I suppose I'm not current on local business decisions. For example, why does a city the size of Chattanooga have to farm out the Waste Resources Division billing process to someone in Hemet, Calif.? Is it just too complicated to be handled locally, or could it be someone in our city government who has an unemployed friend or relative in California who needs a job? At any rate, here's my latest experience with the Hemet billing experts.
On March 28, I received an invoice for the sewer charges for current month, dated 3/22/2013, also a charge for the previous month's services, which I had paid by check on Jan. 30, 2013, and which said check, had cleared my bank on Feb. 1, 2013, a total of 44 days, prior to their sending me the past due invoice!
In my 50-plus years of living in Chattanooga, I have never received a bill with this kind of California expertise. Of course, I'm also unfamiliar with the California city called Hemet! Could it possibly be that this city's name is misspelled, and should start with the latter "D"?
Various opinion pieces in your newspaper and many others - along with the national media - have publicized Congressman Desjarlais' transgressions, which occurred 10 or more years ago, to the detriment of Scott and his family. After the election, the publicity slowly subsided, but with the upcoming primary it's beginning to resume. I am neither Democrat nor Republican. I am an independent conservative Christian. Through redistricting, Scott is no longer my congressman, but he is my friend and Christian brother, and I feel led to comment.
One of the most influential Christians in my life was my lay-witness-team leader, who succumbed to temptations in his early adulthood and that behavior ended in a three-year prison term. He pointed out to our team that he, and all other Christians, are really Christians under construction. He taught me that the construction process depends upon applying Scripture to your life. I would like to mention a few that seem to be applicable to Scott's case - all quotes by Jesus:
"Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her."
"Forgive, and you will be forgiven."
"Do to others as you would have them do to you."
GLEN NORFLEET, Manchester, Tenn.
How fitting that the cease-fire discussion with gang leaders took place around a dining room table. A setting where, traditionally, elders sit in positions of honor. The elders that night created the space for civil, courageous communion with the young men. What a challenge this is for each of us in our community. Do we have the courage to stop violence against others. Violence we commit with our words, our thoughts, our deeds, our isolation. Can we sit at a dining room table and call a truce with our family, and forget race and religious issues or must we continue to protect our turf?
Hopefully, the columnist who was present as witness to the truce will be able to report on follow up dining room table conversations. Evenings that tell of peaceful, empowering opportunities and actions.
SUZANNA ALEXANDER, Wildwood, Ga.