published Friday, June 14th, 2013

Drew's Views

National Guard Brig. Gen. Henry Graham, left, informs Gov. George Wallace that the guard is under federal control as the two meet on June 11, 1963, at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
National Guard Brig. Gen. Henry Graham, left, informs Gov. George Wallace that the guard is under federal control as the two meet on June 11, 1963, at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

HEADLINE: Wallace 'stand' was 50 years ago

THE RECAP: It was 50 years ago this week that then-Gov. George Wallace staged his "Stand in the Schoolhouse Door" to prevent blacks from attending the University of Alabama.

On Tuesday, a racially integrated crowd gathered in Tuscaloosa to remember that landmark event of June 11, 1963. The university staged a commemoration Tuesday evening at Foster Auditorium, where Wallace faced down federal officials to oppose integration.

DREW'S VIEW: It seems unthinkable that Gov. George Wallace's despicable stand against integrating the University of Alabama was viewed as reasonable and even heroic at the time. Denying people fair and equal treatment and preventing them from entering into a public institution simply because of traits they were born with seems ignorant, bigoted and barbaric.

Thank goodness we've become more mature, intelligent and open-minded as a society.

Oh, that's right ... we haven't.

Gay and lesbian couples wishing to enter into the public institution of marriage are being met with the same hatred and prejudice faced by the first black students trying to enter the public institution of the University of Alabama.

There's little doubt that those preventing the equal rights of gay Americans today will one day be remembered with all of the contempt and disgust that we now apply to George Wallace.

•••

HEADLINE: Sequatchie County wheel tax vote likely in August

THE RECAP: Sequatchie County, Tenn., voters will decide as soon as August whether they want a $20 wheel tax to help the county offset its anticipated Affordable Care Act health costs, estimated at $300,000 a year. A $20 wheel tax would generate the amount needed, based on an estimated 15,000-17,000 eligible vehicles, officials said. Voters nixed referendums twice last year to increase the sales tax rate and an informal analysis shows a strong opposition to the wheel tax proposal, as well.

DREW'S VIEW: Who knew the U.S. Supreme Court was so right when it made the goofy ruling last summer that Obamacare is a tax, not an individual mandate? Of course the court, in an attempt to constitutionally justify the fascist program, alleged that the tax would only apply as a penalty to those required to buy health insurance who choose not to. The Court didn't understand that Obamacare would be a tax on everyone. But, it turns out, it is.

We will all pay more in taxes due to Obamacare -- and not just on the federal level. The proposed Sequatchie County tax increase in response to expected Obamacare expenses is among the first of many tax hikes across our region and throughout the nation that will inundate taxpayers in response to the higher costs of insuring low-level employees of city and county governments. In addition to higher local taxes, Obamacare will cause many cities and counties to slash their lowest paid and most poorly educated employees to avoid the significant expense -- harming the very people the president claims to care about the most.

Of course, if Sequatchie County's executive and commissioners would simply exercise a modicum of fiscal responsibility and prioritize the county's bloated $32.2 million budget, a tax increase wouldn't be necessary. Unfortunately, many of the county's leaders would rather pass the buck and force their constituents to pay more in taxes than act like adults and make a few tough decisions.

•••

HEADLINE: Pennsylvania girl who took on donor rules gets adult lungs

THE RECAP: A 10-year-old girl whose efforts to qualify for an organ donation drew public debate over how organs are allocated received a double-lung transplant on Wednesday after a match with an adult donor was made. The family of Sarah Murnaghan, who suffers from severe cystic fibrosis, challenged existing transplant policy that made children under 12 wait for pediatric lungs to become available or be offered lungs donated by adults only after adolescents and adults on the waiting list had been considered. They said pediatric lungs are rarely donated.

Murnaghan's health was deteriorating when a judge intervened last week, giving her a chance at the much larger list of organs from adult donors.

DREW'S VIEW: Murnaghan's plight should generate a larger conversation about America's broken organ donation system. The current system contains no incentives to encourage organ donations and it fails to reward people who pledge to donate their organs. These issues must be solved.

One easy solution to addressing many of these problems has been proposed by Tennessean Dave Undis through his organization LifeSharers.

LifeSharers creates an incentive to donate your organs by giving people who agree to donate their organs once they die priority over people who don't if they ever need a transplant. Since, under the LifeSharers model, more people will agree to donate organs, more organs will be available for everyone.

