Category Archives: Editorial

Weekly Guest Editorial kicks off with Nancy Green LaFollette Librarian

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I feel so honored to have been asked to write as a guest editorial for the Volunteer Times and I am so glad to be able to tell you all about the new LaFollette Public Library. We are now located at 201 South 9th Street, the former location of the Recreation Center. We went from an area of 1600 square feet to this building of approximately 4,000 square feet, and the difference is amazing!
We opened our doors to the public on August 1, 2012 and have since seen an influx of new customers, having issued 450 new library cards since our opening.
We provide many services to the public here at the library. We have the latest best sellers in both fiction and non-fiction; we have DVDs, audio books on CD, playaways, newspapers, and magazines. We provide free computer use with high speed Internet accessibility. One of the main services offered at this time of year is to provide you with tax forms for filing income tax. We do NOT offer tax advice, but the forms are free.
The library has a separate computer lab/soft seating area. Here you will find chairs for your enjoyment if you want to settle in and read. We keep a jigsaw puzzle on one of the tables and invite anyone to sit down and ‘find a piece, place a piece.’ Eight public access computers are in this room, as well as a computer set up for scanning purposes only. The staff kitchen is located at the back of this room, and, for a small fee of $.50, you may help yourself to a cup of coffee.
The children’s room is decorated with an outdoor camping theme, with picnic tables and benches serving as seating. There is even a giant sleeping bear (beanbag, of course), much to the delight of the children! We have the AWE early learning computer in the children’s room, which is a fabulous fun and educational tool. We have a Preschool Children’s Story Hour every Monday at 10:00 a.m. This is proving to be a big hit with the very young, and everyone between the ages of 2-5 is invited to attend.
The other part of the library is where the ‘stacks’ are located, as well as the periodicals, the DVDs, audiobooks, playaways, etc. There are also storage rooms for the Friends of the Library as well as library storage in general. There are 2 restrooms located in this part of the library for the use of library patrons only.
The circulation area of the library has 2 circulation computers. We also provide copying service, as well as faxing and scanning.
The staff of the library consists of myself, Nancy Green, director; Norma Asher, part time assistant, and Joy Robinson, children’s story hour director. Our hours are Monday-Friday 8:00 – 5:00 and Saturday 9:00 – 2:00. We invite and encourage you to come visit us soon, and often!

AUNT HESTER’S GENERAL STORE: MERRY CHRISTMAS

Well My Darlings, I’ve made my last batch of Chocolate Do Das, wrapped my last present, and I’m ready for Christmas. Just these past few weeks, I’ve sat out on the porch of the store and watched as people have been coming and going and I’ve been busy at the store. I did have a customer stop by the other day to ask me to help her figure something out. It seems that her grandson has been spending more time playing video games than she thinks he ought to be spending.

She found several games that he had loaded onto his game player and she wanted to see what they were all about. So, I loaded them up and let me tell you that when she got a gander at what her nine-year-old grandchild had been spending hours watching . . . to say she just about threw a hissy fit is an understatement. Never in all her born days, had she imagined what some of these video games were all about. I asked her where he had gotten these games and she was sure that his older brother had given them to him.

I watched her sit and think and when she got up to go, she turned and said, “I’m going home and call my daughter and her husband and the feathers are going to fly because they need to get their priorities straight and stopped worrying about their kitchen renovation and their stainless steel appliances! And God help them if they don’t have a clue as to what their child has been entertaining himself with as they argue about paint colors while their children are watching this trash! No wonder the older boy flunked out of college and just sits at home all day and complains that he can’t find a job. I guess his studies got in the way of his cell phone and video games. My younger grandson’s grades are dropping and they’re going get him this game dohickey thing that costs a fortune and reward him for his failure as they soothe themselves for their failure? I don’t think so!” When she left, there was no doubt in my mind that Christmas will be interesting for that family this year.

Children are not satisfied this day and age with the games we used to play: Chutes and Ladders, Monopoly, Scrabble, and I remember my parents thinking that Elvis was way too racy for me to watch. Well, things have changed and maybe, in some ways, not for the better.

In the light of recent events, I think we all should take the time to realize just how precious our children happen to be and that they need more from us than just presents under the tree. They need our concern, attention, guidance, and to take responsibility for their futures by teaching them how to be responsible for themselves. To teach them that they don’t always win and life is an investment that if you don’t put anything into it, you don’t get much out of it. That disappointment is something we all experience along with the things we learn when we fail. We have to be really careful as too many of our children are watching too much Trash TV and playing too many games that blur the line between reality and fantasy. I get the impression from some children that they believe that life is a game. Who will teach them that it isn’t a game? Their parents or someone else?

