Reckoning Roundup: Number One
The Buffalo River, Indoor Athletic Facilities, Dirty Water, Size Matters and a Cat Picture. What more could you want?
It's our first Saturday Reckoning Roundup to offer some highlights from the week and share a few odds and ends we find either curious, enlightening or infuriating.
The Buffalo River
It's not in South Arkansas but we say if it's not broke don't fix it. More than 1,100 people attended a town hall meeting in Jasper in the Ozarks Thursday night. Nearly 2,000 more watched the meeting online. The project is apparently spearheaded by two third-generation Walton brothers. Yeah, the Waltons from Walmart not the 1970s TV show.
Basically, the Buffalo National River would turn into a nature preserve. That means out-of-state developers could come in and well, destroy what we believe is a natural gift from God to Arkansans. That goes against our core as folks whose ancestors homesteaded in Arkansas in the 1800s. The Buffalo situation looks a lot like “Yellowstone” and Arkansans are the Duttons.
Indoor High School Facilities
We're all for high school sports but believe strongly schools should primarily focus on reading, writing and arithmetic. That and common sense. We'd also like to see some common sense when it comes to spending our tax dollars. Rumors swirls about more schools wanting indoor facilities for high school football teams. Come on. It costs millions to build one, and let's face it high school football ain't the NFL. (We’ll spare you from talking about Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce.) If a player makes it to the NFL from Arkansas it's not because he practiced indoors in safe weather under bright lights. It's because of his determination, grit, drive and God-given talents. Oversized high school sports facilities are for old men either trying to relive the glory days of their football-playing youth or living the fantasy that they are Jerry Jones.
What You May Have Missed
We would like to think your world revolves around our words. But we know that's not the case. Here are a few of the stories you may have missed this week:
We looked at the drinking water in Sheridan. Would you drink this?
We wouldn't drink it, and a lot of people don't. We're not sure what's in it or why it looks like this a lot of the time. We're determined to find out. And a lot of elected officials in town are not very happy that we even wrote about the water. That's a sign to keep studying the water.
Speaking of Sheridan, we also recently looked at the Sheridan School District wasting our – yes, again, tax dollars – on painting white lines on gravel in order for bus drivers to park correctly. Don't ask us why. We're still scratching our heads about that one. And the scratching, thank goodness, has nothing to do with head lice.
South Arkansas Reckoning also looked at how how school board members have found a way to seemingly self-deal thanks to a rule change in 2016 by the Arkansas Department of Education. Seriously. Read more here about Richard's super deep dive into the history of Act 1599 and how a lot of school board members are running amok making deals and lining their pockets while sitting on school boards and repeating the mantra: It's about the kids. Really? It's about making money.
Suzi, co-publisher of the Reckoning, has long had an obsession with Duran Duran. Richard, the Reckoning's other co-publisher, indulges (or tolerates) her obsession with the 80s British band. She wrote about how it wasn't easy being a Duran Duran fan during the 1980s in Pine Bluff where girls wore preppy plaid instead of black mini skirts and band T-shirts.
Lastly, we'd like to think size doesn't matter. But it does … when it comes to press boxes. Yes, back to sports but people really get their briefs or boxers in a wod over football. That includes press boxes. No joke. Suzi recently had an online argument defending a small press box over a large one. So she wrote an ode about, yes, size does matters in all walks of life.
Here's our Caturday picture – Olivia – a rescue of Suzi's from an abandoned meth trailer in Sulphur Springs. Got a cat picture to share for our next Roundup? Email us at email@example.com. (You can send news tips there, too.)
By Tuesday night, the ceiling fan will be off and the heater on. The forecast calls for 28 degrees for a low. Don't forget to cover outdoor faucets. And what happened to fall?
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