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Thumbs up, thumbs down

June 21, 2008

Thumbs up to all of the fathers in the Tri-State area who are there when their children need them. This includes those who work hard for what their families require, who cheer their youngsters on when they excel in youth sports, or just as important, in the classroom. They are the ones who take turns walking the floor with a crying infant, help toddlers tie their shoes and tell teens that parents aren't their pals, but people responsible for seeing that their kids do the right thing.

Thumbs up to Hagertown Police Chief Arthur Smith, for his quick defense of the officer accused by Councilwoman Kelly Cromer of lying about her recent traffic stop. Just as citizens should expect the chief to call down his officers when they're wrong, they should also expect him to rise to the defense of his men and women when he feels they've been unfairly criticized. Thanks, chief, for standing up for your guy.

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Thumbs up to officials of the Town of Smithsburg and the town's police department, for the special memorial and ceremony held in honor of slain officer Christopher Shane Nicholson. The Veterans Park memorial is illustrated with scenes from the life of Nicholson, who died in December after responding to a call that a suspect in a domestic violence death was in the area.

Thumbs up to all of the volunteers and Hagerstown city officials who work hard each year to bring the Miss Maryland pageant to Washington County. The event brings people from all over the state here and shows them the wonderful Maryland Theatre as well as a host of other local attractions. It's an event other cities would love to have and with a lot of help, Hagerstown keeps it.

Thumbs up to all of the parents who brought dozens of their children to the Washington County Free Library on June 13 for the kickoff of the library's "Catch the Reading Bug" summer reading program. There are many things children can do on their summer vacations, but learning the joy (and benefits) of reading a good book is a skill that will last for a lifetime.

Thumbs down to those politicos and bloggers referring to Barack Obama's wife Michelle as his "baby mama," knowing full well that it's a slang term for an unwed mother. Can't the U.S. have one campaign in which the voters are asked to decide on the basis of the issues and the candidates' qualification as opposed to which side's backers can throw the most mud?

Thumbs up to the Washington County Hospital and the Robinwood Medical Center, for putting on their third annual health fair. During the event, nearly 2,000 people attended, many of whom were screened for a variety of conditions and diseases. Some people who don't see a doctor regularly will attend an event such as this and get a screening that could possibly save their lives.

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