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presstalk 671-TALK

• I opened my presstalk and was in total shock to read that someone would be so ignorant as to label all Hispanics as “Mexicans.” What prejudice. I grew up in a multi-cultural community and consider some of those “bad Mexicans,” as the individual had suggested, some of my very best lifelong friends and extended family. The Hispanic population gives us so much to our community. Personally, I feel it is very boring to look around and see only people who look the same as you do, and talk the same. To the readers who responded on March 16, good for you. Obviously, others feel the way I do. To the card-carrying Baptist who got offended, what a predictable response because it shows the small-minded mentality to the larger issue of thinking only your religion and your culture is the right one.

• It’s been four months since the groundbreaking at the new high school. What’s going on here, that’s gotta be a lot of time? In addition, it’s been over a year since “GOPgate” with Mr. [Mike] Arms and Mr. [Ivan] Harmon and Mr. [Mike] Ragsdale and Mr. [Brian] Hornback. And furthermore, what are we ever going to do about our community because our school situation is just going out of control here, and there’s many folks who are mad. And this Wheel Tax thing, I tell ’yah, I will never be blackmailed again when I go into a voter’s booth to either pick for a property tax or for a Wheel Tax. That is just blackmail, and I am mad.

• I’m calling about the smoking ban [Through The Lens] in Farragut. My wife and I go out to dinner quite often, and we have gone exclusively in the past year to Connor’s because it’s a non-smoking restaurant. I believe if the restaurants in Farragut would do no smoking, then it would be a lot more convenient for everyone to go. And anytime you go to a restaurant, the smoking section’s always full, so I think that most people would prefer non-smoking, they have it in Alabama, they have it in California, they have it in Florida. Those are all nice places to go because you don’t have to worry about sitting next to somebody smoking.

• I am calling regarding the callers who seem to think they know best about getting children to and from school. This is a free country, and no law will be passed that says I have to put my child, my 6-year-old, on a bus. I’m responsible for her safety, not you, and not the bus drivers or Knox County Schools. And for your information, there is no bus service for afternoon kindergarten dismissal.

• I’d like to comment on the smoking ban [question] for the city of Farragut. I’m all for it, 100 percent. My husband and I moved here six months ago, we’d been living out west where smoking is just not allowed. And I’m just amazed that our legislature overturned another anti-smoking bill just within the last two or three weeks. So I’m all for it, there should be no smoking in any public area, period.

• This is in regard to the traffic light at the corner of Grigsby Chapel and Campbell Station Road. There were some complaints the other day in the paper regarding the short green light for traveling across Campbell Station to the other side. What I don’t understand is why they can’t make that turn lane that goes to the school just during school hours? Why could they not make that just, you know, a turn lane only during school hours, and then otherwise use it — because I sit there in a line of traffic and there’s no one in that lane to turn right, and you can’t get through the traffic light. That would be my solution to the problem, would be just to make that turn lane just during school hours.

• I feel that the town of Farragut should take similar steps as Calabasas, Calif., to ban smoking. I moved here last summer from Pasadena, Calif., and last year the city of Pasadena passed a law to ban smoking in all of their city parks. I have three school-age children, and it is wonderful to be able to take the children to a park and not have any secondhand smoke affecting them while they’re playing in the playground, or myself as an adult.

• I would just like to make a comment about how ridiculous it is that Farragut now has Campbell Station Road and Concord Road merging into each other. And there is no red light at the Northshore intersection. I’m sitting in a line right now by the wastewater treatment facility waiting to get to Northshore Drive. There must be 40 cars sitting here, and this is every day. It’s 6 o’clock right now, rush hour’s over. This should not be happening. Somebody needs to do something. [Later on in the call] … It took me 12 minutes to get from the wastewater treatment plant on Concord Road to Northshore. When I got my child I was 15 minutes late picking her up from soccer practice. And on our way back down Concord Road we just counted 71 cars. It is now 6:28 in the evening. This is ridiculous.

