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EDITORIAL: Smucker showed courage through inaction

The Dispatch Editorial Board
Rep. Lloyd Smucker, who is running for the 11th District, at York Fair in West Manchester Township, Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018. Dawn J. Sagert photo

Thumbs up to U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker for showing courage and honor by simply doing nothing.

Unlike his counterpart, Rep. Scott Perry, R-Carroll Township, the Lancaster Republican did not join the failed coup backed by 126 members of Congress seeking to crown President Donald Trump king.

The lawsuit, first filed by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, sought to disenfranchise almost 3 million Pennsylvania voters who cast mail-in ballots. In real terms, the likes of Perry were willing to crush the rights of tens of thousands of constituents in service to Trump.

But not Smucker. He, and about 40% of House Republicans, did not sign a brief supporting Paxton's doomed lawsuit, which the U.S. Supreme Court tossed with little ceremony or comment.

It was consistent with Smucker's position throughout Trump's farcical crusade to delegitimize President-elect Joe Biden's electoral victory. Unlike too many others, Smucker has declined to throw local officials under the bus, spew dangerous conspiracy theories, or attempt to railroad his own constituents with whom he might not agree.

In fact, a few Republican House members have vocally rebuffed this attack on Americans' rights in Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Georgia and Michigan. One, Rep. Paul Mitchell, I-Michigan, even left the party over it, reported CNN.

Smucker didn't take things that far. But he didn't jump on a bandwagon, which served only as a test of fealty to Trump at the cost of voters' rights. Right now, that in and of itself is a display of courage when so many will stop at nothing to kiss Trump's ring. 

Thumbs up to South Western school board for making a tough, but correct decision Wednesday night.

By a 5-1 vote, the school board opted to keep students home, working remotely, through at least Jan. 19. The board called a special meeting to consider resuming in-person classes on Jan. 4 after the holiday recess.

But confirmed cases of the coronavirus are spiraling out of control in York County and throughout the country. 

No, remote learning cannot match the benefits of a classroom. There are distractions. There is less direct oversight. There are legitimate systemic failings that are further injuring the most at-risk students.

But the coronavirus is ravaging the U.S., with more than 308,000 deaths as of Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University, and forcing society to face some of its shortcomings.

Simply put, there's wisdom in declining to force hundreds of students, teachers and staff back into hallways and classrooms never constructed for social distancing. 

Thumbs up: Let's give a hand to the road crews who worked long hours in the wake of this week's unusually early nor'easter.

Some parts of York County received about a foot of snow from Wednesday's storm. For comparison, that's more than the area receive during all of last season. The last time York County saw a storm of this magnitude was in March 2018, when we received almost 13 inches.

As local municipalities declared snow emergencies and the county sent workers home, the salt truck drivers and plow operators stepped up to keep our roadways passable.

Good work, and thank you.

Winter storm weather in Springettsbury Township, Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020. Dawn J. Sagert photo