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Editorials

  • Sophomoric speech is free speech, too

    By KEN PAULSON
    Some school memories are more golden than others.
    While we’ve all benefited from the good teachers and school administrators in our lives, it’s hard to shake the memories of those who either didn’t teach us very well or treated us badly.
    Students in the pre-digital era pretty much just had to grin and bear it. We would grumble to our friends or complain to our parents, but we weren’t going to get an audience with the school board.

  • Oak Ridge 4-lane a two-way street to prosperity

    Have you driven to Oak Ridge recently? The new four-lane section from the old guard gates to Illinois Avenue has been opened. It is glorious.
    The road is wide and smooth, with generous and clearly marked bike lanes.
    It is a joy to drive, whether you are heading north into Oak Ridge or heading south to Roane County.
    More work is being done to widen the rest of the stretch so that the entire segment will be four lanes from Kingston to Oak Ridge. The work is expected to be completed in 2012.
    This work is good news for both communities.

  • Understanding other religions will forge bonds

    By CHARLES C. HAYNES
    Beginning this fall, students in Jodi Ide’s class at Brighton High School will go beyond textbook discussions of world religions and engage directly with students in Pakistan, India and elsewhere who actually practice the faith traditions covered in the curriculum.
    And, yes, this is an American public school.

  • Officials in Rockwood need to step it up

    We are deeply disappointed with some Rockwood officials in their handling of water department issues.
    Weeks after the Roane County News wrote about the existence of a letter from a state official telling the city it has been illegally mingling funds between the water and gas utilities, many of these officials have been burying their heads in the sand.
    We don’t have that letter, some city officals said. Then some of them, including utility director Rod King, seemed to want to continue to ignore its existence.

  • Protectors of history deserve help, support

    We are pleased to see that Chancellor Frank V. Williams III is the guest of honor at the Roane County Heritage Commission’s gala to help fund needed repairs at the Old Roane County Courthouse.

    Williams and the group of other residents who rallied to save the old building from demolition a few decades ago deserve more credit than they are ever likely to receive.

    Not only is the old courthouse of architectural importance, but it also, as the storehouse of important records from the past, is a treasure trove linking us to those who came before.

  • Rockwood's pain a reflection of tough times

    Rockwood city officials are finding themselves in the unenviable position of possibly raising property taxes, and more probably, water rates in tight times.

    Many government entities are pinching their budgets as grants dry up and state and federal funding is diminished.

    Rockwood has taken pride in its relatively
    low tax rate, but sometimes increases really are necessary.

  • GUEST EDITORIAL: Proposed change in notice would shut public out

    By FRANK GIBSON

    Special to the Roane County News

    Noticed how narrow-minded political discourse has become? Political strategists call it staying “on message,” but the goal is to drown out the message from the other side.

    That’s how some of the debate in the legislature over changing the system of providing various public notices to citizens and consumers has played so far.

  • How much do you really know about the Constitution?

    It’s Constitution Week.

    As much as this foundation for our nation’s freedom and way of life has been bandied about lately, we are shocked by how little many people really know about its history and its actual content.

    “We the people...” are words that define our government — our belief system — and our unique set of freedoms.

    These words have guided this country  through hard times and civil strife.

  • Public's right to assembly basic to our freedoms

    By GENE POLICINSKI
    First Amendment Center
    Americans sure have been assembling a lot lately — using a basic right that’s often overshadowed by its better-known First Amendment kin, particularly freedom of speech.

  • 'Dub' sets good example for officials, us

    After decades serving the public as a county commissioner, James “Dub” Harmon is no longer an elected official.
    Instead of tucking tail over his recent election loss, Harmon is, instead, stepping up.
    “That stage of my life is probably through,” the 83-year-old said recently in a Roane County News interview about his failure to get re-elected. “But there are many things for Roane County I can work for.”
    Harmon has not been afraid to champion what, to some, have been unpopular causes.