Yes, I think that too many of us have forgotten the “Reason for the Season” and so my gift to you this year is a poem that was written in 1816 and it goes like this: Silent night, holy night. All is calm, all is bright. Round yon Virgin Mother and Child. Holy Infant so tender and mild. Sleep in heavenly peace. Sleep in heavenly peace. Silent night, holy night! Shepherds quake at the sight. Glories stream from heaven afar. Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia! Christ, the Savior is born. Christ, the Savior is born. Silent night, holy night. Son of God, love’s pure light. Radiant beams from Thy holy face. With the dawn of redeeming grace. Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth. Jesus, Lord, at Thy birth.

Merry Christmas and don’t forget, it’s just a matter of learning . . . unlearning . . . and . . . relearning.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Readers encouraged to give to homeless

In this time of year there are many people that are homeless. This young lady shows us all how we ought to act towards our fellow man. We hear of people going and helping people in other countries yet the people right hear we walk by with no words said. We turn our head and look the other way.

In what way can we help these people without giving them money. We can donate our time at the homeless shelter to feed them diner on Christmas Day take a few minutes and help the less fortunate. We can donate out of pocket as these organizations need money to operate. The are many different ways to help sit down and about it give to the needy not just the greedy. Helping others can and will like this young women who spent just $7.00 worth of food and drink gave her a happy moment that you can only feel when you give to someone who really needs it.

Aunt Hester’s General Store: What a Beautiful Autumn

Darlings, we have been blessed this year with an Autumn that is just absolutely spectacular. Almost everywhere you look, the trees are displaying brilliant colors that I haven’t seen for ages. And as the week has gone on, the leaves are falling and it’s beautiful.

Of course, it’s only a few days now until Halloween, the end of daylight-saving time, and Election Day. Personally, I’ll be glad when all these elections are over because they’re enough to wear a person out! It’s got me so muddled I can’t decided if I want to make some double-dipped chocolate donuts or some chocolate nut brownie bread. So, I’ve made them both and the folks coming to the General Store seem to be glad that I can’t make up my mind.

Then, as I watch the goings on with our County Commission, I feel that not only our government in Washington, D.C., but our county government has grown too large and are not really paying attention to the future.

The future is a strange thing when you think about it because it seems that too many folks don’t look ahead, do they? It’s like Social Security that was never meant to be your only retirement money but a supplement to what you had saved for retirement. Those who run the Postal Service in this country didn’t look ahead and realize what computers and E-Mail would do to that organization, did they? And I guess that many American Workers didn’t realize that with their demands for higher wages and bigger pensions that so much manufacturing would go to other countries, did they? And it’s for sure, that for years our Federal Government hasn’t done a thing to stop the almost 500 billion dollars worth of fraud that it destroying Medicare!

It’s a fact, that the future doesn’t take care of itself, it’s up to us to take care of the future and that seems to be a responsibility that not too many folks want to take on. And that is why I don’t know if things will change, until we make a change, do you? Change is a hard thing for many folks, especially here in Campbell County. I guess that change represents an insecurity that they don’t want to deal with. So, too many of us just let things go on and try to keep things just the way they’ve been for years. How is that working out for us?

The drug problem is not getting any smaller and if I had my way, there would not be a pain clinic allowed in the State of Tennessee and medication that begins with OXY would be only given to patients who are terminal! And these Meth Makers would not be out on probation and re-offending. They’d be cleaning up the highways and all these meth houses as a part of their rehabilitation and incarceration! There are several other things I’d suggest should happen to so many of these criminals in prison across this country but that would be too severe to inflict on you gentle folk.

I know, I’m old and I’m inclined to be cranky, but that doesn’t mean that I can’t look ahead and see what could be possible in the future, does it? In the future, what is known as the Postal Service will be almost gone, you will not use checks to pay your bills, that will be taken over with Direct Deposit, bills paid on line, and cash will be on your Debit Card. Laser Surgery will be almost the only form of surgery, and you will not really see many more Family Doctors. You’ll just walk through a Medical Scanner and when you come out on the other side, you’ll have a diagnosis and everything else.

