Today's Opinions

  • Shame on us all for freezing death of local veteran

    I am writing about something  that bothers me to the core.

    How did we let this hero, Ray Knight, who served in the Korean War, slip through the cracks?

    I’ll tell you how. In 2005, I deployed with the 4th Infantry.  

    Being a veteran of the Operation Iraqi Freedom, I know from experience that the Veterans Administration is disorganized.

    And, quite frankly, what happened a reflection of today’s society. All people are concerned about is “American Idol” and their silly Facebook pages.

  • Editor cruel for negative part in McClure story

    Every parent’s worst nightmare is to lose and have to bury a child. There are no words to describe the depth of the pain and how totally encompassing the grief feels.

    The feelings possess your very soul when you lose your child (no matter the age).

    I know this because my only child, Kevin McClure, died on Dec. 22.

  • Roane County towns should pull together for us all

    In regard to the recent article about the reopening of the local steel mill, it has never been the Harriman steel mill.

    Originally it was Tennessee Forging Steel, and after that Bayou Steel out of Louisiana.

    It is located within the city limits of Rockwood, not Harriman.

    We are happy that the steel mill will reopen; it will benefit all of Roane County.

    We welcome the new owners to our area, whatever name they call it.

    This is like Roane State Community College, known as the Roane County campus in Harriman.

  • After seven years of neighborhood care, Babe is gone

    This letter is to show my gratitude, thanks and respect for the people in my South of the River neighborhood.

    I want to thank you for the care, concern and affection you all shared with me for a wonderful, gentle soul who I had the pleasure and joy to know and, ultimately help care for for the past seven years.

    Her story is a homage to both your wonderful generosity and her courage and spirit.

    Babe, a Labrador retriever mix, was 23 years old when she left this world and crossed over the Rainbow Bridge on Jan. 7.

  • GUEST OPINION: Why freedon of religion matters across the world abroad

    First Amendment Center
    It was anything but a happy New Year for Christian pastor Saeed Abedini, an American citizen who has spent the last year in an Iranian prison because of his faith.

    In December 2012, the Idaho minister was visiting his native Iran to help start an orphanage when he was arrested for “undermining the Iranian government,” according to the American Center for Law and Justice, a legal group working on Abedini’s behalf.


    Well, Gentle Reader, here we all are at the beginning of a New Year — 2014, Anno Domini, and so it is fitting to start out this first column of this new year with our wish for you and yours of a Happy New Year.
    May it be healthy and profitable, as well as happy.

  • Put civility back in free speech options for 2014


    First Amendment Center

    The First Amendment protects our freedom to say and write just about anything we want — but that doesn’t mean we ought to, particularly in public life.

    The difference rests between “can” and “should.”

    Our nation’s founders were no strangers to rude, callous and raucous debate in public life and to vicious commentary, even by today’s “anything goes” online standards.

  • Oncology waiting room — where hope drips slowly

    The last day of the year found me in an impromptu meeting of a strange organization; one that requires no regular meetings or any other standards that identify such public bodies.

    I found myself in the midst of a Waiting Room Society.

    There was no formal structure except, perhaps, for the glass window prominently positioned in the center of the large waiting room.