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We're to blame for store closures

An original anchor store at Scottsbluff's Monument Mall will be closing its doors. The closing of Herberger’s will leave western Nebraska and eastern Wyoming with one less brick-and-mortar store.

This goes far beyond Scottsbluff. You will find employees, shoppers and city officials very concerned in Norfolk, Hastings, Kearney and North Platte. Bon-Ton also will be closing Younkers stores in Omaha, Lincoln, Grand Island and Sioux City.

Who is to blame? The largest amount of blame belongs on us, the shoppers. Instead of shopping at our local brick-and-mortar stores, we can buy the same thing online.

So when Herberger's closes its doors, your neighbor loses their job and your street doesn't get repaired in a timely fashion, don't get upset at Bon-Ton — instead, take a look at your computer, laptop, tablet or phone screen. If you are about to purchase something that could be bought at a local brick-and-mortar business, you share in the blame.

— Scottsbluff Star-Herald


Trump must be friend to farmers

Over and over again, President Donald Trump has told Americans his goal is to "make America great again."

Well, if President Trump wants to see what's already great about this nation, he need only take a trip to an agriculture state, like Iowa. Farmers, the most prolific producers of food on the planet, do more than their share to make America great each and every day. But the Trump administration isn't acting like a friend to agriculture.

President Trump's fellow Republicans (three governors, seven House members and six senators) in Iowa, Nebraska and South Dakota — states that supported him over Hillary Clinton in 2016 — should make maximum use of whatever clout they have with the White House to ratchet up pressure on the administration for more supportive agriculture policies.

Without a detour, the road the Trump administration is on today eventually will lead to economic calamity in the Heartland.

And that won't make America great.

— Sioux City Journal


FAA must ensure passenger safety

If the Federal Aviation Administration were a business, its stock would have tanked right along with that of Allegiant Air after a blistering “60 Minutes” exposé on a history of safety problems that federal inspectors appeared to have overlooked.

The nation saw the horrors that can result from apparently lax vigilance after an engine explosion aboard a Southwest Airlines flight resulted in a passenger’s death.

Yet the FAA raised few concerns as Allegiant's safety problems mounted. Vigorous enforcement of safety issues is the only way to ensure passenger safety. The FAA’s job is to be the enforcer, not the airlines’ friend.

The traveling public badly needs reassurance — especially after the Southwest tragedy — that FAA inspectors are doing their jobs and making sure the airlines don’t even think of throttling back on compliance.

— St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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