CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Elected officials around West Virginia, or their hand-picked appointees, sometimes commit crude, personal affronts such as groping female workers or making racial slurs. When lawsuits result, taxpayers are stuck with the tab. Latest example: The little town of Sophia, Raleigh County -- whose entire budget is just $560,000 -- must pay a $600,000 insurance settlement to the town's only black police officer because fellow cops sneered, ridiculed and insulted him. It's a shame the guilty officers can't be forced to pay part of the loss they caused. Although it's paid by an insurer, such losses eventually are spread among covered groups.
First, three University of Charleston basketball players were charged with robbery -- then three U.C. football players were charged with pot felonies. Do you suppose this will dampen rah-rah cheering at sports events?
The last line of The Great Gatsby -- "So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past" -- sounds wonderfully profound, but few can explain it. Here's our best guess: People struggle for their hopes and dreams, but difficulties of life interfere, and the strugglers end up with less than they wanted.