News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion


Calvary Assembly does a lot for city of Decatur, its residents


I am responding to the mayor and city council's proposal to route I-565 north instead of along Alabama 20. I know Calvary Assembly does not want traffic lights on Alabama 20 any more than anyone else does. They do want the help of the city of Decatur in building an overpass that will help protect everyone.

Calvary has offered to sell its present property for retail use to generate taxes for the city, as well as to attract new businesses to the retail side of its new location. It has done everything possible to work with the city to help the community, including outreaches that help feed and clothe the poor in Morgan County. So instead of helping them, the city proposes to bypass them.

The people in Limestone County are happy because some of the tax money from businesses locating along I-565 will now go to them. The Athens Wal-Mart will also be more convenient than the Decatur one.

The construction phase of I-565 would not be "a nightmare" because most of the construction will be done in the fields beside the westbound lane. A service road would greatly enhance the safety of the people leaving the Conoco and Raceway.

The city has long wanted a Target and an Olive Garden. Why not offer them the retail portion of Calvary's land instead of destroying Wilson Morgan Park? An off-ramp would be an incentive.

Calvary must relocate soon. Sunday school classes meet in trailers, nearby apartments and retail stores. There are two morning services and a lack of seating at productions. The city has approved expansion of all other large churches in Decatur. Calvary is not trying to take their members, but is instead trying to help a broader area of the unchurched.

Carol Tiwari


Hypocrisy a plague in Hartselle, especially among public officials


People who are appointed or elected, or serve in the public eye, are always "under the microscope." They should be held accountable for their actions, whether it is in the capacity of their public service or not. All should be held to a higher standard, be able to accept scrutiny and scorn, while at the same time performing the functions of their positions.

What upsets me most is the hypocritical people. They tell you one thing, then do the opposite. Reminds me of some people in "high standing" who suffer from a Sunday morning hangover at church. They oppose things such as alcohol publicly, but frequently are seen in nightclubs and bars. They oppose government intrusion into religion, while shoving religion into government. Some of the biggest hypocrites have active roles in churches. Some sit on the front row of the "amen section." Some serve as Sunday school teachers, deacons and pastors.

The Bible does not say that it's fine to be a sinner and a hypocrite during the week, just as long as you are a "Christian" on Sunday morning. I call these people "repeat offenders" of God's law. They wear two faces and speak with a forked tongue. When their feathers get ruffled, or they get proven wrong, they spread lies and accusations, which only exacerbates their hypocrisy.

There are many references in the Bible regarding hypocrites and hypocrisy. Now, if these people are going to represent boards, government, churches, or hold other public positions, then they need to put on one face and instill a moral mind and a civil tongue. A hypocrite, in my opinion, is worse than a fool and his money. A fool can spend his money, but a hypocrite is just exactly what he or she is: a hypocrite. Sad thing is, Hartselle is overflowing with these people, many in the public eye.

Mike Dowdy


Taxpayers should not be forced to pay Roy Moore's legal bills


I am disappointed that the Alabama Supreme Court has denied the 11 taxpayers justice in seeking Roy Moore to reimburse the $549,430.53 for his legal bills over the Ten Commandments monument. The court said the plaintiffs did not have the "proper legal standing to pursue their claims."

It must take a "higher power" other than the divine to seek any legal actions against Moore. Thus it falls upon Gov. Bob Riley to pursue the claims. Do Alabamians believe that Gov. Riley will come to the plate on behalf of taxpayers and run the risk of splitting the Republican Party and lose his re-election bid? Not for a moment. The taxpayers have been ripped off in Moore's personal crusade.

Moore stated during his litigation that he would not let the taxpayers foot his legal bills. It was Tom Parker, once Moore's attorney and now an Associate Justice of Alabama Supreme Court, who repeated Moore's financial commitment to the state treasury in November of 2002. Moore has indeed benefited financially from his defiance of federal authority. Look at his profits from television talk shows, speaking appearances and tours and book sales. Moore has even marketed the monument with foundation status. If the conservative Christians do not call on Moore to fulfill his moral obligation, then he has been practicing hypocrisy all along and his supporters have been deluded enthusiasts.

Isaiah J. Ashe


Changing filibuster rule would be consistent with U.S. Constitution


There appears to be a great deal of ignorance among your readership regarding the U.S. Constitution. I realize that the Constitution is no longer the subject of significant study in our schools, but the document is readily available to anyone who wishes to read and understand its intent.

The latest barrage of ignorance involves the confirmation process for federal judicial nominees. Article I, Section 5 of the Constitution empowers each house of Congress to "determine the rules of its proceedings." This means, for example, that the Senate can change its own rules at any time by a simple vote of the majority. Article II, Section 2 empowers the president to appoint justices of the Supreme Court and other federal courts, with the "advice and consent of the Senate."

For the first 213 years of our republic, all federal judicial nominees were confirmed by a simple majority vote of the Senate, as is required by the Constitution. Lately, since the liberal majority on the Supreme Court is being threatened, Senate Democrats have decided that a confirmation vote on any moral conservative nominee will be threatened with a filibuster. While Senate rules allow filibusters, they were never intended to, nor have they ever been used to hold up voting on judicial nominees.

There is a proposal in the Senate (the reactionary leftist media calls it the "nuclear option") to impose a rule prohibiting filibustering federal judicial nominations. This proposed rule is completely consistent with the original intent of the Constitution, and it would not change anything regarding filibusters for other Senate business.

By the recent paranoid reaction of your readers, it seems that not only do they take their positions based on reading the Opinion Page of THE DAILY and by watching CNN, but also they have never actually read the Constitution.

James F. Conrad


Environmental proposal bad for new and existing businesses


The "environmental justice" bill recently passed out of the Senate Energy and Natural Resource Committee has many problems. For starters, it creates another protected class, called subpopulations, defined as groups of people not of the majority race, color or national origin, or who earn less than $15,000. This combination grabs not just poor minorities, but also middle-class and wealthy minority citizens, plus poor whites into the subpopulations category. The only group of people apparently not included in the subpopulations would be white Alabamians earning more than $15,000 a year.

This bill would also form a new Environmental Justice Division at the Alabama Department of Environmental Management that would be required to find all subpopulations within half a mile, one mile and three miles of a proposed new or existing industry site. The unit would have to add all pollutants from all sources — not just from the permitee. If more pollution affects the subpopulations than the other population, the permit would be denied in the case of a new industry. In the case of existing industry, there would be a requirement to reduce pollution. While killing new industries that could bring jobs to Alabama is bad enough, this bill is also a back door to dramatically regulating existing industry.

Alabama is not a wealthy state. It is difficult to think of a site — urban or rural — that would be allowed for new industry under this bill. It is also difficult to think of an existing factory that wouldn't have to pay big bucks to reduce pollution under this bill.

John Hay

Executive Director

Alabama Advance Inc.


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