When I read Gov. Lee's guidance to the leaders of our Tennessee communities, I felt proud and grateful. He offered the absolute best advice that can ever be offered.

I won't take time to talk about how other leaders in Chattanooga have sold out our communities for politics, but I will say that I am so proud of Gov. Lee. To acknowledge God as our helper in this time is to show true wisdom and leadership. It is clear to me that he has not only tried to find but has found the essential; that is, God is our help.

You have only to read the Bible for other examples of great leaders who have led their people to prayer; e.g., Moses, Josiah, Paul. All empires rise and fall at God's will. We not only pray for Gov. Lee but all of our federal, state and local officials who are doing their best to lead America through this difficult time. Now is the time to pull together, not to tear each other apart.

We do not "deserve" anything, but through God's grace, we have one of the best governors a state could have. Thank you, Gov. Lee!

Janet Spence, Soddy-Daisy


Let's not usher in return of Wild West

As Tennesseans anxiously vie over diminishing basic necessities the coronavirus has caused, the sales of guns and ammo have soared. Do we really want the unregulated open-carry of firearms?

Many who favor unregulated open-carry of guns live in the much more violent world of movies and television where our children may see some 40,000 murders and another 800,000 acts of violence by the time they graduate from high school.

Popular in old Western movies was the "law of the gun," but in many real old Western towns, marshals like "Wild Bill" Hickock, Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson enforced laws that had folks surrender their guns upon entering. In Old West legend, a man with a pistol who took on a man with a rifle was considered to have committed suicide.

And Johnny Cash sang of a rueful mother's plea, "Don't take your guns to town, son." But Bill didn't listen, took his guns, took offense at a perceived slight in the local saloon and ended up being shot dead.

One person's right to carry a gun in public shouldn't have priority over the peace of mind the majority of others gain from the regulation of carry permits.

Grady S. Burgner, Ooltewah


Let coronavirus lead us to better coverage

Tennesseans should commend state Rep. Ron Travis of Dayton and four other Republican lawmakers for sponsoring a bill to expand Tennessee Medicaid coverage.

In the furor of the coronavirus, many more Americans die from lack of medical insurance than from the coronavirus. Rep. Travis understands having medical insurance saves lives, as people with medical coverage are more likely to seek preventative care and care earlier for new symptoms.

Lack of medical insurance extends beyond Medicaid. It is a disgrace the richest nation in the world has a health care system that punishes people for being sick. Even private insurance is flawed. The Journal of the American Medical Association recently reported a decline in privately insured people seeking preventative care due to high deductible costs.

I recently fell and broke my hip in Germany. The ambulance cost $75 and the emergency room just over $200. Such an accident here would have cost thousands, which is why medical costs are our country's leading cause of bankruptcy.

If the coronavirus has made us feel more fragile, has made us value life more, let's follow Rep. Travis' lead. Let's work for affordable health care coverage for all Americans.

Dr. Buzz Sienknecht, Signal Mountain