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Political change begins with voters

Recent — and frequent — visits from U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell and Secretry of State Alison Lundergan Grimes serve as reminders of the heated contest between the two as Grimes battles to take McConnell’s seat in Washington. No doubt about it, this is one race to keep an eye on and one that not only Kentuckians are interested in, but others across the nation, as well.
As Alison’s team continues to chant “Thirty years is long enough,” McConnell’s points to the incumbent senator’s many years of experience in the nation’s capital as an advantage.
As vocal as both McConnell and Grimes are as they battle for the coveted seat, locally things have been quite the opposite.
With former sheriff Bill Witten vying to regain control of the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office and current Sheriff Dwayne Price vowing to stay put, one would expect a little more chatter between the two. On the same hand, the several who have come forth to attempt to wrangle the city mayor’s office from incumbent Bob Porter have also been fairly quiet although we did receive a complaint earlier this week regarding some shady political sign switching.
All in all, it appears to be a clean race this election year with mud-slinging put aside and each candidate running on his or her own merit.
For those of you who are unclear on the issues or who just have not yet had the opportunity to speak with local candidates, show up at the public forum scheduled for this coming Monday on the BSCTC Mayo campus. Each candidate will speak and, time allowing, audience members will be able to ask a question or two.
Most importantly, however, in the short time remaining before the Nov. 4 election, make a point to become familiar with each and every candidate in each and every race. Discern the ones that speak for you and show your support by visiting the polls on election day. Every vote does count — male and female, young and old, conservative and liberal — from the local arena to the state level and on up to Washington.
If you feel things need to change, let our elected officials know how you feel at the polls.

Darts and Laurels

A laurel to emergency workers and volunteers who participate in continued training to keep citizens safe!

A dart to delays in setting up the new county animal shelter, even though they are unavoidable.

A laurel to citizens who stand up for themselves — voting on issues that affect many is the American way!

A dart to having to kiss a pig — (or not? They are pretty cute!)

A laurel to continued student learning during snow days (though students may view this as a ‘dart’).

Guest Editorial

Educate yourself about breast cancer

The Kentucky Standard

Your bra is not giving you breast cancer.
Your deodorant is not giving you breast cancer.
Coffee is not giving you breast cancer.
Mammograms are not giving you breast cancer.
In a large percentage of cases, your genes aren’t even giving you breast cancer.
As with anything that escalates to the level of attention breast cancer has received, there are several myths about the disease. There are posts all over social media and even reports on mainstream media that do nothing but incite fear over incorrect information.
That being the case, it’s tough to sort facts from fiction. But there are facts that you should know about breast cancer.
• First, it is something you should be aware of, not just in October — even though the month is designated for that purpose.
• It is killing the women of the world by the thousands.
• This year, the American Cancer Society estimates that there will be 232,670 new cases of female breast cancer diagnosed in the United State alone — and 2,360 male diagnoses. Of those, 40,000 women and 430 men will die from the disease. To put that in perspective, the population of Nelson County is roughly 44,540. So breast cancer will kill almost as many people in the country as live in the county.
• One in eight women born today will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. Think about your family — your mother, sisters, grandmothers, cousins, aunts and close friends. Are there at least eight of them? If so, consider that one of them will be diagnosed with breast cancer at some point. And the risk increases with age.
• Studies indicate that the more alcohol a woman drinks, the greater her risk of developing breast cancer and women who are overweight or obese have an increased risk. For this reason, we should all be mindful of what we put in our bodies and how healthy our behaviors are. You are your own best health advocate.
• Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in women, exceeded only by lung cancer. The chance that breast cancer will somehow lead to a woman’s death is about 3 percent.
• Death rates from breast cancer are decreasing, likely the result of increased technology, improved treatment, increased awareness and earlier detection.
• There are more than 2.8 million breast cancer survivors in the United States.
While breast cancer will kill 40,430 Americans this year, almost 3 million have come face to face with the beast that is breast cancer and have lived through it.
That’s not to degrade or speak ill of those who have succumbed to the disease. Their struggles and the toll taken on their families is just as much a reality and required just as much strength. But it is a fact to be proud of, nonetheless. That is the fact that proves that breast cancer awareness is saving lives.
The reason almost 3 million people have gone on to earn the title “Survivor” is because we are educating ourselves about cancer prevention and because now, more than ever before, we understand the importance of self-exams and preventive screenings.
The American Cancer Society recommends that women 40 or older have a mammogram every year. Women in their 20s and 30s should have a clinical breast exam at least every three years as part of a regular health exam. Doctors also recommend monthly self-exams.
Take care of and educate yourself. The life that knowledge and action saves may be your own.

Darts and Laurels

A laurel to all the youngsters who won Apple Festival awards — whether spelling, art, costume or other, congratulations!

A dart to not knowing where your children are — please seek help.

A laurel to helping keep children safe — it does take a village.

A dart to turning fun times into “brawling” times — know your limits.

A laurel to the Paintsville Fire Department and its new ISO rating — keeping our city safe!


Scooters on roadways create need for extra caution

To many drivers, local citizens “scooting” around town are a nuisance and a hazard. To those citizens traveling on motorized wheelchairs, or “scooters,” it’s the only way they have to get around independently.
Oncoming traffic needs to be aware of the scooters around town. The scooters are used by people who need a way of getting around town for getting groceries, going to the library, or even going out to a restaurant. They have been a big help to people and have their benefits, but they can also cause a very big danger in our community.
An issue has recently arisen and we are hearing people around Johnson County complaining about these “scooter people” not obeying laws and just driving around freely. The scooter people, they say, are driving dangerously, pulling out into the streets and roadways causing people in motor vehicles to suddenly put their brakes on to prevent colliding with a scooter.
We are wondering — in the case of a motor vehicle colliding with a scooter, who does the liability of the accident rest upon? Would the individual on the scooter be responsible for his/her own medical bills and repair/replacement of their scooter? Or would the driver of the motor vehicle be responsible for these costs?
Is a person on a scooter considered to be a pedestrian, or the operator of a “motor” vehicle?
Whatever the answers, we feel the streets of Johnson County are inappropriate places for motorized scooters. These scooters are designed to help individuals around their homes and property, not to be used as substitutes for automobiles.
We feel the scooter is a fantastic invention, but when their owners insist on operating them on city streets, they need to be aware of traffic patterns and road signs and traffic lights.
Don’t just assume that others will watch out for you — use extra caution to protect yourself. When operating a scooter across a road you have the same rules as if a pedestrian was crossing the street. So each person on a scooter should stop and look both ways before crossing to avoid any type of accident or injury from happening.
Everyone — driver and scooter operators — need to keep their eyes open. Whether we like it or not, the “scooter people” are out there.

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