Opinion roundup June 20, 2016: Trump, teacher pay, guns and religion

Posted June 20, 2016
Updated June 21, 2016

The latest editorials, columns and comments from around North Carolina.

Legislature’s transparency idea is a good first step (Winston-Salem Journal) -- We have high but reserved hopes for a state legislative committee being proposed to study “ways to improve transparency of state and local governments in North Carolina,” as the bill reads. Transparency is good for the public and should be good for legislators.

Trump never will be ready to be commander-in-chief (Elizabeth City Daily Advance) -- We realize there are probably more politically correct words to describe Donald Trump, but in the interest of telling it like it is, here are a few that capture the essence of the presumptive Republican nominee for president: narcissistic, greedy, childish, petty, clownish, dishonest, racist, bigoted. We could go on.

Republicans should try to block Donald Trump (Charlotte Observer) -- There are new efforts to deny Trump the GOP nomination at next month’s convention.

Donald Trump’s Place (New York Times column) -- During a bizarre digression in North Carolina on Tuesday night, GOP Presidential candidate Donald Trump seemed to accuse America’s fighting men and women of plundering the war effort in the Middle East (although a spokeswoman later denied it): “Iraq. Crooked as hell. How about bringing baskets of money, millions and millions of dollars, and handing it out? I want to know who are the soldiers that had that job because I think they’re living very well right now, whoever they may be.”

Preparing graduates for gun-America (Winston-Salem Journal column) -- Winston-Salem Journal) -- To our high school graduates: When we woke up last Sunday morning and plugged into cyberspace, we came back to the real America, one where funerals for young people murdered will soon keep pace with ones for their grandparents dead of old age. The cancer of gun violence had charged in again, this time with the most victims in modern American history: 49 people killed, mostly gay and young Hispanics, and 53 injured in an Orlando nightclub.

Horrific attack unlikely to spur action (Rocky Mount Telegram) -- In the aftermath of the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history, efforts to strengthen gun laws took center stage last week in Congress. The shooting spree in a gay nightclub in Orlando that killed 49 people and wounded another 53 once again has torn open the debate.

Don’t allow HB 263 (Greensboro News & Record) -- House Bill 263 imposed new city election systems on Greensboro and the Randolph County town of Trinity.

Franklin Graham misstates Muslim beliefs (Charlotte Observer column) -- After Orlando, Graham said the shooter was following the teaching of the Quran; That’s not true; the Quran prohibits such heinous actions; But Graham has a history of twisting what the true teachings of Islam are

Hurting veteran teachers is unacceptable (Washington Daily News) -- When Gov. Pat McCrory touts his plan for pay raises this year, stop and ask what the flip side of that is. When he praises his plan to push teacher salaries to $50,000, remember that’s a$50,000 cap. Under that plan, no matter how many years teachers works, at some point they will no longer receive raises and no longer be compensated for longevity. New teachers should be welcomed to North Carolina, but not at the expense of those with more experience.

Who will teach when my generation retires? (Charlotte Observer column) -- Every year as the school year winds down, someone asks me when I’m going to retire. Perhaps I look especially weary that first week of June, or my hair is noticeably grayer. Often the person asking is a long-time veteran teacher, and I wonder how much the question is really for me.

General Assembly playing game of age-ism (Asheville Citizen-Times column) -- When you get right down to it, the majority party in the North Carolina General Assembly, particularly those in the Senate, has an intense disdain for their retired constituents, particularly school teachers, administrators, and support staff.

Young offenders get a chance to get back on track (Fayetteville Observer) -- Give a kid a second chance: We've all heard that bit of encouragement before. But too often, in criminal matters, the state of North Carolina hasn't followed suit.