Yes, Jan. 6 was an insurrection

Free Press columnist Byron York argues Jan. 6 was only a riot, not an armed insurrection. By any standard, the use of tasers, axes, ball bats, batons, bear and pepper spray and poles are felonious assaults. Depending on the severity, it could be attempted murder.

I believe the investigation will show that the insurrection leaders were told the authorities were ordered not to use their firearms. Due to the size of the crowd, the leaders knew they could probably break the Capitol with far superior numbers.

Mr. York, armed they were, and they did try to take over the government and install a nonelected candidate. Insurrection it was.

Ed Love


Only in USA could Trump run again

It looks as if Donald Trump is going to run for president again. Only in American could this happen. He tries to overthrow our government to end 200 years of democracy. This deeply sick, unethical human being is running free with no consequences.

I run into Republicans who say he didn't do this or that. Not only did he do this, he did it on national TV.

In any other country this leader would be executed.

Mark Proctor


Are cola companies our plastic polluters?

Plastic waste is a serious environmental concern on a global scale, but it tends to feel like a distant issue to most of us. We need only take a closer look at our surroundings to recognize how serious a plastic problem we have, especially here in Chattanooga.

The waterways throughout Chattanooga unfortunately serve as prime examples of natural areas being polluted (better yet, bombarded) by single-use plastics. A quick Google search shows how Chattanooga Creek is a strong contender for a first-place spot in ranking of plastic pandemonium.

We needn't ascribe blame to any one party, but it's a fair mental exercise to follow the line of consumption back to its source. Chattanooga is home to both a Coca-Cola and Pepsi plastic bottling plant.

Put another way, two of the top-ranked plastic polluters in the world are right here in our Scenic City. A lot of effort to encourage recycling has been made by these companies, but we mustn't forget it is easy to don environmental steward caps when it's convenient for sales.

If our local waterways are any indication, more can be done to eliminate single-use plastics at their source.

Alana Hicks


Nurse worried about ethics of profession

I am a registered nurse. In the past 20 years, there's been a decline in the ethics of my profession.

I was caring for a child; the lubricant used in the trach was six months expired, the equipment filthy, the oxygen frozen. I complained and was fired. I was caring for a elderly dementia patient who falls. I was told to leave her alone by a family member; this was dangerous. My supervisor said that I would not be paid if I stayed and that I would not be given more work because "I care too much."

I recently worked at a hospice. I questioned why they did not make families aware that some things were not covered by insurance and the practice of telling families to dispose of narcotics in kitty litter. Tennessee has a narcotic addiction problem. I was fired.

I have tried to get legal help to no avail. This is a right-to-work state. Good nurses are being fired and patients put at risk. Who will be left to care for your loved ones?

Carol Smith, Ooltewah