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Marching Yellow Jackets compete at state championships

The Trousdale County Marching Yellow Jackets ended their competitive season on Saturday, Nov. 4 at the Division I State Championship.

The band finished 16th in the state among schools with 500 or less in their enrollment. Among bands the same size as TCHS, with 30 winds & percussion or less, the Marching Yellow Jackets ended ranked No. 8 in the state.

The Percussion section ended the preliminary competition ranked fourth in the state. However, since the Marching Yellow Jackets failed to make the finals, they lost out on a chance to finish in the top ten.

Submitted photo
Pictured from left: front row, Lydia Zarichansky, Callie Webster, Caroline Guffey, Angel Williams, JP Angel. Second row, Steve Paxton, Rob Joines

“We had a very good year,” said band director Rob Joines. “We finished in the top three in class at every competition save one, and won our class twice. This was the absolute best band that I have ever had. I am going to miss our five seniors!”

Joines singled out Field Commander Lydia Zarichansky for special praise. “Lydia was more than just a Field Commander for the band. A Field Commander is similar to a quarterback in football. However, she acted more like another assistant band director. She wanted to make Finals badly, and put the good of the group above her personal aspirations. That is the mark of a great leader. I predict that she will be very successful in her future endeavors,” Joines said.

All five seniors earned multiple scholarship offers from at least nine separate universities. The scholarship offers totaled $259,000 for the five student-musicians, which is a new record for TCHS. Along the way, the Marching Yellow Jackets defeated 39 other marching bands, which is also a new record.

Look Back: Massey Farm has long history of innovations

This week we continue our look at Century Farms in Trousdale County. The Century Farm program, run through Middle Tennessee State University, recognizes farms that have remained in the same family for 100 years or more.

We have written about this program before, but several new farms have earned the coveted distinction and we are visiting each one in the coming weeks.

Our farm last week, The Triple Stone Farm, is located in the Providence Community. This week we visit a farm in the Cato Community, where the hills and hollers have been farmed since the late 1700s up to the present.

Submitted
George Monroe Massey is shown in this picture made in the late 1800s. It shows George, his wife Ann Towns, and their six children. Ann died shortly after this picture was made, leaving George a widower. The Massey farm is the subject of this week’s article.

Robbie Evitts is the proud owner of “the Massey Farm.”

The Massey name has long been associated with the Cato Community.

The farm dates back to 1852, when William Iley Massey obtained 220 acres of farmland. William was married to Susan Halliburton and the couple had five children: John William Massey, William Pierce Massey, Clemency Victory Massey, James Henry Massey and George Monroe Massey.

A typical farmer of the time, William did not own slaves but used his children to help him farm the land. Not having a stake in the outcome of the Civil War, William also didn’t fight in that conflict. That may have set him at odds with his neighbors, most of whom took sides – and Cato had both Northern and Southern sympathizers.

As a result, “bushwhackers” often raided homes of people who either didn’t take their side in the war or who tried to remain neutral.

William Massey had neighbors on both sides of the issue, and a “Confederate bushwhacking camp” was in the neighborhood. Yet he managed to keep his family safe and out of trouble.

In 1890, the farm passed to William’s son, George.

George married Ann Towns and they raised six children.

But children weren’t all they raised!

Like the other farmers of his day and time, George raised what it took to feed his family. This was a time when you didn’t hop into the family car and drive to the neighborhood grocery. If you didn’t raise it yourself, you likely did without!

We know that George raised wheat, necessary for bread; corn, necessary for feed for his livestock as well as cornmeal for the family; sorghum, the common source of “sweeting” in the 1800s; hogs, the main source of meat for the family and lard for the kitchen; milk cows, as children need milk to grow; and chickens, for Sunday fried chicken and daily fresh eggs.

Keep in mind that while George raised the basic ingredients, his wife was the one who put it all together to put a meal on the table – three times a day!

George and Ann’s children were: Mattie, Herman, Oakley, Dellie, Sallie and Daniel.

It was daughter Sallie who inherited the farm in 1930.

Sallie married Robert Shela Campbell and the couple had two daughters, Robbie and Grace.

Sallie and Robert raised corn, tobacco, wheat, hay, sheep and cattle.

From Sallie Massey Campbell, the farm passed to daughter Robbie, who had married Jack Evitts.

Robbie and Jack had two sons, Edward and Rickie.

The farm is still in Robbie’s name, but she has plenty of help from her family to run things. In fact, UT Extension Service Agent Jason Evitts is her grandson and keeps the family up to date on the latest farming methods – as he does with all of the farms in Trousdale County!

In fact, the farm has a tradition of keeping abreast of what is new and good for farmers. Today we would call them “progressive farmers,” but sometimes their neighbors looked at them and thought, “Now, ain’t that different!”

The Massey farm was the first farm in Trousdale County to bale burley tobacco, as opposed to the century-old method of piling the tobacco onto large flat baskets. And for over 25 years the owners have worked with the University of Tennessee to test new varieties of tobacco and new growing methods.

In addition to tobacco, today the farm produces hay, cattle and a large vegetable crop. So we can safely assume that the Massey Farm is destined for another 100 years in the family!

Jack McCall: Counting my blessings before Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day is almost here (next week, to be exact) – a time to stop and reflect on the past year, and years – a time once again to recount our blessings. I’m writing this column a week early so the Day doesn’t take you by surprise. Personally, I wish things would slow down a bit.

I was making a speaking presentation to a credit union group in Cleveland, Ohio, a few years back – Cleveland, the home of the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame. The credit union group to whom I was speaking had gone all out for this employees’ training day. The training room was all decorated in festive Thanksgiving style. And at lunch, we enjoyed a full-blown Thanksgiving dinner – turkey and all the trimmings.

Across the Miles
Jack McCall

The title of my morning presentation was, “Making Your Life Count.” The day’s Thanksgiving theme gave me extra freedom to place additional emphasis on the importance of being thankful and “an attitude of gratitude.” I stressed the importance of appreciating “little pleasures” and mentioned “the smell of coffee in the morning” as an example.

At the end of the morning session I was approached by a woman who introduced herself as Erma. Erma was conservatively dressed and I guessed her to be a half-dozen years my senior.

“You are right about the smell of coffee, and the little things that bring us pleasure,” she offered.

“It’s not the big things, or events, that bring us fulfillment. The big things don’t come very often. And they seldom meet our expectations,” she continued.

Then she smiled a sweet smile as she said, “But little things happen every day. And recognizing them and being thankful for them makes for a happy life.”

I could not have said it better myself. I will long remember Erma.

It was John Anthony who wrote, “Savor life’s tiny delights – a crackling fire, a glorious sunset, a hug from a child, a walk with a friend, a kiss behind the ear.”

So, in light of Erma’s wisdom, here are a few things for which I am thankful.

I am thankful for the laughter of little boys and girls, the pride of grandparents, the hope of young love and the wisdom that comes with graying hair.

