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Today's Opinions

  • Event to help flooded food bank a success

    On Feb. 28, flooding destroyed food and supplies at the Second Harvest Food Bank warehouse in North Knoxville. On its behalf, an ice cream social fundraiser was held, hosted by the Roane County Democratic Party and Market Street Fountain at Ladd Landing in Kingston.
    Nearly $500 was raised. Many thanks to those who contributed or volunteered.  A small number of people can make a difference for people in need. 
    The event was a success, in large part, due to a front page item in the March 2 edition of the Roane County News.
    Kudos to all!

  • Why we all need to monitor officials, our government

    By KEN PAULSON
    First Amendment Center
    The Tea Party Patriots are divvying up members of Congress.
    The advocacy group is assigning its members to track every member of the House and Senate, monitoring their every legislative move.
    “We have millions of manpower hours and thousands of people willing to do heavy lifting,” Shelby Blakely, the project organizer, told USA Today.

  • A View from Lick Skillet: Look out Constitution! Big Bill Ketron strikes again

    That noble document, the Constitution of the United States, is ofttimes praised and supposedly relied upon by the rabid, radical, right-wing, reactionary Republicans, yet, how often they do go on ad nauseam about some action they propose which is plainly and specifically outlawed by the said Constitution.
    Take for instance the issuance of currency.
    Article One, Section Eight, Clause Five, vests in the Congress the power to coin money.
    And, Article One, Section Ten, Clause One, forbids any state from coining money or emitting bills of credit.

  • Commissioners attempt to bell the cats political

    On behalf of the many great cats at Tiger Haven I would like to thank state Rep. Julia Hurley for not signing the Roane County Commission's destructive Tiger Haven bill.
    The commissioners all know the cost of placing tracking collars on 280 plus big cats would be an onerous financial burden for this worthy but cash strapped nonprofit.  

  • Legislation on teachers never about better ed

    Over 50 years ago I interviewed with the school board for my first teaching position in a small town.
    I was immediately told they did not allow any teachers their school to belong to a union.
    Each teacher was to negotiate his or her own salary and that salary was to be kept in strict confidence.  
    I was able to bargain them up to $1,800 a year!  
    Later, I learned I was making more than the teacher who had been with them for 30 years, but who “didn't squabble over salary.”

  • Redefining the public's right to know is critical

    This Sunshine Week, a time when we reflect on the public’s right to know and the importance of open government, isn’t it time to address the Pandora’s box left open by the U.S. Supreme Court last year?
    In two landmark decisions — Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission and, subsequently, Speech Now v. Federal Election Commission — the Supreme Court radically altered longstanding campaign finance disclosure requirements.

  • LOOSELEAF LAUREATE: The buzz of spring is worth the noise

    It was Monday — the Monday after the spring-forward time change.

    For me, that is typically the hardest Monday of the year.

    I had come home, taken care of a few errands, then quickly succumbed to my overwhelming, but unusual need for a weekday nap.

    I always seem to need a nap the Monday after the spring-forward time change, despite the lure of an extra hour of evening sunlight. Sometimes I miss Arizona, where the time never sprang forward or fell back.

  • Impressions: Which legislator won’t answer the call?

    Perhaps, our friends in the state legislature are a little busy about right now.
    I’ll grant them that courtesy. After all, their efforts on our behalf in Nashville are critical.
    Still, I have to wonder why a recent call I made as a representative of the newspaper industry to Sen. Ken Yager’s office has gone unanswered.
    I clearly spelled out my name to the friendly staffer, clearly gave my callback number, and clearly explained that I was calling concerning a specific subject — Senate Bill 115.