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Praise God and bless the workers who have restored our potable water supply! The brief deprivation offered an opportunity to experience a tiny bit of what most refugees live daily. It was not any fun.

We might better deal with this issue if we wrapped ourselves in a blanket, took nothing with us and slept outside in our backyard for a day or two.

Being unable to flush the toilet for a few hours was distressing; think about "living rough" for weeks months while fleeing everything you know well with only what you can carry.

Dear God, forgive us for misunderstanding our brothers and sisters in distress.

Bill Laudeman, Red Bank

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Public student debt payment is unfair

When my sister and I were enrolled in our state university at the same time, my father sent one of us a drawing of a man in a barrel, and to the other a drawing of a man pulling his pocket linings out revealing nothing in them.

Dad was determined to give all four of his children a college education, regardless of the sacrifice required. My husband spent nine years of his life working his way through the state university to "pay as he went."

While my daughter attended a state college, I prayed every day nothing else would break so I could continue to pay the college cost. Every day I hear responsible individuals call Dave Ramsey to proudly give a debt-free scream because they ate "rice and beans" until they paid off their student loans.

It is an affront to all of us who endured hardships obtaining or paying for a college education to suggest that student loan debt should be forgiven at public (our) expense. We worked hard to pay for these educations; we don't consider it fair to be taxed to pay for someone else's.

Sherry Kitts, Hixson

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Democrats, what'll you do for me?

To the Democratic presidential candidates:

Do not attack your fellow Democrats. They are opponents, not enemies. If you win the party's nomination, you will need your opponents' supporters in the fall.

Do not waste the limited time that you have in the national spotlight by talking about Trump. Virtually every voter in the country has already formed an opinion about Trump, one way or another, and nothing you can say will change their opinion.

Instead, please tell me what you will do for me. Please tell us how your proposals will improve the lives of the millions of ordinary Americans, the ones who cannot afford to rent a politician. Tell us what problems you want to try to solve and how you intend to solve them. Tell us how we are going to pay for your proposals. Prove to us that you have a solid grasp of the issues facing our country and that you are the best candidate for us to choose to work on these problems.

Finally, and most important, please demonstrate by your example how we can discuss political issues in a calm and rational manner without anger and bitterness and without personal attacks.

Jim Olson

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Bicyclists already paying their share

In response to a recent letter on cyclists sharing the cost of roads, the writer could not be more wrong.

Adult cyclists, on average, tend to have higher than average incomes, more education and pay higher than average taxes.

Also, most are car owners and tend to have more cars and more expensive cars than average. The exceptions are the poor and the disabled, and I don't think anybody expects them to pay more road taxes. Bicyclists also do not use fossils fuels while riding and do not generate pollution.

Adult cyclists also are healthier than average. Few are overweight, smoke or have Type II diabetes. Today, many health and life insurance companies give discounts to cyclists. It is estimated cyclists ages 50-80 have less then 50% of the health care costs of the average person. In the South, the numbers are even higher. If more people would ride bikes, the country would benefit.

Also, Chattanooga has developed a reputation as a bicycle friendly city. That has increased tourism, and the cycling events it hosts each year bring millions of dollars to the city and surrounding area.

Benjamin Voiles, Lookout Mountain, Georgia

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Scary to ponder removing our rights

When I joined the Marine Corp and swore to defend the Constitution against enemies both foreign and domestic, I did not realize the most dangerous enemy would be domestic.

When you have people in Congress talking about getting rid of or abridging parts of the Constitution they don't like, I get very upset.

When Congress people are sworn in, they also swear to defend the Constitution. I suppose to some those are just words they have to repeat, but I took those words to heart. I swear I will do what is necessary to defend the Constitution and my rights.

Remember, if they can get rid of one right, what will stop them from doing away with all rights, such as private property rights?

Jack Runge, Rising Fawn, Ga.

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Remove security from elected folks

Recently I went to the Hamilton County Courthouse. There is a metal detector to screen entrants. I had a small knife in my pocket. I had to go back to my vehicle to drop my knife. Later in another state at a county courthouse, I had to go through another metal detector with a police watch.

My solution to the gun problem is: Our elected officials live behind a security wall — county, state, federal and presidential. Metal detectors, security details and Secret Service should be removed. Our elected officials should have the same level of security as shoppers at Walmart or people relaxing at a bar in the evening.

If their security was the same as a family shopping for school supplies, the gun laws, background checks, red-flag warnings, mag capacity and a number of other issues would be addressed within the week, if not sooner.

The only thing elected officials fear is re-election. If you like the way the country is going, vote accordingly; if not, vote the toadies out.

Benjamin E. Long

Apison

Social justice is what is needed

Yes, the GOP playbook is out. Simple as always; just taking away your right to think for yourself. Your GOP congressman or senator will scream, "You don't want our country to become socialist, do you?" Will you be too embarrassed to admit you don't know what socialism really means, except what the GOP has told you (because even scholars are unclear), and say, "Oh, No!" You could also add: "I want economic inequality to continue as it is now where the rich get richer with tax breaks and and corporations pay no taxes at all so my family can shoulder the burden." While we're at it, let's add to the federal deficit so my grandchildren can be crushed under it." And, "Let's make sure health care stays inaccessible and unaffordable for so many."

A little social justice can smooth the rough edges of capitalism.

Sandra Rice, Sewanee

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When money stops, so do the actions

I agree with a writer who wrote a letter published last Sunday about people who would cause harm and pain to horses so they will prance around, looking silly in my opinion, in an arena. However, I would pay to see the trainers do some high stepping.

The only ones who can stop this ridiculous practice are the people who support it. When the money stops, so does the event, and that applies to poachers as well.

Don't want to see elephants die? Stop buying items made of ivory. Don't want to see furry little animals die? Don't wear fur.

Laws don't always work. People often break laws or work around them. Everything revolves around someone making money.

Elizabeth Runge, Rising Fawn, Ga.

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