I am grateful for the blue of a clear sky, rolling thunder, spectacular displays of lightning and the smell and sound of approaching rain.

And I am thankful for the night sky filled with stars and the comfort I feel in knowing God “telleth their number and he calleth them all by their names.” (Psalm 147:4.)

I’m thankful for the smell of a wood fire, frying bacon, morning coffee and all the smells of Christmas: cinnamon and cloves and sage and cedar and apples and oranges.

I am grateful for comfortable sweatshirts, warm socks, a good coat, and soft leather gloves.

I am thankful for well-tuned chainsaws, sharp axes, and plenty of wood in the rick.

And I am grateful, as an old preacher used to say in his prayer, “that I woke up this morning and put my feet on the floor in a sound mind.”

I am thankful for good eyesight and good health.

I’m thankful for the music of Paul McCartney, George Strait, The Carpenters, John McDermott, The Temptations and The Buckinghams, to name a few.

I am grateful I can lie down at night and drift off into a restful sleep knowing that God’s going to be up all night anyway. “Behold, He who keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.” (Psalms 121:4)

I am thankful for the Columbia River Gorge in Oregon, the Grand Canyon, the Atlantic and the Pacific shores, the Great Smokey Mountains, the Great Plains and the hills of Tennessee.

I’m thankful for the changes of the seasons; the first flowers of spring, the green of summer, the changing leaves of autumn, and the bite of winter’s air.

I am thankful for all those old gospel songs I heard over and over and over again as a boy. Now, their words often revisit me like trusted old friends.

I’m grateful for a warm bed and a cool pillow.

I’m thankful for The University of Tennessee and the hope of better days for the Volunteers.

I am thankful for the promise of eternal life. When I think about it – when I really stop and think about a place where tomorrow will always come, it takes my breath away.

I am thankful for family – for loving smiles, warm hugs, and happy memories.

I am thankful for Red Wing boots, Wrangler jeans, Orvis flannels shirts, Carhartt jackets, and Stetson hats.

I’m thankful for homemade beef stew, chili and hot dogs, country ham, hot, homemade biscuits, and old-fashioned, handmade hamburgers with a big slice of onion.

I am thankful for glorious sunrises and spectacular sunsets.

But above all else, I am thankful that “God loved us and sent His son.”

Here’s to getting an early start on counting your blessings!

Health Insurance Marketplace open through Dec. 15

On Nov. 1, open enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace began. As you may recall, the Health Insurance Marketplace has been offering expanded access to low-cost healthcare coverage for people without health insurance, or for those who are interested in exploring more cost-effective alternatives to their current coverage, since its inception in 2013. Last year alone, more than 12 million people obtained health coverage through the Marketplace.

Photo courtesy of pixabay.com

“One of the foundations of good health is preventive care, and that is a key benefit that health insurance coverage provides,” says Mike Herman, CEO at Trousdale Medical Center. “Without healthcare coverage, people often only seek out medical care when there is an emergency, or their condition becomes unmanageable on their own. The Health Insurance Marketplace has improved access to insurance plans that cover preventive care, which benefits individuals and our community by raising the overall level of health and quality of life in our area.”

Open enrollment for 2018 coverage runs through Dec. 15, 2017. If you do not currently have health insurance or if you are currently insured through a Marketplace plan and wish to make changes in your coverage, you must do so during this time.

Here are a few steps to take to get ready for the enrollment period:

· Learn about different types of health insurance. A variety of plans will be available in the Marketplace.

· Make a list of questions before it’s time to choose your health plan, such as “Can I stay with my current doctor?” and “Can I use my local hospital?”

· Make sure you understand how insurance works, including deductibles, out-of-pocket maximums, copayments, etc.

· Start gathering basic information about your household income. You may qualify for a discount on the cost of your health insurance.

· Set your budget. Different health plans will be offered to meet a variety of budgets.

· Ask your employer if they plan to offer health insurance next year. Some employers, particularly small businesses, have chosen to discontinue offering health benefits and direct employees to the Marketplace.

· Explore current options. Visit HealthCare.gov for information about health insurance for young adults up to age 26, children in families with limited incomes (CHIP) and Medicare for people who are over age 65 or have disabilities.

As you compare plans, you should consider whether each plan includes any physicians and providers regularly seen by you and/or any family members who will be covered by the plan. These include primary care physicians, pediatricians, OB/GYNs, ENTs, dermatologists and other specialty care providers. If you need help identifying a plan to meet your healthcare needs, you can visit HealthCare.gov for more information, including a checklist of documents you will need for enrollment.

Don’t be bait for Internet ‘phishers’

In order to protect yourself from fraudulent activity, it is very important to pay attention to what you’re doing with emails. Lately, there has been a significant uptick in targeted phishing attacks. If you aren’t aware, ‘phishing’ emails pretend to be something they’re not, in order to trick the reader into doing something.

For example, you might get an email that appears to be from a legitimate bank explaining that they are doing a security check, and in order to be safe, please ‘click here’ to confirm your login information. The problem is that the email isn’t really from the bank, and the link doesn’t really go to the bank’s web site.

The whole thing is a ruse to get you to: a) confirm that you in fact have such an account, and b) supply your login information to the criminals who generated that email. The email wasn’t sent by anyone at the bank, and it is in no way legitimate, even if it looks like it is.

Photo courtesy of pixabay.com

Now if you actually have such an account, you might fall for this. This is why you should, and please read this carefully, NEVER click on a link or open an attachment in any email that you weren’t expecting to receive. It makes no difference who sent it, or how legitimate it appears. Don’t do it.

Earlier I mentioned ‘targeted’ phishing. This is the same thing mentioned above, except that some sort of additional data mining has provided the wrongdoers with information that seems to relate directly to you personally in a way that makes it feel more likely that the email is legitimate.

I am a motorcycle enthusiast, and I subscribe to a couple of motorcycle magazines. When I recently received and email that appeared to be from one of them telling me that it was time to renew (‘just click here!’), I nearly fell for it because the detailed information (I do in fact, subscribe to that magazine) fooled me into thinking that the email was legitimate. It wasn’t; it was an attempt to: a) confirm that my email address actually reaches a real person, and b) harvest my address, phone number, and credit card information. Luckily for me I remembered my own advice, and did not click the link.

Here are a few things you can do to minimize your risk with regard to email:

1. As mentioned earlier, do not click on links or open attachments in emails unless you are expecting that specific email.

2. If you aren’t sure if the email is ‘real’ or safe, open a web browser, and go to the site in question directly, by typing the URL (my_bank_here. com for example), logging in directly, and checking your account. Again, do not go to the site by clicking the link in the email.

3. No legitimate business will ever ask you to confirm your login information, or for any other personal information, by way of clicking a link in an email. So right away, if you see anything like ‘CLICK HERE to verify your information,’ you know right away that this is not legitimate.

