Opinions

BigotryIs ignorant bigotry the new American norm?

Well, he’s done it once again! The question is, will his unquestioning disciples follow him again…into that s---hole of un-American ignorant bigotry. 

I’ve included a photo from a 1903 Christmas card – a picture of my Norwegian grandfather who only months later immigrated to America, the land of the free, from South Africa. Under the circumstances, it’s doubtful that he would make the same decision today. In which case, I would never have had the opportunity of experiencing such enlightened communities as Charlotte, Montgomery, Birmingham and Atlanta of the freedom-loving Jim Crow South – or of the 26 months I spent in the central highlands of Vietnam.

Well, I guess I’m just too inflexible, misguided and opinionated to understand and appreciate the “new American norm.” So be it.

John R. Neighbours
Lake Monticello

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Thanks for helping Happy Face
The annual Happy Face Christmas program, sponsored by Fluvanna Christian Service Society, is a tremendous example of a community coming together to support its families who are struggling. It happened again on Saturday, Dec. 2 at Central Elementary School and well over 100 families were served. Churches collected new toys for children and their members bought vouchers so people could purchase necessities at local vendors. Exemplary Fork Union Military Academy cadets lined up to carry and place toys on Friday night and escort families on Saturday through the maze of colorful toys, books, treats and stuffed animals. Our local businesses came through with monetary gifts in encouraging ways, one even doubling its already generous support! Our wider community grocers in Charlottesville, Wegmans, Harris Teeter, and Giant also generously provided support so volunteers could bag up hefty meals to feed families over the holidays. Pastor June Clifford and members from Beautiful Gate led a beautiful program that told the Christmas story, complete with Mary, Joseph, and Jesus, shared music, led raffles and engaged the crowd in games as they waited their turn to enter the toy area. Santa even took time from his hectic schedule to have his picture taken with the children. Thank you, all who gave of yourselves to shed light on our fellow families in need this Christmas. You are a collective inspiration.

    Pastor Ken Albright
    Happy Face co-coordinator

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Goodbye to Fluvanna County
I wanted to take a moment to let you know that I left my position as the plant manager at the Tenaska Virginia Generating Station Oct. 23, 2017. I have started a new position as the plant manager for the Tenaska Westmoreland Generating Station in Westmoreland County, Penn.

I have enjoyed my tenure here, and I appreciate having had the opportunity to work with you. Thank you for the support, guidance, and encouragement you have provided me during my time at Tenaska Virginia since 2003.
Even though I will miss my colleagues and Tenaska Virginia, I am looking forward to this new challenge in building a new team for this  power plant in Pennsylvania and to starting a new phase of my career.

I am now at the end of my journey here at Tenaska Virginia, but not at the end of our journey together. Thanks for the opportunity to work together and for the memories I will be taking with me. I will mention only a few organizations that I had the pleasure of helping:

  • Peaceful Passings;
  • Green Dogs Unleashed;
  • Sheriff’s department;
  • Fluvanna County Schools CTE and STEM programs;
  • Fluvanna County Rotary Club;
  • Fluvanna County Social Services;
  • Hundreds of visitors to the plant; and
  • Habit for Humanity.

I would say good luck, but I do not believe it is appropriate here since luck does not play a role in Tenaska Virginia. Good people plus good vision plus good execution will decide your bright future ahead.
Therefore, before I ride out, I leave you all with this quote: “I’ve heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason…by bringing something, we must learn. We are led to those who help us grow and, in return, we help them grow.”

This has never been truer for me.

Please keep in touch: I can be reached at my email address This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . My daughter and her family live at the Lake.
Thanks again for everything. I wish you all the best.

Robert Mayfield
Scottsville

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Thanks for spotlighting centennial farms
I am writing in my capacity as president of the Fluvanna Historical Society to thank the Fluvanna Review for its recent article on the centennial farm program and to provide some additional information on the society’s work in this area.