• I read the [Through The Lens] on [whether or not to] ban smoking, and I think that not only Farragut, but Knoxville, should do something about smoking in public buildings. And in restaurants, any place where people congregate. There should be no smoking allowed indoors, people should have to go outside to smoke. And if it’s an outside place that is at a restaurant, it should be no smoking as well. They have to be away from people who don’t want to be afflicted by the second-hand smoke. And I also believe that more and more cities are getting like that — New York City is like that, and casinos in Las Vegas, there is no smoking at any of their little poker tournaments and stuff. More and more places are going that way, I’m just afraid Knoxville and Farragut won’t. And that cigarette butts being tossed out is disgusting as well.

• I’m calling in reference to the [Through the Lens] about smoking, should smoking be banned in Farragut? Yes, I think smoking should be banned throughout any place the public goes. It’s a public health nuisance and a health hazard. There’s been numerous studies been made about this, and we should not have to continue to inhale other people’s smoke. I’ve been to California, Florida and other places where they don’t allow smoking in public and those restaurants are very, very busy — you wait in line to get in there. Let’s get rid of those old-fogies in Nashville that are on that agricultural committee who insist on taking pay-offs or whatever in order to keep that tobacco in charge. Hopefully something will come about this.

• I just recently moved to this state from another state that was smoke-free and didn’t realize how nice it was not to have all the cigarette smoke. I would vote, “no smoking.” I think it would be a wonderful idea.

• I am calling about that family that lives in Crestwood Place who allows their dogs to bark constantly. We as neighbors are simply asking that you to do something about your dogs barking. And for those people who have large dogs, and your dogs bark constantly, please, please be kind to those that live around you. If you hear you dog barking, please attend to your dog. If they are barking, they are probably barking at your neighbor who is outside. Please, do something about barking dogs.

• I know a lot of people are up in arms and blaming Mike Ragsdale [Knox County Mayor] for the Wheel Tax we got hit with a while back; and yeah, probably rightly so because we definitely got screwed when we got hit with an exurbanite property tax hike not too long after that. But something you should remember: That [this] never would have gone into effect if the County Commission — I repeat, the County Commission — had not voted a majority vote. The County Commission voted to put the Wheel Tax in place. They also voted for the property tax hike. If you’re ticked off about either one of those, vote against any of the incumbents who are currently in office and get some new blood in the office, especially anyone who’s in the district for Wanda Moody and to her years of personal vendetta against Sheriff Tim Hutchison, whether you like him or not. And now she doesn’t want her personal financial records and that legal vendetta to be able to be brought up about the subject. Talk about a hypocrite. Anyway, please vote.

• This is a call concerning banning smoking, should it be banned in Farragut like the town in California. Boy, I wish they would. There’s so many of us that have had family or friends die of this nasty, filthy, expensive habit. I just wish that we could be a clean town, inside and out, and stop spending so much money to make ourselves sick. I have never smoked, I’m very allergic to tobacco of any kind and I don’t want my kids around it, don’t want my pets around it. I won’t let anybody smoke in my house or in my car, and even in the yard. I wish that the whole town would do this. This would be a great, great step in the right direction for a nice, clean town: Farragut, Tennessee, cleanest town in Tennessee. … We’re already the greenest state in the land of the free. And now Farragut can be the cleanest town in Tennessee.

• As a mother of a 9-year-old who has suffered from asthma for six years I am adament about my son being in a smoke-free environment. I have considered forming a group, collecting signatures and moving forward to our Legislation to ban smoking in all public places. I think we should all educate ourselves to just how dangerous smoking and second-hand smoke really is. I realize that many people in Tennessee make their living raising tobacco — some of my family members included. But I think encouraging them to try another crop is a good start to ending the cigarette battle. Obviously, I am all for banning cigarette smoking in all public places in Farragut and elsewhere. I am thankful to see this issue in the farragutpress.


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