Today's Opinions

  • INSIDE the First AMENDMENT: Pope Francis reawakens American ideal

    At a cultural moment when celebrity trumps character in America, it took a humble priest from Argentina to remind us of the better angels of our nature — and of the kind of nation we must aspire to build in the 21st century.

    Pope Francis arrived in our public square as a self-described migrant, and for a refreshing week his message of compassion and justice drowned out the divisive, ugly, sometimes hateful rhetoric of this political season.

  • Investors, not the taxpayers, benefit from privatization

    We have all heard of Gov. Haslam wanting to privatize all of state government, and a simple Google search will show he has wanted that from Day 1.

    Now, this is where I must be careful and declare my comments here are my personal views as a taxpayer — and I simply want to let the Tennessee taxpayer know that the only people who benefit from privatization are the investors, not the taxpayer.

  • Kudos for support of latest Teacher Supply Closet

    On Thursday, Sept. 24, Roane County United Way, along with Roane State Community College, hosted the 13th annual Teachers Supply Closet.

    This event allows Roane County teachers to gather donated supplies they need for their classrooms — for free.

    These supplies (and monetary donations to purchase new supplies) are donated from various individuals, organizations and companies within Roane County.

    This year, there were over 40 teachers who participated in the event from 10 schools.

  • Roane Countians again show they value reading

    Congratulations, Roane County, once again you have demonstrated that you value early childhood education.

    Good corporate neighbors Pro2Serve and MCLinc challenged us to match their contributions and encourage first-time donors on behalf of Roane Imagination Library.

    You were up to the challenge and met BOTH goals. THANK YOU.

    Roane Imagination Library sends books to approximately 2,000 children each month.

    These new, age-appropriate books are carefully selected to prepare children for school and to teach them to love reading.

  • GLIMPSES from a Teacher Historian by Mark Banker

    Author’s note: The following three premises are essential to this column: 1) None of us see the past or present with absolute clarity; 2) Each of us has the capacity for glimpses of informed insight that draw from and reflect our personal values; and 3) Cordial, forthright exchange of those insights enhances our mutual well being.

    The irregularity of this column is not due to a dearth of deserving topics.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET: Happy Birthday Nell Willis — 90 & counting

    In his well-nigh eight decades of observation and experience, the old curmudgeon has encountered many things, some bizarre, some humourous, some wise, and some outrageous, but to the best of his recollection, none has been more outrageous at first glance than the proposal to charge a fee or tax for the public to look at the public records of this state.

  • Use your vote to tell Commission to live within budget

    When is enough enough?

    The property owners in Roane County now pay more property tax than Oak Ridge. Still, the County Commission elects to increase property tax in Roane County.

    A budget doesn’t seem to mean anything. If you spend more than the budget, you just get the property owners to pay more tax.

    Remember this when you go to the polls.

    Sam Doughty

  • Cage free a good move, but egg free’s even better

    McDonald’s pledge last week to start using cage-free eggs is only a small step in preventing staggering suffering endured by millions of birds.

    Hatcheries that annually supply 200 million female hens for U.S. egg production, including cage-free, also kill the same number of male chicks at birth by grinding them up alive in industrial macerators or suffocating them slowly in plastic garbage bags.

    The female laying hens endure a lifetime of misery, crammed with 5-6 others, in small wire-mesh cages that cut into their feet and tear out their feathers.