published Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Hypocrisy of nations — and more letters to the editors

Hypocrisy of nations

Reports of Iranian warships maneuvering close to American shores made me think of mice striking fear into elephants.

Of course, Americans don't like the idea of other nations' war ships operating near our population, but what about the many times our war ships have struck terror into people half a world away?

For instance, what about the U.S. Sixth Fleet shelling Lebanon with the largest guns afloat -- highly inaccurate guns that killed civilians -- in an undeclared act of war when Ronald Reagan was president?

I'm not sure if the United States qualifies as the "greatest" nation on earth, as our hawkish politicians constantly allege, but we certainly seem to be in the running for the most hypocritical.

MIKE BURCH, Nashville

Let humans issue warnings

Gosh. It snowed last night. Almost half an inch; all gone today.

But yesterday I got no less than one dozen "emergency weather alerts" on my phone courtesy of Google and even got an automated phone call from a Catoosa County Emergency Management phone-bot. All meant to warn me, I suppose, that some sort of wintry doomsday was just hours away. "Wolf! Wolf!"

I sorely miss those days when "listen to Luther" was all you needed to know, and when panic-stricken weather warnings, such as they were, came from real human beings who had made intelligent evaluations. We need to get that back.

Automated applications of unseeing technology will just make it more likely that a real warning will be ignored, not heeded.

MIKE ROBINSON, Chickamauga, Ga.

Look south for snowfall

It is amazing that an all-day storm of any kind could surprise our professional weathermen.

After listening to one of the more popular predictors talking as a "DJ for an hour" on WUTC recently, I think I understand. He talked about all the hours he spends in front of radar screens and studying computer models.

I have one piece of advice that has served me well since I moved here in 1976. Check in with Birmingham.

If it doesn't snow in Birmingham, it is not going to snow in Chattanooga.

And pay attention to this, guys; if it does snow in Birmingham, it will snow in Chattanooga. Ergo, you will have three to four hours not to be surprised.


Don't mess with nature

Some time ago, I saw an article in your paper about the tons of antibiotics being fed to chickens.

I shudder to think about the huge amounts being fed by the pork and beef industry. Add to that the growth hormones that the animals consume, and it is enough to make one become a vegetarian.

The genetically engineered grains are also troubling. No one knows the ramifications that might ensue. A man up north grew a salmon three times the size of a regular fish.

No thanks! All this is done to increase yield and therefore make more money.

While I'm just an old country boy, this much I know: When you mess around with mother nature, you have to deal with the consequences.

GEORGE THOMPSON, Blairsville, Ga.

Please protect children first

Instead of raising money to save pit bull dogs, any and all funds collected from a recent six-bands concert should be directed to the many families who have suffered loss of a loved one or have had surgery repairing a small child's face because of being attacked by a vicious dog.

There have been many adults and small children who have either been killed or mauled by a pit bull.

Saving these vicious animals and allowing them to be re-introduced into neighborhoods is wrong. There is something wrong when the value of a dog is more than a human life.

One more child or any family member being mauled by a pit bull is just not acceptable.


Support our veterans

Voters are encouraged to ask Congress to pass the Veterans Health and Benefits and Military Retirement Pay Restoration Act of 2014.

The bill, S.1950, is the most comprehensive veterans' legislation to be introduced in decades and includes a full repeal of the recent military retiree COLA reduction that penalizes working-age military retirees and their families.

This legislation marks a critical test for Congress and the White House as to the breach of faith, which the cuts to military retirement represent, is remedied and elected officials are reminded of their promises not to balance the budget on the backs of military men and women, veterans and their families.

Please act now, and send your elected officials a letter in support of the Veterans Health and Benefits and Military Retirement Restoration Act of 2014. U.S. House Rep (Tennessee 4th District) Scott DesJarlais, 807 S. Garden St., Columbia, TN 38401; Sen. Lamar Alexander, 900 Georgia Ave., Chattanooga, TN 37402; Sen. Bob Corker, 10 W. MLK Blvd., Chattanooga, TN 37402.

Please support the thousands of men and women who serve and have served our country.

SHEILA BILLINGS, Cleveland, Tenn.

Don't root for failure

At Sochi, Shaun White failed to medal in men's halfpipe after his second run fell apart, placing the former gold medalist in fourth place.

As reported by Yahoo Sports writer Dan Wetzel, White's teammate, Danny Davis, stated, "You know, it's good for snowboarding, man. The world now knows that there are other snowboarders besides Shaun. It's great, man, because there are a bunch of good riders in our sport, and they deserve some credit, too."

What are the Olympics? In short, the Olympics are a competition between countries represented by their athletes.

Danny Davis' statement is incredibly profound. He illustrates the absolute selfishness and clear lack of respect for the United States of America and what the Olympics represent.

When athletes represent their country in the Olympics, it is about the representation -- period. Moreover, the medal count signifies each country's dominance.

Davis unfortunately ignores that competitors are presumed skillful when presented as Olympic athletes. The Olympics are not the X-games.

So, while Danny Davis cheers Shaun White's failure, did anyone mention that the USA did not medal in men's halfpipe?

It's time for America's Olympic athletes to start rooting for, and not against, one another.


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lkeithlu said...

Mr. Rock, let's take that a step further. Regulate the breeding of pits or ban it altogether. Why? Pit bulls can be good pets if raised and kept in very specific and controlled circumstances. But they are unpredictable, and give no warning before aggression. Because of liability, most shelters cannot hold or adopt out pits, and they are euthanized by the thousands daily. I really hate to see healthy animals destroyed through no fault of their own, simply because they were the wrong breed. The country has far too many homeless dogs and cats now, and pit bulls have almost no chance to find good homes.

February 19, 2014 at 7:34 a.m.
LibDem said...

My pit passed several years ago after a long and (I think) happy life. She never liked children and the grandkids learned that poking and teasing the dog was unwise. (I hope they carry the lesson with them.)

Mr. Rock refers to "...many adults and small children..." by which he means "statistically insignificant". Just ask the NRA what level of violence is required to achieve "statistical significance".

February 19, 2014 at 9:52 a.m.
soakya said...

typical progressive response from lkeithu. let government solve the problem.

February 19, 2014 at 1:01 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

If you have a better solution than euthanizing thousands of innocent dogs bred by irresponsible breeders, often on the taxpayers dime, let's have it soakya.

February 19, 2014 at 4:47 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

Soakya's answer to all of our ills is for liberals to pay for the health care, food, clothing, shelter, and education of the poor. Based on his many past posts, that seems to be a recurring theme for him. I assume that he thinks libs should likewise pay for the euthanizing of unwanted and neglected animals or whatever other way to solve the problem. Anything to stop the taxation, which he equates with "stealing!" Then we can all live happily ever after in our Little House on the Prairie, with charities, churches, and liberals pulling money from the money trees that grow in our backyards to take care of all of society's ills.

February 19, 2014 at 5:11 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

I didn't think soakya had a better idea. Of course, when you live in a bubble it's easy to think that Americans will do what's right on their own. In the meantime, my county, like counties all over the country, euthanize unwanted and unadoptable animals, a high percentage of them pits. And yes, I live in a conservative county, full of people who feel they can breed dogs indiscriminately because it's their "right". And these animals end up at our shelter by the hundreds. Sorry, but you can't blame Obama for this one.

February 20, 2014 at 7:17 a.m.
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