You will not see many clerks in grocery stores or other places because you will check yourself out. All these things will happen in the future along with many other things that now, seems hard to imagine. I’ve heard tell that in less than ten years, there will be no real movie stars and such, it will all be computer generated actors. And do you think that accountants haven’t felt the pinch since the birth of a computer application known as Turbo Tax?

But remember this, with all that will change in the future, you will look out of your window, as I did the other day, and see a tree that it glowing with yellow and red and you will realize what is essentially important; not the change; but how you adapt to the change. You either glory in the magnificence of what you are seeing or you just complain about the leaves on the ground.

It’s just matter of learning . . . unlearning . . . and . . . relearning.

Aunt Hester’s General Store: Part II: For Women Only-Men Not allowed to Read This

Ladies, sit down here with me and let’s have one more chat about this so-called War on Women. Before we start, help yourself to a few of my Double Dipped Dark Chocolate Bon Bons and a cup of coffee.

Now, for weeks on end, I’ve heard nothing but talk about this War On Women. What really got my dander up was a speech, given at the Democratic Convention by this woman, who has become a pseudo celebrity and she stood up at that convention and yammered on about how the Republicans are deliberately waging this war on women because they, the Republicans don’t want to pay for her birth control.

I did some research regarding the young woman and did you know that she is almost thirty years old and a law student and she’s complaining that she’s entitled to have her birth control paid for by the taxpayers? What has this world come to when we, as women, know darn right well that she pays more for her unmentionables that it cost her to pay for her own contraceptives! Maybe this woman needs to review some history and realize that if things had not been changed by women, she would have never seen the inside of a university. Women, for years weren’t even considered for Law or Medical Schools. For that matter, it was considered a waste for women to even attend high school.

War on Women! What in tarnation, does she know about that? She can vote because women fought for that right. She’s now entitled to many things because other women took responsibility for themselves and marched, stood together, did without, went to jail, lived years without being given credit for all the work and contributions they made to WWI and WWII, have worked for years being paid less for their work than men. Does she even have a clue that it wasn’t until 1920 and the 19th Amendment that allowed women to vote?

She doesn’t realize that it hasn’t been too long before there were laws enacted regarding Domestic Violence. Before that time, when police were called and a woman was found abused, the police just walked away as they told the couple that they needed to calm down and work their problems out. There were no Women’s Shelters and laws to protect women from the violence. And for years, when a man killed his wife, in most cases, it was regarded and Involuntary Manslaughter, and they served a few years in prison. But, if a woman killed her husband, is was Murder One and she would spend the rest of her life in prison!

It took years to get Maternity Leave so a woman to be able to come back to her job. Before that, if a woman got pregnant, she was let go. And it took many more years to get laws regarding Sexual Harassment because before that happened, women had to endure all manner of slurs and remarks just to keep their jobs. And even with the laws, it still goes on to this day.

Have any of us forgotten what happened when Elan Bobbit did a bit of surgery on her cheating, wife-beating husband? She threw the removed piece of his anatomy out of her car window as she drove down the highway and when she told the police, there were more men out searching for it than you could count. And yet, it takes hours to get enough people to get out and look for a missing child!

Young women are not entitled to have children they can’t take care of and someone needs to remind these young women that you don’t have a child because you want someone to love you. You have a child because you want to love and raise that child under the best possible conditions. I don’t know what I would do these days, but I suspect that I would be giving my daughters some type of Birth Control each day and telling them that it was a vitamin!

Do any of you realize that almost 50% of teenagers are having sex? And after all that’s been written, said, and shown about how difficult it is to have a baby, when you’re still a baby, young girls are not getting the message! And of course, young boys don’t have a clue, they just have an urge! Yes, the Double Standard is alive and well because if a young woman gets pregnant, she’s an irresponsible tramp and the young man is a stud muffin.

And these Right to Life People need to do something about the fact that in this world, one child between the ages of one and four, dies every four seconds. Did you know that the United States has the worst record of any Industrialized Nation when it comes to the death of children between the ages of one and four? And why don’t some of these Right to Life folks, adopt American children, instead of all these children from other countries? It seems that until we can solve the problem of unwanted children in this country, we don’t have a clue how to solve it in any other country!

Maybe much of this business regarding the War on Women got its start with too many preachers of any faith, believing that just because God created a man before he did a woman, that man is superior. Well, maybe God created a woman after He did a man because He realized, that He had not created what the world needed in order to survive.

It’s just a matter of learning . . . unlearning . . . and . . . relearning.