published Friday, September 3rd, 2010

Letters to the editor

Mosque editorial shameless writing

Since the Times editorial “Indefensible Islamophobia” (Aug. 29) used the word ignorance, I will assume the editor has an understanding of what that word means. I contend that the writer knows nothing of the 1,400-year history of Islam, or the true reason that many do not want the mosque (actually an Islamic complex) built near the former site of the World Trade Center.

The compassionate (Christian) thing to do would be to build it elsewhere, and if Imam Rauf would agree, the whole issue would probably disappear. I must ask the question, “Is Sen. Reid an Islamophobist?” because he has publicly opposed the mosque. The editorial, in my opinion, is one of the most shameless and inflammatory pieces of writing to ever appear in the Sunday paper.

JOHN BALDNER

Dunlap, Tenn.

McGary, Ladd: Stick to your area

What was the incentive for Andrae McGary and Pam Ladd to so strongly support the (now defunct, thank God) Hunter Road apartments? An out-of-state developer wished to build this ridiculous project.

It was bad enough when the council spot-annexed that area as Chattanooga. I think many of them could only see potential tax revenue. How many of those councilmen who supported these projects have been out to Hunter Road? Common sense would have told them the project was a bad idea. “Let’s hear your ideas of how the road can be improved.”

I believe the two districts that McGary and Ladd represent could use their-full time effort to take care of Hixson and the Germantown area problems.

Please, Mr. McGary and Ms. Ladd, keep your nose out of Ooltewah county business. I believe there is plenty to keep you busy in your respective areas.

JOSEPH KELLY

Ooltewah

Backing of Corker now embarrassing

Re: “Corker seeks to cap embarrassing debt,” (Aug. 27). I see statements like this from the party of no and wonder if the politician really thinks I’m that stupid.

It’s downright embarrassing to think I may have supported [him] thinking he would represent me, but who really only supports big money.

Social Security is a self-supporting program that doesn’t contribute to the national debt. I worked 50 years to earn my Social Security benefits. I contributed all those years, and now he wants to cut my earned benefits. Yeah, he really represents my interests.

When the Republicans took over, Clinton left a balanced budget and no wars. Suddenly we had two wars (one unjustified) and the biggest deficit in our history!

Now after engineering a financial meltdown, the party of no doesn’t even want to pay jobless benefits so people can eat and keep their homes.

I’ve been an independent (non-partisan) voter most of my life; now I find myself with few choices: Tea Party with all its weird teabaggers associated, Democrats who seem to have my best interests in mind (albeit makes me nervous), and Republicans who can’t seem to represent their constituents, only Fox News and people like Glenn Beck (and of course, the wealthy.)

Are we in trouble or what!

MARVIN THOMASSON

East Ridge

Racists exist in both parties

I would like to comment on a letter of Aug. 25. It stated that “not all Republicans are racists, but ... most racists are Republicans.” What an absolutely horrible thing to say. That’s as bad as saying that not all Democrats are ugly, but most ugly people are Democrats. Neither statement is true.

I have many friends and acquaintances who are Republicans, and just like my Democratic friends, most are decent, kind, thoughtful people who could never be considered racists. Unfortunately, there are still racists in the world, and they exist in both parties.

Being a racist has nothing to do with your political preferences. Sadly, it has much more to do with the value you were taught to place on people as you were growing up. Wouldn’t it be a wonderful world if all children were taught to place value only on what’s inside a person? (Incidentally, in case you’re wondering, I’m an independent.)

JOY STURTEVANT

Monteagle, Tenn.

Some Republicans, pundits spread fear

“The people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.”

These words speak so clearly to the current struggle for political and economic power in this country. Certain misguided elements of the Republican Party, offering no substantive solutions to real human problems, resort instead to fear mongering. There is no shortage of media pundits willing to foment the fear and hatred. The Glenn Becks, Rush Limbaughs and Sarah Palins of the world, with their multimillion-dollar contracts and speaking fees, are altogether willing to spew the hate language, serving neither God, country nor fellow man.

