Editorials

Editorial: How about them acorns

By
0
Aug. 30
editorial

The end of summer is descending upon Rappahannock, presaged by almost imperceptible changes in the natural world around us – of which we, despite humankind’s most arrogant efforts, remain a part. The days are longer, the nights cooler. Plants are beginning to shade subtly toward the pastels of fall – which takes its name...
Read More »

Editorial: A Virginian for President?

By
1
Aug. 23
editorial

Almost upon us is Labor Day, the traditional start of serious political campaigning for the November elections. Based on what’s happened so far this summer, it will be a heated fall. But given the newspaper’s civic responsibility, we will endeavor to provide clear and crisp (like an old-fashioned autumn day) reporting on the candidates...
Read More »

Editorial: Rappahannock exceptionalism

By
0
Aug. 16

Despite what you may have felt, last month was not the hottest July in the county’s history, according to local residents who track the weather. But for the country as a whole, according to federal scientists, July was the hottest month ever recorded in the contiguous United States. And it was also the warmest...
Read More »

Editorial: Welcome!

By
0
Aug. 9
editorial

Rappahannock County, with its locally grown food and welcoming vineyards, is often compared to California’s Sonoma County, just north of San Francisco.
Read More »

Editorial: Achtung, y’all

By
0
Aug. 2
editorial

Getting caught speeding in small Southern towns has always provided good fodder for Gothic mysteries and horror stories.
Read More »

Editorial: Pretty yet practical

By
0
July 26
editorial

The 2012 Castleton Festival may be over, but the Rappahannock hills remain alive to the sound not only of music but also of the enduring impact that music and other arts brings to the county. The economic echoes linger.
Read More »

Editorial: Bit parts in a disaster movie

By
0
July 19
editorial

The dirty little secret among Florida retirees used to be that their favorite television viewing was the Weather Channel. Seeing how cold and miserable the places were where they had migrated from (1) reconfirmed their decision to move and (2) gave them joy in the discomfort of those they had left behind.
Read More »

Editorial: Everything is copy

By
July 12

“Copy” is the newspaperman’s term of art for the words that come together to make a compelling story. And for the headline “Everything is copy,” I’m indebted to Nora Ephron, the essayist, screenwriter and director (perhaps best known for “Heartburn” and “Sleepless in Seattle”) who passed away recently.
Read More »

Editorial: The Castleton spirit

editorial

At the Castleton Festival, there apparently is no obstacle that cannot be overcome, including the most damaging (non-tropical) storm in Virginia’s history.
Read More »

Editorial: Remembering Agnes

By
June 28
editorial

Rappahannock County derives its name, of course, from the eponymous river, whose headwaters arise within our jurisdictional borders. So we should take some stakeholder interest in what happens downstream, particularly to the Chesapeake Bay, into which the Rappahannock’s waters ultimately empty.
Read More »

Editorial: Birds, bees and baby steps

By
June 21
editorial

We have two choices in the face of the earth’s environmental degradation. The first is to feel like we humans are all hospice patients just waiting for the inevitable, apocalyptic end. The other is to take action – countermeasures, albeit small but still meaningful.
Read More »

Editorial: Farmland forever?

By
June 14
editorial

The cause is noble but, given human nature, perhaps inevitably doomed: preserving farmland and other open spaces. A lost cause, really? The question is timely and worthy of discussion, since the eighth annual Rappahannock Evening View, put on by the Rappahannock County Conservation Alliance (RCCA), is scheduled for Saturday evening (June 16). RCCA, made...
Read More »

Editorial: Congratulations, graduates!

editorial

At this time of year, when Rappahannock County High School as well as local private schools send their seniors on their way rejoicing out into the “ big, wide world” (see the graduates’ photos on pages 8-9 today), we are poignantly reminded of the county’s singular strength: its very smallness. Yes, small is beautiful....
Read More »

Editorial: Summer vacation!

editorial

June is upon us, and that means school is almost out! Even for aging adults, like yours truly, the school calendar remains a reflexive organizing principle of life. That means summer always should equal no homework. And no homework translates into fun. Growing up in this part of the world, I found my boyhood...
Read More »