The Historical Society has had a centennial farm program since 1998. This effort is a local one but uses the same criteria as the state program. The results have been remarkable. So far the society has honored a total of 17 Fluvanna farms which have been farmed by the same family for 100 years or more. The Sept. 21 Fluvanna Review cover has a photo of the slate plaque given to the owners of each centennial farm. Again this year we honored another Fluvanna centennial farm at our annual meeting Oct. 8. This marks an ongoing effort to find these farms and to recognize the importance of family farming over many generations.

Marvin Moss
Fluvanna Historical Society president

Tenaska Generation Station comes to the rescue
Imagine preparing to package 79 hot and cold meals in the dark for delivery to hungry homebound seniors and disabled neighbors in Fluvanna County. Well, we couldn’t either. On Monday, Oct. 9, when there was a power outage at Effort Baptist and the surrounding areas, Dogwood Restaurant was delivering large quantities of hot and cold food to be packaged and delivered to the clients of Fluvanna Meals on Wheels. Our kitchen volunteers were ready to divide up and package the food, but there were no lights in the windowless kitchen. One quick call to Tenaska Generation Station and an employee delivered four powerful flashlights to enable the kitchen volunteers to accomplish their task. Crisis averted, and all clients received their hot meal for the day. On behalf of the Fluvanna Meals on Wheels Board, staff, volunteers and clients, we express our thanks to Tenaska Generation Station for their response to our call.

Lisa Himes
Fluvanna Meals on Wheels executive director Add a comment

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We can’t go backwards
Several years ago, the schools were blindsided by a last-minute decision by the Board of Supervisors, led by Chairman Shaun Kenney, to cut $2.3 million from the school budget. As a result, we saw two primary schools close. Threats were made to not open the new high school. We saw class sizes increase. Classes were eliminated. Staff healthcare costs increased. Teachers were forced to work for free via furlough days. People pulled their children from our schools. Some people physically moved out of the county as Fluvanna became known as a community that didn’t value public education.

Here we are, five years later, with two School Board candidates echoing some of the same catchphrases used by the previous chairman of the Board of Supervisors. In fact, according to vpap.org, Mr. Kenney has generously donated money to these two candidates.

The amazing school staff has done a phenomenal job of recovering from the budget fiasco of 2012. We must make sure that we don’t return to that place where political ambition is put above the well-being of our community. Rivanna residents need to elect Shirley Stewart to the School Board. Columbia residents need to fill in the write in bubble and write in “Linda Staiger” to the School Board. Stewart and Staiger are the best candidates to ensure we don’t take a giant leap backwards.

Kerry Murphy-Hammond
Columbia

Rob Bell protected children from predators
I am writing as an Independent, a parent and a survivor of childhood sexual abuse who supports Delegate Rob Bell. I was abused as a child by a sports coach and came forward three decades later to try and protect our children from the predator who abused me. My court battle took more than seven years to win due to a loophole in the law. Thankfully, I was successful in protecting our children from this one pedophile. Not only should it not have taken so long, but there were more predators like mine in our Commonwealth.

Many people told me to contact Rob Bell. When I did, he invited me to his office. Delegate Bell knew the ins and outs of what needed to be done from a legislative perspective to turn my concept into a reality. My goal of protecting Virginia’s children from predators became his goal.

Sometimes new legislation doesn’t pass the first year and mine didn’t. I was pretty down and wanted to quit. At my lowest point, I received an email from Delegate Bell. He told me to keep my chin up and to keep fighting because he would be right there fighting with me.

The following year Delegate Bell was my pillar of strength as I testified in Richmond again. I watched him fight for my legislation and for our children all through subcommittee, full committee and the three needed votes to pass the bill out of the House. I watched him fight for the Senate’s version of the legislation, too.

The law Delegate Bell helped me pass (HB 1353 2015) exposed 5,604 convicted pedophiles whose convictions slipped through the cracks. Without this legislation, your neighbor could be a convicted pedophile and not show up on the sex offender registry. Delegate Bell fixed that. The 58th District has an amazing opportunity to re-elect Rob Bell who will continue to fight to protect our children and help people like me know that, when we come forward, people will believe us.

Rob Buswell Add a comment

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