Now that our first case of COVID-19 has been diagnosed here in Chattanooga, are we going to start getting updates to see how the virus actually progresses in someone without all the hype and fear?

It would be a service to know if it's really worth it for all those people who are going out and hoarding all those cleaning supplies, toilet paper and food items, so there's nothing left for the rest of us.

Lauren Pieniaszek, Ooltewah


Paid sick leave should be provided

Local businesses that provide public services like restaurants, coffee shops and stores have a responsibility to help maintain the public health in our city. Most restaurants do not provide paid sick leave to their employees. Their workers are showing up to work sick, right now, because they can't afford to pay rent and buy groceries without their paychecks.

If we want to minimize the effect that the recent coronavirus may have on the most vulnerable people in our city (the elderly, the poor, the immuno-compromised), then we need to immediately start offering paid sick leave to service workers.

Additionally, all landlords and banks in our city need to stop evictions and foreclosures during this outbreak to prevent people from spreading the disease if they lose their paychecks. Kicking people out on the streets or forcing them to move in with their parents (who are more at risk) will only worsen the effects the virus could have on Chattanooga.

If the city, businesses or property owners are not willing to take these actions, then it is up to workers and renters to force them to do the right thing. Talk to your co-workers and neighbors. Start getting organized.

Danny Freeman


Lack of TV sports sends one thinking

With no sports this weekend, it gave me more time to think.

After two days of no sports on TV, I noticed a strange woman on the couch. I think it was my wife but was afraid to ask. Here is what I was thinking about.

If a gallon of water weighs eight pounds, how much water could be in a thunderstorm? A storm that measures a square mile and dumps two inches of rain would hold, it seems, thousands of gallons of water. How does this much weight float above us? If it all came down at once would our houses, our cars, and ourselves be crushed?

Never mind, I was just thinking. What are you thinking about?

Jim Griffin, Chickamauga, Georgia


Stop looking to blame with virus

Congrats on printing the 3/16 Times page commentary: "It's Fear, Not Coronavirus, That's Upending Markets, Life" by Barry Glassner.

The COVID-19 is a serious issue but not to the level that has fueled the current panic. It is time for us to all pull together and stop the destructive rhetoric promoted by the networks, media and politicians.

We need to listen to and follow the directives of our medical professionals and stop trying to place blame to gain some perceived advantage.

Mike Budnick, Winchester


Media perpetrating coronavirus panic

The egregious disservice the media has perpetrated on this country by its 24/7, frenzied and hysterical coronavirus reporting is a tragedy of historic proportions.

This irresponsibility has wrought untold havoc and hardship throughout the fabric of this country, while inflicting major financial penalties upon millions of citizens.

I'm certainly no infectious disease expert, but it doesn't preclude one from reasoning. Sadly, as of March 15, there have been between 30 and 50 deaths from this virus in this country of 330 million people. (Statistically, that's about half of the traffic fatalities every day in this country.) And for this we need bold, daily headlines, 24/7 histrionics and minute by minute scorecards of reported cases and deaths?

Meanwhile, tragically, the CDC estimates some 30,000 to 50,000 flu deaths this season, all without a peep from the media. Fifty versus 30,000-50,000? Perhaps mathematics is not a media strong suit.

The reality is the media has no strong suit. It does however have an agenda, and rest assured your best interests are not there.

Had your fill yet?

Al Colonna, Signal Mountain


Virus solution: Just wear gloves

To help combat spreading of the coronavirus, it occurred to me that wearing gloves might help. A light cotton glove would work. Then if we touched our faces, we would be aware of it. Also, shaking hands would no longer be a problem.

The mask only keeps you from touching your mouth and nose. But talking with anyone must be hard without removing it. Gloves, no bother. And hardly noticeable.

Just sign me LOLITS: Little Ol' Lady in tennis shoes and gloves.

Sharon Guy, Charleston, Tennessee


Litter keeping 'scenic' from city

I am horrified to see the amount of trash in our city and county. Driving any route in Chattanooga and surroundings, it is visible to anyone.

I drive the "W" Road and Mountain Creek Road, and the fast food containers and beer cans are everywhere. Stop at any traffic light and view the cigarette butts and garbage around you. Every entrance and exit ramp on I-24 and Highway 27 are loaded with garbage.

Are we really a "Scenic City" as all are used to calling the city. I think tourists would laugh at that nickname when looking around at the trash.

Is there any way the city could pick up some of this filth?

People should be fined and made to pick up trash if they throw it out of their car. I have never known anyone to be ticketed for littering; maybe it is time to start. If you see someone littering, get their license number. Call the city.

Everyone needs to help to clean the Scenic City.

Linda Harris, Walden


Is coronavirus a judgment from God?

Is the coronavirus a judgment from God upon the world of the ungodly? Perhaps each of us should examine our hearts to see if we are pleasing to the creator of this world, or grieving him. 

Nearly 2,000 years after creation, God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it sorrowed the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

Nearly 2,000 years later, God sent his son into this world to give all those who trust in him grace and forgiveness. God is merciful, but also just. He warns us that if the land sins grievously against him, he will stretch out his hand upon it, and break the staff of bread thereof, and will send famine upon it.

What can stop the coronavirus?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and will heal their Land."

Michael Siemer