How would police treat non-donors? and more letters from the editors

How would police treat non-donors?

The latest and potentially greatest threat to the welfare of Chattanooga citizens is the secretive, supplemental funding of our police department.

Ron Hart, private investor (and weekly columnist in the Times Free Press), has started a nonprofit to raise money to support the police department. Without oversight, this could create two tiers of Chattanooga police service: Those who are not of the donor class will receive assistance proportional to their donations.

If this were a truly magnanimous gesture, it would be operated with transparency and oversight. The city must place specific requirements on this "benevolent" donor fund.

Chief Murphy, don't allow our city's police department to be owned by special donor class interests. Stop this Trojan horse at the gate, and only allow this with full oversight, transparency and accountability.

John Mathna

Sisters of Charity made a difference

Thanks to the Times Free Press for running The Associated Press report headlined "An era ends for NY's Sisters of Charity" (May 14). As a product of New York's Catholic schools, it hit home and hit hard.

As an upstate New York native now in my late 60s, I don't recall many of my college professors, but I can name every one of my elementary school teachers, all Sisters of Charity in grades K-8 at Our Lady of Lourdes School in Utica.

There was Sister Maureen (kindergarten), the first woman I saw in the "Flying Nun"-like bonnet. There was Sister Edith (grades 1 and 5) and, my favorite, Sister Angela (grades 2, 3 and 7). They all had an impact on this shy Catholic kid who was lucky to end up in their schools and their classes.

These teachers helped shape my faith, set me on a strong academic path and taught me about community. I was pleased — though not surprised — that, despite their dwindling numbers, they have continued to stand for social justice and to work with the less fortunate. It's regrettable that their mission is coming to an end, but I trust they know that they touched many hearts ... and souls.

Frank Maurizio

Migrant flood is ruining country

The flood of foreign migrants continues to pour into our country. Their entry is illegal, but the Biden administration has sent the word out, "Come on in." They receive handouts that are not afforded to legal U.S. citizens.

Our Southern border is absolutely overwhelmed right now. And because of this, the cartels are having a field day — human trafficking, drug trafficking, etc., in record amounts.

No U.S. citizen has had any say in this, nor any congressman, nor any court. Joe Biden is just doing it; no one is stopping him. A country without secure borders is no longer a country.

J. Johns

Ringgold, Ga.

Shouldn't government be pay-as-you-go, too?

Star Parker ("Why Doesn't Massive Debt Bother Biden?") has analyzed the situation pretty well when she says, "We've got staggering national debt because politicians choose to not be honest with citizens by raising their taxes every time they increase spending. Instead they spend and borrow."

The only instance where I disagree with her is when she says that the growing debt burden over time "will fall disproportionately on the younger Black and Hispanic Americans." Why is this so? I would think that my taxes (white woman) will go up at the same rate as the people she mentions. How would it not?

There should be a law restricting Congress from voting for new programs without first being assured that the money to pay for them is available — or immediately forthcoming. We ordinary people are held to this budgetary necessity; why not our government?

Doris Rausch

Tullahoma, Tenn.

Taking my thoughts prayers to ballot box

Schools, places of worship, malls, medical facilities, parking lots, banks, grocery stores, movie theaters, concerts, convenience stores, parades — places that almost 100% of Americans patronize. And we are scared. Scared that places that were safe are no longer.

Sens. Blackburn and Hagerty, Rep. Fleischmann, state senators and representatives: It's time to get out of bed with the NRA and listen to your constituents. More than 70% of Americans are in favor of some kind of sensible gun legislation. Even free speech has its limitations. Why are you putting blood money ahead of your constituents' safety and well-being?

When it comes to gun violence, the U.S. is an outlier. We have the highest rate of gun deaths per 100,000 of the population, 4.2%. Except for Chile, all other countries are less than 1%.

As far as I'm concerned, I'll be taking my thoughts and prayers to the ballot box.

Rebecca Rochat

New acronym for Republicans?

I have come to believe — very sadly — that the political acronym "GOP" now stands for:




Franklin McCallie

CNN shouldn't have become like Fox News

CNN made news recently as it joined hands with Fox. Sadly, the 8 p.m. show involved no news, just support for the loser of many lawsuits who is currently under investigation both federally and in a number of states for unlawful conduct.

When will we go back to the Fairness Doctrine, cavalierly dismissed in 1989, whose dismissal spawned the spew of networks that took advantage of no restraints on what they can say in relation to the truth? It turns out that the rich and powerful are not inclined to police themselves when it concerns potential profits and power. I wonder how many Germans tried to take action during the run-up to World War II. Did they feel helpless to stem the tide of anarchy?

The debacle on May 10, advertised as a town hall, was simply a showcase to aggrandize the worst behaviors — disrespect for women, disrespect for the law, disrespect for humanity, disrespect for one's country, disrespect for one's own person — in a packed and rigged hall. Such an embarrassment in an arena that has a plethora of contenders for the lowest rung of humanity.

Helen Barrett

Aquarium practice shows our regression

In the 1930s, the Nazis made a pseudo-science of determining how much Jewish "blood" determined one's Jewish identity. In the Jim Crow era in the U.S., numerous legislatures attempted to establish the exact amount of African ancestry which would place an individual on the Black side of the color line. Was it one half? One quarter? Even one eighth?

Homer Plessy, the plaintiff in the case which resulted in the Supreme Court's ruling of "separate but equal" in 1896, often passed for white in social settings. In fact, the lightness of his complexion was a factor in choosing him to challenge the Louisiana laws establishing segregated transportation.

So, when you report that three white individuals have sued the Tennessee Aquarium for discrimination in stipulating that an educator hire "must be of minority group," it would appear that we have regressed. Would a person of some African ancestry as pale as Homer Plessy meet the requirement? How about a Native American with as much Cherokee ancestry as Sen. Elizabeth Warren?

Who is clever enough to make such judgments in hiring? And what difference does it make in determining the qualifications of a community engagement educator?

Gary Lindley

Lookout Mountain, Ga.