Did Mayor Berke just need a win and more letters to the editors

Did Mayor Berke just need a win and more letters to the editors

September 9th, 2017 by Staff Report in Opinion Letters

Questions for NAACP's Woods

I have four questions for the NAACP's Elenora Woods:

Will the name of M.L. King Boulevard be restored to Ninth Street? Will Bessie Smith Hall be restored in name to the mill it once was? Will the proposed plaque for the Walnut Street Bridge installation be cancelled? Will the historical marker that identified the location of the blacksmith shop that was owned by a former slave be removed from downtown?

I don't really think so, and I would vehemently oppose any of those measures since all four are a rightful part of the history of our city.

Once again, I call on Ms. Woods to propose and purpose the role of her organization to the commitment of bettering our city by positive actions as opposed to her divisive, inane rhetoric over a non-aggressive statue. If she cannot or will not effect a positive commitment for our citizenry, then I suggest she take her negative and divisive outlook back from whence she came, and destroy and divide that city.

Also, a passing thought for the "peaceful" pastors who would interject themselves into her divisive scheme — Jeremiah 23:1-2.

Erasing history does not change it.

William Hughes

East Ridge

Bookman forgets ones who pay no tax

I take issue with Jay Bookman's commentary in your Sept. 4, issue. He blasts Trump's tax plan because "the bottom 60 percent would see an average increase of 1.27 percent in take-home pay," whereas "the richest 0.1 percent would enjoy an increase of 14.2 percent." What he neglects to mention is that it is impossible to give tax relief to groups that do not pay any. In fact in 2014, Pew Research found "the bottom 20 percent got more money back than they paid in."

Data released for the year 2012 revealed that while the top 1 percent earned 21.9 percent of all reported gross income, they also shouldered the largest share of the tax burden at 38.1 percent. Simultaneously, the bottom 50 percent's tax burden was but 2.8 percent. In 2014, the top 1 percent's share of income dropped to 20.6 percent, while its tax burden jumped to 39.5 percent. Thus does our progressive tax system keep getting progressiver!

It leaves one to wonder how Bookman would distribute a tax reduction fairly across income groups when 47 percent of those groups pay no taxes.

John R. Brown

Ooltewah

Did Mayor Berke just need a win?

Mayor Andy Berke recently was quoted as saying: "Confederates fought against America to preserve slavery. That is the truth."

Hardly. The Union Army came here and attacked us. Hence the name, "The War of Northern Aggression." The Confederacy was/is America and fought for (not against) the freedom of America. At the center of the fight was the issue of states' rights. Lincoln himself said: "My paramount objective in this struggle is not either to save or destroy slavery." We simply refused to be lorded over by an oppressive government and so refused to conform to the unionists' demands. The facts speak to the truth. They shelled our churches during Sunday morning services. Slaves were incredibly expensive and so were owned only by the incredibly wealthy. The Confederate Army was comprised of poor dirt farmers who had no stake in slavery, and black folks fought for the Confederacy. Maybe Mr. Berke believes they fought to keep themselves enslaved? Perhaps Mr. Berke should edify himself (before they burn and rewrite books) in lieu of jumping on the neo-conformist bandwagon.

After the miserable failure of his Violence Reduction Initiative (how pretentious is that?), he needs a win.

Robert Clark

Rossville

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