By Steve Hunley

Kyle Ward: The State Should Keep Its Promise

Commissioner Kyle Ward has a resolution before the Knox County Commission asking the State of Tennessee to finally live up to its promise after the closure of the mental health facility at Lakeshore.  Not only should the commission approve this resolution, but it should do so with alacrity.

Ward’s resolution points out the need for a new mental health facility here in Knox County and the burgeoning homeless population.  It is an indisputable fact the homeless population in Knoxville especially has become a real problem, many of whom suffer from mental illness and/or drug addiction issues.  In fact, it has become more of a problem in Knoxville than in some bigger cities.  As Kyle Ward’s resolution states, many of these many been left to wander the streets after the closure of Lakeshore.  The City of Knoxville has discussed any number of band-aid remedies.  Some councilmen apparently wish to set aside some public “safe space” in the outdoors so that the homeless can be kept together.  Some of the proposed solutions are well beyond the City of Knoxville’s financial means even as their tax rate escalates the mayor’s spending policies.  And local leftists will be shocked to realize Mayor Indya Kincannon’s last budget increased the taxpayers’ commitment to purchasing “art” while reducing services to the indigent.

Mentally disturbed people wandering the streets aimlessly is a tragedy waiting to happen.  Keeping them incarcerated in jail is expensive to taxpayers, too.  An ever-larger homeless population costs a lot of money in tax dollars, but its price as to depressing business is beyond measure.  Folks do not wish to be accosted while parking their cars or run a gauntlet of homeless people demanding money or the like merely to go to the brew pub.  The homeless panhandling in front of businesses and even the grocery store does nothing to make people feel safe.

After a while, it will become easier to go elsewhere.

The toll as far as human beings go is immense and it is well past time the State of Tennessee kept its promise to the people of Knox County.  Tennessee has been well-governed and has the necessary resources to keep its promise to the people of Knox County.

Commissioner Kyle Ward deserves the thanks of all rational people in our community.  The youngest member of the Knox County Commission, Ward has been a thoughtful and productive member of the county’s law-making body.  The commission not only needs to prod the state government to keep its word but to keep banging that drum until it becomes a reality.

It is not only necessary for the well-being of the people of Knox County, it is absolutely necessary for the State of Tennessee’s political and government infrastructure to be known and recognized for keeping its word.  Once given, a promise must be kept and it has been years since the state gave its word.

The Knox County Commission should pass Kyle Ward’s resolution unanimously and send it to every member of the Knox County legislative delegation.  In fact, the Ward Resolution should become one of the priorities of the entire legislative delegation during the next session of the legislature.  None should rest until the State of Tennessee has cited a new mental health facility here in Knoxville and Knox County.  Our mayors, Glenn Jacobs and Indya Kincannon, should get behind it as well.

This has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with helping those people who need it most and protecting the rest of our community’s population.


Georgianna Vines: The Democrat Party’s Best Friend

Knoxville News-Sentinel columnist Georgianna Vines might as well be the local publicity director for the Knox County Democratic Party.  In her most recent column, she raps Congressman Tim Burchett, saying he “continues his streak of conservatism in voting patterns and amendment attempts.”  Vines also tut-tuts the notion Burchett “ignores opportunities to meet head-on with” his Democrat opponent, Mark Harmon.  Old Georgianna neglects to tell her readers just exactly why Tim Burchett ought to draw a crowd for the leftist university professor.  As to Burchett’s “streak of conservatism,” it’s been there since Burchett has been in public office.  There’s nothing new about Tim Burchett, including his Carhartt jacket.  Now old Georgianna likely wakes up in a new world every day so Tim Burchett’s conservatism might surprise her when the subject comes to mind.

Vines ticks off a veritable checklist of the usual sins committed by a Republican congressman, none of which have to do with constant spending and increasing taxing.  Not one has anything to do with kitchen table issues, those affecting everyday working families.  Readers won’t find anything about that inside the pages of the Knoxville News-Sentinel.  If one wants to see Democrat candidates promoted, and glory in the wonders of diversity and equity, that’s the newspaper for you.

Have old Georgianna and the Sentinel written about Joe Biden calling out for dead congresswomen and insisting the economy is hella strong?  Nope.  Won’t find it in the pages of the Sentinel.

It’s the print version of MSDNC.  Pretty much the only way a Republican could get fair, much less good, coverage in the Sentinel is by dying.  Of course, the Sentinel would likely compliment the Republican for having died and made way for someone more progressive.

As for its relevance to the real world most of us live in, there is none, save for serving as fodder in a hamster’s cage.


Burchett and Boebert Save the Lincoln Day Dinner

Speaking of Republicans, local Republicans gathered for the annual Lincoln Dinner last week to prepare for the midterm elections and hear Congresswoman Lauren Boebert of Colorado.  The event was presided over by party secretary Rob Gray who did a credible job as the master of ceremonies while chair Daniel Herrera hid in the tall grass in the back of the room.  It was readily apparent local Republicans had come together to support Congressman Tim Burchett and hear Congresswoman Boebert.

The program was not without glitches.  There was difficulty in playing a video message from Governor Bill Lee, but the message was worth waiting for; a similar message from Senator Marsha Blackburn just didn’t make it.  Herrera was listed in the program for several chores but left those to Rob Gray to perform.  Nobody seemed to mind.  Eventually, Herrera came to the podium and gave what amounts to a defense of his time as party chair; he had to practically beg for applause.

Congressman Tim Burchett made a special presentation to his predecessor, former Congressman Jimmy Duncan.  Duncan made a brief and delightful talk that clearly tickled the audience.

Congresswoman Boebert delivered the red meat local Republicans expected.  The Colorado congresswoman gave a fiery denunciation of Joe Biden and his administration, as well as a call to elect a Republican Congress this fall.  Poised, personable, and down to earth, it was readily apparent why so many Republicans like Boebert’s common-sense approach to government.  The Colorado congresswoman talked about faith, family and God, none of which are topics most Democrats much like.

Drawing repeated laughter and applause from the room, Lauren Boebert was a hit.