Our readers write

Our readers write

Posted: Wednesday, September 29, 2010 8:01 pm

Time to reverse current trends

To the Editor:
Having lived through seven and a half decades, I have witnessed numerous administrations and observed the gradual decline of our country, from the greatest generation to what we have today, a very vulnerable generation.
It is my belief that the late 1960s were the years that added momentum to this decline. This was the “generation gap period” where some radical, liberal, affluent, college kids decided that rights are determined by the individual and not by God, the Constitution or the majority. These are the same individuals, “Hippies,” that stayed drugged up on “pot,” lived in communes, burned their draft cards and bras, and ran over to the Canadian border to avoid the military draft. Unfortunately, today, we have some of these former students holding high offices in our federal government.
Being liberal is not the problem, nor is being conservative. We need a healthy mixture of both. By healthy, I mean individuals with common sense who have a strong desire to bring God and this once great nation back to the values our Founding Fathers gave us.
To reverse this current trend and to try to get this country back on track, we need to look at some areas that are tantamount to the solution, and the solution will take the effect of just about everyone that breathes.
Our culture will continue to decline if we don’t get serious about the education of our children. I know I won’t be popular with many when I say this, but our educational system, overall, is pathetic. I know locally there seems to be a lot more emphasis placed on education than many areas, and that is great but, according to the Tennessee S.C.O.R.E. (State Collaborative on Reforming Education) program, Tennessee ranks 41st in student achievement. Go to the SCORE website for more information — some good and some very disappointing. It is disappointing because our scholastic achievements should be the best in the world, and they are not.
I believe we need a wake-up call in our culture and our educational system, starting with setting priorities. Currently we put too much interest in athletics and not enough on academics. Sports are important, but not nearly as important as a good education.
By the way, if a critical electrical system fails on an aircraft, you don’t pull over to the side of the road and walk away, but it sure is important to know how those systems work.
Let’s change this country together.
Gary Spence

Don’t sling dirt
in campaigns

To the Editor:
I just received a ‘drag through the dirt’ flyer from a candidate for office demeaning another candidate. Nothing on it but “he did this” and “he said that.” The candidate who sent it out just lost my vote and the same goes for any other candidate who must demonize another candidate, especially one in his own party. I will not vote for anyone who resorts to dirty politics.
What I want to see are white papers and position papers written by the candidates on what he or she will do for us and how they will do it. If they can’t put it down in writing in a comprehensive and understandable form, they will not get my vote. If they are really about change, they should be willing to go out on a limb and let us know exactly how they’ll accomplish what they are telling us in their sound bites and single-sentence statements. Integrity is being willing to stand behind what you say and actually turn it into action without attacking your opponents.
I find negative is negative and the statements are always one-sided, don’t present all the facts and do absolutely nothing in explaining the candidate’s position. I would have been punished as a child if I had used some of the same tactics and said the negative things candidates are saying about their opponents. If it’s wrong for a child, why is it right for an adult running for office?
What kind of a Christian example does it set for our youth and, frankly, for the rest of us? Trash talk by wrestlers and others on TV and radio is great for entertainment but it doesn’t belong in our politics. If a child were to say or do, at any school in Tennessee, what many of these politicians are saying and doing, they would be severely dealt with and disciplined by school officials, who are using the guidelines these same politicians voted on and passed. If a candidate is going to claim to be Christian, he or she needs to act like one!!!
Like I said, if a candidate goes negative, he or she is not going to get my vote. If a candidate doesn’t produce a detailed position paper on each issue he or she says is important, I will not vote for them. As Rhett Butler said so succinctly, I really don’t give a damn what any candidate thinks about his or her opponents. I want to know what they plan on doing, in DETAIL, if elected.
I challenge every candidate running for elected office to produce a detailed position paper on the issues he or she deems important. I want to see them spend their valuable time coming up with solutions, not attacking each other like a bunch of adolescent schoolyard bullies. We, as voters, need to see it in writing. Debates and speeches are OK for news bites, but having it in writing lays it out on the table for all to see.
And I challenge every Tennessee voter to not support candidates who attack his or her opponents and don’t take the time to write in detail what they are going to do for their constituents.
It’s time for voters to stand up and be counted by insisting candidates start acting like adults.
Tim Brady

Published in The Messenger 9.29.10

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