The opening quote was spoken by Hermann Goering, Reichsmarschall and second in command under Hitler, at his trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity in Nuremberg following WWII. Interesting how history has a pattern of repeating itself.

JEFF CAMPBELL

Lookout Mountain

Islam no more an enemy than others

With the spotlight still on construction of Muslim community centers and mosques (almost interchangeable terms, like churches and Christian community centers like the YMCA) in areas ranging from California to Tennessee, it disappoints me to find people who conflate Islam with terrorists who corrupt it.

It’s easy to jump to conclusions that America needs an enemy to stand against as a bastion of liberty, but Islam is no more our enemy than other cultures and faiths.

What is a threat are ideologies that put power in the state or the mob as opposed to balancing the two. Equally dangerous are worldviews granting powers to clergy to legislate laws, not limited to Islam; manifesting in Christian theonomy, attempting to apply biblical laws to a country that promises secular impartiality to all faiths.

Putting up a building that would be 15 percent “mosque” (two floors out of 13) is not giving any victory for Islam. And 9/11 struck Sufi and Ahmadiyya Muslims in America just as hard in losing loved ones.

Obama did speak for America; he merely called for an America that doesn’t favor any faith in particular, granting liberty to all. And that’s an America I’m proud to live in.

JARED COWAN

Sewanee, Tenn.

Taxpayers foot part-timers’ benefit

Now school board members want to give themselves a retirement benefit.

They volunteered for this position and knew the pay. These are not career jobs with full benefits, with taxpayers picking up the tab. No part-time person should get retirement benefits. I don’t know of any company that gives part-time employees benefits. The taxpayers are tired of footing the bill for all of this greed. If the taxpayers pay for this, you think it is OK.

What a shame that the city/county leaders can give millions of dollars to big companies but can’t help senior citizens with a tax freeze; they must find a job, hold yard sales, cut food or medicine in order to pay their taxes.

This greed is really starting with the federal government, then city/county leaders and now school board leaders. The school board members should never have the power to give raises or benefits to themselves. They work for the taxpayers, not the taxpayers for them.

It’s a shame that our city/county commissioners enact benefits for themselves when they are supposed to be working for the taxpayers. I bet most of the taxpayers never knew about these benefits.

LINDA NEWELL

26
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Francis said...

Mr. Cowan...Obama does not speak for America...in fact, everytime he reveals himself for what he is, which is the polar opposite of what he ran as during his campaign, he becomes more unpopular. Regarding Isalm...Islam is per- cieved as the enemy , right or wrong,because of the terrorists who have become the face of their religion. the more moderate elements in Islam remain mute. Bible thumping or going door to door to give away some literature may be irritating to some people, but it's hardly on the same level as the covert or die approach. It's up to the leaders of Islam to clean up it's image.

September 3, 2010 at 9:11 a.m.
Francis said...

joy, you're right. that letter from aug. 25th was a piece of work. i wonder if someone wrote, not all muslims are murderers, but if you're a muslim you probably are a murd- erer.....or , not all blacks like watermelon, but if you're black you probably like water- melon......if that aug. 25th statement is ok to run, then so are those.

September 3, 2010 at 11:20 a.m.
Francis said...

jeff, the things you're saying about glenn beck and rush limbaugh, both labeled as "entertainers" by the lib- eraly controlled media, and about sarah palin, who holds no public office at the moment, can be said of the man in the white house. you simply don't like others who express a political opinion that's different than yours. come november, jeff, you'll be a whole lot angrier when you'll see that the views of a failed vice-pres- idential candidate and two "entertainers" are more in sync with regular Americans than the demogogue we have in the white house now. the mistake you liberals have made is going way overboard in attacking anyone who disagrees with president obama. he lied! many who bought the campaign version of obama are not happy now. we're not all nazis, jeff.

