OUR VIEW: Week in review: The best, worstHisses and cheers from the week that was, from obesity to fireworks.
By: Editorial board, The Daily Republic
HISSES to the news that South Dakotans are among the most obese citizens of the United States. A report released last week by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation ranked South Dakota No. 17, up nine places from where the state sat two decades ago. Back in 1990, the study showed that 10.7 percent of the population was defined as obese, while the number now is 28.7 percent. More depressing: Nearby neighbors North Dakota (No. 21), Nebraska (No. 24) and Minnesota (No. 38) evidently are in better shape than we South Dakotans. We consider obesity an epidemic, and hope people take this problem seriously as they make their own life decisions.
CHEERS to the Mitchell Exchange Club, which sponsored this year’s Lake Mitchell fireworks show. The Exchange Club wasn’t alone in providing the fireworks, which cost approximately $10,000; the club collected donations throughout June to help pay for the event, while the city of Mitchell paid for half. We appreciate all of the efforts that led to this year’s show, which was exceptional. There’s nothing like a well-planned, well-executed fireworks display on a beautiful South Dakota evening.
CHEERS to the towns that are celebrating special occasions this summer. Earlier this month, Armour marked its 125th anniversary, while Wessington Springs used the Fourth of July weekend to celebrate the 100th anniversary of its school district. Whatever the party is for, we appreciate such small-town events, which attract hundreds if not thousands of people. They also help to instill more than a little hometown pride, which was on display during those fun weekends in Springs and Armour.
HISSES to the terrible fireworks-related mishap that occurred last week in Fargo, N.D. A man there reportedly was decapitated as he allegedly lit fireworks that may have been homemade or illegal. The fireworks season is over — until a special season this winter, at least — but we hope everyone will remember this tragedy when they light fireworks in the future. Please, handle fireworks with care. As the news from Fargo shows, people can be badly injured or killed when fireworks are mishandled or warnings are disregarded.
CHEERS to the Mitchell Department of Public Safety for sponsoring its annual Citizens’ Academy. The department is now taking applications for the upcoming session, which begins Sept. 1 and which will teach residents about the basic operations of local law enforcement. During the 12-week, one-night-per-week session, attendees will learn about firearms policies, investigations, training and other department issues, as well as receive tours of the local police facilities. For those who are interested in the goingson at the local PD, this is a great way to get an inside look. We appreciate this program, not only for its educational opportunities but also for the department’s wish to get more citizens involved. Call 995-8400 for more information.