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Shelton Mason County Journal
Shelton, Washington
November 26, 2020     Shelton Mason County Journal
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November 26, 2020

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Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020 Shelton-Mason County Journal Page A-5 All our systems just worked during the election rations for holding an election during a pandemic. Industry played a part. Social media companies including Facebook and Twitter took a much more aggressivestance against misinformation and dis- information in 2020 than they did in 2016. They deleted fake accounts of foreigners posing as Ameri- cans that promoted discord. There is now an alphabet souphof organizations to facilitate exchange of information on security and threats, including the Elections Infrastructure Information Sharing and Analysis Center (El-ISAC) that I participate in,- along with my colleagues from around the country. All of this preparation led to an election Where the will of the people, free from foreign interference, won out. While it is always tough for losers to ac- to ensure this success. Here we have a new ballot tally system, ClearBallot, that is the state of the art. We also have a new security system in the ballot processing room, including a camera on our new drive-up drop box at our office. . All the counties in Washington are now linked with the Secretary of State’s Office in a new voter registration system, VoteWA, that allows us to detect in real time if a Kit- sap County voter is trying to register and vote in Mason County. It is also hardened to resist intrusion. We know that foreign adversaries were able to get into voter reg- istration systems in Illinois and Florida in 2016 and we had to work together to see n Dec. 31, 1999, at about 11 p.m., my family _ . . Owent out on the beach at Cannon Beach, Or- egon, to ring in the new millennium. For a couple of years leading up to that time, we had heard dire predictions about v computer malfunctions, known at the Y2K bug, bringing down the electrical grid and g all manner of computer operated systems at the stroke of midnight. As the clock rolled over to midnight, pret- ty much nothing happened because indus- 1 try and government had spent those years preparing and repairing systems so nothing d would happen. The Nov. 3rd presidential election was similar in many ways. There was foreign By PADDY MeGUrRE interference in the 2016 election and the elections that could not happen here. cept the results, there is no credible evidence that community had spent the intervening four years The federal government played a critical part too, anyone interfered with the outcome of the election working together to see that it didn’t happen again. with the Department of Homeland Security treating anywhere. Like that midnight years ago on the beach in Or- the country’s election system and critical infrastruc: For an election official, an election-as exciting as egon, all our systems just worked. ture, akin to the electrical grid in terms of national Y2K is the definition of success. A lot changed in the four years since 2016 in Ma- importance. Congress appropriated money that al- son County, in Washington and around the country lowed for the development of VoteWA and for prepa- I Paddy McGuire is the Mason County Auditor. TO THE federal government bureaucrats who n k u! use public school children to augment Jaumal Letter Polio their agendas by educating them to M a n v . v ‘ believe in unholy marriage, unholy . ' The Journal encourages original letters to the‘ editor of local interest. Diverse beliefs about their sex, unAmerican “$01”,th Jouurl’g‘fllz hank and varied opinions are welcomed. We will not publish letters that are deemed ideas about their country (U~N~ su- lrst r I “’0. . 1 e to t . libelous or scurrilous in nature. All letters must be signed and include the Preme WW” engag‘ngfur youth.“ Mason County c1tlzens for voting for . , . . . fight their wars in foreign countries whomever they voted fen It’s a good writer 3 name, address and daytime phone number, which wrll be used for and use of a W 0 n d Court to try them thing when more people have their verification purposes only. All letters are subject to editing for length, grammar outside the protection of our own Uls, voices heard through this process and clarity. To submit a letter, email editor@masoncounty.com, dr0p it off at Constitution and Bill of Rights if they Second 0f 311: I aPPrGCiate those Who 227 W. Cota St., or mail it to PD. BOX 430, Shelton, WA 98584. disobey the UN. Charter) did not pay attention to the bombard- V ‘ I would like to refuse to pay the ment of negatlve letters regarding portion of my property tax that sup- party lines. (:0 back and read or take ports this school agenda now that notice of the same handful of letters (coming to your county commission- to you negative Nellies that spew your State government can mandate and submitted by the same folks. Yea, it ers’ chambers soon) I’ve crossed fam- negative opposition every week in the teach this curriculum after approval was scary that there are a lot of nega- ily lines and voted Republican. I don’t local paper, thank you for helping Ma- of Referendum 90 sex education tive folks