4. Don’t fall for the ‘unsubscribe’ link you see at the bottom of junk emails. This link exists only to confirm that the email actually reached a person, and should be saved, sold, exploited and generally misused. The exception here would be commercial emails from legitimate enterprises.

For example, as the result of a holiday purchase last year, I was added to the Kohl’s email list. I would regularly receive emails about sales, etc., that I wasn’t interested in, so I ‘unsubscribed’ via the link in the email because I knew that the emails were legitimate. I would never do this as a response to spam email, which is unsolicited, commercial email.

These types of links in ‘phishing’ emails are dangerous, but easily avoided. All you need to do is to remember not to click them, and they can’t do any harm. The same goes for emails with attachments: don’t open them, just delete them, and they won’t cause any problems.

Parent-child communication key to stopping bullying

Bullying. It was the stuff after-school specials were made of when I was growing up but it seemed fictional because it was so rare in real life.

There were kids who were rougher than others – and as always, children have less of a verbal filter – but I don’t remember severe bullying ever being a topic we needed to discuss at school. It certainly wasn’t something that had our schoolmates ending their lives just to avoid.

Yet here we are just a few decades later with our hearts breaking for our youth. We live in such an impersonal world and it has taken a toll on us all. The world where neighbors did live together has become closed doors and avoiding eye contact in the driveway.

Photo courtesy of pixabay.com

We used to keep our opinions to ourselves and live in peace while agreeing to disagree. Now it seems everyone feels it necessary to not only take a stance on every subject there is, but to also insist that others feel exactly the same in order to be right.

While bullying may begin at home, the majority of what is happening is going on at home. The biggest difference between the youth of the past and those today is technology. No matter how bad our days were as kids, we knew once we ran off that school bus we could return to the comfort of a home that kept the rest of the world out. That world does not stay out now. The pings of texting, social media messages, Instagram comments and every other new app that hits the market is overwhelming our youth. And on top of that, they are so often filled with hate.

The days of face-to-face communication, looking into the eyes of the person you are speaking with, have become limited. So much of what we say is done through typing and while this may be convenient, it is so easy to forget there is a living, feeling person on the receiving end of what we write. We can type out hate and criticism while hiding behind a screen. Most of these are things we would never say to someone in person.

As both a parent and a youth prevention specialist, I have seen more than my fair share of bullying. While teachers are doing what they can, I believe it is time to urge parents to take a big step up in this area. How can we do that?

As with anything, your influence is key. It begins with our words because our kids are watching and learning by how we treat others and how we treat them. Respect, kindness and building up others with words need to be a priority in our homes. Spending time as a family with other families, both like-minded and different, has a huge impact as well.

Communication is also a big factor. If your child is being bullied, do you feel that you have enough open communication in your home that you would know this is going on? Have you created the type of relationship where your child feels safe coming to you to talk about problems? It is never to late to start.

Too many youth that I speak to tell me they have issues going on that they have kept to themselves because “nobody cares.” Listen, do not be quick to respond and express love no matter what.

Finally, limit electronics and set the example yourself. Set boundaries with cell phones and computers – whether that means at bedtime they hand over these things, at meals the table is free of interruptions, or you have weekly family time where you focus on one another instead of anything else. We need to teach our children that their phones do not need to be in charge of their lives and that a response to every incoming communication is not necessary. We have confused who and what rules our time. Be prepared to do the same though.

Bullying is getting worse. That is a fact. Netflix created the series “13 Reasons Why,” schools are creating an array of anti-bullying programs and students are banning together in grief over students that have taken their own lives due to bullying. But we need to do the biggest part and that is at home.

Ask your child this week if they have ever felt bullied or victimized and let them just talk it out. From there you can make the decisions best for your home so that your child can not only rise above this, but can be a catalyst to help others who are victims and could possibly save lives in the future. We cannot afford to avoid it any longer.

Guest View: There is a time to (and not to) carry guns

Every disaster brings out human irrationality. When there’s a plane crash, we fear flying; when a rare disease emerges, we fear we will be infected. And when there’s a mass shooting in a church, we think we should bring more guns into churches. Or at least some people think so.

This is a completely irrational response to the tragedy in Texas last week, but it’s being pushed by people for whom “more guns” is always the right answer to gun violence.

Sometimes, “more guns” is in fact the right answer. I am a conservative and a defender of the Second Amendment right to own weapons, and there are no doubt cases in which citizens who live and work in dangerous areas can make themselves safer through responsible gun ownership.

Packing in church, however, is not one of those cases. Despite wall-to-wall media coverage, mass shooting incidents are extremely rare: You are highly unlikely to die in one. Besides, civilians who think they’re going to be saviors at the next church shooting are more likely to get in the way of trained law enforcement personnel than they are to be of any help as a backup posse.

The “guns everywhere” reaction exposes two of the most pernicious maladies in modern America that undermine the making of sensible laws and policies: narcissism, and a general incompetence in assessing risk.

You have the right to carry a gun. But should you?

The heroic impulse runs strong in American culture. When exercised in tandem with prudence and a sense of justice, this instinct has been a pillar of our frontier spirit of self-reliance, and the source of bravery and sacrifice in our democratic military institutions. That impulse, however, has now rotted into a paranoid, grandiose belief that every citizen is a hero in waiting. We absorb this message in our popular culture, and we reinforce it by assuring each other on social media that any of us can be the hard-eyed gunslinger in our own personal action movie.

This kind of narcissistic fantasy has no remedy. The people who think they’re going to shoot it out with mass killers – who seem, even, to relish the idea – are impenetrable by reason.

But even most well-intentioned people have no real sense of risk. They are plagued by the problem of “innumeracy,” as the mathematician John Allen Paulos memorably called it, which causes them to ignore or misunderstand statistical probabilities. They fear things like nuclear meltdowns and terrorist attacks and yet have no compunctions about texting while driving, engaging in risky sex, or, for that matter, jumping into swimming pools (which have killed a lot more people than terrorists).

Part of the underlying issue is the sense of control. We fear flying because we are not the pilot. Our survival is in the hands of strangers. The same goes for crime, which is why gun advocates often argue that, “when seconds matter, the police are minutes away.” A gun grants autonomy, and no amount of statistical analysis can replace the sense of control that being armed provides to at least some gun owners.

I am sympathetic to this argument. My late father was a retired police officer who, at 88 years old, cornered a home intruder with his service revolver. It’s a perfect story of how gun ownership saves lives when the cops can’t be there right away. Except that it all almost went horribly wrong: When the man tried to bolt, he startled my father, who immediately shot at him. He later confided to me that he thanked God he missed. I, too, am glad my father missed – as were the police officers who arrived moments later and arrested the intruder.

Every action we take to protect ourselves involves some assessment of risk, and the uncomfortable truth is that there is very little people can do to prevent an attack from a lunatic or a terrorist. The good news is that most people – in fact, nearly everyone reading this right now – will never have to deal with those problems.