Editorial: Battleground county

editorial

The last time Rappahannock County was a battleground was 150 years ago during the Civil War, or War Between the States. Today’s battleground status also is the result of a divided nation – no longer Confederate versus Union but Red versus Blue states. So the resolution of the nation’s current division should come this...
Read More »

Editorial: Reminder — money isn’t everything

editorial

Last Saturday’s Food Pantry fundraiser was, by all accounts, a dazzling success. But what made it a success? Was the amount of money raised the only measure of success? And could even more money have been raised by tapping into participants’ financial self-interest? Certainly, that’s the way we tend to measure all things nowadays:...
Read More »

Editorial: In memoriam

When you wake up in the morning, tell yourself: The people you deal with today will be meddling, ungrateful, arrogant, dishonest, jealous, and surly. They are like this because they can’t tell good from evil. But you have seen the beauty of good, and the ugliness of evil, and have recognized that the wrongdoer...
Read More »

Editorial: Who’re the real agroterrorists?

“The $10 Buy Local Challenge!” That’s the recent call to action from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS): If each household in Virginia spent just $10 a week on locally grown agricultural products, consumers would invest an additional $1.65 billion back into the local economy annually. “The challenge is not limited...
Read More »

Editorial: Good news, bad news

By
April 26

The bad news: Rappahannock residents have to drive everywhere, whether to go shopping or to visit friends.  The good news: we live right next door to miles and miles of some of the best hiking and walking trails not only in the country but also the world. Like the proverbial “elephant in the room,”...
Read More »

Editorial: ‘Earth Day’ weekend

By
April 19

The weather forecast calls for possible rain on the parade of Fodderstack runners this Saturday. But few of these 10K racers will mind, I bet. Outdoor athletes are by definition in touch with the earth they pound – and understand that the small patch of the Planet Earth known as Rappahannock County could surely...
Read More »

Editorial: Legalize marijuana?

By
April 12
editorial

Drug use among young people is not an issue unique to Rappahannock County. But based upon the ever-growing volume of drug arrests and convictions, as regularly reported in the paper, it is an issue that needs discussing. Part of that discussion should include specifically marijuana use – and whether it should be legalized. If...
Read More »

Editorial: What’s the point of the Point-to-Point?

By
April 5
editorial

If you have to ask the question posed in the above headline, then Rappahannock County might not be the place for you. For certainly the precise place to be in the county this Saturday is Mrs. Thomas L. Eastham’s Ben Venue Farm, site of the annual Old Dominion Hounds Point-to-Point. It is not to...
Read More »

Editorial: Nice weather?

By
March 29
editorial

Spring in Rappahannock, though beautiful as always, feels a bit unnatural this year. It’s as if the latitude has shifted south and we’re now a part of north Florida. Or maybe it’s not spring at all, but an early summer. The ancient Greeks, in their wonderful way of mixing the poetic with the analytical,...
Read More »

Editorial: Priorities in our state capital

By
March 22
editorial

Rappahannock’s representatives in Richmond – Delegate Michael Webert and State Senator Mark D. Obenshain – are back in the state capital this week to try to pass a budget. This reconvening of the General Assembly in a special session is necessary because the regular session, which officially adjourned earlier this month, failed in its...
Read More »

Editorial: Dog days

By
March 15
editorial

Republicans or Democrats: that’s probably not the way most Rappahannock residents would categorize themselves. Rather, we’re either “cat people” or “dog people.” And so-called political Independents, it could be said, like both cats and dogs equally. But whether dog or cat, Rappahannock is the place to be. Here we have articulate advocates and fine...
Read More »

Editorial: Not-so-super Tuesday

By
March 8
editorial

Virginia may have been one of the 11 states comprising the huge delegate battle for the Republican presidential primary on so-called Super Tuesday this week, but for us here in Rappahannock County it was anything but super. Without Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum on the primary ballot in Virginia, we missed all the suspense,...
Read More »

Editorial: Newspapers in education

By
March 1
editorial

Mike Leake, the president of our local bank, Union First Market, is a product of the Rappahannock County Public Schools system. He never forgets where he came from. Whenever given the opportunity, he supports the local schools. Most recently, for example, he has supplied complimentary copies of this newspaper to all the students, both...
Read More »

