Don't be so quick to judge others
I found a recent letter concerning the state of the military which struck me as too quick to jump to conclusions about conscientious objectors and pacifists, among others.
Just because someone doesn't have the courage or will to join the military doesn't mean he doesn't care about the state of the country and its military endeavors. Not everyone who chooses not to engage in war is someone who has not engaged in it previously. As someone said, in a fictional comic book setting, "Men who have seen battle are often the ones who hold life most dear." This is not to say that there aren't exceptions to this who view war as an end in itself as opposed to a last resort means to the end of lasting peace.
Even such gun enthusiasts who exist in Tennessee would probably realize that the goal of the Colt Peacemaker was just that, preparing for war so that peace would prevail.
It's a razor's edge, however, with issues ranging from gun control to military engagement overseas to American military exceptionalism that pervade the political climate today. We may step into the abyss and not be able to turn back. I sincerely hope not.
Benefits promise is what it is
Inmates shouldn't be expected to subsidize operation of their institution. Chattanooga's proposed "adjustment" of public safety benefits equates to that.
A paper trail surely substantiates pay and benefits promised. At the very least, there was a verbal "gentleman's" agreement. Given Lt. Terry Knowles' rank, (letter, April 27) he's delivered his contracted responsibilities. Perhaps his benefits are more than they might be if the deal was struck today. It is what was promised.
Consider this: A man mortgaged a home when interest rates were higher than today. He signed a note, looked agents in the eye and promised to pay. He can no longer afford that payment and notifies the bank that, due to economic conditions, and taking into consideration his "Cadillac" rate of interest, he will adjust his payment downward. The bank is expected to take the loss ... and like it.
Two legal promises, both documented. The firefighter is helpless to prevent a breach of promise and must take it and like it. Case number two simply ain't gonna happen. What's more, the bank can retaliate to the greatest degree.
What's the difference? I don't see one, except that the word "promise" evidently has a different definition depending on where it's used.