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Letters: We're all connected

Johnson City Press • Apr 17, 2020 at 12:00 AM

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We’re all connected

In confronting the dangers of COVID-19, many of us have heeded the guidance of medical experts and government authorities to stay home and maintain physical distance from others.

In the process, we are gaining deeper appreciation of relationships with family, neighbors, friends, and our extended social circles. We are learning about the countless unknown people who provide essential goods and services, e.g., medical professionals and support personnel, emergency responders, farmers, food processors, truckers, grocery store personnel, manufacturers of basic essentials, public servants, etc.

We depend in so many ways on people we don’t even know and whose contributions to life on Earth we will never know first-hand. We don’t know a thing about them, other than many have tough jobs and are working hard to make our entire world thrive. They are important links in the expansive web of life on earth.

This extraordinary moment presents an opportunity to reflect deeply on the importance and expansiveness of human relationships. I invite all of us to reflect specifically on letting go of social labels that undermine our respect and appreciation for the inherent value, spirit, and contributions of every human. While we’re at it, let’s do the same for all living beings.

REBECCA KEELER
Jonesborough

Better planning needed for flood control

I read your article in today's paper quoting Mr. Peterson, our city manager, in regard to the overnight flooding seen near my home in Johnson City.

To take credit that the flooding would have been worse had measures not been taken by city planners is somewhat deceptive in my opinion. It seems to have been impossible for the city to resist development along Brush Creek along with the attendant paving, and resultant perceived inadequate dewatering measures along this creek just to build tax base for the future.

Long-term (isn't that what planners are for) planning should have been taken to carefully look at such projects along the creek (University Edge apartments might be an example) as this recent rain storm will be the norm and not unusual going forward. Also, any tax dollars we might actually realize in the future will probably be needed to repair the infrastructure which will be affected with the rising waters undermining roads, bridges, etc. I am not against development, but I am for good planning.

You might therefore consider use of the TIF monies (that fund represents someone's hard-earned money) to shore up for the costs of the devastation that climate change now fully apparent will cause instead of handing it over to cronies to facilitate poorly planned projects.

It reminds me of the man who sets fire to his house and then expects credit for putting out the fire.

I love Johnson City and its people, having resided here for 25 years. If development is warranted, which makes economic sense, it will happen without use of public funds as artificial props. Mr. Peterson is right about one thing, it could have been worse and going forward it may well be.

W.T. BROWN
Johnson City

Candidates should follow party rules

I have read with interest Nicole Williams' reasoning why her name should be allowed to be placed on the Aug. 6 Republican primary ballot as a candidate for 1st District seat for Congress.

It is a good thing that she has "campaigned harder and longer than any other candidate in this race," however she did not exercise her privilege and responsibility as a registered voter to vote in said campaigns she worked so hard in by even voting in at least three of the last four Republican primaries.

I have been taught that you must adhere to the rules and she obviously didn't think it was important for her to take a few minutes out of her busy campaigning schedule to vote — as many other hardworking Republicans and Democrats do. Citizens vote before, after, and during work hours to try to ensure that the candidate they endorse win the election.

By allowing her to be able to bypass what every other candidate is required to do would set a precedent of the rules don't matter but excuses set a new precedent. I don't think it has one thing to do with kicking a woman off of the ballot in the state that ratified the 19th Amendment. It has everything to do with she did not comply to the rules.

LAURA GRAHAM
Johnson City

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