The desire to bring guns to churches is not about rights, but about risk. You have the right to carry a gun. But should you? If the main reason you’re holstering up in the morning is because it’s a family tradition where you live, or because you have a particular need to do so, or merely because you feel better with a gun, that is your right.

But if you are doing so because you think you’re in danger from the next mass shooting, then you should ask yourself whether you’re nearly as capable, trained and judicious as you think you are – and why you are spending your days, including your day of worship – obsessing over one of the least likely things that could happen to you.

Tom Nichols is a professor at the Naval War College and the Harvard Extension School, and the author of “The Death of Expertise.” He wrote this for the Los Angeles Times.

Guest View: Take time to honor America’s veterans

President Calvin Coolidge once said, “The nation which forgets its defenders will be itself forgotten.”

Coolidge’s words encapsulate Veterans Day perfectly. Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines face daily challenges that we will never encounter. When most of us go to work, we leave our house, we do our job and we come home.

It is different for those who serve. Every day they report for work, they put themselves at risk: for deployment, for permanent disability and death. And they do it all for us. They do it so that we may remain free, prosperous and safe.

The percentage of Americans with a direct connection to the military is at an all-time low. During the Vietnam War 2.7 million men were drafted. They came from almost every segment of society and were geographically diverse. Today, less than one-half of 1 percent of the U.S. population is in the armed services today — the lowest rate since World War II.

I cite these facts not to belittle those of us who have not served but to remind everyone of the invisible sacrifices made every day on our behalf by people we will never meet and never know.

Because most of us no longer have the direct connections to those who serve, Veterans Day is more important now than it ever has been.

Our all-volunteer force is a blessing. It removes the intense pain associated with the military life from the overwhelming majority of American families. The long absences, the loss of life and limb — these are things most of us don’t have to deal with.

The burdens and costs of freedom have been shifted to a select few. That is what Veterans Day is for: to thank those few who carry the burden for the many.

The origins of Veterans Day reveal a deep appreciation for the costs of war and the value of peace. While the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919 formally ending World War I, the fighting had ceased earlier. On the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month — Nov. 11, 1918 — an armistice ended the hostilities between the Allied and German forces. Armistice Day became a U.S. legal holiday to honor the end of World War I and its veterans.

In 1954, after World War II and the Korean War, Congress formally changed the word Armistice to Veterans. And Veterans Day became officially a day to honor all American veterans of all our wars.

This day is a time to celebrate the peace, freedom and prosperity that we enjoy and to honor those who gave us this gift.

While our debt to our veterans can never be repaid, the one thing we can do is dedicate ourselves to never squandering what has been provided.

As President Ronald Reagan once said, “Veterans know better than anyone else the price of freedom, for they’ve suffered the scars of war. We can offer them no better tribute than to protect what they have won for us. That is our duty. They have never let America down. We will not let them down.”

Let us all today reaffirm these words and thank our veterans and their families for shouldering the weight of our freedom.

Randy McNally represents the Fifth District in the Tennessee Senate, where he serves as Speaker and Lieutenant Governor of Tennessee.

Letter to the Editor: Nov. 15, 2017

Dear Editor:

I would like to provide a different perspective to the tax plan debate currently underway, and in particular, would like to counter the misperceptions of the current proposal presented by Doyle McManus in the Nov. 2 Vidette.

First off, the characterization by Doyle that “most Americans think that big businesses pay too little in taxes, not too much.” Really? The United States has the highest tax rate in the world (35 percent), but Mr. McManus has spoken to the majority of Americans and they all feel that 35 percent is not high enough? Really? The silly part of positing that (evil, greedy, etc.) corporations should pay high tax rates is that whatever the tax rate is, corporations do not absorb those costs; they pass them on in the costs of their products and services. So ultimately, we consumers pay those high taxes. You can’t “punish” large companies financially without punishing yourself in the processes. That’s a fact.

While we’re talking about reducing the corporate tax rate, let’s talk about the ridiculous comment from former Clinton Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, who was quoted as saying “Most of the benefits go to corporate shareholders, who have high incomes.” Again, really? Apparently Mr. Summers is ignorant of the fact that the majority of corporate stockholders are individual accounts, mutual funds and retirement accounts (adding up to 61 percent) per a May 2016 Business Insider article. I find it ironic that he criticizes Trump’s economic council advisor Kevin Hassett as being dishonest and incompetent, and yet he himself is displaying those same qualities in his critique of the current tax plan.

The other idea that always seems to accompany a tax reduction proposal is the notion that tax cuts must be “paid for.” This is the dumbest notion ever, but Mr. McManus presents it as a given. The whole point of tax cuts is for individuals and families to keep more of their income at the end of the day, which naturally implies that the federal government will receive less money from each household. This short-term reduction is eventually counterbalanced by overall economic growth and more households participating in the economy and contributing tax dollars. In the short term, the government gets less money, but within a year, overall revenue to the Treasury starts going up each year. This is what happened after the large tax cuts in the 1960s and again in the 80s. Saying that a tax cut should be “paid for” is implying that it should be revenue neutral. The idea that the federal government must never reduce its spending is exactly why we are in the fiscal crisis that we are in. A tax cut that is “paid for” ends up being more of a “bait and switch” than a real tax cut.

We need more honesty in this discussion, and less demagoguery.

Greg Clements

Hartsville

Community Calendar: Nov. 15, 2017

POLICY: Information for the Community Calendar submitted in person, by mail or fax is due by noon Monday for publication. Items mailed should be typed or printed and sent to: Community Calendar, The Hartsville Vidette, 206 River St., Hartsville, TN 37074 or brought to the office during business hours. Free listing of nonprofit events, community club and government meetings. We reserve the right to reject or edit material. Include name and phone number in the event we have questions.

GOVERNMENT MEETINGS:

Monday, Nov. 20

6 p.m. – Budget & Finance Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Budget & Finance Committee will meet in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

7 p.m. – County Commission

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Commission will hold its regular monthly work session in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

Monday, Nov. 27

7 p.m. – County Commission

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Commission will hold its regular monthly meeting in the upstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

Wednesday, Nov. 29

10 a.m. – Water Board

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Water Board will meet in the county mayor’s office, 328 Broadway.

OTHERS:

Democrats Dinner

The Trousdale County Democratic Party will host a Campaign Kickoff dinner on Friday, Nov. 17 at 6 p.m. in the Community Center. Guest speakers will be governor’s candidates Karl Dean & Craig Fitzhugh and Senate candidate James Mackler. $15 per person. RSVP to Jim Falco at 615-374-0416 or email jimfalco@live.com.

Pancake Breakfast

American Legion Post 56 will hold a Pancake Breakfast fundraiser on Saturday, Nov. 18, from 7 a.m.-noon at Keller’s Restaurant. $6.50 per plate. All proceeds go to American Legion’s work to help local veterans.

Harvest Day

Key United Methodist Church will observe Harvest Day on Sunday, Nov. 26 with worship services at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. The pastor of Key UMC, Rev. William A. Jones, will deliver the 11 a.m. message. The 3 p.m. guests are Rev. Albert Strawther and Howard Chapel AME Church from Beech Hill.

