Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down: Nov. 8

Thumbs Up
Thanks for voting
If you’ve already voted today or if you’ve already made plans to vote before 6 p.m., thank you. You are helping maintain and perpetuate the U.S. democratic system.
Democracy is far from a perfect form of government, but it seems to be the best option humanity has available right now. It has been said by Winston Churchill, among others, that “Democracy is the worst form of government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.”
Until humanity makes some unexpected discovery of a new way to run a government, democracy stands head and shoulders above the rest when it comes to improving quality of life, holding corruption in check and encouraging civic participation.
As long as we have a robust democratic system that we as its constituents embrace and respect, there’s little that can tear the country down.
Thumbs Down
Don’t sit out this election
If you haven’t yet voted and weren’t planning on it, please reconsider. Your lack of participation in the election isn’t just letting others choose instead of you; it’s undermining and weakening the system that’s supposed to serve us all.
Elections aren’t just about the candidates; they’re also indicators of the health of our democracy. The votes cast determine who wins, but the voter turnout, to a certain extent, determines the validity of the results.
Help us keep our democracy strong by endorsing the process with your participation. Go vote.
Thumbs Up
Garrard successful in locating missing children
Five different children went missing in Garrard County over the course a few days last week. All five were found safe within hours to days of going missing.
Whenever a child goes missing, fears of the worst arise. It’s never good when that happens, but Garrard got about as much good news as it did bad out of these events.
The plans local and state officials have in place to locate missing children seem to be working efficiently. Missing children were found in different locations both near and far from home, which seems to suggest officials are accounting for all possibilities, keeping the chances of finding missing kids high.
In an ideal world, kids would never go missing, but we live in a less-than-ideal world and we need to be prepared for the worst. If last week is an indication, we are.
Thumbs Up
‘Active shooter’ drill at Ephraim McDowell
Speaking of preparing for the worst, Ephraim McDowell Regional Medical Center held an “active shooter” drill last week, putting hospital employees and first responders alike into the terrifying scenario of a person with a gun, shooting people in a hospital.
One of the best ways to make sure you have robust operating procedures is to put stress on the system to see what cracks and weaknesses show up. Stress-testing also gives those going through it valuable experience just in case things ever really get that bad.
A community that’s not prepared for a disaster will suffer greater losses and recover more slowly than one that is. Boyle County’s hospital and many of its first responders are now better prepared, and that’s a good thing.
Thumbs Up
‘Heroes’ helping out at Junction Elementary
Junction City Elementary School has a new sidewalk, a freshly painted basketball court, new shelter benches and several other upgrades, thanks to a recent community effort made possible in part by the Lowe’s Heroes program.
Volunteers from the community and Lowe’s employees helped make the upgrades at the school over the course of several weeks. The biggest improvement was the newly poured sidewalk that kids and teachers can walk between the school and the Junction City Park.
Previously, students walked a dirt path — or a mud path on rainy days — to get to the park.
A thumbs up is in order for community members working together to make things better, especially when it’s improvements that will benefit the community’s children for many years to come.