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Bethel workforce development: Pitt Community College, Pitt NCWorks Career Center and Pitt County DSS are partnering with the Bethel Workforce Development Center, 7449 N. Main St., to provide Bethel residents with resource assistance and educational training and employment opportunities from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursdays. Call 818-0020 for more information.


Local Events

Maryland, Texas and The Philippines all started their Little League Softball World Series journeys with victories on the opening day Tuesday at Stallings Stadium at Elm Street Park.

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California scored nine runs over three innings to secure a 9-2 victory over the Pitt County Girls Softball League All-Stars on the opening day of the Little League Softball World Series at Elm Street Park Tuesday evening.

BYH, the whole world is a series of miracles but we are so used to seeing them that we call them ordinary things.

Today, I want to talk about Kansas. Not about its corn as high as an elephant’s eye, nor about Dorothy and Toto trying to find their way home, but about Kansas as the geographic and Republican center of America, Kansas as the vintage Norman Rockwell core of America, Kansas as what the Republ…

Last week North Carolinians learned what the leaders of the N.C. Chamber paid to eliminate the state’s corporate income tax — abandonment of support for public education and obedience to the power-brokers in the General Assembly.

A BYH to those who think more of money than their own pets. Seriously, pets are family and should be treated as such. No matter how bad the situation is, it’s not all about the money. Money grabbers will get karma tenfold!

Recently an FDA official said “misinformation is actually the leading cause of death in the U.S. today. We have a lot of effective treatments for most of our health problems, but there’s so much misinformation causing people to make decisions that are adverse to their health.” Ask your regis…

The North Carolina Literary Review, produced at East Carolina University, begins its fourth decade in print featuring “Writers Who Teach, Teachers Who Write.”

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State AP Stories

The North Carolina attorney general’s office is asking a federal court not to restore the state's 20-week abortion ban after the judge suggested his previous injunction “may now be contrary to law.” The attorney general’s office argued in a brief filed late Monday that reinstating restrictions in the aftermath of the June U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade would create “significant risk of public confusion” about the availability and legality of abortion services in North Carolina. Staff attorneys in Stein’s office filed the brief without the attorney general’s involvement.

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North Carolina Democrats have asked a state court to overturn an elections board vote granting the Green Party official recognition despite allegations of fraud. Democrats have been accused by the Green Party of meddling in its petitioning process to qualify candidates for the November ballot. The lawsuit, filed Wednesday in Wake County Superior Court, precedes the first hearing next Monday in a Green Party lawsuit against the North Carolina State Board of Elections, when the newly certified party will fight for an extension to a statutory deadline preventing its candidates from appearing on the ballot.

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein is pushing back against Republican General Assembly leaders’ allegations that he neglected his duty to defend state law by refusing to seek enforcement of a blocked 20-week abortion ban after the fall of Roe v. Wade. Attorneys for Senate leader Phil Berger and House Speaker Tim Moore filed a brief last week asking U.S. District Judge William Osteen to lift an injunction on a 1973 state law banning nearly all abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.  Stein, an abortion rights supporter, says he will continue to recuse himself from the case, drawing criticisms from Republicans who say he is refusing to do his job.

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The remains of two children killed in the 1985 bombing of a Philadelphia home used as the headquarters of a Black radical group have been returned to their brother. Lionell Dotson told reporters Wednesday that the remains of 14-year-old Katricia and 12-year-old Zanetta Dotson will be cremated and taken to North Carolina to be buried. Dotson told WCAU-TV it was a “momentous occasion.” He said he could finally give his relatives “a resting place permanently." They were among five children killed when police bombed the MOVE organization’s headquarters and caused a fire that spread to more than 60 row homes.

A top official says the Justice Department has charged five people for making threats of violence against election workers amid a rising wave of harassment and intimidation tied to the 2020 presidential election. Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Polite tells a Senate committee that one charge has led to a conviction so far through a task force launched last year as reports of threats to election officials, workers and volunteers raised concerns about safety and the security of future elections. threatening messages directed at election workers since launching a task force a year ago. Overall, the department has investigated more than 1,000 harassing and threatening messages directed at election workers.