Food Pantry

The food pantry at Hartsville Church of Christ (Halltown Road) will be open on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month. Please use the backdoor entrance.

Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels is looking for volunteer drivers to deliver meals to elderly within Hartsville city limits. Drivers especially needed on Fridays. Call Ruby, 615-374-3987.

American Legion

Attention all former military members! American Legion Post 56 of Trousdale County would like to invite you to come spend time with us and get information on the benefits the Legion has to offer. You served your country well, now let us know how the country and your community can help you! Call John LaFleur, 860-268-7303 for more information.

Adult Education

FREE GED/HiSET CLASSES! The Adult Learning Center holds adult education classes each Wednesday at the middle school. Call 615-374-1131 to schedule an appointment.

TROUSDALE SENIOR CENTER:

Thursday, Nov. 16

11:30 a.m. – BP Check by Suncrest

Noon – Thanksgiving/Birthday Dinner

Friday, Nov. 17

9 a.m. – AFEP Exercise

10 a.m. – Tai Chi

10 a.m. – Yoga

Noon – Rook games

12:15 p.m. – Chair Exercise

Monday, Nov. 20

9 a.m. – Wii Bowling

11:30 a.m. – Book Club

Tuesday, Nov. 21

9 a.m. – AFEP Exercise

10 a.m. – Yoga

11:30 a.m. – Bingocize by Adoration

Wednesday, Nov. 22

9 a.m. – Line Dancing

11 a.m. – Chair Exercise

Noon – Rook games

1 p.m. – Bible Study

Look Back: Triple Stone Farm dates back to mid-1800s

For the next several weeks we will be visiting some of Trousdale County’s “Century Farms” – farms that have been in the same family for at least 100 years!

We wrote about our local Century Farms back in 2005, but there have been some additions to the list since then. So we will be recognizing those, and each one has its own unique history and story to tell.

We start with the “Triple Stone Farm” in the Providence Community, currently owned by Quindy and Kathy Robertson. Quindy is the great-great-grandson of the farm’s founder, Stephen Stone.

Stone had moved to the area from Virginia, along with his wife Kezziah and their children.

Stephen and Kezziah Stone had 13 children!

Submitted
This photo shows cattle grazing on the lands of Triple Stone Farm in the Providence Community. This farm, noted as one of Tennessee’s Century Farms, has been in the family of current owner Quindy Robertson since the mid-1800s.

One of those children was William Nicholas Stone, Quindy’s great-grandfather.

However, the first owner of the land now occupied by the Triple Stone Farm was not a Stone.

Jacob Dice was one of the first settlers in the area south of Hartsville, along the banks of the Cumberland River. When those first settlers arrived in 1822 and saw the verdant landscape, one of the first things they did was build a simple, one-room log church. When they finished the building, one of them remarked how “the providential hand of God” had led them to this piece of the Promised Land and had guided them to build a house of worship. The church then took on the name “Providence Church” and that in turn led to the community taking the same name.

It was Jacob Dice who was the original owner of the land that is now part of Triple Stone Farm.

In 1855, the heirs of Jacob Dice sold 250 acres of land to Stephen Henry Stone, as the farm didn’t pass through William. The land in question came through his brother, Stephen Henry Stone. Records show that Henry inherited 108 acres from his father’s estate.

In doing his research, Quindy found that his great-great uncle borrowed some money and used the land as collateral. In addition, the chattel mortgage also listed one horse named Bob, one roan mule, and a fawn-colored Jersey cow.

Great-great uncle Henry died a short time later and his family forfeited the land. The mortgage holder then sold the land to Quindy’s grandfather, James H. Stone.

As we can see, the deed trail is complicated, but proving the cycle of ownership is one of the requirements of the Century Farm program.

Quindy’s grandfather Stone farmed the land until his death in 1969. At that time the land was divided between his four children, William H. Stone, Mary Eleanor Stone Robertson, Wandalene Stone Woodmore, and Ethel Stone Dillard.

Quindy’s mother, Mary, received a portion of the 108 acres that had been in the family since 1855. But other land purchases over the years have increased the farm’s size to 355 acres.

To qualify for the Century Farm program, a minimum of 10 acres has to have been in the family for the required 100 years, and in Quindy’s case that would be the 30 acres given to his mother and that are now part of the total farm.

In preparing the forms for his application, Quindy Robertson included bits and pieces of history from the farm and its owners.

We won’t print the full story, but the first Stone to live in Providence (great-great-grandfather Stephen Stone) was a veteran of the Revolutionary War.

Quindy’s great-grandfather served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War. He was paroled at the end of the war in Greensboro, N.C., and had to walk the whole way home to return to his family!

Quindy has written a short novel, “Southern Trails Home,” based on his great-grandfather’s long walk! You can contact him to purchase a copy.

In 1897 there was a freak accident in the Providence Community, as a steam thresher blew up!

The steam-powered machine had a large boiler and a faulty release valve caused the steam to build up until the large iron contraption exploded. Four neighbors of the Stone family were killed and over a dozen men were injured, including Stephen Henry Stone. Fortunately, his injuries were slight.

Mother Nature has also left her mark on the family history. In April 1974, a tornado blew through the Providence Community and took the roof off of the home that had once been “Mammy Stone’s House!” It was being used as a tenant house at the time, but it was no less scary to its occupants!

Next week we look at another new Century Farm, and it too will have its share of history to relate!

Jack McCall: Faith, family keep me optimistic

I will admit it. I am an optimist. As Webster’s Dictionary defines it, I am one of those people who believe that good will prevail. I have come to be this way for many reasons.

First, I came into this world equipped with an easy, cheerful disposition.

My mother told me that when I was a baby, she never knew when I went to sleep at night or when I woke up in the morning. At night she would put me in the baby bed and I would play until I went to sleep, and in the morning when I woke up, I would play and coo until she came to get me out of the bed. You might say a part of my personality is bent toward happiness. Some of that must come in our gene package. Our granddaughter Elizabeth Jane is turned that way.

Across the Miles
Jack McCall

Second, I grew up in a home permeated with optimism and hope. My father was a pleasant man to be around and my mother was often heard to say, “Every situation will usually work itself out if you will just let it.” One of the themes of our household can be found in the words of King David of old, “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.”

Third, in the home where I grew up, I came to have faith in God. My brothers, my sister and I were taught it and our parents lived it.

When I was a small boy, a man came to our house one day selling various religious-based articles. Among them were Bibles and Bible story books. He also offered a variety of quotes and sayings and Scripture verses printed on beautiful backgrounds suitable for framing. My mother seemed most interested in those, especially one in particular. Its background was a stunningly deep royal blue and on it, etched in fine gold glitter, were the words, “Have Faith in God.”

She purchased it, framed it, and hung it on the living room wall just to the right of the front door. Over many years it quietly delivered its message as we would come and go. So revered was its place in our house that my mother had an exact replica of it inscribed on our father’s gravestone. Without faith in God there is no real cause for optimism.

