THUMBS UP! To the announced goal for the WSOY Community Food Drive. Organizers have set the effort's goal at 1.5 million pounds of donations. It's an ambitious goal. But there's a reason we call the annual happening as the world's largest charity food drive. As we've said previously, the WSOY Community Food Drive continues to be one of the most remarkable things in the history of our city. Each of the event's 16 previous years, aggressive goals have been met. Everyone wins when we work together to surpass that goal.
THUMBS DOWN! To Gov. Rauner. His latest tactic is touring the state and telling voters whom not to vote for. The governor's focus is less on himself and his largely unsuccessful term and more on his opponents, primarily J.B. Pritzker and Michael Madigan. The biggest issue: Rauner is not running against Madigan, and the overwhelming majority of the people to whom he's talking have no option on voting for or against Madigan. The control the powerful speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives holds over the state is outrageous. But that's beyond the control of Rauner and his audiences. The governor's current tactic essentially boils down to him saying everything going wrong is everybody else's fault.
THUMBS UP! And a pat on the back to us, if you don't mind. Sports editor Justin Conn and the Herald & Review have opened our assignment desk to high school football fans. Each week, a list of games will be presented at www.herald-review.com, and the game that receives the most votes is the game we'll cover. Call up all your friends and relatives and get everyone involved.
THUMBS UP! To Lashonda Anderson. The mother of two special needs children wanted to help others in Decatur who face the challenges she does, so she organized a free event: the Special Needs Resource Fair. The Sept. 15 fair is at Decatur's Pershing Early Learning Center. The fair is designed for special needs families to connect with organizations that provide resources, services and support to children with disabilities. It will feature more than 20 vendors representing various types of disabilities.
THUMBS DOWN! To the ways we can go viral. Two Decatur mothers whose public fight settling a dispute became a Facebook viral video. The video was viewed millions of times and shared by thousands. The behavior is disappointing, the video is alarming, and we again question the value of sharing these kinds of experiences via social media.
THUMBS UP! To Decatur's increase in the fees for video gambling licenses. The fee doubled from $250 to $500, still under councilman David Horn's proposal of $1,250. As we said two months ago, the $250 fee was reasonable enough that more licenses were being purchased. As much as businesses will complain about the rates, the market clearly has clearly not yet reached a point of saturation.