We need campaign finance reforms
A recent letter to the editor suggested term limits for members of Congress as a way to reform our current system.
I believe a better method to restore decency in our government is campaign finance reform. Currently, secret money groups, such as 501(c)(4)s, are not required to disclose their donors under IRS rules. These groups play a huge role in our elections because they are able to operate entirely in secret by funding candidates anonymously. There needs to be reasonable limits on campaign contributions and stricter enforcement of bans on coordination between candidates and super PACs.
A meaningful system of public financing would greatly help to create a level playing field for every qualified candidate.
Clinica Medicos providing valuable testing service
We would like to express our sincere gratitude to the staff of Clinica Medicos at 1300 East 23rd St. for the excellent service with regard to testing for COVID-19.
The process was so simple: a telephone call to 423-760-4000 gets you an appointment, you arrive at the designated time, wait in line very briefly, then drive through the station and receive your test.
For us, the entire process took no more than 15 minutes. The tests are then forwarded to Baylor School; you receive your results within 24-48 hours. The staff was extremely well organized, professional and courteous.
Thanks so much, Clinica Medicos, for the invaluable service you are rendering to the Chattanooga community.
Howard and Ann Brown
Lookout Mountain, Tennessee
What treason isn't, and what treason is
Since TFP columnist David Cook never served in the military, he has no idea what treason is. I too was disturbed by the actions of protesters at the Capitol. It was unlawful, but labeling it "treason" is too far. To attack police, burn businesses and neighborhoods, lay siege on the White House, threaten and murder innocent people, and then have district attorneys refuse to prosecute the perpetrators is unlawful and reprehensible, but not treasonous. Repeatedly calling the president a racist, a Nazi, a Russian puppet with no proof, only because you hate him, again, is not treason, but is divisive.
Now, let me tell you what treason is. When you take an oath to defend the Constitution, and then try to usurp the parts you don't like, that is treason. Such as getting rid of Electoral College, infringing upon the right to bear arms, making laws punishing people for saying what you determine is bad and for exercising their religion.
But this is trivial. The real treason is dishonoring the men and women who fought the scourge of communism by now promoting communist ideology over the people and trying to destroy middle-class America.
Rising Fawn, Georgia
Trump's term was 'epic fail'
During a trip to Atlanta after the 2016 election, I was thrilled to see Black Americans protesting the election of a man who swapped racist dog whistles for bullhorns and whose ascendancy to the Oval Office was reliant on an archaic institution that considered Black men and women 3/5 of a person.
I was equally thrilled to see women take to the streets to protest the inauguration of a man who has been, on multiple occasions, credibly accused of sexual assault and was caught on tape bragging about getting away with it.
On Jan. 6, though, I watched in horror as this man whipped his throng of domestic terrorists into a fury that resulted in the Capitol being breached, five deaths and at least 50 arrests. And for what? The failure to accept the result of a democratic election that he lost at the ballot box and in courts across the country.
The four years of Trump's administration have been the epitome of the term "epic fail." And with one of his last displays of petulance and narcissism, he has secured himself a spot in history alongside Benedict Arnold and the leaders of the Confederacy.
Whitfield County: Leave mandate in place
The fact we are in the middle of a pandemic that doesn't seem to get any better with people still complaining about masks doesn't seem logical. I understand where we live isn't quite as bad as other places, but wearing a mask is the bare minimum we can do.
The U.S Centers for Disease Control did a study in November that showed the decrease of COVID-19 with mask mandates, so we know masks work. I understand removal [of a mandate in Whitfield County] is toward county buildings, but the people in that building come into contact with coworkers, who come into contact with others, and so on. So, I think removing the mask mandate in county buildings is not safe.
We have to be more considerate. Even though it may not affect us directly, it may affect someone else greatly, though we don't know. So as a community we shouldn't be removing mandates, even if it's in certain places, but we should be more considerate about wearing masks and social distancing. Since the pandemic doesn't seem to be getting better, we have to realize not wearing masks and not social distancing are part of that problem.
Will arrow or archer win out?
I am the Ranter who recently wrote that history shows America functions best with a split Congress and wish to respond appreciatively to the Jan. 10 letter writer who presented a different and constructively critical viewpoint. I continue to maintain history is on my side (with which, as she wrote, she apparently agrees), but I concede completely current and recent events are on hers.
Bottom line: Sometimes it's not the arrow (the well-reasoned constitutional structure), but rather the archer (a power-hungry, party-driven Congress), so let's wait and see if things change now that one party has the sole power. Personally, I sadly doubt it, but I remain hopeful as I believe does the letter writer.
Young Harris, Georgia
Throw out the baby with the bath water?
Extremism and Donald Trump threatened the future of the Republican Party. The party emerged in 1854 from the anti-slavery movement that destroyed the Whig Party. Ironically, the 166-year old Republican Party now staggers under the weight of racial animus and white superiority.
Through our Constitution and our governance as Democrats and Republicans, our nation aspired to be a society of liberty and justice for all. Until Donald Trump. He harnessed racism and white superiority in an improbable ride to the White House. He governed as he campaigned. His immigration policies, his response to disasters and social issues never failed to tragically conflict with principles of decency and fairness.
And the Republicans? They stood back. They stood by. Their senators forsook advise and consent to aid and abet. The question now is how they can start afresh post-Trump? Infected with so many that continue even now to support Trump, the answer may be to throw out the baby with the bath water and begin anew under a different banner. To those Republicans who wish to rejoin the American experiment, embracing the principles we hold so dear, I wish you well.
Joseph E. Huber