Lock ‘em up


To the editor:


My brother is 14 months younger than I.  As young boys, we used to fight a lot. Nothing serious, just the normal “you bug me so I’m gonna do something that causes you grief” stuff. 

Eventually, my mother had had enough of the petty fighting. She took us both into our parent’s bedroom, said she wasn’t going to take it anymore, and told us two to fight it out where only one would emerge from the bedroom, turned around, and locked us in.

My brother and I were dumbfounded – probably looked like deer in headlights.  We had no idea what to do.  We did not want to seriously hurt each other, but we definitely heard our mother’s edict: only one can emerge. We faked fighting – making noise – with nothing really occurring. That didn’t work.  We talked about sneaking out of the side door, but knew that would lead to further difficulties. And no food, no drink, no bathroom break!! I really don’t know how we finally came to the conclusion that we should promise our mother to be better and not be as petty – and really do something about it.  And I don’t know how long it took us to come to this conclusion, but it was not a quick realization – probably 90 minutes at least, maybe more – with lots of deliberation!

We have a gun problem in this country. We must honor the 2nd amendment, but we must find a solution to this problem. Enough innocent people have died in this country from this gun problem.  I propose that the American people surround the capital building – both chambers, remove all aids, staff, spokespersons, media - everyone except the elected members of Congress, deny them texts, phone calls, internet, food, drink, bathroom breaks (well maybe let them have bathroom breaks or catheters), demand a solution to this problem (actually do what they are supposed to be doing anyway – like really being nicer to your brother) before they are allowed out of the building. I’d be there.  Anyone else want to go?  Don’t bring your guns.


Bob Bates



Happy retirement, Flower Shop


To the editor:


I just want to say how much I appreciated Janie, Julie, Kathy, Tommie and Selena at The Flower Shop. They have given the people of Tullahoma a beautiful shop and beautiful flower arrangements for years. I have loved going in and laughing with and sometimes crying with them.  I hope you all have a wonderful retirement.  You all deserve it.


Judy Darden



Street repair program needed


To the editor:


Street maintenance on Tullahoma streets has been and is being neglected. The streets are in poor condition. Paving over needed street repairs is like paving over a sponge. A rough depression is usually the result. Street excavations are not properly filled with compacted material and sewer maintenance covers are not raised with rings prior to paving. A street repair program is needed.

First of all, present improperly filled excavations need to be dug up and filled with compacted materials prior to asphalt paving. A concrete cap can be applied in the winter when asphalt plants are closed. Once the repairs are made a street excavation permit should be required for all new excavations in the streets. The permit should include an inspection fee and a city inspector should verify the compacting prior to applying the asphalt or concrete cap.

Either the city or the utility should be required to install rings to elevate sewer maintenance covers prior to paving. Repairs should be made to those covers that were not property elevated.

Once the streets are repaired a multi-year asphalt paving program is needed.

I make these observations and suggestions as a former public works director responsible for street maintenance. 


Ron Darden



Is the fix in for the new police chief?


To the editor:


I recently read your articles dated July [28] entitled “Henderson named acting police chief” regarding Lt. Henderson being chosen as the acting chief of police, and [Aug. 7] “Field of four: final police chief candidates named.” It appears as though the fix is in for Lt. Henderson to be named the new chief of police. I base my comments on the following:

1)      City Manager Moody made Lt. Henderson acting chief on July [7], one week prior to the closing date of the vacancy. Moody’s comments “that [he] is our only internal applicant” with one week remaining before the closing date makes her decision highly questionable. With one week remaining, there was ample time for other internal applicants to apply for the job. (Source: July [28] article)

2)      “According to Moody, of the 73 applications from 23 states … 32 did not meet the requirement of the job as defined in our job description and job advertisement.” Based on her statement, that would leave 41 applications as viable candidates, yet she appears to have arbitrarily narrowed it down to four applicants. (Source: Aug. 7 article).

3)      I am aware of a few well qualified local candidates (local meaning within the State of Tennessee) who were removed from further consideration for the job very early in the process.

Based on the above, it appears the decision has already been made to make Lt. Henderson the permanent chief. I am not sure what is motivating Moody, however, by eliminating well qualified applicants from further consideration, the Board of [Mayor and] Aldermen can select Lt. Henderson without fear of anyone questioning their decision.


Keith B. Moses



[Editor’s note: regarding point one, the author correctly states the application window for the position had not closed when Lt. Henderson was announced as the city’s only internal applicant; however, as only Henderson had acquired the degree required by the job posting, that point is irrelevant. Another week would not have allowed others to gain the qualification. Regarding point two, the city administrator said when the job was posted in June [“Police chief job officially posted,” June 9] she would invite a total of four to five applicants from the larger applicant pool to an MTAS-developed assessment center; the August announcement of those four applicants was not, in our view, arbitrary.]


Sacrifice and suffer for success


To the editor:


In his “Insider” column for Aug. 4 in The News, Dr. Marcus Lee wrote the following sentence: “To have a brighter future, people must usually sacrifice, save or suffer.”

Dr. Lee is my family doctor. I am his patient. In the waiting room of his office, Dr. Lee has several inspirational Bible verses painted on the walls. But these verses do not talk about sacrifice or suffering.  After all, Dr. Lee goes here to make a living! 

But the secret to successful living is now out. You must sacrifice and suffer to thrive and to be truly alive. As Mahatma Gandhi put it: “Happiness is suffering voluntarily extended.” The Biblical prescription for this subject is “For Christ suffered for you and left you a personal example and wants you to follow in his steps” (1 Peter 2:21).

Without question, sacrificial love and sacrifices are the key to the good life. For as the great Lutheran martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer put it: “It is not the religious art that makes the Christian, but participation in the suffering of God in the secular life.” 

May we all suffer and sacrifice in the real world and as a result life the abundant life, world without end.


Karl Smithson


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