Letters to the editor, Oct. 13



The Tennessean

Published 5:03 a.m. CT Oct. 13, 2017

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Rishard Matthews needs to refocus

Titans wide receiver Rishard Matthews is able to play a game and sign, as he did this year, a three-year $15 million contract because brave people like his brother, a U.S. Marine, is willing to defend our flag and our freedom on foreign battlefields.

Rishard’s brother died two years ago in Afghanistan, and I am sure that as a Marine he would be appalled at his brother’s workplace protest of not standing or even making an appearance for our national anthem.

I say workplace protest because while employed by the Titans, the game and the stadium they are playing in is the workplace. The First Amendment does not apply to the workplace. Ask any constitutional law expert. I can’t try to convert customers and fellow employees to my way of political thinking, for instance, during company conference calls or during meetings with customers. There is a company code of conduct, and if I consistently violate that code of conduct, no matter what I feel about my right to be heard or my political grievance, I will be fired.

I would ask that Tennessean Titans beat writer Jason Wolf gain a “new perspective” and ask Rishard Matthews if he is a registered voter, did he vote in the last presidential election, and does he know the name of his district’s U.S. congressman or the senators who represent him. It’s important to ask the multimillionaire Matthews these questions about his country, where apparently he feels that he and others have been treated unfairly and have not had equal opportunity, because that is where you should express your grievances with our country/government, on your own time as a citizen.

Wesson Smith, Red Boiling Springs 37150

Pelosi threatens gun rights

Re: Editorial: Refocus gun debate on responsible ownership, Oct. 8.

Thanks for a reasonably balanced editorial on the gun control issue after Las Vegas. As a non-gun owner, it is good to see a rational story rather than the quick gut reaction polarized views filling our TV screens.

However, I would like to point out one important inaccuracy in the story — a reference to the NRA “false narrative that ominous forces are here to take American guns.” Let me introduce you to Rep. Nancy Pelosi, an ominous force against guns if there ever was one.

Just a few days ago, she stated at a press conference “… hell, yes, I hope that there is a slippery slope toward more gun control.”

That is specifically the type of comment that drives the NRA to oppose any gun restrictions.

This tragic incident confirms again that there are two constant elements of mass shootings — guns and mental illness. Most often we talk about the easy one: guns. We need a lot more discussion about the more difficult one: mental illness.

Remember, he could have used the explosives in his SUV to do even more damage.

Ed Duffy, Mt. Juliet 37122

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Trump not intellectually honest

Re: “Respect and Donald Trump’s character,” by Bill Peach, Oct. 8.

Bill Peach’s letter was on target regarding Trump.

I was a volunteer lobbyist for a nonprofit organization for 20 years. I have strong political views of my own, but I left them at the doorstep when I entered the Capitol because I honor the political system and those men/women who represent us who are intellectually honest, regardless of party affiliation.

There are only a few stinkers there. Unfortunately, Trump tops the list of stinkers. He is not intellectually honest. He is dangerous.

Don Peterson, Franklin 37067

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