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CURRENT STORIES


Traffic concerns, Emily Drive and evil Barbie

by John G. Miller

MANAGING EDITOR

This and that:

- IT'S OUR RESPONSIBILITY: As reported in Wednesday's edition, there is growing concern about motorists who ignore stopped school buses, speeding past them despite state law that requires vehicles on both sides of the road to stop.

While law enforcement has promised to step up patrols during the hours school buses are on the road, I think we can all play a role in solving this dangerous problem.

We need to obey the law and stop for school buses. And if we see others who don't follow the law, we should make every effort to report them to local law enforcement.

- EMILY DRIVE UPDATE: Almost on a daily basis I hear from readers complaining about Emily Drive, the access road to Eastpointe and New Pointe shopping centers.

There is some good news to report, though.

As Jim Fisher reports in today's issue, the state Division of Highways has concluded that lights could serve a purpose at the Wal-Mart and Lowe's entrances without causing traffic-flow problems.

The sticking point: Who's going to pay? The state expects the city to negotiate with the developer and merchants to cover the installation and operating costs. The state will supply design assistance.

Hopefully, something will happen soon, but don't expect lights up there by Christmas. One state official has said it will take about six months from the time the state gets word back from Clarksburg that funding is available. I understand that to be a generous estimate. Other officials have said it would be anywhere from 12 to 18 months before a light could be installed -- once there is an agreement in place.

- EMILY DRIVE, AGAIN: To add to the already dangerous situation, for those who haven't traveled the road this week, the far right-hand lane as you head toward Anmoore is once again slipping over the hill, creating a dangerous pothole/crater near the post office.

How many times has that part of the road been fixed?

- EVIL BARBIE: For those who might have missed it, it seems our friends in Saudi Arabia believe Barbie dolls are the work of the devil. Or at least the work of infidels, who are bent on corrupting Saudi society.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that the Committee for the Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice banned the doll 10 years ago, but has recently stepped up its campaign to warn Saudis of its evil ways, describing it as a "Jewish" toy.

"Jewish Barbie dolls, with their revealing clothes and shameful postures, accessories and tools are a symbol of decadence to the perverted West. Let us beware of her dangers and be careful," according to a message on the group's Web site.

Gee, I wonder what they think of those Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears dolls?

Managing Editor John G. Miller can be reached at 626-1473 or by e-mail at jmiller@exponent-telegram.com.