It’s an interesting day in the life of N.C. newspapers’ front pages. Consider:
The Star News in Wilmington, which recently has had intensely local front pages, publishes a story by the Hickory Daily Record. Hickory is 263 miles west of Wilmington. The Kinston Free Press, 260 miles away, also features the story on its front page. Not to be outdone, the Fayetteville Observer, 189 miles from Hickory, publishes the same story. What’s the story? It’s a good one about the impact of the Google and Apple data centers. Short answer: not much in the way of new jobs or population growth. Google employs 250 people; Apple employs about 400.
Meanwhile, the Times-News of Burlington publishes a good Charlotte Observer story about the urban-rural divide. “Rural residents are less likely to have college degrees or be connected to broadband services than those in or near cities. They’re older on average and less likely to live among people born somewhere else. There’s even evidence that rural life, for all its fresh air and leafy aura, produces sicker people.”
The Jacksonville Daily News publishes a Wilmington Star-News story about Rose Hill, a small town doing big things with wine. And the Winston-Salem Journal publishes a story by the News & Observer about how the declining population in rural counties will affect gerrymandering and the state’s congressional districts.
These are all part of a special series on the urban-rural divide by “the North Carolina News Collaborative, a partnership of the state’s largest newspapers that aims to provide deeper and broader news coverage to all regions of the state.” It’s an important cooperative effort among the papers to perform one of their civic duties and worth accolades. And widespread coverage.
Also on today’s front pages:
Asheville: The Citizen-Times has a piece about the number of students from rural areas who attend college. It is behind a paywall, but here is a shot of it on the front page.
Greensboro: I have a weakness for powerful people who shake things up and stand up for the little guy, which is one reason I like this story about Drew Brown, a feisty Greensboro attorney. “Because I’m not married and don’t have kids and don’t have to make money on a given month, I can take cases I otherwise couldn’t take,” Brown says. “It’s given me the ability to go and try cases in random counties and not come home for two weeks.”
Greensboro: On this, the 400th anniversary of the arrival of enslaved Africans in America, the News & Record features a story about a prominent slave owner and his huge plantation in North Carolina – a name associated with a street in Chapel Hill and a shopping center in Raleigh: Cameron. It’s a sentimental choice because one of my students wrote it.