You Said It is a periodic feature of The Mount Airy News, where we share comments we’ve received on Facebook, via Twitter, or on our website,, on articles we’ve published. The comments are reproduced verbatim.

On a story by staff writer Tom Joyce, in which he reports on the Mount Airy Redevelopment Commission’s unveiling its redevelopment plans for downtown, we received this comment on our website,

Terry Hill: If you own a piece of property, you owe it to your neighbors to keep the place looking decent. That is especially true if you’re trying to survive off tourism.

That whole corner on West Pine is a total eyesore and for many, if not most, tourists coming in to downtown, that’s the first and last area they see.

On a story by staff writer Andy Winemiller in which he reports that Surry County Commissioner Larry Phillips assails the continued presence of Commissioner Paul Johnson on the board and calls for his resignation, we received the following comments at


Radical American Infidel: I agree with Vanguard employee. But then again, Mr Johnson just might be playing the Hillary Clinton CARD!!!

concernedcitizen: The understanding that I received from people in Flat Rock Community was the Dollar General across from Flat Rock Elementary school was not to sell cigarettes and alcohol, but they do! It’s all about our “elected” commissioners wanting tax money from these corporations. Its not “We the People” anymore it’s “We the Commissioners”.

Guest: It is sad that Paul Johnson still collects a paycheck from the same citizens he stole from. The MA News should report how much he has been paid.

concernedcitizen: If Paul Johnson is still receiving a check from Surry County that just shows how crooked our county government are. I just payed over $2000.00 in property taxes and then I receive a letter from the Surry County Tax director wanting me to list any improvements that I have made to my properties. I guess you can figure it out for yourself Mr. Tax Director!!!

Guest: He will keep getting a paycheck until he goes to jail or resigns. Johnson should have already been a man and done the right thing. Of course, I’m giving him too much credit. He’s a thief.

Doug: Mr. Phillips your words are very un-Christ like. God did not call you to judge but to restore a brother in a Godly manner with all longsuffering. Have you reached out to Mr. Johnson spiritual way ?

Terry Hill: A pastor defending the store and the sale of alcohol, what ya got to say about that Andy Winemiller?

Jennifer Terry Hill: Actually, he isn’t defending the store or the sale of alcohol – it’s just that Johnson has been fine with every other Family Dollar store going up in and around the community. Now that he (Johnson) has his personal problems going on, he (Johnson) wants to holler and cry about what’s not right (i.e. the sale of alcohol) – what Phillips says is a pitiful attempt at painting a picture showing his (Johnson’s) “good” side (if there is one).

Now, at the end of the article Phillips does speak about the sale of alcohol – saying “you hold the power of the purse, if you don’t want it sold, don’t buy it”, and unfortunately he’s right. If nobody buys it, it’ll be taken off the shelves!

I’m FROM Westfield, and I don’t support a corporation of ANY type coming into the small area so many call home. I very much believe we’d prefer keep this a farming area, with produce stands and tiny restaurants! You can keep it.

concerned citizen: Paul Johnson is a disgrace and should be off the board! Glad Larry spoke and said what everyone is thinking!

LindaLea: I know Larry must be really frustrated with what Surry County has been going through for the last year. If I were a commissioner who was facing charges like Mr. Johnson’s, I would have the integrity to resign my commission so that our board would not be under so much strain to take care of all the things that need to be taken care of. But then again I am not sure Mr. Johnson knows what the word “integrity” means. Oh I know there is all those people who will say innocent until proven guilty. I would say the paperwork speaks for itself. He stays to create havoc.

Guest: You are correct that Johnson is not familiar with “integrity”.

Vanguard employee: As a member of Paul’s family i want to say something but om not. Tell us why you had your court documents sealed and prove what you say.

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