Isn't it only fair that people who have agreed to donate organs get dibs over those who haven't if they ever need a transplant?

"Drew's views" is a weekly roundup of Free Press opinions about topics that appeared recently in the Times Free Press. Follow Drew Johnson on Twitter: @Drews_Views.

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Oldhickory said...

George Wallace...50 years ago... And still no commentary from the Free Press Editor on the racist mob in Manchester. Why is the Editor strangely silent on this event when he could have just as easily written the following in his commentary today?

It seems unthinkable that the Tea Party's despicable stand against the Muslim citizens of Manchester was viewed as reasonable and even heroic by many readers on this newspaper. Denying people fair and equal treatment and preventing them from speaking at a public meeting simply because of traits they were born with seems ignorant, bigoted and barbaric.

Thank goodness we've become more mature, intelligent and open-minded as a society.

Oh, that's right ... we haven't.

Muslim citizens are being met with the same hatred and prejudice faced by the first black students trying to enter the public institution of the University of Alabama.

There's little doubt that those preventing the equal rights of Muslim Americans today will one day be remembered with all of the contempt and disgust that we now apply to George Wallace.

June 14, 2013 at 8:34 a.m.
charivara said...

Oh yes, that fascist Obamacare, modeled after that fascist Romneycare, first proposed by that fascist "think tank" the Heritage Foundation. Give it a rest Drew. If you want to find fascists, look in the mirror, look at the people and policies you support.

June 14, 2013 at 4:37 p.m.
AndrewLohr said...

Drew, do you denounce government's action in prosecuting beakers who refused to do wedding cakes for "gay" weddings?

Oldhickory, what do you think of Saudi Arabian society? Have you prayed that open Christian worship be allowed there?

June 14, 2013 at 7:21 p.m.
Hunter_Bluff said...

I actually agree with Drew. All American citizens have the same rights and responsibilities no matter gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation (or lack of), etc. Equal means equal. There aren't degrees of equal just as there aren't degrees of uniqueness.

I don't agree with Drew getting away with just casting rocks at Obamacare w/o offering up his solution. Since he likes to point out what he thinks is wrong with it, he must know what it should be and should articulate his plan (hint - the Republican mantra of "repeal and replace" requires you to have a plan with which to replace).

June 15, 2013 at 5:54 p.m.
Hunter_Bluff said...

Mr. Lohr, Outside of ex-pats working in Saudi Arabia what Christians are there for you to pray for?

And yes, if a baker (or beaker) involved in interstate commerce is at legal risk if he declines to serve an American citizen no matter that citizen's race, color, gender, sexual orientation, etc. The probability that he would be prosecuted depends on how visible the behavior is. If the company's website says "We only serve white, hetero christian males" it might draw too much attention.

June 15, 2013 at 6:05 p.m.
marmadukegarcia said...

Prediction for after gay marriage is legal: if a wedding contractor wants to specialize in gay weddings, no one will mind. If a contractor wants to specialize in straight weddings, HATE CRIME!

June 15, 2013 at 6:06 p.m.
rick1 said...

Does anyone believe Eric Holder and his Justice Department would prosecute a Muslim owned bakery if they refused to make a wedding cake for a gay or lesbian couple?

June 15, 2013 at 7:14 p.m.
Hunter_Bluff said...

Unless you make a public display of your discrimination (think Governor Lester Maddox and his axehandles at his restaurant "The Pickrick" in Atlanta or Wallace in the door of the university) you aren't likely to draw the attention of legal authorities. Most customers can sense if a business wants to work with them. Most of us adults can agree to disagree and move on.

June 15, 2013 at 10:42 p.m.
marmadukegarcia said...

Really, Drew, comparing gay marriage to the civil rights injustices enforced by racist Democrats like George Wallace is beneath you. This is a liberal/progressive tactic. Where are the police dogs today? Where are the water cannons? Where are the gays being prevented from going to state colleges? None of that is happening, of course. Gay marriage may well be worth having, but society would be better served if gay marriage supporters viewed it in the context of Chesterton's Fence rather than Bull Connor's police batons.

June 17, 2013 at 11:49 a.m.
LIFESHARERS said...

If you want your organs to go to other registered organ donors, please join LifeSharers at www.lifesharers.org. Membership is free, there is no age limit, and no one is excluded due to any pre-existing medical condition.

June 17, 2013 at 1:39 p.m.
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