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Today's Opinions

  • Roane children do deserve better, but this school plan not feasible

    My thoughts on the “mega school”: People are typing like crazy about how big schools add to more businesses in Roane County.

    Well, that’s not entirely true. To gain more businesses you need better infrastructure, and the leadership to bring those businesses to Roane County.

    Take a look at Putnam County. Putnam is growing rapidly, and at the same time they have Cookeville High, Monterey High, Upperman High, and the Adult Education Center. Hmm ... that sounds like it goes against the narrative.

  • Glimpses From a Teacher Historian: Another Elegy for Appalachia

    By Mark Banker

    J.D. Vance, author of the best-selling memoir “Hillbilly Elegy,” spoke recently at the University of Tennessee. His visit to East Tennessee spurred me to share these thoughts about our similar – yet very different – journeys.

    Mine began and continues in Roane County!

    Vance’s ancestors settled in hardscrabble Eastern Kentucky at a time when coal was king. There, they developed traits that came to distinguish Appalachian: an isolated rural lifestyle, fierce independence and disdain for formal education.

  • Building program kind of bold action Roane needs

    The Greenwood School Education Foundation heartily endorses the Roane County Board of Education’s High School Building Program.

    Our Foundation exists for the purpose of filling gaps in education and training opportunities throughout Roane County. As such, we gain a “street level” view of current and emerging trends in our community, and we have developed an understanding of the conditions and past decisions that have brought us to this point in the first place.

  • Going with the Flo: We should all measure up to Barbara Bush’s yardstick

    By Flo Charles

    The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.

    The life celebration of Barbara Bush was held at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Houston with past presidents, dignitaries and leaders from all backgrounds and religions — 1,500 inside and thousands outside showing their respect for her life of service to her fellow man.

    She was the matriarch of one of the most powerful American political dynasties in the families of American history.

  • A View From Lick Skillet: Comments on & analysis of Watkins’ essay pt. 1

    When we wrote last week’s column concerning the mega-school proposal and the need for a vote by the people on that proposal, little did we know that this week’s column would be on the same mega-school proposal, without any intervening messages about anything else.

    But, Friday’s Opinion page featured not only our dear Flo’s column, and our own View, but also had a lengthy discussion bearing the title “New school questions now answered,” with authorship credited to Leah Rice Watkins.

  • Bravo to Kingston Water, Fire personnel for making ‘light work’ of main break

    This is a thank-you letter to the Kingston Water and Fire departments. On April 17 a water main broke on Windswept Lane up the hill from our home. Being about 900 feet downhill from that location, we had a lot of gravel and red mud deposited on the parking area outside our home.

    Two members of Kingston Water Department arrived at about 8:20 a.m. on April 18. Additionally, six members of the Kingston Fire Department arrived shortly thereafter to help with the clean-up.

  • Don’t always agree with Largen, but he has a knack for stating obvious

    It’s been awhile since I last wrote to this paper, but as a former son of Harriman and dedicated Tennessean, I try to keep up on what is going on.

    I have mentioned in the past Mr. Largen and I have different points of view, but I have to admit his column on guns and coward cops of March 16 caught my attention. He is dead on (no pun intended) about the need and reasons for guns in this county, and the history lesson he gives should be required reading in senior-year history class. (Yeah, I’m dreaming.)

  • Wage gap contributes to Tenn. poverty

    For the Roane County News

    A state-by-state analysis released for Equal Pay Day tomorrow reveals that a woman employed full time, year-round in Tennessee is typically paid just 82 cents for every dollar paid to a man – a yearly pay difference of $7,745.

    That means Tennessee women lose a combined total of nearly $16 billion every year to the gender wage gap.