September 3, 2010 at 11:58 a.m.
lkeithlu said...

Moderate Muslims remain mute, just like moderate Republicans don't speak out against Limbaugh and Beck's lies, and Palin's hypocrisy. Both should come forward and offer a more rational voice.

September 3, 2010 at 12:25 p.m.
hambone said...

Mr. Thomasson you're right. As a working man, with a democrat you may not know where they stand all the time. However with a republican you know where your at from the get go.

September 3, 2010 at 1:12 p.m.
Livn4life said...

Please be reminded that racism exists in all color or lacking color of persons. We pretend the only racism that is bad, evil, unacceptable is white against anyone else. It is all bad, evil, unacceptable and as long as any exists the potential for its ugly perpetuation will continue. And as for all of you who are wondering what color I may be, YOU JUST PROVED MY PREVIOUS POINT! No matter, we truly are all the same in value. So let's try to all work together despite any outward differences.

September 3, 2010 at 1:25 p.m.
Francis said...

comparing republicans to radical islamists, huh..and the other guy comparing them to nazis....and you wonder why the november elections will be a blood bath for liberals. joy behar, lady gaga, kieth oberman, katie couric, the jackass jeremiah wright and the rev. al sharpton...yeah you liberals are much more credible

September 3, 2010 at 2:07 p.m.

Rudolph Hess, Mengele, Hitler: Progressive Darwinists and Eugenicists-all. Hatred and bigotry in America. BTW, where are all the examples and facts of Palin's, Beck's, Hannity's "hate and bigoty"? Half a million folks on 8-28 (proven by aerial and on the ground shots of thousands that CBS's hired guns 'missed'), including many Blacks, Asians and Hispanics on and off the stage kinda disproves the "racism" comments. Moreover, Bush's appointments of Blacks, Hispanics and Asians were denigrated and disparaged by the Left media for years. More examples of REAL hatred:

These are the moderate Muslims they said we don’t need to worry about Date: 9/1/2010 by Bryan Fischer

"Ahmed Mohamed Nasser al Soofi was the poster child of a “moderate” Muslim. He just came to America, according to friends and relatives, for a better life and to take care of his family. Character references were in abundant supply, as we were told how honest he was and how harmless he was. Why, he worked at a convenience store in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. How dangerous could he be? He wouldn’t hurt a fly, we were told.

In other words, he is the poster child of the Muslims we’re told represent most Muslims in America, the ones that are on the side of freedom and pose no threat to our national security.

The Associated Press, by the way, never gets around to mentioning his religious affiliation at all. And in their original story, the AP didn’t even give the names of the two suspects involved until the fifth or sixth paragraph, likely because their names are clearly Arabic. Nope, no bias in the out-of-the-mainstream media here that I can detect at all.

September 3, 2010 at 3:48 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

And where did I equate Republicans with radical Muslims? I equated radical right wing foam-at-the-mouth crazies with radical Muslims. Palin, Limbaugh and Beck-do they speak for all conservatives? They seem to think so.

September 3, 2010 at 3:49 p.m.

Well, all was fine with al Soofi until he boarded a plane in Birmingham, Alabama with luggage that contained a cell phone taped to a Pepto-Bismol bottle, multiple cell phones and watches taped together, and a knife and box cutter.

Inexplicably, the people who are supposed to keep us safe in the air, the TSA, spotted the stuff in his suitcase, examined it, and decided there was nothing to worry about here, move along. He was allowed to board the plane and continue his journey.

It wasn’t until he sent his bag on ahead to Washington, D.C. while he changed his itinerary at the last minute and got on a plane for Amsterdam that officials got concerned. They had to call the plane with his bag on it back to the gate. In other words, they were perfectly willing to let the plane take off with this suspicious luggage as long as he was on board, as if suicide bombers don’t exist and the Christmas Day bomber who tried to blow up his underwear and 270 passengers was just a figment of our collective imagination.

