Letters: Duties, Vaccines, and Wholesome Consuming Opinion



Promote the common good

Vintage even at 91, I often read your articles in Today in History. The joke of April 13, 1966 caught my eye and my reflection. “Voting is the process of standing in line to decide which party will spend your money.” It’s smart, catchy, legible, and quotable, but doesn’t necessarily create thoughtfulness.

However, it got me thinking. The Introduction to the Constitution, which begins with “We the People,” lists the things that We the People are supposed to ensure by the Constitution. Among them is “promoting general well-being”. I believe that our money, taxes, should do exactly what is influenced by our elected leaders.

Our culture today is dominated by the concept of social justice, which has been defined in multiple ways to adapt to our diverse populations. Fortunately, my pastor, the Rev. Doctor Brian Wyatt, continues to biblically define social justice as the distributive justice demonstrated through the life and teachings of Jesus in his sermons, conversations, and church activities. While we may accept this, it is seldom easy to do. For me, my taxes are a way to contribute my share.

I also believe that “the common good”, also known as “general welfare”, is always the responsibility of the party we choose to “spend our money” (taxes for social justice / distributive justice). If “the common welfare” doesn’t make us realize the importance of everyone finding it easy to choose, what in the world would we find convincing?

JEAN HALL

Johnson City

Grateful for the vaccine

Hallelujah! I received the second COVID vaccine! I am so grateful to have received my second dose!

So many people have to be thanked for the immediate measures taken for COVID vaccines. President Trump and his administration have worked diligently with the region’s lawmakers, drug companies, and volunteers who have signed up for the vaccine trials. This is only a small group involved in this historic event. Many Thanks.

I would like to thank State of Franklin Healthcare Associates for all of their hard work enabling their patients to receive the vaccine in the best of circumstances. The transit point was so well organized and everyone, staff and volunteers, did a fantastic job.

I hope everyone gets the vaccine so that the Tennesseans will be protected. It is important to protect your family and yourself.

Can’t wait to see my granddaughter!

KAREN HOLDEN

Johnson City

Switch to a sustainable diet

With Earth Day on April 22nd, we reduced our carbon footprint by restricting travel and our thermostat. We recycle. But we can do a lot more by reducing our consumption of animal meat and dairy products. Yes, that.

A recent article in The Guardian argues that animal husbandry is a major driver of climate change, as well as air and water pollution, soil and water depletion, and wildlife habitat destruction. Oxford University’s prestigious Food Climate Research Network reports that solving the global warming disaster will require a massive shift towards plant-based foods. The Netflix feature Seaspiracy documents the devastating environmental impact of the fishing industry.

In a greener world, we must replace meat, fish and dairy products with vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds and grains, just as we replace fossil fuels with wind, solar and other renewable energy sources.

Each of us has a unique opportunity to heal our planet by moving to plant-based foods. We can start with the one-minute New York Times diet quiz. Let’s then celebrate Earth Day by trying out the rich selection of plant-based meat and dairy products in our supermarket. The internet offers plenty of advice and recipes.

JIM CALDWELL

Johnson City

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