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Today's Opinions

  • Kim Jong Un — and why isolation isn’t the answer

    Kim Jong Un is playing the same poker his father played: Do something dramatic and half-crazy to gain attention and bribes from those governments whose leaders fear he will attack south, or worse, unleash an atomic warheads on Japan or South Korea.

    Declaring the armistice null and void is dramatic and causes concern about his rationality, but such ploys have worked many times before, and in his mind, it will work again.

  • GUEST COLUMN Pity the poor children; DCS secrecy shameful

    By Kent Flanagan, Tennessee Coalition for Open Government

    Tennessee Department of Children’s Services has one of the toughest, most unforgiving jobs in state government — to protect the most vulnerable children in our society from harm — but few Tennesseans know much about the agency.

    Most details about Children’s Services operations are denied to the public by confidentiality required under state law to protect the privacy of the children and the families that come into contact with DCS.

  • GUEST EDITORIAL 1st Amendment: One woman’s lesson in liberty

    By Ken Paulson, President, First Amendment Center
    In 1940, a group of community leaders in Champaign, Ill., joined together to give young people a better moral foundation by offering religion classes in the public schools.

    It was creative, thoughtful and well-intended.  It was also unconstitutional.

    The Champaign public school district’s decision to invite representatives of multiple faiths to teach in its classrooms led to a historic U.S.  Supreme Court decision handed down 65 years ago on March 8, 1948.

  • Crowded jails? Common sense answer is here

    Gerald Largen’s “I told you so” column on on the jailhouse situation (Friday, March 8) proved that he has the uncanny ability to discern the future without ever having lived there.

    Some would call this ability clairvoyance. However by using that power or by transitting a time portal, he was able to accurately predict that the new jailhouse would not achieve incarceratorial nirvana.

  • Great things are made possible by pancakes

    The Rotary Club of Kingston hosted its annual pancake breakfast and silent auction on Feb. 2.  

    More than 300 people were served, and folks enjoyed wonderful food and visited with friends and neighbors in this annual tradition.

  • Thanks to Aytes for helping with school safety

    I am a school bus driver for Roane County Schools, and I would like to take the time to thank our new director of schools, Gary Aytes, for helping to keep the children and bus drivers safe.  

    I have driven for Roane County schools for seven years.  

    At the beginning of the school year, Aytes was there to welcome us and let us know how much he appreciated what we did.  

    He also came by a few weeks ago while we had our bus certification and did the same.

  • GUEST OPINION: Can yoga be twisted into religion?

    By CHARLES C. HAYNES
    Is yoga secular or religious?

    That’s the conundrum at the heart of a new legal battle in Encinitas, Calif. over the teaching of yoga in public schools.

    In a lawsuit filed last month, a couple with two children in the Encinitas schools charge that the district is unconstitutionally promoting religion by giving yoga classes twice a week to students during the school day.

    School officials insist that the yoga classes are for physical fitness – and have nothing to do with religion or religious indoctrination.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET: Sadly, a new chapter of jail house tale begins

    Some folks, we understand, are troubled by a recurring nightmare that disturbs their sleep virtually every night of their lives.

    We have not previously experienced this phenomenon, but we fear that we are about to do so.
    In this nightmare we will be joined by most of the citizens and taxpayers of Roane County.

    What, the reader may well ask, is the scenario which causes us to fear it so?

    It may be summed up in two words ­— The JAIL!