Today's Opinions

  • Resist making enemies of good

    By Mark BankerMTBanker1951@gmail.com

    Roane County’s ongoing school debate brings to mind a story shared by writer Tony Hillerman.

    As a youth in Depression-era Oklahoma, Hillerman worked for an old farmer known for his generosity. When less honorable neighbors took advantage of the old man’s kindness, young Tony was enraged.

    In response, the old man advised: “Son, if you don’t forgive your enemies, you’re going to run out of friends.”

  • A View From Lick Skillet: Donald John - he has a problem, how bad is it?

    Gentle reader, hard as it may be to believe, it is still some two months until we reach the half way mark of the current administration of Donald John Trump. So, more than two years yet remain until that administration by law comes to an end. Considering the turmoil, chaos, and disgraceful happenings that have already occurred, can you imagine what lies in wait for us?

    Mayhap a benevolent Deity will provide relief to the Republic. One can only hope.

  • Going With the Flo: Nationalism is having pride, putting U.S. first

    The Florida voting chaos of dishonesty and outright lies by those in charge reminds me of the words of Karl Marx, “Take away the heritage of a people and they are easily persuaded.”

    Rebellion against authority permeates our land.

    They rehearse the phrase, “All votes count,” but ignore the fact that all illegal votes should not count. More deception!

    Our Founding Fathers believed that the faith and character of every individual elected to office was vital to the future of our nation.

  • THE VIEW FROM HERE: One Soldier, One War


    “Never underestimate the cruelty one human being can exact on another.”

    Charles Jennings,

    Former Army Staff Sargent, my father

    It was a long way from the red clay of North Georgia to the Rhine River in Germany for my father.

    To an 18-year-old boy who had never been much past the county line, it was almost unfathomable that any place on Earth could be so far away or so far removed from all that he believed.

  • Glimpses From a Teacher Historian: Polarization hurts all

    By Mark Banker

    In the days since I last shared thoughts in this space, our nation has experienced a wave of sobering events.

    A spate of pipe bombs, several mass shootings, and hotly contested mid-term elections remind us that anger, polarization and paralysis persist and imperil our individual and collective well-being.

    In past columns, I have suggested we might consider these ongoing afflictions as responses to the bewildering economic, cultural, and technological changes that accompany modernity.

  • A View From Lick Skillet: Vox Populi —Listen to the voice of the people!

    Gentle readers, Thank you, thank you, thank you! As you may recall, since our column of 19 October concerning the Wheel Tax Referendum, we have requested you more than once to be sure to vote on this question, and further requested that you vote against the wheel tax. Well, you couldn’t have done better, and we thank you for it. Of the total number of you who voted, 19,617, 18,832 voted in the wheel tax referendum. And of those of you who voted in the referendum, 14,813, or 78.66 percent voted against the wheel tax!

  • Going With the Flo: God uses historical events to accomplish His will

    By Flo Charles

    A note of gratitude to Mr. Largen for the inspiring article he had last week, which so encouraged me!

    I took it to UPS to be laminated. The shared memories were touching also, relieving the grief of Clarence’s absence — each holiday has been difficult, especially in the fall — his favorite season.

    Your article reminded me of Jeremiah 6:16: “Stand ye in the ways and see and ask for the old paths — the good way, and walk therein.”

  • THE VIEW FROM HERE: Kingston farmer gives frustrated rooster something to crow about

    By Shelia Sitzlar

    My father-in-law, Loyd “Pops” Sitzlar, runs a small farm in Kingston, where he has a small herd of cattle, of which he mainly feeds the family.

    Everyone in the family has always appreciated his farming efforts and his fantastic beef, especially at dinner time.

    When Pops gets an idea in his head, it tends to stay there and he will continue thinking about it until the issue is resolved to his satisfaction.