Editorial: Made in Rappahannock

By
Feb. 23
editorial

You lose money on every unit sold, but you make it up in volume. So goes the old joke, which perhaps encapsulates what was wrong with the “old” economy – the same globalized, mass-production, industrial-scale, high-volume, scaled-up, low-margin economy that ground to a virtual standstill four years ago. Now that this economy appears to...
Read More »

Editorial: Worst of places, best of places

By
Feb. 16
editorial

In a map measuring the Gini coefficient of income inequality across the country, Rappahannock County pops off the page. Its familiar geographic silhouette is painted in the richest or darkest (depending how you look at it) hues — showing the county to have among the highest Gini in the whole state of Virginia. The...
Read More »

Editorial: Epekho

editorial

The headline above is ancient Greek, meaning: “I suspend judgment.” It is the skeptical philosopher’s (or newspaperman’s) response to dogmatic assertions – a polite and masterful way to avoid agitated argument with someone whose opinions seem off the mark, yet who seems unlikely to ever change those opinions. So it is that in recent...
Read More »

Editorial: The human comedy’s front-row seat

editorial

In days not too distant a well-bred Virginia gentleman’s name would appear in the local newspaper no more than three times during his life: birth announcement, wedding announcement and obituary. A lady, if a debutante, was allowed a fourth mention. In today’s world of Facebook, reality TV and endless self-promotion, such notions seem “so,...
Read More »

Guest editorial: The broken branch

There’s a major political event approaching this fall, and though I have no doubt it will be overshadowed by the elections, I hope you’ll carve out some time for it anyway.
Read More »

Editorial: Nobody to kick around anymore?

By
Jan. 19
editorial

When I was in high school, I briefly dated a girl who went to Chatham Hall, just north of Danville near the North Carolina line. That part of Virginia is known as Southside, and it always felt like a foreign country. Except for its rural roots, it has very little in common with Rappahannock...
Read More »

Editorial: Citizen of the Year?

By
Jan. 12
editorial

Last Friday marked the first of what we hope will be many open-to-the-public editorial meetings. Most of the “citizen journalists” and interested community members attending said they thought the newspaper was doing a pretty good job but offered some useful suggestions about how it could do even better. Among the questions posed was:  “What...
Read More »

Editorial: A new year

By
Dec. 29, 2011
editorial

Two years ago, this newspaper’s longtime publisher, the late Arthur “Nick” Arundel, who loved the Rappahannock News because he loved Rappahannock County, decided it was time to sell. At about the same time, he sold another rural, county-seat-based paper, the Clarke Courier in Berryville. Today, the Courier no longer exists, but the Rappahannock News...
Read More »

Editorial: Slick operator

By
July 28, 2011
editorial

No major engagements in the Civil War, the sesquicentennial anniversary of which is now being celebrated, took place here in Rappahannock County. But in what is today’s not-so-civil conflict in Big Washington, our very own congressional representative is leading the charge. Rappahannock residents don’t know whether to be proud, frustrated, embarrassed or outraged about...
Read More »

Editorial: Civil War remembrance

By
July 14, 2011
editorial

The July 21-24 Sesquicentennial of the First Battle of Manassas makes me feel old enough to be a Civil War veteran. In a way, I am.
Read More »

Editorial: A patriotic Fourth

By
July 7, 2011

“Liberty means responsibility. That’s why most men dread it.” George Bernard Shaw’s famous quip came to mind this Fourth of July weekend as our elected representatives in Big Washington struggled to become fiscally responsible. Or at least pretended and postured that they were struggling. Here in Little Washington and environs, our patriotism somehow seems more...
Read More »

Editorial: Blame the bears

By
April 28, 2011
Joy Lorien spied this adult bear in a tree in Shenandoah National Park.

From all accounts, the Earth Day litter cleanup, sponsored by the local Democratic Committee, was a great success (see Jed Duvall’s letter this week). Apparently there is now much less litter on Route 211. But is that a good thing? The question should be asked. For some of us, the colorful food packaging and...
Read More »

Editorial: Drugs in school?

By
April 21, 2011
editorial

This headline poses a hard question. It is a question common to just about all high schools across the nation, but no one in a position of authority at our own local high school wants to give a good answer. Why?
Read More »

frontroyalbattle on Facebook