Letters To The Editor

Wednesday, April 30, 2003 at 1:00am

Not just any store will do downtown


I am responding to your April 28 article, "Wanted! Grocery store downtown" (p. 1). While I wholeheartedly agree with this statement, Nashville doesn't need just any grocery store downtown. It needs a unique grocery store downtown. It needs a Trader Joe's grocery store. Trader Joe's is a chain based in California, but it is slowly making its way to eastern states such as Virginia, Ohio, Indiana and several other states.

What makes Trader Joe's unique is that it sells high-quality groceries at very low prices. By high-quality I mean that it can compete with a Wild Oats, but at prices that are lower than even the average Nashville grocery store chain.

By putting a Kroger or Food Lion downtown, the store might attract those living downtown but no one else. However, if some unique store were placed downtown, such as Trader Joe's, not only do the residents of downtown have a high-quality, low-cost grocery store to visit, but also people who live in the rest of the city and outskirts would likely visit this grocery store, at least periodically for items they can't get at just any grocery store.

I would encourage those who are looking into putting a grocery store downtown to at least contact Trader Joe's or visit its Web site at www.traderjoes.com and see if you don't agree that this would be an ideal situation.



Nice to have city newspaper


It's nice to have a city newspaper. Thanks for the Vanderbilt baseball story today (April 29, "Swift return promised for Vandy's top hitter," p. 36).



All diatribes don't have to have ear


Let's just get over it and move on. I'm tired of the Dixie Chicks, Susan Sarandon, and the Black Caucus and their idiotic diatribe. If people want to be idiots, get out of their way and let them go.

For heaven's sake, Sen. David Fowler is supposed to speak his mind on the floor of the Senate. He represents people who voted to send him there to do just that. There was absolutely nothing "racist" about his remarks. I for one am thankful he injected some common sense into the increasingly misguided legislature.

Insecure and small people cloak themselves in pious robes of false grandeur, strutting on the stage, crying, "Look at me! Listen to me!" in order to get attention. I for one have stopped paying attention.

Freedom of speech does not guarantee an audience.



Are Republicans close to fascism?


Now that the dust has settled somewhat in Iraq, I would like to express my concern over the recent backlash against the likes of John Kerry and Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks for their supposedly "un-American" remarks about our president and the war.

One of the loose pretexts for the war on Iraq was to bring freedom and democracy like we have here in the United States to the Iraqi people. I find it dangerously ironic that in supporting that endeavor under those auspices there is a large majority of Americans who would take away from those of us who did not support the war one of our most basic freedoms, that of free speech and assembly under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

I have to wonder whether the Republican Party hasn't knee-jerked so far to the right that it now stands perilously close to espousing the ideals of fascism. Many in the Republican Party have said that it was un-American of Kerry to say that we need a regime change in America, or that it was un-American for Maines to say that she was embarrassed that President Bush was from Texas, or that it was un-American for citizens to protest publicly against the war.

It frightens me to ask, but I feel that I must: When did it become "American" to wish to deny citizens of this country their First Amendment rights?



Best TennCare answer is simple


I have a simple solution to the TennCare and health insurance problem. If the federal government would pass a law that insurance companies could not have access to patient history and charge everyone that wants health insurance the same premiums, that would be a simple, enforceable plan. Then the government could offer to pay a portion of the insurance cost of extremely poor citizens, based on their tax returns and living standards.

Someone qualifying for Medicaid might qualify for aid. There would be no need for TennCare. Most of us would pay slightly more, but the cost would be spread out over the whole industry and every policyholder.

It was almost that way 70 years ago. The insurance companies got smart and started cherry-picking who they insured, leaving thousands without insurance. This plan would be better than our government running the health industry.

Congress is controlled by the drug, medical and insurance lobbies, so for now they won't pass commonsense laws like these that save money.



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Filed under: City Voices