Each year the RiverRocks Festival has grown, improved and benefited the community, until this year.
Unfortunately there appears to have been a change in its philosophy and direction. Its primary focus now seems to be directed toward competitive events, forsaking the individual and family opportunities of the past, such as introduction to Chattanooga's amenities via hikes, educational, etc. events.
Attempting to find individual and family opportunities was frustrating, with confusion as to what websites to view, information disappearing from them, and no means to register to participate in these few events.
Hopefully those overseeing RiverRocks will get their act back together next year. RiverRocks' original direction, encompassment and benefit to the community were wonderful.
I am a veteran of two tours in Vietnam, 1968 and 1969. I'm not going to whine about how we were treated and how that altered the course of our lives forever. I took an oath to defend the president and this country just like all the military.
Over 600 World War II vets die each day, and during the government shutdown they were being denied probably their last chance to see their memorial. The fallen returning from today's wars were denied benefits.
Obama has disrespected the military with exceptions for photo ops. He does not have our back, and everyone that serves or served knows that. I am known for my honesty and integrity. This is one oath I would be hard pressed to honor.
How can the American people not see that this is how America looks when we try to change Washington and the business-as-usual society.
FRED GREB, Madisonville, Tenn.
Would you invest $7.3 million into a product that has an effective life span of 25 years and a payback period of over 35 years?
The Chattanooga Airport received $7 million in EPA grants to install solar panels. The projected annual savings is $205,000 based on current efficiency.
You can expect an efficiency drop of .5 percent - 1 percent per year. When solar panels drop below 80 percent efficiency, it becomes more economical to replace then. Most experts agree by years 25 through 30 it makes economic sense to replace the panels with more efficient panels.
I requested the projection report from the Chattanooga Airport but was informed no report exists. I was curious whether the decline in efficiency was taken into account with this projection. Since the savings is based on current savings, it is safe to assume future savings will be lower due to the decline in efficiency.
Officials say the airport had saved 2,719 tons of carbon dioxide from entering the environment. Neglected in most reports is the fact that the panels themselves had to be manufactured, which is an energy-intensified process. This process produces pollution, heavy metal emissions and greenhouse gases.
THOMAS LYNN, Cleveland, Tenn.
Tea party underappreciated
Much has been written about the tea party over the last few weeks and how it promotes racism and violence. I seriously doubt these writers ever attended a tea party rally. Those I have attended have been well organized and directed in a professional manner.
To make the tea party movement look even worse, there was a recent letter in the Free Press stating the reason conservatives disliked the president was because he was black. Now the government shutdown and current Washington malfunction is being blamed on the tea party.
I think we all agree race relations, bipartisanship and governance in general have deteriorated over the last four years but the left should look within before placing blame and making absurd statements.
Consider the following partial list of failures by this president: Benghazi, budget, national debt, the fast and furious debacle and out-of-control IRS, Obamacare and a corrupt attorney general.
Had it not been for the tea party, these issues would have been swept under the rug never to be seen again.
Let's look at job performance rather than color of skin or party affiliation.
We have so many immigrants in the United States who are undocumented.
For too long, our immigration system has been broken. Now, we have a historic chance to fix all of that.
We also need to crack down on employers who hire undocumented workers. If the employers hire these immigrants, they should be required to pay a fine.
The two U.S. Republican senators from Tennessee, Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, recently bailed out in a game of negotiation hardball over the un-Affordable Care Act and the debt ceiling.
They had billed themselves as conservatives and promised the citizens of this state they'd do whatever it takes to defund an onerous, job-killing Obamacare. They didn't do so.
And despite current federal tax revenues over $200 billion a month, they allowed the president, Democrat legislators and a liberal lap dog media to convince them this country couldn't pay $20 billion a month in interest payments and forestall a default.
Now Alexander and Corker are distancing themselves from courageous men like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Utah Sen. Mike Lee who stepped up to the plate. The two Tennessee senators even chose the dishonorable route and undermined Cruz, Lee, and House Republicans while those Republicans were challenging the destructive Democratic agenda.
Tennessee has two U.S. senators who capitulated and allowed both another trillion dollars in U.S. government deficits and absolutely no concessions with Obamacare. The citizens of Tennessee will remember how Lamar and Bob reneged on their promises and sold out on this country's future.