Opinion Posting Guidelines:
  1. Comments should be related to general interests of the public.
  2. You may comment on elected officials, public offices, government bodies, public figures. You can comment on the actions public officials take in relation to their jobs but not make personal attacks.
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  4. No comments on candidates for public office or political issues, within 30 days of an election (primary or general). If a political candidate is named in your comments, a signature is required.
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Editor's Note: We made the decision not to require a name in this forum because in a small community such as ours, in certain situations, people involved can not give their opinion due to fear of repercussions (job loss, etc.). We believe the advantage of anonymous comments outweighs the problems. We will continue to review all comments before they are posted to this site. We retain the right to post or not post at our discretion. 
Opinion Forum: Remember these letters are peoples’ opinions; they may or may not be actual facts. This is not a news forum, it is an opinion column. We also urge you to take into account whether the letter is signed. We do not correct spelling or grammatical errors.

Dog That Was Shot


Its a shame and disgrace that we live in a time where people would want someone charged with a felony crime for shooting a dog and then stand idly by, with no problem whatsoever, while countless babies are murdered every day under the name of "choice" and nothing is done to stop it. Its pitiful that people think more of an animal than they do a human being these days.
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I'm so sorry to hear about your dog getting shot. I hope they charge him with a felony. This goes on way to often and nothing is ever done. Maybe if they do actually charge him it may send a message to others to leave people's pets alone!

Wonderful Christmas Play


Higgins FWB church on Cane River put on a wonderful Christmas playon Sunday night. It is wonderful to see a church with so many children, teenagers and young adults who give of their time to practice and perform these plays every year. Thanks to the adult who guide them through it and teach them the true meaning of CHRISTmas all through the year. GOD BLESS YOU ALL! Merry Christmas.

Another Heavy Frost and Another Day Off for Students


get over it people stop complaining about schools being called off or delayed. Weather in these mountains is unpredictable and our people who make the decisions do not have ESP. would YOURATHER GET A CALL SAYING YOUR CHILD WAS IN A SCHOOL BUS ACCIDENT because a bus flipped over or have your child make up a few days in summer. stop griping and let people who know best make the best decisions for the safety of our precious children.
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The schools will be criticized no matter what decision is made. If they run buses, someone will surely be mad because they risked kids getting hurt. If they don't, someone will be mad about that. I think the schools make the best choices they can. Just be thankful that someone cares enough about your kid to make that choice.
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Days like today there wasn't much snow at my house either, the road was clear. However their was several roads in the county that were covered with snow as well as snow coming down. So it is my opinion the reason that school gets cancelled is they follow the weather reports and radar to try to make sure every kid and driver arrive at their destination unharmed, realizing that if a bus got stuck or Susie or johnny got a one inch scratch on their big toe that the LAWSUITS would fly. When I was in school the chains, blocks were under the back seat so when the snow begin to come down making roads get slick quick or the driver suddenly faced a very slick side road up some holler one of the bus garage men would show up and the bigger boys helped put the chains on sure we got our hands and clothes dirty did we or our parents mind mine didn't apparently the other boys didn't either because next time they were helping again.( I CAN ONLY IMAGINE WHAT SOME PARENTS WOULD DO IF THEIR CHILD DID THAT NOW)  Life is not always convenient or easy. Might I suggest if people get so upset about the calling off of school move your family to a place where the snow don't  blow   THIS IS JUST MY OPINION.
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What is going on with Yancey County Schools? It has gotten to the point where it seems like they call school off for nothing. Remember the day before Thanksgiving where there was no school because of a chance of snow? Im sure as I wake up today that some of the higher elevations in the county might have a little more snow than I do but it it really so bad that school couldn't have run on a 2 or even 3 hour delay. This is the reason our children have to attend school for most of the summer. I would love to know who it is making the decision to cancel school. Could it be someone who just wants a day off. This is something that the elected school board needs to look at or maybe it is time to start electing new school board members.

Thank You for Blankets


thank you all so much for the throws, and blankets that were donated to Noah's blankets for hugs. They were greatly appreciated from all who received them. May God bless you all, thank you, Noah Williams and Bible Baptist Church

Reflectors on Altapass


Altapass Road needs some kind of reflectors or flourescent lines painted or something. When it is dark or rainy it is almost impossible to see where the road is. Dept of Transporation or somebody please do something, it's dangerous.

Crime in Our Community


 I would like to thank the Yancey County Sheriff's Office and The Mitchell County Sheriff's Office for the recent arrests of people Breaking and Entering and associated drug arrests. The one on 19 W is a little too close for comfort. Thank you for your vigilance ! Also thank you to the citizen who reported the van. We live in a small community and should look out for each other. If you see something suspicious , please report it!

