Columnists

Thu
25
May

Cameron's Chronicles: Volunteers needed to guide youths to success

Possibilities — A group of young people, including West Volusia students Chance Hansen, Ryan Tankard, Elijah Raynor, Traci Holbort, Fredyoma Grimes, Kenyetta Grimes, Jaheem Curry, Allen Tumor and Steven Mnari, tour the Bethune-Cookman University campus in Daytona Beach May 6 as part of the CATALYST and DREAM programs’ “Mind Expansion Tour.” These middle- and high-school students learned about careers and higher-learning options.

Possibilities — A group of young people, including West Volusia students Chance Hansen, Ryan Tankard, Elijah Raynor, Traci Holbort, Fredyoma Grimes, Kenyetta Grimes, Jaheem Curry, Allen Tumor and Steven Mnari, tour the Bethune-Cookman University campus in Daytona Beach May 6 as part of the CATALYST and DREAM programs’ “Mind Expansion Tour.” These middle- and high-school students learned about careers and higher-learning options.

PHOTO COURTESY CATALYST AND DREAM

As community organizations across the county continue to provide support to further develop our students, we must continue to share these opportunities.

Empowering parents and caregivers to engage children is a duty for all.

CATALYST (Children and Adults Together Achieving Leadership, Inspiration, Success and Trust) Global Initiatives Inc. celebrates its eighth anniversary this year, and now offers services in 27 of Volusia County’s 72 public schools.

Dr. Felicia Benzo founded this mentoring program and now assists children of all ages across the public-school system in Volusia County with the help of community volunteers.

The volunteers are professionals, business owners, managers and sometimes supervisors. The mentors start guiding the children in elementary school, and the goal is for each mentor to remain with his or her mentee through high-school graduation.

Thu
25
May

Russ White: Clown car travels to the Middle East

Russ White

Russ White

Here’s a brief list of Drumpf administration news this past week:

• Drumpf blurts out code-word classified information to the Russians.

• James Comey memo says Drumpf asked him to drop the Flynn investigation.

• It is revealed the classified information Drumpf revealed came from Israel. He did not have their permission to release it.

• Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein appoints Special Counsel Robert Mueller to take over the Russian collusion investigation.

• Transcripts show, in the meeting with the Russians, Drumpf said Comey was “crazy, a real nutjob,” and that “I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off.”

• Reports surface that an adviser “inside the White House” is now a “person of interest” in the financial-crimes segment of the Russia investigation.

• It has come out that Drumpf asked the heads of U.S. intelligence to put an end to the Russia investigation.

Thu
25
May

David Rauschenberger: Trump has successful trip to the Middle East

David Rauschenberger

David Rauschenberger

The left is having fun turning on its former buddies the Russians for political gain. When President Barack Obama brazenly told Vladimir Putin’s flunky Dmitry Medvedev that he’d have “more flexibility” after his re-election, you people on the left deflected criticism and your left-wing media shills soft-pedaled reporting that real news. Try YouTube, if you don’t believe me.

Now, Russia has become enemy No. 2 for Democrats (President Donald Trump is No. 1) — only because Hillary lost and they find themselves in a minority position that might last a generation.

Those predicting Congress falling to the Democrats in 2018 and Trump facing articles of impeachment are delusional. Impeachment isn’t inevitable, and Hillary won’t be president if Trump is removed.

Mon
22
May

Letters to the Editor: On the Marriott, the Volusia County government, and political punditry

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Volusia County government has too much equipment

Editor, The Beacon:

If Volusia County government is so worried about adding $25,000 to the homestead exemption and not having enough money to get by, they should think about getting rid of hundreds of pieces of equipment, vehicles, and employees that operate them and subbing this work out.

I eat breakfast on State Road 15A, and I can’t tell you how many dump trucks and equipment go by just during the hour I’m there. It’s ridiculous. No county needs all this equipment.

There seems to be way too much fat in Volusia County.

Joe Stackhouse

DeLand


Marriott’s good, but museum sign offends

Editor, The Beacon:

Unlike a recent writer, I love the Marriott hotel, now under construction, with its muted Florida colors.

Thu
18
May

David Rauschenberger: Comey had to go, and Garland shouldn’t be his replacement

David Rauschenberger

David Rauschenberger

First of all, let’s get one thing straight: There are hundreds, if not thousands of people who serve at the pleasure of the president. That’s how it goes.

Get over it. You don’t get to lament and hand-wring to the point of distraction when a public servant is terminated.

Former, and I mean former, FBI Director James Comey isn’t excluded from that group, no matter who on the left cries out.

What’s laughable is how Democrats who would have drawn and quartered Comey for his handling of multiple investigations of Hillary Clinton are now rallying around him supposedly to provide his defense.

Comey’s been an equal-opportunity offender, comrades. It’s not that he’s dishonest, because I don’t believe he is. It’s not that he’s incompetent, because I don’t believe he is. It’s that he was FBI director during the worst time in our history to hold that office. And his firing is and is not his fault.

Thu
18
May

Russ White: Incompetence and narcissism cause debacle regarding Comey’s removal

Russ White

Russ White

The schizophrenia that is the Drumpf administration continues to spin further out of balance with every new action taken by the Twit-in-Chief. The firing of FBI Director James Comey, not undeserved, led to the White House offering a cornucopia of conflicting stories on the hows and whys of the decision.