Besides all that, I am an optimist because of what I have observed and experienced throughout my life.

Of course, there is so much going on in our world today that does not lend itself to optimism. I have observed over the years with resigned amusement as U.S. ambassadors have trekked back and forth to and from the Middle East seeking to maintain some sort of peace. No lasting peace will ever be achieved there, at least not a negotiated peace. The Arabs hate the Israelis. They always have and they always will. We will be embroiled in some kind of conflict in that part of the world until the end.

These days there is much talk about the health of our national economy. The homepage of my computer displays the headlines of the Wall Street Journal. Everyday the stock market showcases its hypersensitivity. The slightest bit of new information can send it soaring or spiraling downward. Almost all the “experts” see a correction coming. And then there is our federal government, which seems intent on remaining embroiled in an ugly political tug-of-war that weighs on us all.

At the time of this writing another mass shooting is being reported – in a church no less. One is prone to ask, “What is our world coming to?”

Yet in the face of so much uncertainty, there is still much room for optimism.

And I find hope in the words of an old hymn that goes like this, “Many things about tomorrow I don’t seem to understand. But I know who holds tomorrow, and I know who holds my hand.”

Open House Shopping Days return this weekend

The Chamber of Commerce is very excited at the participation from local businesses and independent vendors for the Open House Shopping Days being held on Friday, Nov. 10 (9 a.m.-5 p.m.) and Saturday, Nov. 11 (9 a.m.-1 p.m.). This is a great time to visit our local merchants and show your support for everything they bring to our community.

Independent vendors from Trousdale County can be found at the Community Center.

Start your Black Friday shopping early without the crowds, take time for lunch at one of our local participating restaurants -and shop local!

The list of participating businesses is:

• Advanced Propane (109 McMurry Blvd. East);

• Citizens Bank (100 McMurry. Blvd);

• G & L Garden Center (113 McMurry Blvd. East);

• Hartsville Pharmacy (207 McMurry Blvd. East);

• Hartsville Taco Company (101 River Street);

• Hartsville Liquors (103 White Oak Street);

• Hartsville United Methodist Church (224 River Street);

• Piggly Wiggly (103 McMurry Blvd. East);

• Pig Pen Barbeque (116 McMurry Blvd. West);

• Trousdale Medical Center (500 Church Street);

• SaGrace Flower Shop (403 East Main Street);

• Wife-n-Laws (118 Rogers Street);

• Wilson Bank & Trust (127 McMurry Blvd.).

Please note that the banks will NOT be open on Saturday.

Independent vendors at the Trousdale County Community Center (303 East Main Street) will be:

• T&L Honey, James and Jelly (Loretta Ewing);

• Agnes & Dora Clothing (Katie Dean);

• Plunder Jewelry (Pamela Wiggins);

• Hoffman Wallace Antiques (Eric Wallace);

• Handmade Jewelry (Susan Russell);

• Young Living Essential Oils (Lisa Blair);

• Pampered Chef (Michelle Brown).

Shoppers may begin and end at any business, and can leave completed cards at their last stop. You must visit 10 businesses to be included in the drawing for a $250 gift card good at any participating business. A stop at the Community Center will count as two businesses visited.

Hartsville Rotary Club, schools team for annual Food Drive

The Hartsville Rotary Club, in conjunction with Trousdale County Schools, is preparing to launch its annual Food Drive to benefit the Community Help Center and those in need in the county.

The Food Drive will run from Wednesday, Nov. 8 through Friday, Nov. 17. Students can bring canned goods to school during that period, and will be provided with information on what items are needed prior to the beginning of the Food Drive.

Chris Gregory / File / Hartsville Vidette

Students can have their names entered into a drawing for a monetary prize for bringing canned goods. A student’s name will be entered once for every five items donated.

One student in each grade from pre-K through 12th will win a $25 prize, while four homeroom teachers will also win $25 prizes.

The school with the largest donation per student will receive the rotating trophy, affectionately referred to as the “Beaner Award” for the can of beans atop the trophy, to display for one year. Jim Satterfield Middle School currently has a three-year streak of claiming the trophy.

“Trousdale County Schools, its teachers and students are most appreciative of the opportunity to join together with the Rotary Club in order to fight hunger in Trousdale County,” said Director of Schools Clint Satterfield. “I know Jim Satterfield Middle School is excited to defend its food drive championship trophy for the fourth consecutive year, as well as the other two schools are to take it away from them!”

Members of the Rotary Club will pick up donated items on Monday, Nov. 20 and take them to the Community Help Center.

According to estimates, the Food Drive typically results in around 6,000 pounds of food donations to the Community Help Center, which then distributes the items to Trousdale County residents in need.

“This is one of the longest-running service projects that the Hartsville Rotary Club has been involved with,” said Rotary Club president Paul Knudsen. “We are happy that we can continue to serve the community with this worthy cause.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.

Community Pregnancy Center holds chili fundraiser

If you are a chili aficionado, Hartsville City Park was the place to be Saturday for the Chili Cook-off and Fall Festival.

The event served as a fundraiser for Hartsville’s Community Pregnancy Center, located at 783 E. McMurry Blvd.

Chris Gregory / Hartsville Vidette
The crowd enjoys chili and fellowship Saturday at the Community Pregnancy Center’s Chili Cook-off.

“We are 100 percent funded by donated dollars,” said Peg Shonebarger, who serves as director of the CPC. “This is our first fundraising event to try to make people in the community aware that we’re here to help them, and also that we have a need.”

Shonebarger said the CPC has served “around 10” women since opening earlier this year. The CPC offers free pregnancy testing, prenatal counseling and classes on parenting and other life skills. Baby clothes, diapers and other materials are also offered.

Besides the chili contest, Saturday’s event also featured a cakewalk, live auction and live music.

Shonebarger said the CPC is “always looking for volunteers” and donations to continue its mission of providing hope and help to expectant mothers in the area.

“The community has been very welcoming and supportive,” Shonebarger said. “It is a help to the community, and we look forward to continuing to help.”

For more information on the Community Pregnancy Center, call 615-680-8026 or go online to pregnancycenterhartsville.org.

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.

Guest View: Even America’s churches are no longer safe

Our hearts go out to the people of Sutherland Springs, Texas. The First Baptist Church of this town and the entire community was ambushed in what resulted as the worst mass shooting in Texas history. Twenty-six people are dead and many others are currently fighting for their lives in intensive care. This is heart crushing for this Texas community and all of America, as we must conclude no place is safe in America anymore.

My hometown church in Inez, Ky., kept the backdoor of the church unlocked during most of my high school years. The church was a place where anyone could enter and pray, and seek refuge from the problems of the world.

A little Catholic church around the corner from where I once lived in Louisa, Ky., kept the front door unlocked the entire time I lived there. My sons and I went in there a couple of times to just be quiet, think and pray.