Now if I or any member of my family was on that plane from Birmingham to Chicago, and I found out that they let al Soofi and his luggage on board knowing it contained a cell phone taped to a bottle of liquid and a knife and a box cutter, I’d be absolutely furious right about now.

Our vigilant protectors at Homeland Security have already decided this wasn’t a dry run for a terrorist attack, as if everybody tapes cell phones to bottles of liquid when they fly.

September 3, 2010 at 3:50 p.m.

The president’s spokesman confessed that the two men arrested in Amsterdam - al Soofi and another man by the name of Hezam al Murisi - are not on anybody’s watch list, which is up to about 20,000 names by now. Al Murisi only changed his destination to a different continent at the very last minute - which people do every day, of course - and so naturally did nothing that should arouse anyone’s suspicion.

And security officials assure us that they apparently are not a part of any terror network, as if the presence of rogue jihadists among us such as these two shouldn’t alarm anybody.

All that means is that we have no way of knowing which Muslim is going to be the source of the next terrorist threat.

What officials don’t realize is the fact al Soofi apparently acted on his own makes the case against the theory that there are any truly moderate Muslims in America crumble like a cheap Bedouin tent in a mild breeze.

In other words, al Soofi was a classic moderate Muslim, someone we’re told is not a threat to anyone, not a part of any terrorist cell, is a follower of the religion of peace and a man who only wants to contribute to America and realize the American dream.

Now it looks like he was trying to figure out a way to blow 300 of us to kingdom come.

The bottom line is this: if we can’t even trust “moderate” Muslims, which members of the Islamic persuasion can we trust? If a convenience store clerk in Tuscaloosa can go jihadi on us with no warning, how many other Muslims like him do we have to worry about?

The constant, constant danger is that a “moderate” Muslim may suddenly begin to take his religion seriously and get about the business of blasting some of us infidels to our final reward as his god and his religion teaches him to do. If a guy like al Soofi can’t be trusted, then no “moderate” Muslim in America can be trusted. We have to be cautious with them all".

September 3, 2010 at 3:52 p.m.

Date: 9/2/2010 Elijah Friedeman

"We hear a lot these days about the plight of unemployed Americans. How they can't find work and are having trouble paying the bills. But there's an untold story that needs to be shared: The plight of the liberal mainstream media. No, I'm not talking about plummeting viewership or the dwindling number of subscriptions. I'm talking about the problem that liberal talking heads have had recently with finding an angry, violent conservative troublemaker to use to bash the Tea party and conservatism at large. What do I mean? Well let me explain.

First we were confronted with the death of the census worker in Kentucky. The census worker had the word "fed" scrawled across his chest, resulting in exultation from the liberal media that they finally had an example of right-wing violence. One liberal rag even breathlessly proclaimed that the "Dead census worker highlights right-wing paranoia." MSNBC quoted a conveniently anonymous law enforcement officer wondering if the death might have something to do with "anti-government sentiments." Then, without much fanfare from the same outlets that decried the murder weeks earlier, investigators announced that the murder by anti-government, right-wing extremists was actually a suicide. Woops. Such a simple mistake, though, any fact-checking news outlet could have jumped to conclusions in that case, right?

Recently, amid warnings from the media of Islamophobia and anti-Muslim violence, a Muslim cab driver was attacked by a young, white male. At last, the media had a prime example of conservative hatred and violence! Overjoyed, liberal outlets everywhere proudly denounced the violence brought on by the opposition to the Ground Zero mosque.

And then the news slowly began trickling out. The attacker wasn't a crazed opponent of the mosque, turns out he actually worked for Intersections International, a left-wing organization which supports the Ground Zero mosque. Strike two, for the media.

September 3, 2010 at 3:59 p.m.

