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presstalk 671-TALK

• I’m calling in response to the Oct. 20 presstalk [call] citing the homeless people at the ramp of 1-40 and Campbell Station [Road]. The person described the pity we should take on these Vietnam veterans. They cited, quote: “experts estimate one-third of all the homeless in this country are Vietnam-era veterans.” Well, they say there’s a sucker born every minute, and whatever minute this caller was born, they are the sucker of that minute. The one-third figure for homeless Vietnam vets comes from none other than that old liberal spinmaster, Dan Rather.

In the mid-1980s program hosted by Rather entitled “The Wall Street Within,” Dan Rather proclaimed one out of three homeless men is a Vietnam vet. Studies by the [Veterans Administration] at that time indicate that one-third of homeless are veterans of all wars, not just Vietnam. That’s a very reasonable figure given that 40 percent of adult males in the general population were veterans of any war at the time of Rather’s remarks. In fact, economist Sharon Cohany of the Department of Labor, in 1994, studied Vietnam-era veterans. The current national unemployment rate was six percent, [with] Vietnam vets it was five percent, and that’s vets for all forms of service during that era. And vets that actually served in Vietnam was 3.9 percent. So, in terms of handing out money at the ramp of 1-40 and being concerned, shaming us because these are Vietnam-era veterans, I would ask the caller to please do a little bit of homework. Perhaps they could start marking their bills before handing them out, so the local police could tally their total at the next drug bust. It’s OK with me if you wish to continue your brainwashed handouts, just leave the rest of us out of your make-believe world.

• I’m a Farragut fifth-grader and I am calling about the beggars at Farragut exit highway ramp. We have seen them many times. One time the car in front of us had a lady talking on the phone. A beggar walked up to her car, and she handed him $20. The beggar laughed as she drove away. My dad said … a store down the street probably gets beggars all the time. We stopped and asked the cashier if they get beggars. The cashier said they come and, very often, with lots of cash and buy alcohol. Then they checked in at [a motel] near the ramp. Also, my grandfather picked one up that held a sign saying that he would work for food. When they got to the house the beggar started to complain about his back and his feet and saying … he couldn’t help at all. We give money to our local church and I don’t think that they are buying apples or mind about being homeless.

• First, I have a question: Is The Rush [fitness center] and the Sonic at Kingston Pike and Lovell Road, in Farragut? [No]. … Also, the business about the speedway on Kingston Pike, is why can’t a red light be installed either at Virtue Road or Old Stage [Road] now to slow traffic down and help with the turns and in the morning with school traffic? And then as they work on the road down the way toward Everett [Road], once they get that finished, put a traffic light there. And the cameras, it works in different areas in Chicago and New York, also Charlotte, N.C. And we do have speeders, we do have people who run red lights. And people have died because of this.

• I saw [Through The Lens] red lights on cameras in Farragut, they definitely should be put in. I’ve seen more people run red lights after the lights change. If they don’t put ’em in they’ll be more accidents and people killed, especially Campbell Station Road, Lovell Road, Parkside [Drive] and all that, … and Village Green.

• This is in response to the letter in the farragutpress [Nov. 17 issue], “Where’s the sheriff?” The sheriff [Tim Hutchison] is afraid to write speeding tickets because it will upset potential voters. You can expect fewer tickets than ever since it’s coming up on an election year. Check the records on the amount of speeding tickets this year … compared to other counties of this size, and you’ll learn where the sheriff is.

• I missed the police reports in the paper [Nov. 17 issue]. I sure like for them to be in there, it gives me an idea of what I need to keep an eye open for. Hope you keep [them] up.

• I just want to say a good thank you to Doug Horne and Horne Radio network for the new [AM] 670 Oldies station, we’ve really been needing something like that. And I just hope it continues.

• Editorial freedom is a wonderful concept, but it does come with its responsibilities. With that in mind, the farragutpress has developed policies that will be followed regarding the publication of presstalk comments:

• Libelous comments will not be published.

• Malicious comments will not be published.

• Comments will remain anon-ymous.

• Recorded comments will be limited to 30 seconds.

• Names of individuals or businesses mentioned in the call will not be published (public figures and officials excluded).

• The farragutpress reserves the right not to publish any comment for any reason.

• Because of space limitations, not every comment will be published. Also, portions of the 30-second message may be omitted, but the basic message of the call will remain intact.

• Vulgar language will not be printed.

That’s it. The forum is open for comments regarding anything you have on your mind — local politics, world affairs, sports, religion, community affairs, city-county unification or anything else.


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