Make Smith, board more accountable
I read with interest and concern your May 27 editorial, "Defacto segregation a threat." It had interest because it brought to the public's attention the way this school board is operating now. I'm concerned because according to the Chattanooga Times, the board seems to be voting on issues so quietly and without a "ripple of noticeable public controversy."
Are decisions being made because they are in the best interest of the children, or are they being made for self-interest or special interest? For Superintendent Rick Smith's failure to submit a "timely and well-considered proposal for a state Innovation Zone grant that was expected to provide around $8 million or more to help the school system improve performance at seven failing schools" is irresponsible.
More of the community should show up at board meetings to make Rick Smith and the board more accountable and responsible. We've heard from the Chattanooga Times, now let's hear from Superintendent Rick Smith.
JAMES WALTON, Hixson
Festival lets us celebrate our area
It's that time of year when we celebrate our community and our region. It's time for the Riverbend Festival, Tennessee Valley's Family Reunion!
This will be our 31st year of bringing the Riverbend Festival to our community, and we are proud of our many partners that make this regional celebration possible. From the city to the county to our sponsors, and over 1,500 volunteers, our staff and our board welcome you to Riverbend 2012.
Riverbend is more than a music festival. It is a celebration of all things Chattanooga and the Tennessee Valley.
When our colleagues from the Pasadena Tournament of Roses (the granddaddy of them all) visited last year, they could not believe what a great community and event we have. But most importantly, they remarked about the great people of our area. I hear that comment the most; y'all have the greatest folks we've ever met! And, a big thanks to our partners from the Bessie Smith Cultural Center to ensure that the Bessie Smith Strut will continue better than ever! Once again, our community responded.
Let's celebrate our community together June 8-16 at the Riverbend Festival. And, most importantly, let's do what we do best. We take care of one another and our guests who come to visit our fabulous community so they have the best experience ever and can't wait to come back and see our beautiful city!
See you at Riverbend 2012!
Water firm ads used scare tactics
I read with a sense of dismay and mixed amusement at the Times editorial (June 6) about the recent history of the Tennessee American-Water Co. (TAWC). Those ads, paid by TAWC shareholders, that were bombarding us in the media warned us of galloping socialism and the high rate increases that would follow if the water company were taken over by the city. The public bought into the demons of socialism as the shareholders laughed all the way to the bank when it was ultimately sold to European investors. The profits from our Tennessee River water have been going to wealthy Europeans. Does that anger anyone?
Perhaps there are parallels with anger at the U.S. in the Middle East, where most live on meager subsistence while few own the oil.
The Asian nations are meeting this week without the U.S., as our 18th century economics isn't particularly relevant. Living standards for most citizens are being driven down as the public continues to buy into the notion that Wall Street is our friend and our government the enemy.
JOHN F. EARY, Ringgold, Ga.
Just imagine what could be
Alas, our president is a gay Kenyan Muslim Hitler conspiring to destroy American business and bring down Western civilization. Those are the negatives about Mr. Obama.
The positives are buried by the biased right-wing media. He once cut down a pineapple tree in his yard in Hawaii. When his mother asked him who did it, he said, "I cannot tell a lie, mother, it was my girlfriend, Michelle." He walked from one island to another just to return a penny an old lady overpaid him at Blockbuster where he worked. Once, he rode a tornado in Texas. He also reversed the direction of the Mississippi River for fun.
All these negatives and positives are true about our president, but sometimes I like to imagine who he could be. I imagine he could be a statesman of rare intellectual ability. I imagine what John McCain imagines, that he could be a decent man and citizen. Mainly, I imagine he could be the epitome of family values. He could be a terrific father who loves his beautiful wife and daughters. I wish my father could have been like him.
For that, I wish our president a Happy Father's Day.
WILLIAM D. HEARD, Ringgold, Ga.
Christian freedom should prevail
Remove atheism from political debates because of North Korea's terrible atheistic government, and because the ungodly in the U.S. tax Christians for ungodly schools and programs, and because they suppress Christian free speech as Rhonda Swan (Perspective, June 3) urges. Remove Islam from political debates because of terrible Muslim governments: Saudi, Iran, Taliban.
Replace atheism and Islam with Christian freedom. Atheists in Chattanooga are far freer than Christians in North Korea; Muslims in Chattanooga far freer than Christians in Saudi, who by law cannot meet nor build buildings for church. Jesus, I like to post, is libertarian. (Obama, Romney, note this.) Biblical lists of jobs for government (Romans 13, I Timothy 2) are far shorter than D.C.'s list or Ron Littlefield's.
Homosexual marriage, Swan's topic? Triune Jehovah's Bible with the "mere Christian" (worldwide history-long) Church approves Adam-and-Eve-for-life type marriage: Wendy and I stick together making love. It tells all other sexual couplings, as Jesus told the woman caught in adultery, go break up (literally, go stop sinning); repent (change) or perish. Christians need not enforce this outside the Church (I Corinthians 5-7), only inside (please!).
Where is outrage over destruction?
I would like to comment on what I witnessed Friday night during nightfall. On June 1, I found a comfortable seat along the bricked area of one of the raised flower beds containing trees, shrubs and flowers (there were no plants around the part where my feet were). There were clear signs stating please do not sit or stand "in" raised beds. This bed has two crepe' myrtle trees as well as azalea bushes and shrubs.
As I sat there, several children (5-10 years old) began to climb in the bed and on the trees, crushing plants and breaking off limbs of the trees. Not only was this amazing to me that parents would let their children disregard the signage, but I saw parents also walking within the beds. At one point, a child was playing with one of the signs. His parent took it from hi, and placed it back into the ground.
Many people today wonder why our youth disregard rules and regulations and get into so much trouble.
Everyone made such a big deal out of "smoking at Miller Park." Where are the outraged people over the destruction of public property?
JANIE MURPHY, Lookout Mountain, Ga.
Mention of D-Day noticeably absent
I was very disappointed in your paper's failure to remember anything about the anniversary of D-Day, June 6,1944. I read the paper, front to back, and not one mention of this historic event was to be found in your paper. I don't know if it is your so-called "progressive views" that justify an omission of a very significant historical event or an historically revisionistic attitude that allows you to overlook such an important milestone in our country's history and that of the world, when the United States became the world's first superpower.
If you are unaware, June 6 is the annual observance of the Allied invasion of Europe to free many countries from the fascist Nazi regime that had enslaved Europe and western Asia for almost five years.
Far more information about singing sensations and "feel good" events is devoted to your pages rather than a remembrance to the greatest generation of Americans, Canadians and British young men who sacrificed everything to bring liberty to an entire continent.
I recommend your staff retake courses in American history and world history before they finalize their choices of what is and isn't important in this nation! Then print what your readers want, the truth!
CARTER PARHAM, Lookout Mountain