What’s in a name?
I was disappointed to see that both the Johnson City and Kingsport Chambers are endorsing Appalachian Highlands after the North Star report was released.
The fact that the majority of locals associated the word Appalachia with negative words like poverty and opioids does not bode well for people getting excited about using the phrase. If locals can’t have buy in, then grassroots marketing will fail.
The fact that the report said that Tri-Cities is just as good as Appalachian Highlands means better options were not provided. We already know Tri-Cities is not working, because of the lack of growth in the region for years, so why would Appalachian Highlands work if it gets the same response?
The Highlands is already a mountain region that is close by and located just south of Asheville in the Nantahala National Forest. The Appalachian Trail goes through the Nantahala Forest, so in essence, Highlands/Cashiers, North Carolina, is already the Appalachian Highlands.
I know Ballad has pushed this phrase hard, and I applaud them for trying something new, but their internal marketing of Appalachian Highlands has just created a recognizable phrase instead of allowing organic regional names to evolve through North Star's study. In fact, Appalachian Highlands was an option given during the survey.
People may ask, “well do you have a better name?” The answer is yes, Mountain South.
If you don’t like it, then come up with something else, but do not support Appalachian Highlands. If you like Mountain South, then support it via social media.
On a side note, Johnson City was changed to Haynesville in 1859 but changed back in 1861. Maybe there is still hope!
In defense of rifles
This letter is in response to the letter presented by Kayla Tucker (Aug. 11). In Ms. Tucker’s letter, she advocates eliminating “assault rifles” and notes that no one needs an “automatic” weapon with a 100-round drum.
First, let me agree with some of Ms. Tucker’s points, that we, not only as a nation, a civil society and as a specie, have moved away from our guiding light, i.e., putting God first and treating others as we ourselves would like to be treated.
However, as to her point as to eliminating ownership of the modern sporting rifle (her mischaracterization as an “assault rifle”), she and I have a difference of opinion. Her comment regarding the ability to purchase an automatic weapon is misinformed. No one has been about to purchase an automatic weapon in the U.S. for decades.
As to her point that the modern sporting rifle is not used for hunting is again a gross mischaracterization of the facts. These rifles are most certainly used for hunting, sport shooting, self-protection, protection of others, and protection of livestock.
As to these rifles having a terrible aim, it is the person who aims; the rifle produces a point-of-impact. In the past when such rifles were introduced into the civilian market, that may have been true. But now with improvements in barrel manufacture, triggers, internal operating mechanisms, improved cartridges, and bullet ballistics, these rifles have incredible accuracy. Some of the higher-end rifles have a point-of-impact in sub-MOA groups. If the aim of the modern sporting rifle was so terrible, why is it you see SWAT responders carrying an AR?
In short, our society needs to respect others and respect ourselves. Guns would then not be the focus, but instead, we would look to the individual and their actions.