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Presstalk 671-TALK

• OK, I get it. The puppy lives outside 24/7, and everyone wants to hang the people that have the dog, and I understand. But why don’t we try to move out of Farragut and look downtown, and see how many families, real live people with children, live outside, just like the puppy. And I don’t hear anybody whining or complaining about that. So until you do, quit whining about a dog.

• I noticed in the farragutpress that Tim Burchett, who is running for mayor of the County of Knox, thinks apparently that the school administration, or bureaucracy as he calls it, does not deserve appropriate facilities to house the school administration. I would simply point out to Mr. Burchett that, No. 1, Knox County has probably one of the smallest proportionate sets of administration in the state of Tennessee. And I think he needs to go down and consult with the school board before he starts wanting to sell property that houses them, because they will have to replace that housing with something else if they sell that old hotel that they’re now in. Furthermore, I personally think the school people would like to move out of that building. It’s not very well suited in the first place. Just as a matter of history, perhaps Tim Burchett ought to recall that they were moved out of the City County Building, which were the original quarters of the school system. Anyway, I think that’s a pretty cheap shot. Thank you.

• Well, it’s now been published; it’s now in writing; there’s no excuses. Red light ticket citations will only be issued if someone is already under the light, red. Then it was red when they started under it. It says in black and white, if someone begins to cross the intersection or makes the turn while the light is yellow or green, there is no citation issued. It is only issued if the light is already turned red. So if you get a ticket, shut up, pay the fine and pay more attention. After all, there’s those of us out there that obey the law who are driving and we really don’t want you to kill us.

• Here is how I drive since the [automated enforcement] cameras have been installed on Kingston Pike. Red means stop. I don’t turn until the light turns green. If the person behind me gives me the horn, I say to myself, “Grow wings and fly over me, little buddy.” When I leave the post office to go to Kroger’s, I turn right on Campbell Station Road and avoid the camera on Kingston Pike. And this is my way of dealing with the cameras. They may be good to stop accidents, but I already got a fine and I’m not going to pay another one, so this is my way of doing business. Red means red, stop, wait for the green.

• The caller who gave the French language lesson was only about half right in this week’s presstalk, to say “puce” is French for “flea.” “Marche au Puce,” the French flea market, is how you say it, “flea market” in French, but it’s not a low-end. In fact, it’s a craftsman’s show, or an artists’ market. But the fact is “Marche au Puce” is French and it does mean the “flea market,” but it does not mean “flea market” in the sense as you would find it in the United States. It’s more of a, what you would call a crafts market or an artists’ market.

Editor’s Note: Historians report the term “flea market” originated because clothing at the markets — high end or low end — was infested with fleas.

• I’m calling about the little dogs that are left outside 24/7 in all kinds of weather. I did call. We have no ASPCA in this area, and Young Williams Animal Shelter told me to call Animal Control, and they won’t do anything about it. So I don’t know what else to do.

• I saw in one of our local papers that one of the state representatives that is from Farragut that wants to negate any tickets written against people from the red light cameras for doing a rolling stop. Who does he think he is to circumvent the law? The law is, you come to a full stop at any stop sign or red light. Always has been and should always be. Now, here several weeks ago we had someone call in and say they’d been doing rolling stops for 45 years and they were going to continue to do that. Well, whoop-de-do. If you say you’ve been breaking the law for 45 years, what else have you been doing for 45 years? Cheating on your taxes? Cheating on your wife? Lying to your employer and your church? This is the kind of mentality that has put our country into the cesspool of lack of morals and ethics, and why crime is on such a rise, especially violent crime. Because it starts with little things; it starts with being completely disrespectful of our laws, our neighbors and our community. This may seem like a little thing, but it will escalate to a big thing. And I’ll tell you right now, you do a rolling stop and you hit my back end of my car, I don’t care if there is injury or not, I am calling the cops and I’m going to have you cited.

