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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Wednesday, April 11

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Please don’t shoot cats

To the editor:

I met a stranger for the first time the other day, and we started up a conversation on game cameras and hunting. I told him of the now 15 game cameras I have on my farm for the purpose of filming the cougars that have been roaming through here on different occasions. 

This person was a big-time deer hunter and only harvested trophy bucks. I respected his views, and then the conversation turned towards Cougars. He told me that if he ever saw a cougar in the woods he would “shoot it in a second.”

I informed him that this is not only illegal, but if he did so it would be such a waste as he could not tell anyone and probably would be fined and receive jail time. 

He said he knows a friend who is a taxidermist and this friend would mount the cat and not tell anyone. I shared “my” thoughts with him on the subject and reminded him how rare these big cats are and that they have been here for so many years, and hardly anyone ever sees them. Besides the fact that they have never harmed a person here nor have they ever bothered any of the farm livestock to my knowledge, he still thought it great sport to kill one. 

Before we parted ways, he offered his help to me if I ever needed any assistance on my farm concerning the cougars. I’m not sure what he meant by that offer, but I would never let someone with those views on killing such a magnificent animal access to my land. 

I would suggest that if he really wanted a cougar for his trophy room, then he should go out to our western states where cougar hunting is allowed and do so legally. With the so few cougars that roam through the East, it would be tragic for us to lose even one of them. 

I’m sure there are others out there who also would like a chance to shoot one of our big cats given the chance. To those I would say please show restraint. As long as they are no threat to us, allow them to live their lives in peace as they do to us. 

If you want to shoot something, please unload on the ever burgeoning population of coyotes that we are hexed with. You certainly have my blessing as well as the County of Halifax to rid us of these pests. 

When you have some free time go on the Internet and do some research on the mountain lion/cougar, and you will see how fortunate we are to have them in our county. 

In the last 100 years there have been less than 20 people killed by mountain lions in the USA, and those were mainly out west. There are way more people than that killed by dogs every year here in the states. 

Even coyotes are known to attack people, and you know they will attack your pets. 

Let’s focus on them and leave our “big cats with long tails” alone.


Bob Crone

Vernon Hill


A wonderful person

To the editor:

Congratulations to Charlie Baskervill for being inducted into the Halifax County-South Boston Hall of Fame. 

What a deserving choice. Not only being a great athlete, Charlie is a wonderful person. He is a very low handicap golfer, and I can’t tell  you how many rounds we have played together. Most golfers of his caliber wouldn’t consider playing with a high handicap player like me. 

If all the people in the world were like Charlie Baskervill, the world would be a much better place to live. 


Jimmy Allen



Thanks for bringing band

To the editor:

Thank you very much for having the United States Army Field Band and Soldiers’ Chorus.

We enjoyed all of it. We recognized the fine members of the band — their abilities, and also the conductors and ones who were soloists and in concert.

We especially enjoyed the many last numbers — I guess they were ever more familiar.

With appreciation,

Irvin and Doris Hunt

‘Stand for Freedom’

To the editor:

I would like to respond to the letter submitted by Mr. Kevin Chandler last week entitiled “Stand for Freedom.”   

I absolutely agree every person’s vote counts, and I also agree every eligible United States citizen has the right to vote and in my opinion the responsiblilty to vote.  I do not think showing proof of identity as a registered voter is an unreasonable expectation.  

If you are not a natural born United States citizen, and you want to vote in our elections then become a citizen and register to vote,and if you are a citizen, register to vote.  

In today’s world, people are doing many things illegally by using someone else’s identity.  While a voter registration card or a photo identification card is not a cure, it is a deterrence to keep nonregistered voters or illegal immigrants from illegally voting.

I do not agree with Mr. Chandler regarding the law to ban ex-felons as being a “racially motivated ban,” as it applies to all races who commit a crime serious enough to be found guilty as a felon.  

In some states this right to vote can be reinstated if the person takes the necessary steps to become an eligible voter again.  

Everyone is accountable for their own actions, and if we break the law we must face the consequences.  We live in a time where changes have taken place and, I pray, they will continue to change.  

We cannot undo anything from our past, but we can do a multitude of things to make life in America better for us all as we strive toward the future.  

These changes are not insignificant, and if we don’t all participate in our elections, things will not change for a better America for us all. 

There are people in powerful positions in our government who should not be there.  They are not helping the American people, they are helping their big donors achieve their own agendas.  

I also get very upset with the state our country’s school systems are in when I see the amount of money donated and spent on elections.  This money would go a long way to helping the schools in our country both now and in the future.  I believe there should be a limit to the amount of money anybody can donate and a limit to the amount of money any candidate can spend to be elected or re-elected to any office in the United States.

I have heard it said many times and read it as well in newspapers, there should be a term limit for Congress.  We can’t expect the changes to be made to move our country forward with a governing body that stays the same. 

 There is a limit to other elected offices, and Congress should not be the exception.  I am not a politician nor a law expert or much of a writer. I am one person with an opinion, and I appreciate my right to express it in this newspaper and my right to vote.


Connie Murray


Madeline’s House slated to lose

 To the editor:

Madeline’s House, Southside Virginia’s only domestic and sexual violence shelter, is losing its building to a large State Department training facility that is anticipated to bring economic growth to Nottoway County.  

Along with this much needed economic growth, unfortunately, the displacement of Madeline’s House also will bring serious distress to the 12 rural counties it serves including Halifax County.   