out there, spewing out nega— think I’ll ever go back; the Democratic son County stay a red county. L for ages kindergaliten through 12th five Opposition and lies from news Party is in shambles. They’re out of Also on another note, the Electoral grades, even though parents can opt reports that they see on TV, without their minds, they are out for them- College works, it’s how smaller coun- out I“ refuse, then I would lose my doing a little research, selves, not our country. ties can get representation on choos- home for nonpayment of taxes and be Unfortunately, 99% of the media Some say they’re progressive, ing our senators and governor. homeless. were for Biden so the sheep followed. I know I was raised and have always voted Democrat, until my party de- cided to run Hillary, I felt that was a bad move. I knew President Donald Trump would win, so I wrote in good , old Mickey Mouse on that one. , But after four years of made-up lies, false reasons to impeach, closing down our country and blaming CO- VID on Trump and now court packing that’s just a term that means they think they are. I have a co-worker who disagrees with me on most of the issues but we debate it out and when we’re done we both understand where the other is coming from and move on. It’s actually made our working rela- tionship stronger because we respect the other’s opinion. Too bad the so-called adults who run our government can’t do this. And Carl Olson Shelton lI am truly upset’ Editor, the Journal, I am pleased with this venue to ex- press my beliefs. I am truly upset with my state and But thanks to my heavenly Father and His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, I still have my heavenly soul to main- tain me. Diane Eaton Shelton see page A-6 Sports: Kids are running out Of time to make memories continued fro)” page A_4 we must focus on the values challenges we face. Students ation. Schools offer the most and interconnectivity of ex- are not attending on a regular ‘ But that is not what this is equitable opportunities for These examples of students tracurricular activities. basis or, in some cases, at all. about. ' students of all skill levels and returning to sports are not meant to diminish the havoc and loss that this virus has caused. They are meant to show that if we work together and take the proper precau- tions, we can return to offer- ing these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. We know this because it has already been done. These are challenging times, absolutely, but there is no hiding from this pandemic. We’ve heard the hesitancy among superintendents: “How can we offer athletics when we haven’t returned to in- person learning?” This is not a logistical question. It is a question regarding optics and politics. I understand the hes- itancy based on the'stance of their communities. However, Education-based sports and activities have always been a key component of our school system. We cannot eliminate one portion of a stu- dent’s education because we had to modify another. Aside from the inherent values that come with athletic and activ- ity participation, students who compete in high school have shown to achieve higher grades, increase motivation and engagement, and improve the overall high school experi~ ence. ‘ I’ve heard anecdotal evidence from our schools as well. Administrators in large school districts are report- ing three times the number of students earning failing grades this year with all the This has. been a difficult time for students, teachers and ev- eryone working to educate our children. Returning to com- petition will not be a cure-all, but, in a time where students have become disconnected from their educ_ation,_we know athletics and activities can help them re-engage. This call to action is not coming from a place of self- preservation or self-interest. While the WIAA itself has taken a financial hit during the pandemic, I am confident the organization is positioned to survive these hard times and thrive when we return to normality. A return to play this year without fans in at- tendance likely makes for a more difficult financial situ- We have seen education- based athletics and activi- ties take place successfully throughout the country. Washington has demon- strated we can develop and execute safety measures ' during the pandemic. Our athletic directors and coaches have proven they are commit- ted to ensuring the safety of student-participants and com- plying with state-mandated regulations. We must allow students to participate under the supervi- sion of their school leaders and coaches and the WIAA is prepared to assist in navigat- ing that process. There is no safer place for a student than our schools, before and during this pandemic. financial means. Restricting the ability of schools forces ,, students and families to pur- sue avenues that are cost-pro- hibitive and have fewer safety measures. I understand that as'I write this, we are seeing an- other surge in COVID cases around the country and in Washington, and that we might need to wait before we begin competition again. But we cannot wait until COVID goes away because students don’t have that luxury. . They’re running out of time to make memories. I Mick Hoffman is the executive director of the Wash- ington Interscholastic Activi- ties Association.