Thumbs - Our high country lowdown on the news - Sept. 14, 2012

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By Optic Editorial Board

THUMBS DOWN! NINETY POUNDS AND CHILD ABUSE. Drive through Las Vegas once with no seat belt fastened, en route to see a sick uncle in Santa Fe (you say), and maybe a deputy will let you off with a warning. Drive through again, going the other way, and maybe the officer will get suspicious. And if you happen to be carrying about 90 pounds of marijuana, your trip might just come to an abrupt end here.
That’s what reportedly happened to Manuel Pinela Madrid, 22, of Kansas City, Kan., on Sept. 1, and the worst part of it is that he had his 2-year-old son with him. Madrid went to jail in lieu of a $50,000 cash bond and his son was turned over to the state Children Youth and Families Department.

THUMBS DOWN! SOME NEVER LEARN. Frank Sanchez, 40, of the 1000 block of Calle Margarita in Santa Fe, and Louie E. Mares, 46, of the 900 block of Fourth Street in Las Vegas were arrested and charged with their 10th and 11th DWIs. They face two-year mandatory jail sentences if convicted.
That’s two years to sober up, once and for all. Here’s hoping it’s enough time.

THUMBS UP! ADVOCATING LITERACY. For former President Bill Clinton, it may be all about “arithmetic” but for The Literacy Council of Northeastern New Mexico, it’s reading. And literacy is the subject of a display at the Las Vegas Arts Council office on Bridge Street, as a way to highlight those who have advanced the cause in our nation’s history.
It’s always a good cause to promote something that can spell the difference between success and failure in life.

THUMBS UP! FALL IN THE NIGHT AIR. It’s still bone dry — the occasional shower we’ve been having is nice, but nowhere near enough — but at least the nights are getting brisk. Autumn is in the air. We welcome the changing of the seasons, and invite a good snowfall soon.

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“It’s already September.”
— L.J. Sanchez, whose apple trees produced blossoms this fall, probably because of drought conditions this summer.