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Today's Opinions

  • GUEST OPINION: Crazy free speech battles on campuses

    By CHARLES C. HAYNES
    Inside the First Amendment
    Robert Van Tuinen’s run-in with campus police would be a funny story — if it weren’t such a disturbing example of how freedom of speech is under assault on many American college and university campuses.
    As reported in The Daily Caller and elsewhere, Van Tuinen, a student at Modesto Junior College in California, was stopped from handing out copies of the Constitution on Sept. 17 – the 226th anniversary of the signing of the Constitution.

  • Maybe we should increase vigilance on NSA

    By LEE HAMILTON
    Center on Congress
    Washington is beginning to debate the proper extent of government eavesdropping powers in the wake of Edward Snowden’s revelations about the NSA.

    It’s hardly as robust a discussion as it should be, but it’s a desperately needed start.

    The effort to monitor Americans’ communications has been going on for at least seven years, under two presidents.

    It constitutes an expansion of government power without precedent in the modern era.

  • Fleischmann still gets paid under shutdown

    Open letter to U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann:

    Your Party’s strategy to allow the government to shutdown in order to get concessions on Obamacare is irrational.

    You know as well as I do that people  may not like Obamacare (because they do not understand it yet), but every poll shows they are vastly not in favor of shutting the government down to gain your small health care concessions.

    I and others will remind people when it is time for your re-election on the stupidity of your Party’s decision.

    You will not get re-elected.

  • GUEST OPINION: Shield law may have unintended consequences

    By GENE POLICINSKI
    Inside the First Amendment
    We’re all facing a tough decision by Congress later this year — and it’s not about the federal budget or national health care policy.

    A question that ultimately will affect us all involves a bill with the innocuous name “Free Flow of Information Act.”

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET: Even Marie Antoinette didn’t say let them starve!

    As long time readers of this column may recall, we dislike too early engagement in holidays.

    For instance, there are already Halloween decorations which are beginning to look shop worn and disheveled, even though it is more than a month until we reach All Hallows Eve, and there are stores that have already put Christmas things on display, almost three months early, however, we have decided that the most apt introduction to this week’s column is from that Charles Dickens classic, “A Christmas Carol.”

  • Good Samaritans’ kindness to elders not easily repaid

    On Thursday night, Sept. 19, my  parents, who are both in their mid-80s, had a flat tire while driving on  Hwy. 321.  

    Almost immediately, a gentleman stopped to help.  His name was  Travis Marcum.  He is the owner of Marcum Marine in Lenoir City.  He placed a  call to his son, who responded very quickly and they had the bad tire off and  the spare tire installed in no time at all.  

    They refused payment at the time, so we would like to publicly thank them.  It was a kindness not easily  repaid.  

  • GUEST OPINION: Stills honored for free speech through music

    By KEN PAULSON
    First Amendment Center
    In the 221 years since ratification of the Bill of Rights, Americans have had the right to speak out. And sing out.

    In recognition of the power of free speech set to music, the First Amendment Center and the Americana Music Association join together each year to honor a prominent musician who has used his or her music to contribute to the markeplace of ideas.  

  • Seniors should be on high alert for scammers

    By JASON ALDERMAN
    I look forward to the day when we no longer need to warn senior citizens about scams designed to separate them from their hard-earned money.

    I’m not holding my breath, however.

    According to the FBI, senior citizens make attractive targets for con artists for a variety of reasons:

    They’re more likely to have a nest egg, own their home and have good credit.