• I saw a request in the paper for a Laundromat nearer to Farragut than Cedar Bluff or Lenoir City, and there indeed is one; I’ve used it. It’s the Everclean Laundry in Century Plaza, at 10820 Kingston Pike.

• Via While home from college over Christmas break, my son went to visit a friend who lives in Farragut. A few days later he received a red light ticket in the mail for not coming to a complete stop before turning right. My advice to him was to stay out of Farragut … besides his friend, there’s nothing down there anyway!

• Via e-mail: I have been told that Lowe’s hardware store wanted to move into the old Kroger location, but was denied by the town of Farragut because Lowe’s wanted an outside plant/gardening area. Why would the Town do this? People have been asking for a Lowe’s and the old Kroger location would be the perfect place. It has ample parking, a perfect place for the garden area and perfect size of building. If this is true, the town of Farragut is once again showing they are “not business friendly,” which is not the message they have been trying to promote. Also, how can we, as citizens, find out what businesses have applied for permits or shown interest/made inquiries in coming to Farragut? Could the farragutpress list them? This way if there is one of special interest the Town’s people can contact the town of Farragut with support for that particular business.

• Via Did any of you happen to read in [U.S.] Congressman [John J.] Duncan’s [R-Tenn.] “Washington Report” (which we receive in the mail) the stats quoted in it concerning red light cameras? If you did, you read that according to a story in the Washington Post, crashes at locations with cameras, more than doubled. That over a 57-month study period in Greensboro, N.C., red-light cameras resulted in a 40 percent increase in accident rates and injury crashes and no decrease in severe crashes. That three of the four major red-light camera manufacturers are foreign, so most of this revenue goes to other countries. That a six-month study by the Virginia Transportation Research Council found a definite increase in rear-end crashes and an increase in total injury crashes. This is disturbing. Another disturbing thing I have observed is that the folks who are pro red-light camera, sure are self righteous and judgmental of the folks who are not.

Editor’s Note: In fairness, the VTRC report goes on to say: “ … These results cannot be used to justify the widespread installation of cameras because they are not universally effective. These results also cannot be used to justify the abolition of cameras, as they have had a positive impact at some intersections and in some jurisdictions. The report recommends, therefore, that the decision to install a red light camera be made on an intersection-by-intersection basis.” Reports from the City of Knoxville indicate a reduction of the aforementioned accidents at intersections where red-light cameras have been installed.

• Via Front page news in last Thursday’s farragutpress and Knoxville News Sentinel pertained to Farragut’s Red-Light Cameras Netting $193,000; apparently a major percentage was collected from drivers making Right Turns on Red. JACKPOT? This was emphasized with much comment and a close up picture of “Right Turn on Red After Stop” sign placed within the article. It’s almost like arresting mostly bingo players during a raid on an illegal gambling casino. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that less than 4.3 percent of the estimated nine million automobile accidents in the United States in one year occurred during right hand turns, including yield on right turns. Interestingly, more than 6 percent were caused on 3-lane divided and purposely slowed traffic roads, such as you’ll find on Grigsby Chapel [Road] now that it has calming islands. A much larger percentage of the yearly total accidents was caused by speeders and distracted drivers. What percentage of that $193,000 was collected from those guys? Can’t we just be fair to right turners and spread the tickets around to others violators too?

• Via e-mail: Red-light cameras are popping up all over the country simply because the government always wants more money. Three of the four red-light camera manufactures are foreign, so most of the money goes to other countries. In 2008 the City of Knoxville received $1,179,352.44 from the cameras and the vendor received $2,007,831.34. A 2005 story in the Washington Post reported that crashes at locations with cameras had more than doubled. A six-month study in 2004 by the Virginia Transportation research Counsel found a definite decrease in crashes directly caused by running a red light, but a definite increase in rear end crashes and an increase in rear-end crashes and an increase in total injury crashes. After a 57-month period in Greensboro, N.C., red-light cameras increased the accident rates and injury rates and injury crashes and no decrease in


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