Letters to the editor

Letters to the editor

August 24th, 2010 in Opinion Letters

Recall effort raises a few questions

Concerning the big movement to recall Chattanooga Mayor Ron Littlefield - a few questions.

Why? Sure, he has proposed a pretty substantial property tax increase, but I think it is for improvements to the city that will boost our rankings among "desirable cities" according to The Daily Green Report or Industry Week, which have praised the city's accomplishments regarding "livability."

Question 2: Who is in line to be the replacement? After all the expense of a recall vote, and the campaign efforts which will have to be made, it all just seems like a big waste of time and money to me.

Question 3: Did everyone who has been trapped leaving the City-County Courts Building even vote in the mayoral election? Should they have any power to "recall" if they did not use their voice to "elect"? And, are they required to vote in any future election?

Question 4: Does this not set a precedent in our elective process - if your candidate does not win, just wait a couple of years and have a "recall vote" on anyone. Or shorten all terms of office to six weeks - if they haven't worked miracles by then - take them out office!

PATTY COUNTS

Recall cost nothing compared to burden

In response to a letter that questions the cost of the recall efforts.

The letter writer's rationale is that the cost for the recall will be a burden on the citizens of Chattanooga.

Do you think that the proposed annexation by Mayor Ron Littlefield will be profitable and increase the tax base of Chattanooga? Not in 20 years! Is Mr. Littlefield's underhanded attempt to hide items in the budget from the City Council members something that a CEO could get away with in a major company? Water runoff fees increased, adding a burden to those on fixed incomes.

A city councilman telling citizens at a council meeting "We don't have to listen to anybody." This is the typical arrogant attitude of elected city officials.

Perhaps the cost of the recall is minute as compared with what it will cost the city of Chattanooga to allow Mr. Littlefield and his "cronies" to "do as they please" for the next three years.

Stand up, America; stand up, Chattanooga; stand up, Hamilton County. We are giving our county away. Now is the time for recalls, to fight for your rights, and stop the professional politicians from creating a tax burden which will be with us for centuries to come.

JIM SHULL Hixson

Don't allow mosque near ground zero

The controversy over the location of the Islamic Center near ground zero is not about religious freedom; it is about ideologies.

The World Trade Towers were attacked by Islamic fundamentalists, and that is a fact. They are bent upon destroying our country, and we should not allow them the symbolic victory of building a mosque so near to our fallen symbols.

Our president should not roll over as easily and quickly to Muslim pressure. He should feel first for American emotions (69 percent against the mosque) and negotiate with the rest of the world later. This mosque is not a house of worship being built by its members; it is a beachhead being built by outside money from those who would bury us and our way of life.

Would Saudi Arabia allow us to build a Baptist church in Riyadh? Would Egypt allow a Catholic church to be built in Cairo? Is Pakistan open to Americans building a Pentecostal church in Karachi?

Google The Costly Call by Emir Fethi Caner. Should we capitulate to our enemies and give in while they do not? Mr. Obama has already spoken out. Shame on him for not speaking up for America.

GERALD WHITELY

Some pedestrians can hinder cyclists

I have noted the discussion about the mix of bicycles and pedestrians on the greenway. The discussion has seemed to place the blame on "speeding cyclists." Based on my observation there is more to it than that.

I encountered pedestrians walking four-abreast who would not give way with a polite "On Your Left" from the cyclist. They even gave me dirty looks when I dismounted and pushed the bike (through the grass) around them.

Then there were the mothers pushing strollers side by side who behaved in the same way. Even a single pedestrian who chooses to walk up the middle of the path and ignores or does not hear the cyclist's warning can be a problem.

One letter writer noted that the bicycles approached silently. Perhaps the pedestrian could hear if their ears were not obstructed with electronic music.

It boils down to the fact that some people are selfish and believe that their own way of using this facility is more important than all others.

Banning any one class of users is not the answer. If the government were to do anything, perhaps a stripe down the center and a few "Keep Right Except Pass" signs might help.

JOHN L. ODOM

Follow the money for recall groups

Following the Chattanooga recall campaigns (and being invited to be part but declining), I have two questions that have yet to be answered by Times Free Press reporting:

1. Who is paying for the campaign, including for promotional materials and newspaper ads? Is any one of the three organizations involved dominant in this way?

2. Are the three organizations chartered in the state of Tennessee - that is, Chattanooga Tea Party, Citizens to Recall Mayor Littlefield, and Chattanooga Organized for Action - and if so, how?

From my own journalism background, it's logical to me that how the money flows and how the organizations are structured will give we readers deeper insight to what's behind the campaign other than the rhetoric and charges the campaign offers.

WES REHBERG

What if Congress rooted out lying?

It was with mixed emotions that I read that Roger Clemons had been indicted for "allegedly lying to Congress."

On one hand, it is another sad day for sports and a reminder of a period a few years ago when stars did whatever was necessary to excel. Whatever happened to pitchers like Sandy Koufax and Nolan Ryan?

But the refreshing news is that a member of Congress has recognized lying. What a new dawn this could be for our country if leaders in Washington rooted out lying and liars. What would honest leadership look like? How many politicians would be gone? Why isn't lying while in Congress a crime?

It makes us oldies remember the Andrews Sisters and their song, "But, I Can Dream Can't I?"

JIMMY CAMPBELL

Column comments not fair discourse

I can handle an occasional silly commentary by Dick Morris; I just consider the source and move on. However, the column by Thomas Sowell just made me angry. I'm not going to rebut every point, but I will say this: Robert Gates did not cut the defense budget by $100 billion.

His proposed budget actually represented an annual increase; strategy was updated. What really got me, though, was the inference that Obama would compromise public safety based on his policies and background.

I have no problem with divergent points of view and the right of one to express them, but vitriolic rhetoric such as this is beyond fair adult political discourse.

There is a faction of the electorate that is willing to accept this far right nonsense if it appears in a legitimate publication; look no further than recent polls on Obama's religion and other negative aspects of the current administration that are patently not true.

Surely the Chattanooga Free Press can do a better job of choosing columnists to make its conservative case.

REECE H. MOODY Ellijay, Ga.