive grip on northern states as opposed to those in the South.Heroin addiction in the North is about:— Mexican...

21 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Protecting our military: one of our top duties

As Representative of North Carolina’s 8th congressional district, I have the privilege of nominating young men and women to four of the five service academies. Just last week, it was my honor to call a student from Hickory Grove Christian High School to give her the great news that she was accepted into the United States Naval Academy. Midshipmen like this young woman, and all men and women in uniform, make incredible sacrifices to defend our freedoms. Just as these patriots pledge to u...

21 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Sen. McLaurin shares monthly newsletter

Because I enjoy studying history, I was intrigued when a Rowan County teacher living in my district recently emailed to share information about a North Carolina leader from the past, Mr. Calvin Wiley. Born almost 200 years ago in 1819, Mr. Wiley was a strong believer in public education. He was a husband, father of seven children, novelist (one of the first in our state), newspaper editor, textbook author, attorney, legislator, Presbyterian minister, and N.C.’s first superintendent of s...

28 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

North Carolina-Florida women: political bellwethers

What important Democratic woman politician, a Wake Forest alumna, who was born in North Carolina and later moved to Florida, has gained national attention this year for her candidacy in a critical bellwether election?There are two correct answers.First, Senator Kay Hagan. Although born in North Carolina, she grew up in Florida where her family had long been politically active. She worked on campaigns for her uncle, the late U.S. Senator and Florida Governor Lawton Chiles...

28 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Fiscal responsibility is an ‘afterthought’ to Washington Democrats

I know everyone is probably as disappointed as I am to see Carolina Panthers’ Wide Receiver Steve Smith part ways with the organization. He gave all of us 13 exciting years of passion and dedication and he will be greatly missed.A big reason why we all have to suffer through this loss is that the organization was forced to make tough choices regarding its budget and salary cap. As you all know, after years of reckless spending by the Obama Administration, this is an essential...

28 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Time for McCrory to lead on Medicaid

In the early days of the 2013 General Assembly session, just a few weeks after the inauguration of Gov. Pat McCrory, leaders of the state Senate were rushing a bill through the chamber to refuse Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.The bill quickly cleared a committee and was on the Senate calendar for a vote on a Monday night when McCrory’s legislative lobbyist delivered a letter to senators asking them to delay the vote to allow the administration more time to w...

28 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

The crazy anti-vaccination movement

In a feat that would have been unimaginable a few decades ago, the anti-vaccine movement has managed to breathe life into nearly vanquished childhood diseases.It took all the ingenuity and know-how we are capable of to find safe, effective ways to dramatically diminish diseases like measles and whooping cough in the developed world; it took all the hysteria and willful ignorance we are capable of to give them a boost. A developer of the measles vaccine, Dr. Samuel Katz, says the qu...

29 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Talking trash again

It was in this space a week ago today that we lamented the fact that Robeson County was looking more and more like a dump, with our roads scattered with trash and no coordinated and determined effort to remove the litter.So we were glad to see Steve Edge, the director of Solid Waste for the county, grab the baton and go before the Board of the Commissioners with a plan to clean up our mess. Edge is asking for between $125,000 and $150,000 in the Solid Waste budget that takes effect...

29 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Columns

Time for McCrory to lead on Medicaid

In the early days of the 2013 General Assembly session,...

28 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

Editorials

Talking trash again

It was in this space a week ago today that we lamented...

29 days 10 hours ago | | | Email

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