While growing up as a kid, my family attended different churches and there was never a thought of anything being unsafe about our worship.

Times have changed. Sutherland Springs, Texas again reminds us that evil is everywhere and no place is perfectly safe. Worshippers in this quiet Texas town gathered to sing, pray and hear a good sermon Sunday. They never dreamed their lives would end in church at the hands of sick and evil gunman. We don’t know his motive for sure, but it seems to me based on various reports that Devin Patrick Kelley was there to his kill in-laws.

Kelley’s past was filled with troubles that included domestic abuse and a dishonorable discharge from the military. Unfortunately Kelley needed mental help that might have saved 26 lives and carnage that this Texas community will never overcome.

Too bad a good deacon in the foyer or vestibule area of the church did not shoot Patrick Kelley dead. I know my good moderate Christian friends frown on me for this line of thinking. However, maybe several lives could have been saved if the church had a game plan for reacting to terrorism. This has been a hard concept for my religious friends to embrace. Many have ignored the times of this world and simply sloughed it off. Some have said, “God will take care of us.” Others want to brush off this crisis with, “Something like that would never happen here.”

Wake up, reader. Bad stuff happens everywhere. This is our world. Walkers on a bike path in New York City are not safe. Concertgoers in Las Vegas are not safe. People shopping in Colorado are not safe. Moviegoers and schoolchildren are not safe. Quaint cafй wine drinkers on sidewalks in peaceful neighborhoods in Paris, France are not safe. Busy people trying to earn a living in prestigious skyscrapers are not safe.

We are all vulnerable. If we do not take a position of defense we are more vulnerable. People sitting in churches, concerts, movies and many other places are in danger of being attacked by surprise. It’s very difficult to survive an ambush. This is why there must be a defense plan in place for all churches, civic groups, businesses, factory work places, offices and families.

When I was child I remember when my mother started locking the front door. We had not always locked the front door but my mother had heard about people walking our road late at night and decided it was time to do so. We also had shotguns.

Today, of course, people with common sense lock their doors.

America has changed. We still have a great country. I love America. America mostly has good and decent people. Sadly, there are Devin Patrick Kelleys scattered throughout our country. There may be one in your state or even your community. You have to be ready to confront him or them.

By the way, Kelley was denied a gun permit. He still managed to obtain guns. Evil people will find ways to rent trucks, obtain guns, knives or make bombs. Please think about this and live and sadly now worship defensively. Even church is not safe anymore.

Glenn Mollette is a syndicated columnist and author of 12 books. He is read in all 50 states. Contact him at GMollette@aol.com.

Jim Tracy named USDA State Director for Rural Development

State Senator Jim Tracy (R-Shelbyville) announced Monday that he has resigned as Senator of the 14th District and Speaker Pro Tempore of the Senate effective immediately.

President Donald Trump appointed Tracy to the position of Tennessee State Director for Rural Development late Friday. Tracy has accepted the appointment and under the Tennessee Constitution is required to relinquish his Senate seat.

Submitted

“Serving the people of the 14th Senatorial District has been the honor of my lifetime. I’m proud of my record over the past 13 years and thankful for the many friendships I’ve made along the way,” Tracy said.

“(My wife) Trena and I have been truly blessed to serve the people of the 14th District. I am excited to continue my public service promoting and strengthening Tennessee’s rural areas. This is a great opportunity to serve my nation and my state doing something I am truly passionate about. I look forward to working with (Agriculture) Secretary (Sonny) Perdue to make a difference in rural Tennessee,” Tracy added.

The appointment will place Tracy within the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), where he will continue to work to improve the economy and the quality of life for rural Tennesseans.

USDA Rural Development promotes economic development in rural areas through loans, grants and loan guarantees to help create jobs create jobs and strengthen rural economies with an emphasis to assist areas of persistent poverty.

Tracy was first elected to the state Senate in 2004. He most recently served as the Senate Speaker Pro Tempore and formerly served as chairman of the Senate’s Transportation and Safety Committee.

Tracy’s resignation from the Senate will trigger a special election in District 14. The date of the special election will be determined by the governor.

Guest View: Veterans have options to fight opioid addiction

Long after active duty ends, U.S. service members and military families face a different battle — the opioid overdose epidemic. Opioid overuse kills nearly 100 people in America every day, and Tennessee is ranked third in the country for prescription drug abuse. Further, a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) study shows veterans are twice as likely to die from overdose as civilians.

Between 2010 and 2015, the number of veterans addicted to opioids rose 55 percent to roughly 68,000 individuals. That figure represents about 13 percent of all veterans currently prescribed opioids. More than 63 percent of veterans receiving chronic opioid treatment for pain also have a mental health diagnosis.

What’s more daunting is that many veterans haven’t received adequate treatment due to numerous barriers. Those include the stigma associated with seeking help, lack of access to a variety of treatment options and not enough understanding about the complexity of mental health and addiction, especially as it relates to service members’ experience.

Last month, joined by almost 1,000 advocates, Centerstone leaders attended the National Council for Behavioral Health’s annual Hill Day in Washington D.C. to discuss why it’s important for all Americans to have access to quality behavioral health services. As a mental health provider, Centerstone uses evidence-based methods to help individuals working to overcome opioid addiction, from medication-assisted treatment (MAT) and intensive outpatient services to clinical case management, peer support services and counseling.

Centerstone is committed to delivering care that changes people’s lives, including the lives of our service members and Veterans. Centerstone Military Services helped more than 11,000 people across the United States in 2015-16. For example, Sgt. Ray Moser in Tennessee made the decision to seek counseling through Centerstone Military Services after decades of failed personal relationships, plus social and emotional issues related to balancing his civilian and military lives. He gained the essential tools and support to make better decisions and guide him to a better personal and professional life.

Help is available, and recovery is possible. One of the most crucial steps is asking for help. Numerous treatments, facilities and rehabilitation options are in place to help our service members, Veterans and their loved ones. In addition to behavioral health services, Centerstone offers online support groups to the entire family, because we know addiction has a ripple effect on individuals, families and communities.

This November, in acknowledgment of Veterans Day, we show our gratitude to military families and honor those who have served and made sacrifices for our country. While we can’t fully repay our service members or their families for their patriotism, we can thank our heroes every day and support them in finding and accessing the services they need to thrive. We invite individuals and corporations to join us in supporting our heroes through charitable gifts and partnerships. To learn more, visit centerstone.org/militaryservices.

Retired Col. Kent Crossley is the executive director of Centerstone Military Services, which offers confidential, free services to individuals and families facing post-traumatic stress disorder and other invisible wounds of military service. Dr. Bob Vero is CEO of Centerstone, overseeing the company’s Tennessee-based operations. Centerstone is a not-for-profit health care organization dedicated to delivering care that changes people’s lives.

