• Keep them topical, short (200 words or fewer), legible and not more often than one every 30 days. Letters chosen for publication may be edited and should not previously have been published elsewhere.
• Must be signed with name, address and telephone number.
• Send to: Editorial page editor (either Times or Free Press), P.O. Box 1447, Chattanooga, TN 37401; fax: 423-757-6383; or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Trooper texting dragnet cause for concern
Re: “Truckers vs. Texting” in Friday’s paper:
Are you kidding me?
Talk about distracted driving.
Drivers texting while driving are a hazard to everyone, but I feel even less safe on I-75 knowing there’s a state trooper driving a big rig at 70 mph, looking out his side windows for anyone texting while driving, riding without a fastened seatbelt and open beer cans.
How distracted would the trooper need to be to cross into my lane? A tractor trailer is 8.5 feet wide and an interstate lane is 12 feet wide. That is only 21 inches clearance on either side.
There’s a reason drivers are taught to keep their eyes on the road.
County must help its senior citizens
I would like to know why the county commissioners haven’t found the “time” to get back around to the property tax freeze program? With taxes going up, senior citizens are being completely overlooked by Social Security’s cost-of-living raise, and they still continue to be hurt by increasing property taxes.
This was approved by the state, yet Hamilton County didn’t care enough to make a decision that could make or break their senior and/or disabled citizens.
It is disturbing that taxes continue to be raised with no consideration of the unfinished business. Knox County saw fit to help out its seniors. It is disheartening that Hamilton County pushes us to the “forgotten” list.
I hope someone will find it on their conscience to finally make a decision on a very serious problem for fixed-income families and widows.
If Knox County can look out for their elderly, surely Hamilton County can do as much.
JUDY WILSON, Ooltewah
Mr. Know-It-All better than bridge
Six days out of seven the paper runs a column on the card game bridge. On the one remaining day, Monday, we get the fascinating column called Mr. Know-It-All. Readers send all manner of questions, and he finds the answers. Are there enough bridge players in the readership of the Times Free Press to justify that much space devoted to the game? Could we please divide the week and have at least three days of Mr. Know-It-all and four of bridge. ... I am trying to be fair here.
CAROLYN McCRARY, Hixson
We don’t need invasive government
Who made the decision to invite the EPA, HUD and Transportation departments to invade Chattanooga with their assistance? Remember the scariest words in America, “I’m from the federal government and I’m here to help you”? To the EPA we owe such decisions as mandated low-flow toilet tanks, restricted shower heads, air bags, switch grass ethanol, designated wetlands, the ever-expanding list of endangered species and the banning of home products like cleaning fluids, phosphates in dishwasher detergent, effective insecticides, incandescent light bulbs, etc., etc.
HUD has promoted ugly, dangerous public housing and burdensome restrictions on rental property.
Do Chattanooga seniors need the federal government to come in and help us? The federal government giveth, the federal government taketh away.
MARTHA AKIN, Hixson
Two actions needed before going to war
I have a couple of suggestions for Congress before we decide to “go to war.” First, we must reinstitute the draft, so that all the country’s citizens and families are involved. Secondly, Congress must pass a new tax to pay for the war, not pass the bill on to future generations.
I was also going to say that we must have accurate intelligence to justify the action, but maybe that is too much to ask.
CHARLES M. RENNEISEN, Signal Mountain
U.S. wars fueled by ignorance, fear
I agree with David Cook’s reflections on the 10-year anniversary of our invasion of Iraq.
War may be the terminal sickness of our body politic. The United States’ proclivity toward war is reminiscent of the behavior of an addict who repeats a behavior even when that behavior is harmful to himself.
The expense of our most recent illegal invasions continues to undermine our deficit-financed government, weakening our country’s economic strength.
This behavior seems similar to the rapacious growth of a cancer that ultimately causes the demise of its own host self. This cancer is fueled by ignorance and fear.
The propagandist rationale supporting war is false. Google “War is a Lie” by David Swanson.
Our public treasury can no longer sustain such insanity.
Some religious leaders note peace in the world starts with peace inside each individual.
So perhaps hope for the future is possible.
Perhaps more citizens will acquire the skill of critical thinking.
Perhaps voters will select political candidates who have an understanding of the universal connection of all life on our planet. Or perhaps not.
M. MARTIN HINE
CARTA drivers not considerate
The morning of March 16, I was at a bus stop on Lee Highway, by Chickamauga Road. It is a clearly marked bus stop. I was there early so I would be sure to catch the first bus of the day.
Well, I saw the bus coming, so I stepped up to the curb, held my arm out with my card in my hand, even waved my arm a little bit, and would you know it, the bus just blew by me like I was invisible. This has happened several times in the last few weeks.
Another thing that has occurred recently is as I was getting off the bus, the driver closed the door on me, pushing me off the bus. Luckily, I was able to maintain my balance and not fall down. I am an amputee, and I have enough difficulty walking and maintaining my balance. I certainly don’t need any help from CARTA drivers with my difficulties.
‘Trusted servants’ shouldn’t play God
Why are we sending our Chattanooga sewer payments out of Chattanooga? First it was Pittsburgh, Pa., and now Hemet, Calif.
When I grew up, I worked for local concerns in the city of Camden, N.J., home of Campbell Soup Co., RCA, Camden yards of the Pennsylvania-Reading Railroad, and I spurred the economies our cities and states where my alliances were.
The same for Pacific Gas and Electric Co. while living in Oakland, Calif.
Don’t any of our elected “trusted servants” understand the invisible lines between management, responsibility, limits of authority, sovereignty, not to mention taking care of our own? We’re long overdue for them to quit playing God.
USDA furloughs can be accommodated
I’m disappointed by either the lack of fact-checking or intentional misleading in an article by Chris Carroll and Shelly Bradbury regarding possible meat-processing plant closures resulting from the sequester. The article states that there could be up to 11-day furloughs for USDA meat inspectors, leading to plant closures, price increases and food shortages.
Even if 11 days were cut to meet the department’s budget, I’m certain that the USDA would schedule them as one day per week for 11 weeks, not one 11-day furlough. The USDA has a responsibility to maintain the continuity of the supply chain and cannot arbitrarily cause plant closures for any reason other than substandard product or processing issues. One-day furloughs could easily be accommodated by having the inspectors pre-certify the meat prior to processing, then recertifying the finished goods after the processing, an acceptable practice.
It seems that your writers failed to either Google “USDA Meat Inspection Regulations” or reach out to the USDA inspectors or plant managers at local plants to fact-check the accuracy of the secretary’s statements, even in light of the Obama administration’s cheezy campaign to scare consumers by lying.
Is this how you treat ‘family’?
I viewed Channel 3’s news coverage of the circus and heard the Ringling circus “technician” describe the animals as “family.”
Interesting how they treat their family. I’m very grateful that my family does not force me to endure a bullhook, chains, whips, screaming and confinement all in the name of greed.
Actually most real families would not tolerate these conditions, and the abuser would be in jail.
ELIZABETH SIMONS, Harrison