The tragic events of yesterday's hostage crisis at the Discovery channel should finally dispel the myth of the violent, politically-motivated conservative, but I wouldn't count on it. The gunman, James Lee, wasn't a conservative, much to the chagrin of the news oulets. In fact, he seems to be an angry politically-motivated inspired by - wait for it - Al Gore.

Lee said that he experienced "an awakening" after watching Al Gore's eco-documentary "An Inconvenient Truth." His bizarre demands during the hostage crisis included getting those "destructive, filthy, pollutive creatures," otherwise known as humans, to stop reproducing. Lee's tirade also touched on nuclear weapons, global warming, and pollution from cars. He also called for the media to talk more about evolution and Darwin and bashed the "religious-cultural roots" of civilization.

Surely, surely the Left wouldn't try to brand this guy as a conservative. But wait, the Left's spin machine whipped into full gear, and some liberal publications attempted to tie the gunman to anti-illegal immigration groups. But by and large the mainstream media didn't even try to pin this on conservatives. It's almost as if they've given up on the cause of proving the violent teapartier narrative.

Every single time, just when the media had a chance to prove that conservatives caused political violence, that chance has been brutally dashed to pieces on the cold, hard rocks of reality. The media really has it tough. You may not realize this, but it's hard work, keeping up the narrative that the teapartiers are a violent bunch when there's no proof to back it up.

This is why the mainstream media is in such dire straits. They just can't seem to catch a break by finding a violent, politically-motivated conservative. It's hard, sometimes, creating false narratives, which is why the mainstream media's story needs to be told. They put so much effort into creating the perfect framework for their thesis that conservatives are a violent bunch, and yet no conservative violently fits into that storyline. All that hard work just gone to waste".

September 3, 2010 at 3:59 p.m.
ToHoldNothing said...

Francis, I never said Obama was the only representative for America. He speaks as the head of state, but I never said he was the end all speaker. I don't necessarily agree or sympathize with everything he says anymore than you do, no doubt.

Islam can be perceived as anything, it's a matter of whether that perception matches with the varied reality that can appear with each individual Muslim, be they in America or in the Middle East. Creating enemies tends to only create more problems than solve them.

And I didn't compare bible-thumping or the Gideon Society to the violent interpretation of jihad in Islam. I compared that to the equally radical groups within Christianity that insist their holy text's law must be the country of America's law, which is not only contrary to the constitution, but to any sense of secularism the country was founded upon.

September 3, 2010 at 4:34 p.m.
hambone said...

No, big bird James Lee wasn't a conservative, just another way out WHACKO looking for attention any way he could get it. This will happen to you if your tinfoil hat ever falls off!!

September 3, 2010 at 5:09 p.m.
mudbug said...

@ Francis...I would implore you to not read more into my letter concerning the spreading of fear than what is there. You assume way to much about me and how I feel about things that I do not address in my letter...incorrectly I might add...Peace and blessings

September 3, 2010 at 5:26 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

mudbug, canary doesn't read posts by anyone else. His MO is just to rant endlessly about things that are not true, and call anyone who disagrees (or points out the lies) as evil.

September 3, 2010 at 5:45 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

My bad-Francis doesn't either, although I have not pointed out lies by Francis, my requests for evidence from Francis to support his claims falls on deaf ears.

September 3, 2010 at 7 p.m.
Francis said...

christians may insist, they may urge, they may push it at the pulpit, put it on paper, and lobby for it...but the violent element isn't there, it just isn't. you have the occasional abortion clinic incident..but, when one happens it's quickly condemed from all directions by christians. but, islam stands out like a soar thumb. there is no organized radical christian element. if so, where are they? who are they? sorry, but islam has cornered the market on religous violence.

September 3, 2010 at 7:05 p.m.
inquiringmind said...

The bottom line is the Republican Party was dead in the South from Reconstruction until the Great Society and Civil Rights Act. At that point, LBJ remarked that doing this good thing would probably spell the end of the Democratic Pary in the South. And true to form, vitually every segregationist (racist) around flocked to the GOP and its far-right, code-word racism. It is sad, but it is Southern thing.