The North Carolina Court of Appeals has ruled that Gov. Roy Cooper’s secretary of health and human services is not immune from a lawsuit over the administration’s restrictions on large gatherings in the early months of the coronavirus pandemic. The Department of Health and Human Services temporarily shut down Ace Speedway in June 2020 after it repeatedly defied Cooper’s executive order limiting outdoor crowds to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. The racetrack filed counterclaims that August, alleging the department unlawfully singled out the business and violated its employees’ constitutional right to earn a living. The court unanimously voted  Tuesday to uphold a January 2021 trial court ruling denying a DHHS motion to dismiss Ace Speedway’s claims.

National & World AP Stories

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Two anti-government extremists sought to spark a “second American revolution” by kidnapping Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, a prosecutor told jurors Wednesday, as the government gets a second opportunity for convictions in an alleged plot to shock the country into …

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Wall Street is roaring after inflation cooled more than expected last month. The S&P 500 was 1.6% higher in Wednesday morning trading after encouraging data suggested the Federal Reserve may not have to be as aggressive about hiking interest rates as feared. Technology stocks, cryptocurrencies and other investments were leading the way, after being the market's biggest losers earlier in the year due to the Fed’s aggressive rate hikes. Treasury yields pulled back sharply following the inflation data, as traders pared their bets for how much the Fed will raise interest rates at its meeting next month.

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French authorities say a beluga whale stranded for several days in the Seine River had to be euthanized after it was removed from the French waterway. The whale was being prepared for transfer to a saltwater port in Normandy. A veterinarian said Wednesday that the dangerously thin white mammal began to have breathing difficulties while it was being driven to the coast in a refrigerated truck. Experts decided the most humane thing to do was to euthanize the creature. Environmentalists had acknowledged the plan to move the beluga risked fatally stressing the mammal. But marine conservation group Sea Shepherd said the whale couldn’t have survived much longer in the Seine’s fresh water.

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Ukraine’s air force says that nine Russian warplanes were destroyed in massive explosions at an air base in Crimea amid speculation they were the result of a Ukrainian attack. That would represent a significant escalation in the war. Russia denied any aircraft were damaged in Tuesday’s blasts — or that any attack took place. Ukrainian officials have stopped short of publicly claiming responsibility for the explosions, while poking fun at Russia’s explanation that a careless smoker might have caused munitions at the Saki air base to catch fire and blow up. Analysts have also said that explanation doesn’t make sense and that the Ukrainians could have used anti-ship missiles to strike the base.

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Italy's far-right leader Giorgia Meloni, who is leading in opinion polls ahead of next month's elections, is insisting she won't be a danger to democracy if she becomes the country's next premier. In a message she released on Wednesday, and recorded in English, French and Spanish, she dismissed any concern that if her Brothers of Italy party comes to power, there would be a risk of “an authoritarian turn" or of Italy's exiting the euro currency. Her party's symbol features an icon borrowed from an Italian neo-fascist party. Critics say Meloni has been ambiguous about denouncing Italy's fascist past under dictator Benito Mussolini. On Wednesday she denied that the right has been ambiguous about 20th-century fascism.

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China has repeated military threats against Taiwan while appearing to wind down wargames near the self-governing island it claims as its own territory. The message issued by the Cabinet’s Taiwan Affairs Office follows almost a week of threatening Chinese military exercises near the island that have disrupted flights and shipping in a region crucial to global supply chains. China says the moves were prompted by a visit to Taiwan last week by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, but Taiwan says China used that as a pretext to increase its threats. Beijing earlier extended the exercises without announcing when they would end, but they appear to have run their course for the time being.

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Russia and Ukraine have accused each other of shelling Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, stoking international fears of a catastrophe. The Zaporizhzhia plant is in southern Ukraine, on the banks of the Dnieper River. Russian troops overran it early in the war but have left the Ukrainian staff in place to keep operating the plant. The chief of the U.N. nuclear watchdog agency has warned that the situation surrounding the plant “is completely out of control," and he has urgently pleaded with both sides to allow experts to visit the complex to help stabilize it. The fighting around has fueled fears of a disaster like the one in 1986 at Ukraine's Chernobyl plant, where a reactor exploded and spewed deadly radiation, contaminating a vast area in the world’s worst nuclear accident.