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Local Editorials

Technology saves debates at Farmfest

Like most other major gatherings this summer, Farmfest was canceled. Instead of thousands of farmers and others interested in agriculture traipsing around the Gillfillan Estate near Morton to look at the latest farming technology and products, and viewing test plots, everyone is staying ...

Et Cetera …

Kids returning to school Fairmont Area Schools’ leaders spent many hours developing a plan to allow students to return to classrooms this fall, given the COVID-19 pandemic. They also surveyed parents to gauge their thoughts. In the end, Fairmont has chosen in-person learning, a plan ...

Processing of tests hits wall, needs boost

In many respects, COVID-19 is all the U.S. health care system can handle, and more. As of Thursday, 159,000 Americans had succumbed to the disease. Though enormous progress has been made since the pandemic first breached U.S. defenses last winter, challenges remain. Among them is processing ...

Americans would do well to remain skeptical

Russia and other foreign foes continue to probe election mechanisms and the political network in this country in attempts to find ways to commit mischief electronically, it is being reported. With the presidential election three months away, that comes as no surprise. The vast majority of ...

Resource officers can and do help many kids

Mistrust of law enforcement has become widespread to the point of becoming dangerous. One need not be a defender of the tiny minority of “bad cops” to recognize that. Of course they need to be purged from police and sheriff’s departments. George Floyd’s brutal death at the hands of a ...

Vaccine distribution should be worked out

As researchers race to develop vaccines against COVID-19, the specter of rationing is being raised by some. Among the most intelligent strategies adopted by the federal government to battle the coronavirus is the one involving vaccines. Developing them safely yet quickly is a very expensive ...

Nursing homes must maintain their vigilance

About 40% of the Americans killed by COVID-19 have been residents of nursing homes. Many of the deaths occurred during the early weeks of the epidemic, before the need for extraordinary long-term care safeguards was apparent. Many others were the result of wrongheaded action by public ...

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Not the right place One Fairmont City Council member announced her re-election campaign at the group’s meeting this week. Called out on this inappropriate self-promotion, she subsequently apologized. Which is good. Another council member, Tom Hawkins, seemed to think the situation was ...

Walz plan leaves many questions remaining

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz on Thursday announced a school reopening plan that really settles nothing. Instead, state experts at the departments of health and education will work with districts across Minnesota to help determine what plan is best for them: in-person, distance learning or a hybrid. ...

Fairmont looking for ways to pay for streets

The city of Fairmont has embarked upon a good mission: it is considering ways to move away from assessing property owners when the street in front of their home or business is improved. Such assessments can amount to thousands of dollars that are suddenly owed. The worthy goal is to spread ...

Restrictions at colleges must be strictly enforced

Many U.S. colleges and universities are preparing to reopen for the fall semester, with in-person classes scheduled widely. It is understandable that many students, parents and college officials are on edge. Science is on their side, in a way. COVID-19 seems to be most dangerous for older ...

Resource officers are valuable to schools

Calls for change in law enforcement range from those demanding that police departments be virtually disbanded to others insisting on better training for officers and more accountability for the few rogues among them. Common to most reform proposals is that law enforcement personnel be more ...

Ceremony scheduled for restored helicopter

At the end of this week, on Saturday, Aug. 1, the Martin County Veterans Memorial site in Fairmont will host a ceremony to unveil the mounted Bell Cobra attack helicopter that the memorial committee spent the past year restoring at an estimated cost of $40,000. We hope those who can will attend ...

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Who’s ready to play? We congratulate The Adventure Playground task force in Fairmont for the completion of its project. The site will open Tuesday, with a ribbon-cutting at 3:30 p.m. at Gomsrud Park. Adventure Playground offers a place for all abilities, physical and cognitive. The ...

Mandated masks: Will police use time on this?

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz took the step this week of mandating mask-wearing. The rule goes into effect Saturday and requires that masks be worn in businesses, public buildings and other indoor spaces where people gather. Cities can adopt more stringent requirements. Walz is attempting to slow ...

Schools face planning, financial uncertainties

School is likely to be different this fall. In many states, classrooms that normally would have been open by mid-August will not be occupied until September or October, if then. Whether the education process for millions of children will involve in-person teaching or “distance learning,” ...

Cannot afford a stamp? Non-issue needs to end

This fall, many voters will be leery of casting ballots at polling places. That has renewed the debate over absentee ballots cast by mail. There is genuine reason to have concerns about mail-in ballots. Will everyone desiring to vote that way have access to the process? Will the unscrupulous ...

Pope issues guidance to tackle sexual abuse

Pope Francis is telling Roman Catholic leaders they must do what most people — including the overwhelming majority of the church’s faithful — would do without being told: report cases of sexual abuse of children and vulnerable adults to the police. A long awaited manual of guidance ...

Small cost to pay for their sacrifice for us

Some of the men and women who serve us in uniform suffer wounds or other injuries that lead to a lifetime of sacrifice for us. In return, taxpayers help the most severely affected purchase specially adapted motor vehicles — once. U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Susan Collins, R-Maine, ...

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Group saves animals Most people love animals. When it comes to pets, some prefer dogs, others cats. But not every dog or cat out there has a good home. Some are strays. Some are abused. Some of their owners just cannot keep them for whatever reason. Thank goodness then for the Martin County ...