As part of the rescue infrastructure of Southside Virginia, Madeline’s House must find a new home quickly and avoid any lapse of the life-saving services it provides.  Efforts to obtain an adjustment to the State Department’s proposed footprint that would exempt Madeline’s House from demolition, or to obtain a comparable building from local officials have not been successful. 

There are numerous challenges facing Madeline’s House as it moves closer to its eviction date.  The biggest challenge is the lack of financial resources needed to fund the costs of relocation.  The vast majority of financial resources available to the shelter are restricted for program costs (state grants).  

Operating costs are funded primarily by smaller individual and community group donations.  The federal government will provide limited relocation assistance, but not enough to meet the extraordinary costs of renovating a comparable location that will meet the specific needs of the women and children we serve. 

The next challenge will be finding a comparable, suitable facility.  In a predominantly rural area, the options open to Madeline’s House are expected to be limited.  Even if a location is found, major renovations are anticipated.  With limited assistance from the local and federal governments, Madeline’s House will need to launch a major capital campaign in order to meet the costs of this forced relocation.  It is estimated that the minimum required and the goal of this capital campaign is $300,000.  

Madeline’s House is appealing to its friends and supporters as well as to the business and corporate communities to help us in any way they can. 

There are three ways you can help.  (1) Contribute to a restricted fund that Madeline’s House has established to cover any relocation or renovation costs not covered by the minimal assistance anticipated from the levels of government involved in this major project (Madeline’s House Capital Campaign).  (2) Join our letter-writing campaigns  making targeted individuals and government officials aware that critical services for victims of violence that are being placed in jeopardy by the shelter’s displacement, and who can help Madeline’s House find and fund its new home.  Simply call or email your desire to help, and you will receive copies of letters, appropriate address lists and instructions by return email. (434-292-1077 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ).  (3) And finally, if you know of a potential home for Madeline’s House, contact Emily Marshall at 434-292-1077. 

Madeline’s House is a 33-bed capacity domestic and sexual violence shelter, offering safe haven to victims in crisis, and providing life-saving and life-changing services to the women and children we serve.  Madeline’s House is the only safe house serving 12 counties in southside Virginia including Amelia, Brunswick, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Dinwiddie, Halifax, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, Nottoway, Prince Edward, and Powhatan. 

Emily Marshall

executive director

Madeline’s House


Criminals, game on

To the editor: 

Criminals beware. There is a new breed of women in the towns of South Boston, Halifax, Nathalie and in the neighboring towns of Virginia, and we are prepared for you. 

Thanks to Norma Chaney and the kind ladies who brought the defense classes for women to the Green Folly Clubhouse, women can now gain the upper hand in defending themselves against criminals. 

I also want to give my thanks to Corporal Tiffany B. White and her partner from the South Boston Police Department for their very educational and enlightening demonstrations for self-defense.  

I highly recommend all women to take this class. This class has taught me that we do not have to be victims any longer. We can be skilled with knowledge to protect ourselves,  our bodies and our homes.   

I would also like to thank Anthony Powell and his son, Justin Powell, from Powell’s Gun and Ammo. They were both so good as to show and demonstrate the proper use of firearms, how to conceal them and the way to choose the individual firearm for each individual person’s needs. 

They also will answer all your questions that you may have about firearms.

Women have choices, and we do not need to become victims. We choose to defend ourselves and fight back for our lives, because our lives certainly do depend on it. 

We are no longer the weaker sex. We will be prepared for attackers and whatever comes our way.

Criminals, game on.

Maxine Hohneker



Rifle hunting
from ground

(EDITOR’S NOTE: The following letter was written to members of the Halifax County Board of Supervisors and presented at Monday night’s meeting. It is being reprinted here upon request and by permission.)

Dear members of the board,

It is with regret that I cannot be with you tonight to express my view on allowing the use of rifles for hunting from the ground. A last minute conflict arose for me. 

If you recall I was one of the opponents of allowing the use of high caliber rifles for hunting when it began to be discussed several years ago. 

However after having used them for the last couple of years, I now believe them to be safer than using shotguns and I also believe that allowing them to be used from the ground will be no more dangerous than from an elevated stand.

The statistics cited to you tonight speak for themselves, but the bottom line is, “you cannot legislate common sense.” If someone is going to use a firearm dangerously, they will do so, law or no law. 

Don’t require the elderly gentleman or young hunters to climb into a tree stand in order to hunt coyote or deer for that matter. 

I can tell you, if a farmer has livestock being killed by coyotes, he’s not going to find a tree to climb to shoot one. By removing this requirement, you will de-criminalize the pet owner or farmer who is going to shoot them when they see them anyway. 

Furthermore, since most coyotes are taken during deer season, allowing the hunter to shoot them when they see them will be much more effective in controlling the population. 

If need be, perhaps setbacks from adjoining property owners or highways could be adopted by the board.

Thank you for your time and consideration of this important issue. Please feel free to contact me with any questions. I may be reached by cell phone.

James Edmunds Jr.



Enjoyed concert

To the editor:

My family and I really enjoyed the Army Field Band Concert. 

I appreciate your company sponsoring the event.

Mark C. Thackston

South Boston


Real education

To the editor:

I got a real education at the Halifax County Board of Supervisors’ meeting Monday night. 

The more I learn about people, the more I love my horses.

Marsha Barksdale