Today's Opinions

  • GUEST OPINION: Look to the First Amendment to know the Second

    First Amendment Center
    The First Amendment right to freedom of speech and the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms are usually related only by their proximity in the Bill of Rights.

    But the connection actually runs much deeper. Courts are using standards from First Amendment law and applying them in Second Amendment cases.

    The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals just did this in its Oct. 25 decision in National Rifle Association v. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.

  • Residents respond to ash cleanup

    Roane County residents directly impacted by the 2008 catastrophic release of 5.4 million cubic yards of fly ash, expressed their disappointment in TVA’s most recent clean up plan.

    Last month, many of them submitted comments on TVA’s latest plan to clean up the fly ash that still remains in the Emory, Clinch and Tennessee rivers.

  • Time for a change in Harriman High football coaching

    I have watched Harriman High School football since 1958. Sometimes we won, sometimes we lost, but we always competed.

    This is the worst coached team I have seen in my 64 years.

    When I played for Harriman, practice was harder than any game we ever played.

    I have watched these teams practice for a long time. These coaches don’t allow tackling.
    This is football, coach.

    I am so sick of hearing “We are so young.” You haven’t been young for the past nine years.

  • Likens bombing of embassies to World War III

    A recent letter by B.J. Gillum urges us to stay out of war. But it appears to me that we are already in World War III.

    Bombings of embassies in Kenya and Tanganyika were acts of war, as was the bombing of the USS Cole.

    The first bombing of the World Trade Center was still another and, of course, a “better” job was done on that building on Sept. 11, 2001.

    This war is quite different than the two I was involved in, World War II and Korea, and will have to be approached differently, of course.

  • GUEST OPINION: Cheerleaders, biblical banners get day in court

    First Amendment Center
    In Kountze, Texas, there’s not much daylight between God and football on Friday nights.

    That’s why most fans in the stands cheer loudly when the cheerleaders hoist banners with biblical verses for the football team to crash through as they take the field every week.
    Most, but not all.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET: Shocking results of poll of racial attitudes

    Well, gentle reader, we near the end of another quadrennial collision over who should be the chief executive of this great republic, and all the pundits and prognosticators unanimously agree that it’s too close to call.

    Maybe so, and maybe not.

  • High wind topples crane, but leaves are another matter

    I watched a nine-story-high steel construction crane above a skyscraper in New York as the wind lifted it to vertical and then forced it to topple over and hinge downward until its tip crashed against the structure 80 stories above a Manhattan street.

    The TV reporter said that Hurricane Sandy’s wind speed was over 100 mph at that height.
    Today I used a leaf blower with a wind force rating of 130 mph to blow leaves from my decks and patio.

    I noticed that the 130-mph wind often couldn’t move a leaf from a crack or a corner.

  • Voting for person – not party – best course of action

    Recent newscasts were terrible. There were complaints from hospitals about having to re-admit senior patients to hospitals.

    Some senior patients have mini-strokes and maybe in a week have another. It makes me shudder.

    One day the Democrats are blaming the Republicans, and the Republicans are blaming the Democrats.

    I do not consider myself being either. I have to vote more for the person instead of the party. I have voted for a Democrat and also for a Republican in the same election for different folks.