You know that TV commercial that ends with Chattanooga mayoral candidate Tim Kelly filling a pothole? Well, he stepped in it this week, but it was on social media rather than the middle of the street.

Kelly, like many liberals across the country, enjoyed a victory lap when news of Rush Limbaugh's death was reported this week.

"I have never wished a man dead, but I have read some obituaries with great pleasure," read the meme that Kelly shared in a since-deleted Facebook post about Limbaugh, who died Wednesday from lung cancer at 70.

Doing cartwheels after cancer deaths is an interesting personal decision to begin with, but Kelly's statement to TFP reporter Sarah Grace Taylor makes it clear that it was the timing of his comment, not the content, that Kelly viewed as inappropriate.

"I recently shared a ... quote in a social media thread which I quickly deleted. Weighing in on that day was insensitive, and I should not have done it," Kelly wrote in an emailed statement to the TFP. "I believe the best way to handle a mistake is to first own up to it and then do better in the future. Our city and country would be a better place if more people took responsibility, and committed to doing better in the future. As your next mayor, I'm committed to bringing Chattanooga together."

So Kelly's campaign pledge is to quickly apologize and promise to do better after his thoughtless mistakes. While that's a fine lesson for middle schoolers, how about our leaders pledge to, you know, not make these kinds of mistakes to begin with?

Kelly, a successful businessman seeking his first public office, certainly has mastered the spin of the "quote-unquote" apology. Sounds as if he is a lifetime politician, don't you think?


Speaking of contempt ...

See, I think everyone is looking at this Ted Cruz thing backward.

Sure, the Texas senator took off for Cancun with the family to escape the dire conditions in his home state in the aftermath of record-setting winter storms. There are at least 24 dead and countless Texans without power, water, gas or food.

But Cruz's daughters needed some sun, and gang, those Ritz Carlton rooms are not going to fill themselves.

Maybe, just maybe, we are undervaluing the service Cruz has just provided our great nation.

The collective contempt being expressed for Cruz's selfishness and carelessness right now may be the most united our states have been since 9/11.


You bet Georgia's watching

OK, the record-setting first two months of legalized gambling in the state of Tennessee certainly has the attention of one Georgia lawmaker.

"Over 2 million [Georgians] are doing it now," Sen. Jeff Mullis, R-Chickamauga, told this week. "Do you know who's in control of it? The bookies."

Mullis is the chief sponsor of Senate Bill 142, which would legalize betting in the Peach State. It has a similar framework to a bill being reviewed by the Georgia House, too, in that the state lottery would run the gaming and work with at least six online partners, who would be required to pay annual licensing fees of $900,000, as well as the taxes on revenue.

According to, 19 states have legalized sports betting, and four more, including Georgia, are currently debating and reviewing legislation that could make it legal as soon as this year.


Obit observation

I believe we all know our world needs more love.

Well, we're going to need even more after news of Clara B. King's death this week. She was 90.

King was the mother of five sons, their children and grandchildren. She was a devoted member — for 70 years — of the Greater Friendship Primitive Baptist Church here in town. And her heart was able to give more.

She spent more than two decades later in her life as a valuable part of the Hamilton County Foster Grandparents organization.

Thanks Clara, for being part of the solution in your wonderful life.

Contact Jay Greeson at

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Jay Greeson