By Steve Hunley, Publisher

Presently the fake news media in the State of Tennessee are trying to perpetuate the myth a Democrat in the General Assembly cannot get anything done due to the Republican super-majority dominating our legislature.  That fails to explain the remarkable success of State Representative Rick Staples, a Knoxville Democrat.  Staples has enjoyed a number of accomplishments in the immediate past session of the Tennessee General Assembly and Governor Bill Lee just signed into law a bill sponsored by the Knoxville Democrat.  Many Knoxvillians will remember the tragedy of JaJuan Latham.

JaJuan Latham was a twelve year-old who was gunned down by a drive-by shooter while sitting in his father’s vehicle at Danny Mayfield Park in Knoxville. To date, no one has been charged with the murder of JaJuan Latham but if local law enforcement officials are able to charge and convict the culprit(s), he or they will face harsher penalties due to Representative Rick Staples.  The bill sponsored by Staples increases the penalty for drive-by shootings.

Staples has proven to be an effective voice for the people he represents, which includes East Knoxville and South Knoxville neighborhoods.  Representative Staples has enjoyed several successes with legislation he has sponsored in the Tennessee General Assembly with a winning personality and an approach that is less confrontational than cooperative.  Rick Staples has shown he is willing to work with others to pass legislation that is beneficial to the people he represents and his bill on behalf of JaJuan Latham has been praised by Knoxvillians who wish to see a decrease in violence in our community, as well as showing young people they have other options besides gangs.  Staples also sponsored a resolution intended to highlight the tragedy of teen suicide, which has been praised by mental health professionals and educators.

While some state legislators yap and yowl, Rick Staples has been busy translating community needs into legislation that is meaningful for the quality of life in Knoxville and Knox County.  Way to go Rick Staples!