Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

June 29th, 2011 in Opinion Letters

Drug-war weapons come from abroad

I am responding to your editorial "Gun-running gone amok," (June 22). The basic premise of your editorial - that the massive smuggling of guns from southwestern American gun stores have fueled the drug cartel wars - is in error.

It is against the law for American sporting good stores to have fully automatic weapons (machine guns) for sale. It is machine guns that are creating the horrid bloodshed in Mexico. Assault weapons are fully automatic (machine guns).

Let's look at this from another angle. You are the head of a drug cartel with millions of ill-gotten dollars. You have incredible power. You need weapons. Are you going to send Juan up to Bob's Pretty Good Gun Shop in Phoenix to solve this problem? And what exactly will Juan buy, illegal? A used Colt revolver? A bolt action 30-06? A lever action 30-30?

I think you're going to send Juan to an illegal arms dealer in Hong Kong or Singapore who has access to thousands of surplus assault rifles from the millions that the Chinese and the many iron curtain countries have manufactured over the last 50 years.


Children will lose if arts funds cut

As the county commissioners cast their vote on the budget Thursday, I hope that they will reconsider their former decision to cut off all funding for Allied Arts.

The number of children under 18 alone who are impacted by the programs of the various organizations funded by Allied Arts IS incredible. Through special programs and attendance at events, the Arts and Education Council reaches 15,300 children; the Association of Visual Arts, 1,889 children; Ballet Tennessee, 10,000 children; Chattanooga Ballet, 36,715 children; Chattanooga African-American, 9,400 children; Chattanooga Theatre Center, 17,000 children; Hunter Museum, 22,000 children; Chattanooga Symphony, 20,000 children; and the Creative Discovery Museum, 160,179 children.

Allied Arts also has artist residencies in the schools as well as other programming, which brings the total of students reached by all of the above to 858,278. The impact on the children in Hamilton County is so important, especially because there is very little art offered in the public schools.

Beyond this incredible outreach is the fact that businesses, tourists and potential residents of Chattanooga are attracted by the outstanding number of arts activities occurring here.

County Commissioners and some of the public may not be aware of the work that is being done by these funded members. I hope they will rally to email their members to vote once more for Allied Arts. They, their funded members and the community will be very appreciative.

CHARLOTTE LANDIS, AVA Board of Directors