Dr. Charles Peterson: For 20 years, North Carolina has actively committed to reversing the trend of low oyster harvests. Blue ribbon advisory panels have been convened to guide oyster revitalization, and tens of millions of dollars have been invested in oyster research, habitat repair and protection, and increased oyster cultivation. North Carolinians are well-acquainted with the culinary delights offered by oysters. What is not yet so widely appreciated are the substantial and varied environmental benefits they provide.
Tim Cook: America’s business community recognized a long time ago that discrimination, in all its forms, is bad for business. At Apple, we are in business to empower and enrich our customers’ lives. We strive to do business in a way that is just and fair. That’s why, on behalf of Apple, I’m standing up to oppose this new wave of legislation – wherever it emerges. I’m writing in the hopes that many more will join this movement. From North Carolina to Nevada, these ‘religious freedom’ bills truly will hurt jobs, growth and the economic vibrancy of parts of the country where a 21st century economy was once welcomed with open arms.
Nicholas Kristof: Today, among urban Americans and Europeans, “evangelical Christian” is sometimes a synonym for “rube.” In liberal circles, evangelicals constitute one of the few groups that it’s safe to mock openly. But I’ve been truly awed by those I’ve seen in so many remote places, combating illiteracy and warlords, famine and disease, humbly struggling to do the Lord’s work as they see it, and it is offensive to see good people derided. On a recent trip to Angola, the country with the highest child mortality rate in the world, I came across a rural hospital run by Dr. Stephen Foster, 65, who has lived there for 37 years – much of that in a period when the Angolan regime was Marxist and hostile to Christians.
Chris Fitzsimon: One of the most interesting debates of this General Assembly session is about the proposal by Senate Majority Leader Harry Brown to redistribute local sales tax revenue among counties by increasing the share allocated to rural areas and decreasing how much urban areas receive. Brown says that there are now two North Carolinas, one rich and one poor, and that the General Assembly needs to do something to help the struggling counties and the people who live there. It’s an explicit admission by a key conservative legislative leader that public investments play an important role in a healthy economy and the quality of life for North Carolinians.
We don’t need to know the political or religious views of Germanwings co-pilot Andreas Gunter Lubitz to call his crashing of a crowded airliner into a mountainside an act of terrorism. And we don’t need any further evidence to recognize a cruel irony: Legitimate fear of potential terrorist attacks apparently made this tragedy possible.
The digital home for the Triangle arts community that connects visual and performing artists, venues and audiences in a lively conversation that builds engagement, community support for artists and awareness of the arts’ economic impact.
A small boy being treated for leukemia at Duke Medicine has been the subject of his father’s Facebook post about his son being made fun of due to his bald head. Here’s hoping that parents and teachers take the time to address their children about appropriate behavior in dealing with the ill.
NC State University Chancellor Randy Woodson met with editorial and newsroom folk this week to talk about wide-ranging topics, including the new Hofmann Forest plan, the school’s endowment nearing $1 billion and the difficulty of retaining faculty when there’s been virtually no pay raise in six years. He also talked about rumors that he is being mentioned as a possible candidate for UNC system president.
The viability and sustainability of North Carolina’s marine fisheries are too important economically and environmentally for its residents to allow underfunding and inaction to go on any longer. This inaction is the culmination of stakeholders’ inability to get beyond decades-old arguments and historical distrust.
Google is the biggest and best-known Internet company in the world, a colossus whose revenue this year is expected to top $65 billion. It makes headlines seemingly every week – including this past week’s unflattering publication of the government’s 2012 investigation into Google. But despite being so familiar, Google is often misunderstood.
Regarding the March 21 news article “Fracking rules to cover federal, Indian lands”: The N&O reported that the Obama administration issued “standards for wells on federal and Indian lands, requiring disclosure of chemicals and covered storage of waste. Companies also will have to use covered storage tanks for fracking waste rather than open pits, a requirement that was made in order to give ‘greater confidence that we are in fact protecting groundwater.’”
Regarding the March 18 news article “NCSU unveils new forest plan”: Chancellor Randy Woodson and NCSU now have the right stuff for the Hofmann Forest. Now NCSU should analyze the best alternatives to keep and manage the forest; explicitly involve forestry, conservation, faculty and local stakeholders in an open and transparent process; and place a working conservation easement on the forest.
Has it occurred to any other readers that the tenets of character education, taught in North Carolina public schools, would be a valuable addition to the orientation program for North Carolina state legislators?
In his March 22 column “Obama, race and his opponents” Ned Barnett decried a presumed tendency toward racism among conservative opponents of the president. In effect, I think he created an umbrella argument whereby those who disagree with his worldview can be branded as racist, thus negating their argument by association rather than logic. I suspect George Orwell would be proud.
The worst of the Great Recession is in the rearview mirror, but the recovery has left far too many people, families and communities worse off. When you take a sober look at North Carolina’s economic reality, the breathless self-congratulations ring a bit hollow. An alarming pattern has emerged: Economic growth is not producing broad prosperity, which is trouble for everyone.
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