Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

July 13th, 2011 in Opinion Letters

Our free markets reward only few

I read an article, "Governor savors a simple agenda" (July 4).

Three hundred million dollars in bond issues to cover subsidies for expanding businesses? They borrow $300 million to be paid back plus interest, by the taxpayer.

That's the way free markets work, you know, with the government deciding who gets free money so they have a huge advantage over their competition, not who has the best product or service. This is nothing but cronyism, rich and powerful people doing favors for each other to increase their power and wealth by stomping on free markets.

How about the 500 new laws passed by the General Assembly - 500 new ways for the protection of freedom and liberty to take away your freedom and liberty, all signed by the governor.

This is how government works for us: sweetheart deals for the well-connected and hundreds of new ways for the rest of us to go to jail.

It was Thomas Jefferson who said, "I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them." How sad he would be if he could see us now.

MITCHELL PATTON, Copperhill, Tenn.

Thurman's quote stupid, not racist

Were school board member Rhonda Thurman's comments racist?

No. Were they stupid? Certainly. Ms. Thurman has been in public service long enough to know some people constantly search for opportunities to be offended.

WILLIAM SPURGEON, Ooltewah

History supports Thurman remarks

The recent unmerited hypercriticism of school board member Rhonda Thurman calls to mind Frederick Douglass, the renowned 19th century advocate of freedom and equality.

While he was a 12-year-old slave, back when teaching and learning to read were illegal for slaves and an excuse for whippings and beatings, shoeless Frederick, with Tom Sawyer ingenuity, was engaging his white buddies as his private faculty, teaching him good reading skills. Later, with equal skill and at great risk, Douglass taught reading to other slaves.

In 2008 at Gadsden High School in Anthony, N.M., in a program in a limited English-speaking, 100 percent poor student body, Education doctor Joan Kalkwarf reported how - given good technology and a committed teacher - the students had the ability to jump several skill grades in one year. Among others, one student gained a year's skill in one month and one went from eighth grade to the 12th-grade level in four weeks.

I have a hunch that folks in Anthony, N.M., along with Frederick Douglass, would be tempted to say to board member Thurman, "Right on, lady! We can overcome."

FLOYD DENNIS, Hixson

Hiring practices need to change

There is something wrong with school board members who want all their friends to be employed by the county educational system. Don't people in Hamilton County see that?

Are they even qualified to be on the board? How about electing a whole new school board instead of the ones who are already there? Get in people who are from all walks of life on education.

Some members are so wrong in thinking that inner-city schools do not need to be (focused on). They are the sore spots in almost any city, and nobody wants to do anything about it because they are usually the poor.

Then you wonder why we have kids who are committing crimes. It's because people don't want to see poor people get ahead in life even through education.

Rhonda Thurman was mad because her friends got fired. Boo hoo. We all get the ax sooner or later. What makes her friends any better than someone from outside the community?

How do you expect people to react to this shady type of hiring going on in the educational system?

Don't people in Hamilton County think there is something shady about it too?

PENNY FURMAN, Cleveland, Tenn.

Photo spread not puppy love

The adage that a picture tells a thousand words is an understatement, when I viewed the photo/story in Monday's Metro Section on Page 2.

Regrettably, the photos and captions were more of an indirect endorsement of puppy mills than pictures of puppy love.

The large, well-placed photo/article sent humane education back to the Dark Ages. The majority of pet stores which sell puppies have long, nefarious ties to puppy mills across this country. National organizations such as Humane Society of the United States and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have connected the dots with well-documented investigations.

The general public needs to be educated on responsible pet ownership and the horrors of puppy mills. Unfortunately, those photos achieved the exact opposite.

KIM BUTLER, Signal Mountain

No money? Use voting power

With all the hullabaloo over tightening the federal budget before its ceiling can be raised, I'm a bit puzzled by the rhetoric used in deciding just who is going to make the sacrifice to accomplish this goal.

One side says we must not tax the wealthy because that would jeopardize businesses' capability of hiring more workers. (Are they actually under the impression they have been providing jobs?) But, then, it's OK to tax the Social Security recipients. Or don't you consider taking away a portion of this deserved entitlement a tax? I guess it is understandable since this group of people doesn't have the money to buy votes.

The other side wants to split the responsibility, each giving up a portion in order to achieve the goal. I could accept that. You give some, I give some and we can be more united.

However, reality is reality. Some don't want to sit on a bare wooden chair without the padding of a fat wallet. Those of us who don't have the money to provide this comfort do have the voting power though. Exercise it.

JIM ORRISON, Cleveland, Tenn.

Pay attention with pacifiers

I have a concern about pacifiers and babies 7 months or older.

A niece has a 7-month-old son who I call Poppy. Last week, Poppy was in his walker, pacifier in his mouth. I turned away for a split second to answer the phone and heard a cough., It was Poppy. I looked over at him. The pacifier was gone.

I realized that he was choking. I hit him in the back, his mouth flew open, and there it was, the pacifier had lodged in his little throat.

I reached in pulling it out, and he smiled at me.

I screamed out to his mother to check him and told her what had happened. She said he had done this before.

After reading about pacifiers, I learned they advise mothers to change the size of a baby's pacifier or just wean them at 6 months.

Please pay attention. When a baby plays with a pacifier in his mouth, he's bored, and it becomes a task for the baby to do something else with it. We all know that everything goes into the child's mouth.

Please, don't let him get bored with a pacifier. This is serious.

CHARLOTTE COSBY

Condo article like infomercial

Your article on condominium living looks more like another infomercial for The Pinnacle than unbiased informational reporting.

Chattanooga has many condominium communities in all price ranges and with varying amenities. Please strive to be more unbiased.

GAIL STEWART