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presstalk 671-TALK

• Yes. I just read in the farragutpress about the individual who wrote about the principal of Farragut Primary School driving Grigsby Chapel [Road] and Smith Road. I would advise parents who have children going to that school to take the bus. It saves all kinds of headaches, it saves on gas and that’s what children should do, is ride the bus. Then there would not be all the traffic jams out there in the morning at Grigsby Chapel and Smith Road and Campbell Station Road. Parents, they’re kids. Let them ride the bus and there will not be any traffic problems. Thank you.

• Yes. I was reading the comments from presstalk last week and noticed the comments about cyclists. I don’t have anything against people riding their bikes around Town, but I do agree it can be somewhat annoying when you’re stuck behind one on a winding, curvy road. And it’s especially annoying when they don’t follow the same rules of the road, even though they want to share the road with you. So I started thinking about this, and I came up with a great solution. Since the Town is in love with their handy-dandy moneymaker cameras, maybe they could use some of the funds from those cameras to create a committee to do a pilot study of where the bike riders ride. Then we could study what type of traffic laws they violate. We could add a couple of categories for the ticket cameras, and put up a bunch more cameras to catch bike riders breaking the law. Wonder if they’d come to a complete stop? Wonder if they stop behind the magic white line? This would be a great way to find out, and another way for the Town council to add some money to their coffers.

• Via e-mail: In reference to the subject of Farragut-ites not recycling, I know why. It has nothing to do with the fact that we’re in the South versus the North, as one of your [presstalk callers] has written. It is because of Democrats versus Republicans. Republicans do not place a priority on being green and on the environment, and if you’ll look around, most of the people who are avid recyclers are Democrats. They’re definitely not Republicans. I have been recycling since 1965, since before most people had even heard of the concept.

• Via e-mail: I am outraged and disappointed that the so-called [Knox County Schools] nutrition director Jon Dickl is proposing the addition of coffee in our high schools as a means to promote the National School Breakfast Program. Caffeine disrupts teenagers’ already erratic wake-sleep cycle, which can have harmful effects on short-term memory, learning ability and can lead to decreased productivity, negative mood, loss of behavioral control, depression and an increase in impulsiveness. Large caffeine intake can lead to increased heart rate and increased blood pressure in teenagers. Caffeine is a drug. It causes a physical dependence in its users. Users go through withdrawal symptoms from throbbing headaches to fatigue to irritability when they don’t have it. And the drug’s effect on teenagers can be greater than on adults because of teenagers’ varying tolerance levels and low body weight. While soda and other high-energy drinks have caffeine, ounce for ounce they can’t match the high level of caffeine in brewed coffee (and I would argue that all caffeinated drinks should not be sold in our schools.) I am not so naive as to think that teens aren’t already consuming caffeine whether it’s coffee from home or a coffee shop, soda or energy drinks, but to sell coffee in our schools sends a message that we condone the consumption of caffeine in our children, who are still growing and developing. It also makes coffee far more accessible and easy to consume for all students, not just the percentage that are currently drinking coffee products. The argument that selling coffee will increase participation in the National School Breakfast Program is Machiavellian; on a par with the notion that selling cigarettes and nicotine products is acceptable as a means to fight obesity. I am a firm believer in the public school system and applaud the efforts to improve child nutrition. [However,] adding coffee for sale is not an acceptable approach.

• Via To the person who addressed the frustrations of getting stuck behind cyclists on local roads, I am in complete agreement with you. In fact, I have often thought it is a miracle that no accidents have occurred due to a motorist attempting to pass cyclists on the roads you mentioned. If cyclists feel they must ride on narrow roads with such poor visibility, please for your safety and the safety of all motorists, pull over and let cars around you.

• 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 anonymous.

• Recorded comments will be limited to 30 seconds.

• Names of individuals or businesses mentioned in the call may not be published (including public figures and officials) depending on the issue.

• Comments mentioning names of public figures, not issue related, will be published as a “Letter to the Editor” and must be signed.

• 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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