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Posted: August 15, 2013 6:30 p.m.

Publicity we don’t need

We had two unpleasant characterizations of our community this past week. The first involved a tourism video, paid for by our local chamber, that features a spoof on Covington’s vampire connection, which is the fact that the wildly popular TV series "The Vampire Diaries’’ is filmed here.

The video is featured prominently on the gocovington.com tourism website that was introduced in late April. It was also used as an ad to promote Covington during a Dixie Boys world series that was being played in Alabama.

Kyle Mooty, the editor/columnist at an Alabama newspaper, was offended by the blood and innuendo depicted in the video, and especially the fact that it was aired during a sports event for young teens and their parents.

Mooty wrote a scathing column that questioned the wisdom of our town leaders, most of whom probably didn’t even know the video was running in Enterprise, Ala.

We don’t blame Mr. Mooty for expressing his personal feelings, as we ourselves have written many "homer-type" articles defending our community when needed.

Hunter Hall, our local chamber leader, defended the video, saying it was a spoof.

We enjoy spoofs, so we got the message. We are not so sure, however, that youngsters and their parents will always get such spoofs. It might be wise to develop another, less-graphic ad promoting our vampire connection, to use in small communities like Enterprise, Ala.

Also this week, a local mother was apparently told by her daughter, who attends Alcovy High School, that the school was allowing messages of hate involving God to be posted in a school classroom.

According to the mother, she made an attempt to talk to school officials about her concerns. School officials deny this.

The mother or someone else contacted an Atlanta TV station, which immediately sensed blood in the water and tried to make a big issue out of it.

As it turns out, the images were part of an assignment involving Arthur Miller’s play "The Crucible,’’ which is based on the Salem witch trials. Students have been reading the play for decades. And NCSS officials said the images won’t be removed.

Once again, Alcovy High School received unwanted attention, for no other reason than it was doing what a high school is supposed to do, teaching.

We commend the school administration for not backing down.

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