• John McGary, Woodford Sun Editor

Here's Johnny!

Halloween, elections and shock collars

The scariest time of the year is upon us. I’m referring not to Halloween, with its ghosts and goblins, but rather the election season, with politicians trying to scare the heck out of us by suggesting their opponents are in league with the Devil himself. The higher the office, the lower they go. A pox on (nearly) all their houses, I say. And their Senates. I still think my proposal after the first presidential debate in 2016 would be a great way to encourage our leaders to conduct themselves as polite adults during debates: shock collars automatically activated when they speak out of turn. I can envision a split screen, with one candidate speaking while the other’s face is fixed in a frightful grimace, hair standing on end. Eventually, after enough jolts, the interrupter, like a dog zapped when it crosses an invisible electric fence, would learn a lesson. Theoretically, anyway. It would be great TV, folks, and good for the good old U.S. of A. I say that as a Navy vet and someone who hates interrupters. The toxic commercials and bad manners this campaign season remind me of the story about the elderly lady who, when asked why she wasn’t going to vote, said, “It just encourages them.” Well … The preceding was written Monday afternoon and the rest of it Tuesday morning. There’s been a major development in planning for the next presidential debate, which will take place tonight, Thursday, Oct. 22. Monday night, the Commission on Presidential Debates announced that the microphone of the person who’s not supposed to be speaking will be turned off. It may be a more effective way of making sure contestants observe the rules and shut the heck up when it’s not their turn, but it won’t be nearly as fun for the viewers at home. As soon as I finish this column, I will write an angry email to the commission and include this column and links to websites with shock collars for sale. Bottom line: it’s not too much to expect candidates for the highest office in the U.S. to follow the rules and wait their turn. You know, like most of us were taught in elementary school. Coming soon to a newspaper near you (this one) Next week, Sun employees, printers and God permitting, we will publish our annual countywide newspaper. We call it the countywide because, with the assistance of the U.S. Postal Service, it goes to every home in Woodford County, absolutely free. (Well, it’s not free for us – we still pay to print and mail them.) Each year we pick a theme for the issue; last year, it was history. This year, it will be the 2020 general election. Dear Readers will have noticed last week’s Q & A session with state House candidates and this week’s with candidates for the state Senate. For the countywide (also referred to as the “blanket the county”), we’re doubling up: candidates for the Woodford County Board of Education and the Midway and Versailles city councils will have their turn in the barrel. Though plenty of folks have already voted, I hope the candidates’ answers provide useful information to those who haven’t. Next week’s issue will have more than nearly two dozen Q & A’s, though. We’ll also have several special articles that we hope will remind folks throughout the county, as well as our longtime subscribers and newsstand-purchasers, that we’re an important source of accurate information and, sometimes, entertainment. We hope you like it. OK, time to save this document and print it for proofing. I’ve got a letter to write and collars to research.

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