Editorial

It’s time to get over it.

We shouldn’t even be having the conversation concerning making vaccinations mandatory — people should take responsibility for themselves.

This attitude of willful ignorance is pervasive in conversations concerning the topic of the pandemic, at first, and now on to vaccinations.

Our hospital officials, local doctors and public health officials have said it repeatedly — vaccines are safe and they’re being swamped treating the unvaccinated for COVID-19.

No, vaccines don’t offer complete protection. Nothing does.

This is the latest in an avalanche of arguments against taking any precautions in a pandemic that has hospitalized hundreds of Floyd County residents just in the last month and killed over 200 people here, in this county alone.

News versus opinion

It’s unfortunate that covering the news has been degraded by politicians and wanna-be politicos as a partisan thing.

Don’t get us wrong, cable news infotainment is most certainly skewed and biased. But on the local level we try to give news to you straight down the middle.

One of the traditions in newspaper coverage is that we keep a section — prominently labeled Editorial & Opinion — where we post letters to the editor, columnists and editorials.

We rarely make exceptions to that rule — today’s newspaper is an infrequent example. When we do, it’s clearly labeled as a column.

Let’s explain the difference between some of our opinion content.

Letters to the editor are from people like you who express their opinion on a topic. Columns are where writers, often professional writers, share their opinion on a topic. A columnist could share their life experience, views on politics or religion or any other such thing — but it’s their opinion. Then there’s an editorial. This is where the newspaper weighs in on a given topic. More often than not it’s going to be a local topic. We’re a local newspaper.

Then there’s news coverage.

In our coverage we’re going to interview people involved in the topic of a story. They could be an expert, a witness, or someone personally affected, or they could be representing an agency that is part of the story.

We’re not going to throw our opinion in that news article. We may fact check something a politician or government representative says, but we generally only resort to that when they’re lying to you and us.

Occasionally, articles we publish from other sources may contain what you feel is opinion within their news coverage. That sometimes is how the author words a particular story, especially concerning politics. We attempt to edit those but, honestly, don’t always catch it so we ask for your patience when reading national stories from other news outlets.

We feel it’s important that you get local news and come to your own conclusion about what you think is important.

There’s an old newspaper adage “if it bleeds, it leads” and we don’t subscribe to that notion. We believe in responsible journalism and recognize the responsibility of the position we hold and take it very seriously.

We want to assure you that we will continue to do so.

The good ol’ days

It’s been said before but politics is like college football — predictable and unpredictable all at the same time. The fact is, we’re tired of the shenanigans.

You pick a team, one you may have grown up with or chosen along your life’s path, and then for better or worse support that team. Some are able to evaluate their team’s weaknesses and strengths and others will never, ever admit their team has done something badly.

Some quietly support their team while others don their team’s colors ritualistically and lend a bit of their identity to their team.

Too many people have uninformed opinions about both college football and politics but are all too ready, all too willing and, now with social media, all too able to vociferously prove their ignorance.

There seems to be no sweet spot between predictability and unpredictability when it’s game time. Sure, both teams always run their mouths prior to a big game — or election — that determines the winner.

After the big game is resolved, both teams would go home and work on strategy to win the next time or stay on top. Or at least that’s how it was, anyway.

Remember the days when a coach or politician could look at their opponent and hand them due respect? They’d still practice or campaign late and work to win — but there was an inherent respect within the competition.

Where has that respect gone? Today’s politics have turned into a melee in which politicians attempt to shout the loudest to get the most attention. Unfortunately, what they’re shouting is also often skewed and untrue.

We need to work together for the good of our country, not to the benefit of political parties.

Thank you for reading.

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