News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion


Christmas is a celebration of Jesus Christ's birth

The tradition of Christmas began as a Christian holy day and is largely celebrated and recognized as a Christian holiday. Christmas is not intended to unify all faiths, but to unify people in the Christian faith by calling attention to the birth of Christ Jesus, God in the flesh, hence the name. Otherwise, it would be called Santamas, or Buddamas or Mohammedmas.

Celebrate Kwanzaa if you want, but don't try to make Caucasians relate to it. Celebrate Ramadan, but don't water it down to make Christians and Jews feel comfortable. It's not their holy time. Celebrate Hanukkah if you want, but don't try to include Christians or Muslims. The traditions of Hanukkah have to do strictly with the history and faith of the Jews.

I realize that many traditions surrounding Christmas have little to do with the birth of Jesus, but if you want to have a Christmas tree, don't call it a Kwanzaa tree or a Ramadan tree, or even a holiday tree. It is a Christmas tree. If you have a problem with that, do what George's dad did on "Seinfeld": make up your own holiday!

Cameron Reeder


City employees make Decatur safer, better

I would like to thank Billy Jackson for refusing the pay raise for council members set by a former council. While the comments printed from other council members only tried to justify their acceptance, Jackson's actions and comments were commendable. To those who voted for a raise for city employees, I thank you. However, accepting a raise yourself is a slap in the face to those who work for the city and to their families. At least the former council and mayor declined a raise if the city employees were not given a raise.

Most of the population doesn't know about or hasn't even thought of the extra work city employees do. These people endure conditions that most of us would not, such as being called out in the driving rain to cut trees that have fallen over roads or clean up after a wreck in the middle of the night. They get hot and exhausted in the summer and cold and tired in the winter.

They may work throughout the night during storms like Katrina, or if Decatur expects snow, to make sure the roads are passable or barricaded the next day, knowing they are still expected to cover their shift the next day. Some are required to carry a beeper 24 hours a day. Policemen go to court on their days off, and most of them do extra work as security at ball games, teen hang outs, and the mall. Garbage workers are out there in all types of weather. These are some of the most important workers employed by the city, and I would like to personally say thank you to each of the city employees for making Decatur a safer, cleaner, prettier and better place to live.

Laquinn Richey


Delphi employees need benefits they've earned

In response to the editorial on Delphi: Miller made proposals on wages cuts and pensions that would cause hourly employees with 20 years or more to have to start over.

It would put people like me (63 years old) in a position where I would have to work until age 88 to have enough money to retire if I received a livable wage. This would put most of the older employees in a position of not being able to meet their obligations. This would put hourly workers out of business. A strike would surely hurt the company and employees.

Miller seems to care nothing for the employees' plight, so why should we care if we hurt Delphi or Miller? We as a group need to live with the benefits we worked for and were promised by the corporation.

Thomas S. Cowart


Bowling wrong about
appointment protocol

This letter is in response to an article published Dec. 4 in THE DAILY regarding the Morgan County Commission District 2 candidacy of James Ray Bowling. There are errors of fact stated by Bowling that I would like to correct.

Bowling accuses Gov. Bob Riley of not following proper protocol in the appointment of the Morgan County District 2 Commissioner's position when John Glasscock was elected commission chairman in November 2004. Bowling stated that, since he came in second in the 2002 Republican Primary, he was entitled to the appointment created by Glasscock's election to the chairman's position. Bowling also implied that it is common practice to name the runner-up in a primary election as the successor to an office if the elected individual is unable to fulfill the duties of the office to which he or she is elected.

The "protocol" that Bowling accuses Gov. Riley of violating does not and has never existed. If such protocol had existed, Hartselle Police Chief Ron Puckett should have been appointed sheriff when Steve Crabb unexpectedly died in office. It should also be noted that when Commissioner Charles Sparkman became unable to serve due to health reasons, then-Gov. Don Siegleman named Commissioner Sparkman's wife to serve the remainder of Mr. Sparkman's term. At that time, Faye Sparkman had never been a candidate for an elected office.

I was one of several members of the Morgan County Republican Executive Committee asked to serve on a committee to recommend a replacement. I can state for a fact, contrary to what was written in the paper, that James Ray Bowling never applied for the appointment to complete the term of John Glasscock.

Tom McCutcheon


Judge Roy Moore was correct on Constitution

I found your Dec. 14 editorial ("Former Moore supporter reveals chilling prophesy") interesting for several reasons. First, I have never considered delusional ranting to be worthy grist for serious editorializing. Obviously, you disagree, since you called these ramblings a "vision of the future." Additionally, I find it less than intellectually honest when you state a lie as fact, and then proceed to use the lie as the basis for your opinion piece. In this case, the lie is your statement that there is a "constitutional ban on mixing church and state." This lie forms the basis for your obvious disdain for Roy Moore. Thus, whenever you hear that somebody, who has been identified as a public member of "the right wing of the Republican Party," speaks out against Moore, you can't wait to get his or her quotes in your paper.

The truth is that there are few people in public or private life who possess the knowledge of and respect for the U.S. Constitution that Moore does. The truth is that Moore's respect for the Constitution is so great that he was willing to sacrifice the Alabama chief justice position to defend it. What was he defending? Simply the First Amendment, which says, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

Those who removed Moore from office failed to cite which law, made by Congress, he violated. Instead, they enforced the orders of a federal judge — orders that actually violated the constitutional guarantee of the "free exercise" of religion. The remedy should have been impeachment and removal of the judge.

James F. Conrad


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