Tar Heel Editors Speak Out

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Police officers aren’t asked to buy their own handcuffs or radios.

Paramedics don’t foot the bill for bandages, gauze and tape.

Full-time or volunteer, all firefighters are equipped with air tanks and turnout gear.

Teachers are the only public servants expected to chip in for the tools they need to perform their job. On average, each educator shells out roughly $500 each year to buy classroom supplies.

To meet the needs federal, state and local government fail to fulfill, communities come together each summer to pitch in for our public schools and defray the cost burden our hardworking teachers will shoulder.

Gov. Roy Cooper has helped organize one such effort, the second annual Governor’s School Supply Drive. ...

“When you’re shopping for your family’s school supplies, consider purchasing an additional item from our supply list and donating it at a drop-off location,” Cooper said in a statement. “Businesses can also get involved by downloading our School Supply Drive kit and collecting supplies in your workplace.”

... Leaving politics aside, the governor’s school supply drive is something we can all get behind. Buying a box of tissues and a couple packs of copier paper won’t do anything for Cooper’s re-election prospects in 2020, but it will make a real and meaningful difference ...

The story is mind-boggling: Three full-fledged gambling casinos, doing business around the clock, policed by their own law-enforcement operation and owned by a group that claims to be an American Indian tribe that is not subject to the laws or jurisdiction of the United States government.

It sounds like a far-fetched plot for a novel. But it’s actually a gaming operation in Robeson County that was just shut down by a massive raid by agencies ... Cash, drugs and a host of weapons were seized in the raid.

... we’re concerned that it took more than a year of investigation before the casinos were shut down. ...

There are several problems with this state’s approach to gambling in all its forms. For one, enforcement is at best uneven. Even within counties, some gaming operations run on for years while others are shut down quickly. ...

... It’s long past time for a rational public discussion of gambling by our state’s elected leaders. It’s clear that what we’re doing now isn’t working. But it’s equally clear that casinos operated by groups that claim exemption from U.S. and state law will never be acceptable either.

You have to hand it to the town of Roseboro and its citizens for always being willing to put their best foot forward, doing things that will benefit its citizens while, at the same time, promoting the western Sampson County town.

Take the recent opening of the new Roseboro Senior Center as an example.

Keeping a senior center has long been an issue for the town and its seniors. It’s not been for lack of enthusiasm or need of such a facility, but more because of timing, finances, property woes and structural needs.

Last week, Roseboro seniors and town officials were able to put those hurdles behind them, though, as they cut the ribbon on a new facility, located at 206 NE Railroad St. That move comes thanks to many individuals and groups, including the Sampson County Department of Aging, town officials, resident Gilbert Owen and determined seniors who have wanted a place to come together, enjoy a meal, fellowship and engage in activities that will benefit older adults.

It was teamwork that made last week’s event possible and paved the way for what will now be a full-fledged center, ...

... we applaud all those who made it happen.

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