Though many of my Republican friends are wont to deny it, their love of money; big, laissez faire business and "rights to free association" are part and parcel of that legacy. It is their hertiage.

That racist mindset extends to the controversy over the mosque-to-be in NYC. Maybe we should shut down First Pres, and some other local churches as too right-wing, too anti-feminist, too much followers of a false Christianity..or is it just a few have the right to free exercise of their religion ?

Be thankful for freedom and defend it.

September 3, 2010 at 7:07 p.m.
Francis said...

inquiringmind....keep spouting that stuff. keep it up. it will spell the end of the democrats in the south, north, east and west.... so, let me get this straight republicans, are greedy, racists and hate freedom. wow. you're doomed in november.

lbj wouldn't have passed anything for civil rights if it weren't for republicans. he needed them because southern democrats, like al gore's father, the senator, would not vote for the civil rights act. you need to read more history.

also the great society was anything but great..it's a flop. it's created gener- ation after generation of government dependent , angry and hopeless people. go to chicago and check out a city overun by such people.

the controversy over the mosque has to do with the people who are backing it. groups like hamas. the slaughter of 2000 civilians who were just going to work tends to leave a lasting impression. so cut people some slack. especially the families and friend of those who were slaughtered..............no one is bothered by the mosque 4 blocks away from it.

your blanket condemnation of repbulicans is ludicrous. it's in the same league as..."all republicans aren't racists, but most racists are republicans."

somehow you think it's ok to label republicans as greedy, racist and freedom haters, but you would scream bloody murder if i called democrats jew haters, baby killers and anti-american.

in fact, the democrat party uses the race card as a weapon to shake down companies for money. jesse jackson, al sharpton and others have become wealthy from it. check it out.

as much as i think the democrat party, the modern version of it, is out of their minds, i wouldn't cond- em every democrat. seems that you're doing that.

September 3, 2010 at 8:02 p.m.
Francis said...

you know the whole notion that government is some pure entity that rides in like an angel on a white horse to rescue the citizenry from the evil private sector and it's evil greed republican leaders is just nauseating. do you know who makes up the governement? entrenched beurocrats who cannot be fired and politicians who cave to lobbyists. what makes your think their motiviation is so pure? a business owner in the privates sector better put out or he'll lose his customers and his income. the government is far greedier than any corporation you liberals label as greedy. beurocrats are the problem, and the majority of beurocrats care only about lording it over the citizenry and keeping their well paying governement jobs and security.

September 3, 2010 at 8:19 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

Good grief, Francis! You are clearly one of the tinfoil hat club. You and canary ought to have a drink together; you are both completely tanked.

September 3, 2010 at 8:45 p.m.
Francis said...

there you go again..name calling....tinfoil hatclub, racists, bigots, homophobes you libs have all the labels ready to toss out. but, the numbers are against you guys, numbers and facts are nuetral. you have names and insults..but we have the facts and numbers. wait until nov. tanked? it's fun to have a day off and come on here and point out things you libs hate to be faced with. maybe next week i'll come back and do it again. cheers!

September 3, 2010 at 9:15 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

still waiting on the facts and numbers you claim to have

September 3, 2010 at 9:33 p.m.
nucanuck said...

Francis,

The Islamic violence that we all abhor pales to the violence rained down on Islamic countries by smart bombs,drones,fighter jets,helicopter gunships,white phosphorus,depleted uranium...Christian state sponsered violence so horrible that it exceeds our ability to imagine.

Don't tell us that Islam has a corner on violence,they're only amateurs.


You go on about post November as though the Republicans have an agenda that would improve the US.

The problems I see are American problems that demand a united American effort. Political parties beating each other up is just kicking the can down the road while the house is burning down.

I see your overly partisan contentiousness as part of the problem.

September 4, 2010 at 12:08 a.m.
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