Nighttime Christmas Parade


Can anyone give me a good reason why we have the Christmas Parade at night? So many years the weather has been cold, wet and windy. Not to mention it's dark at 6:00 pm. If you want people to come in to town to shop or browse in the local shops why not have it during the day. I remember years ago it was a delight to come to Spruce Pine on Saturday during the daytime (12:00) shopping, lunch and then wait on the parade to come through. So many elderly cannot see to drive at night or its too cold for others. Don't you think we would rather be able to see everyone on the floats or marching during the day than at night? Come on Parade Organizers take a second and think about it!!! If you want downtown to be a tourist town and the locals to shop-then have it during the day!!! Bah Humbug!

Prevent Veteran Death by Suicide


Our veterans and their families have done so much for us. Let’s honor them this Veterans Day by learning how we can help prevent another veteran death by suicide.
We all need to be aware of suicide risk factors and warning signs. Go towww.afsp.org and click on “Understanding Suicide” to learn more. If you recognize someone is in immediate need, the Veterans Crisis Line connects you or them to qualified, caring U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text. Veterans and their family members can call 1-800-273-8255 and Press 1, chat online atveteranscrisisline.net, or send a text message to 838255 to receive confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
Sincerely,
Jodie Rhymer, AFSP Field Advocate

Election Over


thank goodness the election is over. It did not go exactly as many had hoped it would the majority staying the same. I had hoped that it would swing and maybe the majority could right some of the made up jobs and hire qualified people instead of the favors for votes jobs we have now. way to go commissioners, maybe in the next two years you can get all of your family/friends jobs they are not qualified for. you've got to love American and yancey county

Destruction of Jeff Neill Campaign Signs


I will begin by saying I am A staunch supporter of Sheriff Gary Banks, but it is sad to see where someone has destroyed the large campaign signs of Mr. Neill. This is very childish and also criminal. I would highly recommend that Sheriff Banks try to locate the guilty and prosecute them. If you have anything against Mr. Neill why don't you be brave enough to confront him face to face? This my opinion : LARRY PRESNELL

Loves WTOE


Just moved to Spruce Pine from Banner Elk. Radio WTOE has been a great resource of information, I listen via streaming on the computer. As a newcomer to the area, it has been great. Not to mention the Oldies are awesome and sounds good on the computer!  

Celebrating Five Years of Success with the Yancey County Dream Home Tour


Dear Editor:
 
For the last five years, Yancey County has embraced and supported the Mayland Community College Foundation’s Yancey County Dream Home Tour. Since the “Home Tour’s” beginnings in 2010, this event has grown from an idea into an anticipated signature event. Community support as vibrant as our fall landscape made this year’s tour the most singularly successful to date.
 
This year, over 60 volunteers helped with the Home Tour, which welcomed 100 guests to five homes across Yancey County. The Home Tour not only connects visitors to Yancey County, it also connects the college and the community. Volunteers included community members as well as Mayland Community College staff, faculty, and students.  Proceeds from the Home Tour benefit Mountain Heritage High School’s recipient of Mayland’s Intelligent Choice Scholarship as well as deserving students in classes at Mayland’s Yancey Learning Center.
 
Foundation Board member Bill Baker continues to lead this event. His vision for the past five years has artfully blended his passion for education and his love for Yancey County.
 
Special thanks belong to Sam and Anne Sabri, Michael and Joan Pardy. Dr. Rita Meeks, David and Fran Strawn, and Mark Lombardo for opening their homes for this year’s tour. Once again, the Foundation is grateful for the gracious and ongoing support of the Yancey County Chamber of Commerce, WKYK/WTOE, The Yancey Common Times Journal, Ye Olde Country Store, Mountain Air Country Club, and A Touch of Cass. The Home Tour is not possible without incomparable assistance from the Yancey County Transportation Authority, which has faithfully and skillfully served the event since the Home Tour’s inception in 2010.
 
Through commitment and caring, Yancey County specializes in translating dreams into reality.
 
Sincerely,
 
 
Laura R. Laughridge
Executive Director
Mayland Community College Foundation

Media Coverage for Cane River Athletic Events


The comment about Times Journal's coverage of middle school football fails to mention that the Cane River team received one-half page of coverage the week before. At the beginning of the season, we ran team photos of East Yancey and Cane River. Because we have one very part time sports reporter who cannot be in two locations at the same time to cover the games, he alternates covering the middle school football games and has done so since the the season started. The Times Journal provides coverage of school sports to a much greater extent than any of the small newspapers in surrounding counties, which provide little if any coverage of middle school sports. We go out of our way to give the players recognition and do the best we can with the resources we have and can afford. We work closely with the schools and coaches -- and some are more cooperative than others -- but in the end we do it for the kids.
--Jody Higgins
Publisher/Editor
Yancey Common Times Journal
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I think it is very sad that the Cane River Middle School sporting events do not receive the same coverage as East Yancey School events. I have noticed this "unequal representation" for several years. However, it was very evident in today's Yancey Journal when EY football received a half page of coverage and the recent CR game was not even featured at all. I think this is very unfair to CR students, staff and parents.

Editor's Note: In our coverage we try to get pictures from all the teams however we have to balance out where we are at with other events too. We welcome any and all photos sent in to us and are happy to publish them!