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Letters

  • Obama did more for area than deny clemency

    This is in response to Roane County Sheriff Jack Stockton’s ill-considered remark that denying Ralph O’Neal’s petition for clemency is the “greatest thing he’s [Barack Obama] done since he’s been in office for Roane County.”

    I’m certain that if Sheriff Stockton applied himself, he could provide readers with other examples of President Obama’s actions and initiatives beneficial to Roane County citizens over the last eight years.

  • Coal ash toxicity only one part of the picture

    With respect to the recent report on the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC) meeting in Knoxville (Roane County News, Jan. 20, page 2A), the SELC is on the cutting edge in raising questions about the disposal of coal ash. The new federal law allows legal action by citizens and the state to compel compliance.

  • Fix what’s wrong with ACA but, don’t eliminate it

    The Republican obsession to completely repeal the ACA (Affordable Care Act) is a terribly bad idea. Any health-care repeal without a suitable replacement plan will put insurance companies back in charge of health coverage causing less coverage and higher costs; and it will create economic chaos in small hospitals because they will have to go back to treating patients in their emergency rooms that will not be able to pay for that treatment. That is NOT a good thing!

  • Problem with aquatic plants multi-faceted

    Since water weeds are choking the front page of the Roane County News, I’d like to make several points on the matter of vegetation in Watts Bar Lake.

    1. While an overgrowth of aquatic plant life is a problem, like all problems, this issue is multi-faceted. Thus, solutions should be evaluated from many perspectives, not just the ones presented by those with the most to gain.

  • If you believe Israel should turn the other cheek ...

    If you believe that the establishment of the State of Israel was illegitimate, even though its recognition by the Balfour Declaration became international law when mandated by the League of Nations; and

    If you believe that Palestinian land was stolen by the establishment of the State of Israel, even though there has never been an Palestinian State, but in fact the land was considered a part of Syria; and

  • Laughable to compare SoCal, Tenn. waterways

    While enjoying your Dec. 31 in-review issue, I read Mr. Ken Johnson’s letter comparing the irrigation canal systems in Southern California to the lakes and rivers of East Tennessee. I was moved to respond.

    In a nutshell, comparing the canals, waterways and lakes (??) of Southern California to the Tennessee River, Chickamauga Lake and Watts Bar Lake is risible.

    First, SoCal canals, waterways and lakes are narrow and shallow. In SoCal, creeks are exalted as rivers and ponds promoted as lakes.

  • Lake weeds will take over if not treated soon

    For over 20 years during the ’80s and ’90s, I flew a small private plane from Meadowlake Airport in Kingston to Fayette, Ala. In doing so, I picked up the Tennessee River at Chattanooga and flew it all the way to Guntersville, Ala., before leaving the river.

    It is an understatement to say the river had some plants in it. It was clogged! The boats had only small lanes to navigate, and I saw few of them on the river.

    Those who see those plants as pretty have not seen what I saw from the air.

  • No quick, easy remedy to rid our lake of weeds

    To paraphrase Lewis Carroll’s The Walrus and the Carpenter, “The time has come, the Walrus said, to talk of many things...”, like weeds and carp.

    Carroll might admonish us to study seriously Mother Nature’s quirky response to poor decisions based on widespread misconceptions.

    I’m referring, of course, to the weed problem now impacting TVA’s reservoirs, including Watts Bar Lake. Readers will recall that TVA got its collective wallet caught in the wringer when Eurasian water milfoil infested the lake a few decades ago.

  • Weeds choking out one of Roane’s biggest assets

    One can easily make the argument that Watts Bar Lake is the most valuable non-human asset Roane County enjoys.

    With the many wonderful water activities, beautiful vistas, waterfront property tax revenue and tourism, Watts Bar Lake is a precious asset.

    However, the lake is broken and needs to be fixed. The hydrilla, milfoil and spiny-leaf naiad are diminishing the value of that asset in every respect.

  • Each and every letter read by Santa personally

    To all the children of Roane County:

    Thank you for all your letters to Santa. Some of the letters were sent directly to the North Pole and did not appear in the Roane County News. Mrs. Claus and I wanted you to know that we received them and enjoyed reading them.

    It turns out that all the children in Roane County were on The Nice List.

    Thank you to all of those who left milk and cookies out for me on Christmas Eve. I was very hungry.

    My reindeer also ate some of the cookies.

    See you next Christmas!

    Sincerely,