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Saturday, May 25, 2013
County social services needs a new place
Your May 15 news story (“Supervisors discuss improvement projects”) about the Roanoke County Board of Supervisors struggling to prioritize needed capital improvements caught my attention when you quoted Supervisor Butch Church concerning the woefully inadequate social services space in Salem.
Church commented, “We don’t want to put a Band-Aid on this. We’ve got to do something so that your people will be able to work.”
Church and I seldom agree on anything, but this time he is right. The facilities in Salem are a cramped warren of cubicles and hallways with thin walls and little space for family meetings. The subject was brought up 14 years ago, when I was on the board of supervisors. If it was bad then, how much worse is it now?
An entirely new location with twice the space is needed immediately.
Getting guns can be too easy
I would like to thank Bob Crawford for his thoughtful and well-reasoned commentary, “Disconnect on gun rights,” May 17. He argued that “gun regulation is as necessary as is regulation of vehicle use, and for precisely the same reasons.”
Within the past two weeks, a petition for expanded background checks was presented to our state’s legislators in Congress. That petition had more than 1 million signatures. It took only four hours to gather these signatures. These folks just want sensible gun control.
The commentary “Armed and safer,” by Keith Martin, May 19, argues that concealed carry creates a polite society. But then, one remembers the picture printed in The Roanoke Times on May 4 of a man at the National Rifle Association conference wearing a T-shirt showing the silhouette of a hand gun accompanied with the words, “I don’t dial 911.”
Isn’t concealed carry with minimum restrictions and, in some cases, no background checks setting us up for a “shoot first, ask questions later” society?
Organizing for Action
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