“Misery loves company,” so goes the English proverb. But, after the last 15 months, you’d think we’d all agree to send the miserable couch potatoes home.

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Of all the commercials that have made cheeky pitches for light beer over the years, this one is a classic:

Friday, June 11, 2021

Republican state senators voted last week not to confirm Dionne Delli-Gatti as secretary of the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality because they think she is insufficiently knowledgeable about something they called Gov. Roy Cooper’s “natural gas strategy” and she was “unfamiliar” with a stalled natural gas pipeline project.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

“We can’t just choose to learn what we want to know and not what we should know,” President Joe Biden said last week from Tulsa, Oklahoma, on the 100th anniversary of a targeted massacre of black residents there by their white neighbors. 

Sunday, June 06, 2021

On July 1, North Carolina local governments — counties, cities and school systems — must have their annual budgets enacted. That’s the law. State agencies — from public parks to county courthouses — need to start a new budget year.

Thursday, June 03, 2021

The Big Lie that drives Republican politics at the moment is former President Donald Trump’s false claim that he won the election. The party has peddled another falsehood for more than 40 years.

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This week marked the first anniversary of the death of George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man who was killed by a Minneapolis police officer who knelt on his neck for more than nine minutes, obstructing his breath as he begged for his life. A jury of 12 found Floyd’s killer guilty of one count of second-degree murder, one count of third-degree murder, and one count of manslaughter on April 20. He awaits sentencing and has appealed his convictions. Three other officers involved are awaiting trial.

For the nearly five decades since the U.S. Supreme Court decided that a woman has a constitutional right to an abortion, that right has been under attack by state legislators. But the high court has stood by its landmark decision in Roe vs. Wade over and over again in the rulings that followed.

There may be no profession more publicly and thoroughly second-guessed than educators. From parents to public officials to lawmakers, people believe they know better — or perhaps could do better — than those who educate our children.

To some people, the best solution to gun violence in an already gun-saturated nation — where, in fact, guns outnumber human beings — is, of course, more guns in more hands in more places.

“Our children’s education is too precious to play politics with, and I am going to try my hardest to separate politics from this role — to do what is right,” Catherine Truitt said a few days after she was elected the state’s Superintendent of Public Instruction. “The fact that we elect this position makes it difficult to eliminate politics, so let me just say that I cannot eliminate politics, but I’m going to do as much as I can to take the temperature down and keep this about students instead of politics.”

The pandemic brought much-deserved attention not only to the importance of essential workers, but also to the essential work of mothers.

A bevy of bills before the state legislature seeks to improve how state and local agencies assist people struggling with mental health crises and related issues. They’re both promising and overdue.

The tortuous slow drip of police video footage in the fatal police shooting of Andrew Brown Jr. in Elizabeth City has confounded national media, which have struggled to explain this state’s convoluted police video law to the rest of the country.

Every day for the past several weeks, groups of protesters have marched peacefully on Elizabeth City’s streets demanding release of the body camera footage showing the April 21 shooting death of Andrew Brown Jr. by Pasquotank sheriff’s deputies. “Release the Tapes!” has been their just rallying cry.

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Senate Bill 355, legislation that promotes and enhances public access to the performance records of public employees, has generated significant resistance from state organizations that have several things in common — they are all union related and they are determined to continue operating without public scrutiny.

In April, a Swedish plastics manufacturer announced that it would be locating its first U.S. production facility in Gaston County, creating 22 jobs at an average salary of $59,132. That news merited a press release from the state Department of Commerce and a quote from Gov. Roy Cooper.

It was a too-uncommon display of bipartisanship and government unity last week at the announcement Apple was going to invest about $1 billion, develop its first east coast campus, an engineering hub in the Triangle and create 3,000 high-paying jobs in North Carolina.

We know that our students need high-quality, well-prepared teachers and principals. We know that our students need access to early childhood education. We know that we must address the academic, social, and emotional learning of our students, which includes access to school support personnel, such as counselors, social workers, and psychologists.

Exactly what happened when Pasquotank County Sheriff’s deputies fatally shot Andrew Brown Jr. in Elizabeth City has not yet been revealed, but one thing is clear: North Carolina’s body camera law needs to be fixed.

Three times already in his brief tenure, President Biden has rolled out a far-reaching and extraordinarily expensive proposal to address large-scale problems in this country. First there was a $1.9-trillion plan to help individuals and businesses cope with the surging COVID-19 pandemic. Then there was a $2-trillion blueprint to build and repair American infrastructure, defined in unusually broad terms. Now comes a $1.8-trillion boost to programs that help American families, particularly those with low and moderate incomes.