Rehashing a list of the different rationales is rather pointless, as anyone with a brain knows it was about throwing a wrench into the works of the FBI investigations of connections between the Drumpf campaign and the Russian influence in the last election.

It must surely suck to be a member of Drumpf’s team right now. He is quite likely to make you look out of touch and incompetent by contradicting anything you might say as a representative of his administration.

Thu
18
May

Beacon editorial: DeBary debacle grinds on

Clint Johnson in a 2015 Beacon file photo

Clint Johnson in a 2015 Beacon file photo

CLICK HERE TO READ OUR FULL COVERAGE OF THE RULING

Some nine months after DeBary’s mayor was removed from his duly elected office on rather flimsy grounds, we have a circuit judge’s ruling in the case, and the ruling pretty much guarantees the saga will continue in appellate court.

While Volusia County Circuit Judge Randell Rowe ultimately ruled against Clint Johnson, Rowe also poked holes through most of the arguments the DeBary City Council used to get rid of a colleague they found critical and bothersome.

Rowe should never have been placed in the difficult position of ruling on this.

Thu
11
May

Cameron's Chronicles: Youths learn to tap their inner power

​​​​​​​Strengthening — Spring Hill Boys and Girls Club members surround club Director Althea Chavers and Jannet and Ray Clark after a program at Starke Elementary School in DeLand. The students witnessed feats of strength, which included the smashing of bricks, the bending of horseshoes, and telephone books being ripped in half, all while being encouraged to pursue their dreams and stop at nothing.

Strengthening — Spring Hill Boys and Girls Club members surround club Director Althea Chavers and Jannet and Ray Clark after a program at Starke Elementary School in DeLand. The students witnessed feats of strength, which included the smashing of bricks, the bending of horseshoes, and telephone books being ripped in half, all while being encouraged to pursue their dreams and stop at nothing.

BEACON PHOTO/MARSHA MCLAUGHLIN

 

That’s power — Ray Clark begins to bend a metal rod during a demonstration of feats of strength in front of a crowd of students, including members of the Boys and Girls Club. Clark bench-presses 450 pounds and can smash through concrete with his forearm.

That’s power — Ray Clark begins to bend a metal rod during a demonstration of feats of strength in front of a crowd of students, including members of the Boys and Girls Club. Clark bench-presses 450 pounds and can smash through concrete with his forearm.

That’s power — ​​​​​​​Jannet Clark, center, lifts Angel Resendez, left, and Kelvion Kelly during a program about the Third Day Power ministry presented to Starke Elementary School students after school April 28. Third Day Power is a Christian-based nonprofit ministry led by the Clarks.

That’s power — Jannet Clark, center, lifts Angel Resendez, left, and Kelvion Kelly during a program about the Third Day Power ministry presented to Starke Elementary School students after school April 28. Third Day Power is a Christian-based nonprofit ministry led by the Clarks.

This is an exciting time for youth in West Volusia, with organizations and individuals across our county and beyond offering opportunities for learning.

Conrad Reid, an active DeLand community member and a minister at Greater Union First Baptist Church of DeLand, hosted a demonstration by the Third Day Power group April 28 after school at Starke Elementary.

Third Day Power is a Christian-based nonprofit ministry led by the husband-and-wife team of Ray and Jannet Clark. The couple travel the world demonstrating the power of God in their lives, Reid said.

Their story is amazing as it is presented on their website: www.thirddaypower.com.

The Clarks experienced many years of turmoil and neglect, but chose to rise against all odds through bodybuilding and sharing the message of God.

Ray bench-presses 450 pounds and can smash through concrete with his forearm. His wife can bench-press 345 pounds.

Thu
11
May

Letters to the Editor: On Kiwanis, Marriott colors

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Kids need Kiwanis

Editor, The Beacon:

For more than 100 years, Kiwanis International has been active in communities around the world. In DeLand, the Kiwanis Club of DeLand has been helping kids for 77 years.

You might know some of our members. You’ve probably seen us in the neighborhood, in church or at the grocery store. We’re the do-gooders in the community — the ones who arrive early to help set up an event and stay late to clean up. Sometimes we serve pancakes or peanuts or ice cream to raise money to support our efforts to help kids.

Thu
11
May

Tracy McKenna: The Marriott is not in the historic district

As a member of the DeLand Historic Preservation Board, I would like to respond to a recent letter sent by Teri Peaden indicating her displeasure with the Downtown Marriott’s paint colors, and her shock that the HPB would approve them.

First, I would like to say that I, too, was horrified the first time I saw the color choice — specifically, the orange blocks of color on the sides along Wisconsin Avenue. My first thought was “I would never have approved that!”

Then I wondered, did it come up at a meeting that I missed? Or were the colors chosen from the city’s historic-colors palette, which does not require HPB approval?

I took my questions to city officials, and this is what I found: The Marriott is actually not in the historic district. Rather, it is part of the “support” district and, therefore, is not required to comply with the historic-colors palette, nor would the hotel’s builders have sought the approval of the HPB.

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