City Council Misses Opportunity To Correct Bad Decision - And Response

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The City Council has rejected the results of a successful petition to overturn benefits for homosexuals and unmarried heterosexuals. It missed an opportunity to correct a bad decision. Instead, its obstinate behavior will result in unnecessary costs related to putting the matter on a ballot when the issue could have been settled last night. Clearly, members of the City Council feel they are unaccountable to the voters who elected them. They seem irritated to be questioned about their decisions. This is a fight between elected officials and their constituents that did not need to happen. 

Perhaps it is time to look at recalling members of the City Council who support spending money on things the taxpayers do not want. The decision to provide benefits for unmarried city workers who shack up is both immoral and expensive. The timing of it is suspect, given the election of Chattanooga's first openly gay official. What's next in Chattanooga? Will the Council support gay marriage? Will they legalize marijuana?

Having thwarted the will of the people in a manner similar to the (thankfully) departed Littlefield, the City Council requires fundamental change. It is time for Chattanoogans to get more interested in electing officials who support our values. Let's keep the Council's feet to the fire and make sure this issue is not forgotten when the next election rolls around.  

I will not forget. 

Jim Nichols 

* * * 

I don't understand why the city is insisting on going forward with this. They spent a lot of time developing an ordinance that is so all inclusive, it includes an Achilles heel. The goal: provide benefits to same sex partners. The result: provide benefits to everyone. This is the old adage of, "if your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail."  

Marriage is currently defined on a state level. Why is the council trying to circumnavigate that? I think Councilman Anderson did a horrible bait and switch with the voters. If changing the definition of marriage was his main mission for running, he should have run for a state level representative and fought it on the appropriate level. Or he could have used his new position and media coverage to address the state legislature and get the definition changed. Maybe easier said than done, but his election to the council proves that these times are a'changin' 

Imagine the headline: Tennessee Acknowledges Same-sex Marriages from Out of State.  Then Mr. Anderson would have been triumphant in accomplishing the goal of providing benefits to same sex partners, not only in the city, but state wide. In all of the little cities and businesses! Instead, he and the council aimed small and missed big.  

The opposition now includes the religious right, who will opposed homosexuals anyways, and those who are concerned about expanding the city's financial liabilities. In a time when the city's pension plans are under great scrutiny, and the former employee's benefits having been recently cut, the second group is way too big to draw a line in the sand and then call them bigots. 

I suggest repeal the ordinance and head to Nashville. Go big or go home. 

Tim Giordano

Petty County Tyrants - And Response (2)

Last week's County Commission meeting was quite a show. Ironically, the preacher giving the opening invocation asked that "truth may prevail" because that is the opposite of what happened. What we actually saw was bickering, verbal attacks, and a collapse of democratic discourse. It is typically not my approach to "attack" individuals, but as each commissioner made public statements, ... (click for more)

Enforce The Bond Forfeiture In Padgett Case

Now that Christopher Padgett  was taken into custody by the Chattanooga Police Department and checked back into the Hamilton County jail, I trust the judge will do no favors and enforce the forfeiture of Padgett's entire $350,000 bond. Padgett was accused of murder, he was granted $350,000 bond and he ran. Padgett was found guilty. A convicted murderer was ... (click for more)

2 Witnesses To A Murder Refuse To Testify At Jury Trial

Two men who prosecutors say witnessed a murder in Hixson on Jan. 31, 2014, on Wednesday refused to tell their story to a jury. Criminal Court Judge Barry Steelman ordered Andrew Biro and Jacob Tyler "T.Y." Keel to answer questions from prosecutor Lance Pope, but they both refused. Biro had said during testimony in General Sessions Court that Christopher Levi Parker threatened ... (click for more)

PETA And Humane Educational Society Offer Reward For Torture-Killing Of Dog After Envelope Mailed From Chattanooga

An envelope postmarked from Chattanooga and containing a photo of a dog strung between two trees arrived at PETA's office in Virginia Tuesday, along with the severed ear of a dog. PETA members are offering a reward of $5,000-and the Humane Educational Society of Chattanooga has added another $1,000-for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible ... (click for more)

CCS Wins, Notre Dame Falls in A-AA State Soccer Tourney

MURFREESBORO -- Chattanooga Christian sophomore Addie Henry celebrated her 16th birthday in style here Wednesday night with a goal and an assist to help CCS defeat Madison Academic Magnet (Jackson, Tenn. – 16-5-3), 3-0, in a A-AA state quarterfinal match played at the Richard Siegel Soccer Complex. Teammates Kyra Duble and Olivia Hoffman also scored goals, while Taylor Price ... (click for more)

Randy Smith: Mocs Hoops Looking For Huge Season

In the midst of what is an exciting college football season, I thought we might talk some college hoops as the Chattanooga Mocs are gearing up for what could be an amazing 2016-2017 season. Coach Matt McCall returns practically every starter from last year's squad that won the SoCon regular season and tournament titles as well as a school record 29 wins. The Mocs scored wins at ... (click for more)