This March, the Chattanooga Area Food Bank is recognizing National Nutrition Month in honor of the one in six Americans who lack access to enough food for an active, healthy life.
In addition to meeting the emergency food needs of 20,000 people each week through our 20-county network of 300 member agencies, we also are striving to meet the nutritional needs of this at-risk population.
After all, food insecurity has serious health consequences. Food-insecure children are more likely to experience poor physical health and hospitalization, as well as developmental delays. Furthermore, many of the risks of being food insecure are the same as those of becoming obese including limited resources; lack of access to healthy, affordable foods, cycles of deprivation and overeating; and high levels of stress.
By providing healthy food, including an average 1 million pounds of fresh produce annually, the Chattanooga Area Food Bank plays a unique role in the fight against hunger and the equally important promotion of good health. But there is more to do. We have set an ambitious goal to increase produce distribution by 50 percent next year, including 150,000 pounds sourced directly from local growers.
Help us nourish hungry families. Visit ChattFoodBank.org this month.
MAEGHAN JONES, president, Chattanooga Area Food Bank
Legislators are considering HB621. It amends TCA Title 49, Chapter 50, to require owners of dangerous and vicious dogs to secure minimal liability insurance. The amendment would define as vicious: Dogs that belong to a breed that is commonly known as a pit bull dog. The ownership, keeping, or harboring of such a breed of dog shall be prima facie evidence of the ownership, keeping or harboring of a vicious dog.
I am a dog lover. I had the opportunity to raise a litter of pit bulls. Raising them helped me determine if they are mean by nurture or nature.
My pit bulls were raised as babies. They slept in my bed, and laid on me when I watched TV. They were gentle to humans and never exhibited aggressive tendencies. I can truly say, after years of analysis and experimentation, that pit bulls are not an aggressive breed. The pit bulls aren't the problem. It is the evil people who make them mean. Pass laws to address the evil people who are raising fighting pit bulls. Make the penalties significant enough to deter such evilness toward an innocent breed of dog.
TRECIA GAYLE WATSON, Cleveland, Tenn.
Did it occur to Mr. Bennett that the government of North Korea does not allow private citizens to bear any arms, and certainly not assault weapons? Perhaps the framers of our Constitution realized an armed citizenry would not permit a repressive, oppressive and insane government such as North Korea has to exist here.
TOM BAKER, Harrison, Tenn.
The Pottery Studio editorial was ill-considered and badly aimed. It is immaculately run by talented potter, David Chambers, who generously shares his expert knowledge and is a patient and inspiring instructor.
The assumption that the studio has few participants because it doesn't have to "please its customers" is inaccurate. Hundreds of school children and countless seniors who utilize it for demonstrations and to have a hands-on experience with a fundamental art go uncounted because they pay no fees. Maintaining a studio where expensive equipment and space can be shared by all citizens makes good community sense as many would otherwise be unable to pursue the craft individually. It would be better attended if it were more aggressively promoted and open more than a few hours at a time, three or four days a week.
Maybe Mayor-elect Andy Berke will have the clear vision to return this treasured facility to the Parks and Recreation Department where it can continue to thrive under David Chambers' excellent direction.
You are muddy wrong about this.
We, along with three other couples, have season tickets to the Mocs football games. Last year, for one game, instead of meeting in the parking lot for a tailgate, we all met at T-Bones before the game. One of the couples has an adult son confined to a wheelchair. When we left the restaurant, I was dismayed, frustrated, aggravated and embarrassed that, in my city, it was so difficult for the wheelchair to travel the one block to the stadium.
The sidewalks are deteriorating, bumpy and often don't have wheelchair access. This is something that really needs to be addressed. I was so glad to read that Ms. Wheelchair is working to get some changes. Until someone is faced with a situation like this one, you really don't understand the difficulty people in wheelchairs have moving around in the city.
I do hope and pray that improvements can and will be made in a timely matter. This city is moving forward in so many areas and this needs to be part of the improvements.
I was delighted to learn that the newly elected pope chose to name himself after St. Francis of Assisi, generally known as patron saint of the animals. Indeed, Catholic and Anglican churches hold ceremonies blessing animals on his feast day of October 4.
On one of his nature walks, Francis reportedly preached to the birds and is often portrayed with a bird in his hand. On another occasion, Francis concluded a pact with a ferocious wolf that was terrorizing local townsfolk, whereby the wolf would quit preying on the town's sheep in exchange for being fed regularly. He even persuaded local dogs to stop harassing the wolf. He freed a rabbit from a trap, returned caught fish to their stream and fed half-frozen bees in wintertime.
I hope that Pope Francis will inspire Catholics and all persons of goodwill to show nonhuman animals the respect and compassion they so richly deserve, particularly when it comes to subsidizing their abuse and slaughter for food at the checkout counter. Joining the Meatless Monday trend may be a good start.
The question is, should the post office continue to provide home delivery on Saturdays?
Without doubt, not getting mail on any day is a nuisance. But has that inconvenience ever become a real problem?
For me, I lose out on getting one additional movie from NetFlicks via mail every other week.
I hate that our postal workers won't get those overtime hours, but I believe USPS Saturday delivery is one entitlement we can afford to lose.
BERT HAMMER, Cleveland, Tenn.
Please help put an end to animal cruelty by not promoting the circus. The animals suffer immensely and unnecessarily.