Sunday sampler, back-to-school edition

I’m not featuring any back-to-school stories today because they’re all the same and I don’t care about them. But there is still good stuff on today’s front pages.

Asheville: Asheville is on pace to near a 10-year-high in murders, the Citizen-Times reports. And while the number for the first seven months of the year is six deaths, every one impacts more than the victim. “‘People are shooting in the morning, noon, evening, middle of the night. They don’t care. They are ruthless,'” said Jackson, who runs to her children’s beds and pulls them onto the floor when she hears gunshots at night.”

Charlotte: The journalist in me like stories that give voice to the voiceless. The Charlotte Observer does that with its damning story today about a dilapidated hotel that the city might finally be ready to demolish. “Inspectors found rooms with no heat or air conditioning, piles of garbage, bedbugs and broken windows among other problems at the Airport Parkway Inn and Suites. Former tenants and a neighboring business complain the building on Wilkinson Boulevard is a magnet for drugs and crime…. Advocates for the poor say the businesses can thrive financially because Charlotte doesn’t have enough affordable housing, homeless shelters are almost always full and some hotel owners are not held accountable for substandard conditions.”

Raleigh: Courts have always been political, but it’s been a long time since they’ve become as overtly politicized as they are now. And it’s not just McConnell-Trump and Merrick Garland. The News & Observer explains what happened when the N.C. Republican Party tried to get one of the state’s appellate court judges to retire early so the seat would remain in Republican hands. “That was when I realized, it wasn’t keeping a Republican in the seat that they were interested in,” McCullough said. “It was getting their Republican in the seat.”

Lenior: The News-Topic has what appears to be a fascinating story about a hazardous waste incinerator plant that was closed down 25 years ago…and problems with groundwater even now. Even worse a governmental study that was supposed to have been done years ago never got started. The story is behind a paywall so I couldn’t read it all.

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