City should prioritize rail crossing safety
For the second time in 10 days, the crossing guards at the Hamill Road rail crossing remained down with no apparent active train approaching.
I have seen one deadly accident at this crossing when a motorist went around the guards.
The city insists there is little that can be done to improve this situation. A potential accident similar to the recent accident in Collegedale could happen as the stop light at Northpoint Road is very close to the crossing and causes vehicles to stop on the tracks.
With the current investigations into train safety ongoing, this may be a good time to bring this problem to state and federal officials. When Lake Resort Drive closes for needed repairs this summer, the problems at this crossing will only increase. The city should be considering solutions before other accidents occur.
‘More guns mean more dead people’
In last Sunday’s TFP, there were various rants complaining about shootings in Chattanooga. This compels me to ask: Did the complainers vote for politicians who made it legal for any yahoo in this state to carry a concealed gun, no background check, no training, no license?
If they did so vote, they should not complain to the rest of us. They are living in the world of their own creation.
A good quote: “More guns means more dead people. There is no compromising that.” — Ann Richards.
Katheryn A. Thompson
Dropping ‘Dilbert’ not an overreaction
A frequent letter writer recently noted that during the Feb. 22 episode of Scott Adams’ YouTube podcast “Real Coffee with Scott Adams,” the cartoonist referenced a Rasmussen Reports survey that had asked whether people agreed with the statement: “It’s OK to be white.” Most agreed, but Adams noted that 26% of Black respondents disagreed and others weren’t sure.
The letter writer felt the action of many papers to drop his comic strip, “Dilbert,” was an overreaction.
To the contrary, according to the Anti-Defamation League, as quoted by The Associated Press, the phrase “It’s OK to be white” was popularized as a trolling campaign by members of 4chan, a notorious and anonymous message board, and was adopted by some white supremacists.
Adams, again according to the AP, has repeatedly referred to Black people as members of a “hate group” or a “racist hate group” and said he would no longer “help Black Americans.”
In view of Mr. Adams’ extensive history of hateful remarks, I would not characterize the dropping of his comic strip as an overreaction, but as a reasonable and overdue action.
What’s offensive to one not to the other
Big mistake dropping “Dilbert.” If you want to rid the paper of offensive content, how about starting with Chattanooga Times cartoonist Clay Bennett and “Doonesbury”?
Seeking rental, child subsidies
President Biden has released his new budget. Among his many priorities, a huge one is making the tax code fairer for everyday Americans.
I agree. There are two things Congress could do right now to make it happen. First, expand the Child Tax Credit. In 2021 Congress expanded the CTC for all low-income families and sent it as monthly payments. Child poverty immediately plummeted, and parents breathed a sigh of relief. Sadly, Congress let the expanded CTC expire.
Second, enact a Renter Tax Credit (RTC). Millions of American renters are struggling to keep up with skyrocketing rents. While the tax code gives billions in tax breaks to homeowners, renters get nothing. The RTC would remedy this by giving rent-burdened households a refundable tax credit to help offset the high cost of rent.
For decades, Congress has skewed the tax code for the wealthy. The president is calling on them to start putting everyday Americans first. I urge our members of Congress to follow suit by expanding the CTC and enacting an RTC now.
Reader says drag law simply bigotry
So, let me get this straight (no pun intended): If a biological male impersonates a woman by participating in a public drag performance, or, judging from the vagueness of this law, dresses as he feels comfortable at Walmart, he could be arrested?
Would that also apply to a short-haired woman wearing cowboy boots, blue jeans and an Earnhardt T-shirt? Asking for a friend. Stop legislating bigotry. Full stop.
Wants proof of solar’s prowess
Thank you for your in-depth reporting. I hope that you can help me clarify some statements reported by the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. They claim that renewable power costs less than fossil- or gas-powered electricity. I wonder and maybe you can explain how this is physically possible. I understand that solar uses the sun to generate electricity, but the sun sets every day, which to me means the solar power shuts down every day. Yet, a fossil or gas plant is expected to run 24 hours a day.
I do not understand why they are compared as equals. If they say they would use batteries to back the down time for solar and wind, where has this been done and are they including the cost of batteries in their cost of generation or are they counting on fossil and gas to make up for them?
I just wonder how they can supply power 24 hours a day when people need and want the power. It would be helpful to see a 24-hour generation comparison of solar to a fossil plant instead of blindly accepting their claims.
Spring City, Tenn.
It’s a drag to focus on drag attendance
Republicans all seem to be focusing on transgender and drag issues as if they are a pressing problem.
Only six out of a 1,000 people in the U.S. identify as transgender. That is half the percentage of American Indian and Alaskan natives. Now consider that about 770 out of 1,000 Americans do not meet the minimum standards to join the military.
Republicans may believe that attending drag shows is a kind of “sexual orientation crack,” and one-time exposure will make children opt for a sex change. Maybe if we send highly decorated soldiers wearing their uniforms decorated with lots of medals to our local high schools, that exposure would turn our children from high school dropouts to military heroes?
There are bigger issues that our representatives need to focus on — issues that affect a larger percentage of the population. Marginalizing a group of people that has a hard time defending themselves has happened before. Maybe we’ll just make them wear a pink ribbon instead of a yellow star.
East Ridge Tenn.