Arm children with tools for future
During Mitch McClure's town hall in Hixson to address gang crimes, the solutions suggested were to herd youth into churches and police into our schools. The suggested policies are from what the old suits are most comfortable, and nothing to do with what our children need for their future. Children will not learn how to compete in a global society at church and our police are certified to fight crime, not global economics.
McClure's forum did not address the fact that our failing education system leaves our children excluded from the technology they need to be globally competitive for jobs. The obvious quick-fix starts with technologically-advanced after-school, weekend, and summer programs.
What I am asking of McClure and his fellow conservatives is to look at what our children need for their future, even when it makes them uncomfortable. Why not ask corporations to help with such programs? It simply cannot be about enforcing religion and a blame-oriented world view. Arm kids with computers so their hands are too full for guns or spray paint.
ANGELIA STINNETT, Hixson
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No reservations in vote for Haynes
As a resident and church member in District 3 (Hixson), I am excited to see Marty Haynes in the race for public office.
I have complete confidence in Marty and his ability to work on behalf of the constituents in our district.
I have known Marty for many years and have seen him demonstrate his high level of integrity, morals and ethics in many circumstances. I have no reservations where my vote is being cast.
CRAIG S. MILLER
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Catholic Church is still relevant
Regarding a letter "Catholic employers abusing power" (Feb. 13), I'd like to respond.
The letter only amounted to anti-Catholic bigotry.
Question: Is the church relevant in the post-modern world? Yes, and the Scriptures reassure us that it's not going away.
On the subject of repressing women, wrong! The most joy-filled people you'll ever meet are nuns who dedicate their lives to the service of God, not to the temporary trinkets of this world.
I agree about pedophilia being a disgrace in the church, just as it is with the Boy Scouts, Penn State, other churches, next door neighbors, teachers and weird uncles.
Church leaders are well aware that all Catholics don't follow all the rules. Rules and rule breakers have been around since before the discovery of dirt.
Church leaders, however, are real leaders, and are not about to cave to modern malcontents who want everything their own way.
The writer, who said that "Catholic employers should understand that their religious preferences end where the constitutional rights of employees begin" obviously had never read the Constitution or even the First Amendment. This may be a shocker to many, but free birth control pills won't be found anywhere in the Constitution, but freedom of religion is.
JIM GOODIN, Decatur, Tenn.
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Social Security an earned benefit
Thanks, Richard Shanken, for your letter (Feb. 14) on Social Security. You are absolutely correct. Social Security is not an entitlement.
It is an earned benefit.
You and your employers and me and my employers have paid into the program for years.
I started paying into the program when I worked at the A&P grocery store on McCallie Avenue in 1954.
Now the various Congresses have muddled our earned benefits into the general Treasury and it will take an army of accountants and statisticians to clear the picture. It is an earned benefit because it is my and my employers' money.
GLENN G. BUTLER, Ooltewah
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Look in mirror when laying blame
I have grown used to finding ignorance among the current products of our government educational facilities. From dropouts who can't make change at the local fast-food store to those unable to make proper use of our language after four years of college, it seems that these institutions have failed in their duty.
I was especially saddened, then, to read the letter titled, "Social Security is no entitlement" in Wednesday's paper. My dictionary defines an entitlement as something to which you have a right, claim, or legal title. The writer made his claim and then went on to explain exactly why his charge is wrong.
The National debt is currently above $15.3 trillion. The Social Security liability alone is more than $15.5 trillion; Medicare liability exceeds $81.5 trillion. Federal spending is nearly $3.6 trillion while revenues are just over $2.3 trillion; Washington has to borrow 36 of every 100 dollars they spend. The writer lays the blame at the feet of our elected representatives, but we all have to remember who put them in office. As Pogo said so famously, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."
RONALD A. KOHLIN, Soddy-Daisy