I was very concerned when the state decided that Taft (Center) should be closed down, especially when we are in such dire need of reform and alternative schools in Chattanooga.
My daughter goes to a "questionable" school, which used to be a very "good" school in the '80s and '90s. There are drugs, gang violence, fights, and bad influences all over the school.
I put blame on parents who don't deserve the kids they were blessed with. They enforce nothing, and the fruit doesn't fall far from the tree.
But a good solution to this problem would be more and larger reform schools like Taft and more alternative schools. Separate the problem kids from the population, not enforce harsher rules on good and bad kids.
Dress codes, "no hoodies," and crazy strict rules don't work. Separation from society and forcing conformity for out-of-control teens will.
Crazy rules just punish the innocent along with the guilty. Let the good kids enjoy a good school. Put the troublemakers in schools that are miserably strict, so they "appreciate" the good schools.
Re: "Chattanooga area's economic outlook brightens":
As a Chattanooga resident, it gives me hope that our economy is showing signs of progress. Thanks to Volkswagen and Amazon for their job opportunities that in turn reap future home buyers for the Chattanooga area.
Without them we could very well be feeling the repercussions of the recession for the next several years.
I would also like to voice praise for the community businesses and corporations for coming together to sponsor a program like Gigi City as this could really brighten Chattanooga's future in terms of the economy and innovation.
If these signs are not a facade of Chattanooga's emergence from the recession, then we could very well be on our way to a brighter future.
My comment is to reference the letter sent in by the retired chaplain Bill W. Smith (Hamilton County Jail).
What I take from this is from the book of Judges, 21:25:
"In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes."
Our king today would be King Jesus and since he has been removed from every facet of our lives, every man or woman, boy or girl, does what is right in their own eyes, and to take it a step further right is wrong.
BETTY W. PALMER
It burns me up to think that the mayor wants to spend $75,000 for a gang study when my stormwater fees are over $10,000 per year.
The $75,000 seems like a small amount to the overall tax income for the city, but a little here and a little there and soon it will all be gone.
Guess what? If he wants a "gang study," all he has to do it Google it. All gangs are the same except some may wear red and some blue.
Spending money like this has got to stop. I wish he had owned his own business for 20 to 30 years and he would see things a lot differently.
Reducing crime might be accomplished by starting at the bottom, littering. Our police could try enforcing that law with warning citations and, for repeated incidents, fines when the violations are observed.
There is so much litter, say on Brainerd and McCallie around the tunnel area, and at bus stops, that citing some offenders without harassment should be possible. The word will spread. Minor crime addressed at a low level will show we are serious about reducing all crime.
THOMAS A. OROFINO
There has been a rising debate within the Republican Party between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich, and Rick Perry. Perry called Romney's economics "vulture." Remember way back the term "Voo-doo economics?"
Point is -- better late then never -- there is a real dialogue now on capitalism and its moral role in society. Is capitalism to be like Enron or the Bernie Madoffs? And questions arise over Romney's manipulations with Bain Capital. Does capitalism depend on the suffering of the masses for the profits of the few and privileged? This is the moral question now within the Republican Party, and it is not a minute too late.
MIKE C. BODINE
There is only one man in the race for the White House who knows exactly what to do about the mess we are in. Only one who knows how to balance a budget, lower the deficit and bring jobs back to America.
He is the only one standing who knows where to put the bomb to blow up the bridge (so to speak), the only one who can out-debate Obama, because he is the smartest man in the room, and that man is Newt Gingrich.
So before we give Obama four more years, remember, the smartest man in any and every room is Newt Gingrich. He knows what we want and need and how to get it, because he has done this before and with a sitting Democratic president.