Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Thumbs Up: The VA Homeless Veterans Program and Eastern Carolina Housing Organization hope to bring awareness of benefits provided by the Veterans Affairs during an event Saturday at Lumberton Downtown Plaza. Representatives from several local organizations will be available from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Participants also can receive free COVID-19 vaccinations.

Thumbs Down: There is no good reason residents in our area should keep dangerous pets. Two dogs were euthanized recently after they attacked people without provocation. Both people — a 2-year-old boy and a man conducting a house inspection — required hospitalization because of life-threatening injuries. Both cases illustrate the need for strict enforcement of the county’s dog ordinance. The ordinance, which requires a $100,000 liability insurance policy is both a burden on owners, and inhumane for dogs who are required to be maintained is a secure pen. The ordinance also provides little assurance to residents threatened or attacked by dangerous dogs.

Thumbs Up: During Saturday’s Remembrance Walk the Lumberton Fire Department, joined by the Cross Creek Pipes and Drums, walked in honor of those who died in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Lumberton residents joined the 3.43-mile walk, representing the 343 firefighters who lost their lives during the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The Lumberton Fire Department’s Remembrance Walk included a large American flag hanging above Cedar Street and participants carrying American flags.

Thumbs Down: Two events significant to our thriving agricultural sector have been canceled because of the possible spread of the coronavirus. Both the Fairmont Farmers Festival and the Robeson Regional Agricultural Fair have been sidelined until next year. While we support the action, we share in the disappointment that so many have in missing these two community events designed to show the success of those in our traditionally strong ag industry throughout the county.

Thumbs Up: Pembroke has a new Dollar General store at 1395 Melinda Road providing grocery items and other retail merchandise. Dollar General officials said the new store brings about 10 jobs to the area. Employees are eligible for health insurance coverage options, 401K savings and retirement plans, tuition reimbursement, paid parental leave, and adoption assistance.

Thumbs Up: Eight emergency generators will be installed across the Lumbee Tribe territory to bring emergency power at each Lumbee Tribe Boys & Girls Clubs and community center buildings throughout Tribe communities. Recent hurricanes prompted the action to provide assistance to people in need.

Thumbs Down: A string of gun violence continues in our region, the latest involving a 9-year-old girl. The Robeson County Sheriff’s Office and the Lumberton Police Department report that at least 14 people have been shot in the county since Aug. 1. We praise our local law enforcement, and encourage families and other residents to be vigilant and aware. Robeson County was recently ranked among the top five most-violent counties in the state. We must take action to reduce violent crime locally.

If you have a Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down suggestion, please contact David Kennard, executive editor, at [email protected]