Guest View: ‘Tax reform’ plan does nothing to help Middle America

The Trump Tax Reform Plan does nothing to help American workers. The Trump family, other wealthy individuals, and businesses are the major beneficiaries of the proposed cuts. The plan should be scrapped in favor of true tax reform, which reduces burdens on the poor and middle class, requires wealthy individuals and businesses to pay higher taxes, and provides realistic incentives to businesses to provide training and more and better jobs to workers.

This plan would surely benefit me, my family, and my law firm, but I am opposed to it because it is bad for my fellow citizens and bad for my country. These tax cuts would add to our ever-growing income and wealth inequality. This gap has to close, not widen.

If workers are consigned to a poor present and a hopeless future while the top 1 or 0.1 percent of the population continues to enjoy ever growing wealth, our entire social and economic structure will collapse. We will move towards an oligarchic structure, where despotic power rests with a small privileged group who rules on the basis of their own self-interest. Not surprisingly, the self-interests of the President and his family permeate this plan.

Proponents of the plan say that it will simplify personal taxes for everyone. They say that fewer rates make taxes simpler. But how, exactly, does this benefit most taxpayers? The answer is that there is no answer, because simplicity isn’t really the point. The point is that, the richer you are, the more you will benefit from this “simpler” system. When it comes to rates, the taxpayer making $100 million a year could pay the same rate as the taxpayer making $1 million.

The American people are not clamoring for a simpler tax form and fewer deductions. About 70 percent of American taxpayers currently file simple returns using the standard deduction. It’s the wealthy who file complex tax returns. My federal return is typically more than 100 pages long, and people with greater wealth file much longer returns. Clearly, it’s the wealthy who will benefit from simpler returns.

The Trump Tax Reform Plan proposes to eliminate the AMT, which prevents taxpayers from taking unfair advantage of excessive deductions. But according to Forbes, only three percent of American taxpayers paid it in 2014, the vast majority of whom had income in the range of $200,000 to $1 million. Why eliminate the AMT? Perhaps it’s because what little we know about President Trump’s tax returns shows he had paid this AMT tax.

The proposed reduction of corporate tax rates is more junk economics. Good economic arguments can be made in favor of reducing the corporate income tax rate, but only if deductions are adjusted so that corporations pay more money in taxes. Indeed, many corporations are already paying no income tax at all. A recent study of 258 profitable Fortune 500 corporations showed that 100 of these companies paid no tax in at least one year between 2008 and 2015. The argument that giving corporations more money will create more jobs has been repeatedly proven to be false. Corporations can and do use the money to buy back stock, pay more money to executives, and automate functions thereby reducing jobs. Tax credits and/or deductions for employers focused specifically on training and creating new jobs would be a far more effective approach.

Last but not least is the proposed elimination of the estate tax. The administration has not and cannot argue that the elimination of this tax and resulting loss of revenue helps the country. We have a large deficit. We need to rebuild from three catastrophic hurricanes, meet the public’s desire for some guaranteed level of health care to all Americans, and replace aging infrastructure. And the President wants to build a wall on the Mexican border and increase our nuclear arsenal ten-fold. These things take money.

Moreover, the estate tax doesn’t even kick in for a married couple until their combined estate reaches over $11 million. Only a tiny fraction of estates pay a federal estate tax, just 2 out of every 1,000. Once again, eliminating the estate tax helps only rich people. And once again, the richer you are, the greater the benefit you reap. Abolishing the estate tax will create unprecedented dynastic wealth typical of an oligarchy. The benefits to President Trump and his family are obvious.

From start to finish, this is not a tax plan to benefit the American people. This plan is all about benefiting the President, his family, and other wealthy people.

Patricia A. Martone is an attorney and member of the Patriotic Millionaires. Proud “traitors to their class,” members of the Patriotic Millionaires are high-net worth Americans, business leaders, and investors who are united in their concern about the destabilizing concentration of wealth and power in America. The mission of The Patriotic Millionaires organization is to build a more stable, prosperous, and inclusive nation by promoting public policies based on the “first principles” of equal political representation, a guaranteed living wage for all working citizens, and a fair tax system. You can find out more at patrioticmillionaires.org/about/.

Community Calendar: Nov. 8, 2017

POLICY: Information for the Community Calendar submitted in person, by mail or fax is due by noon Monday for publication. Items mailed should be typed or printed and sent to: Community Calendar, The Hartsville Vidette, 206 River St., Hartsville, TN 37074 or brought to the office during business hours. Free listing of nonprofit events, community club and government meetings. We reserve the right to reject or edit material. Include name and phone number in the event we have questions.

GOVERNMENT MEETINGS:

Thursday, Nov. 9

6 p.m. – School Board

The Hartsville/Trousdale County School Board will hold its regular monthly meeting at the offices of the Board of Education, 103 Lock Six Rd.

6 p.m. – Parks & Recreation Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Parks & Recreation Committee will meet in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

7 p.m. – Charter Review Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Charter Review Committee will meet in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

Monday, Nov. 13

6 p.m. – County Building & Zoning Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Building & Zoning Committee will meet in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

7 p.m. – Planning Commission

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Planning Commission will meet in regular session in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

Tuesday, Nov. 14

7 a.m. – Executive Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Executive Committee will hold its regular monthly meeting at Dillehay’s Café.

6 p.m. – Local Government Services Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Local Government Services Committee will meet in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

7 p.m. – Election Commission

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Election Commission will meet in the office of the Administrator of Elections, 214 Broadway.

Monday, Nov. 20

6 p.m. – Budget & Finance Committee

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Budget & Finance Committee will meet in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

7 p.m. – County Commission

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Commission will hold its regular monthly work session in the downstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

Monday, Nov. 27

7 p.m. – County Commission

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Commission will hold its regular monthly meeting in the upstairs courtroom of the courthouse.

Wednesday, Nov. 29

10 a.m. – Water Board

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Water Board will meet in the county mayor’s office, 328 Broadway.

OTHERS:

Fall Cleanup

The Hartsville/Trousdale County Sanitation Department will hold its annual Fall Cleanup through Nov. 9, 2017. The guidelines are: one (1) pickup truck load per stop, and only tree and shrub trimmings will be picked up. Trimmings must be left at the curbside for pickup. This service will be offered in the old city area only. For more information, call Cliff Sallee, Public Works Director, at 615-374-9574.

Choir Anniversary

The choir at Key United Methodist Church will celebrate its anniversary with a musical & worship service on Sunday, Nov. 12 at 3 p.m. Various choirs and musical groups will participate in this service. Please join us as we lift our voices and talents to praise and worship the Lord in spirit and truth.

Community Thanksgiving Meal

The Hartsville/Trousdale Chamber of Commerce will hold its second annual Community Thanksgiving Celebration & Meal on Wednesday, Nov. 15 from 4-7 p.m. at the high school auditorium. This is a FREE meal for everyone who lives and works in Trousdale County. NO TO-GO MEALS. This celebration gives thanks and honors the people, places and spirit that make our community a special place to live and work. Donations and volunteers also still being accepted. Contact Natalie Knudsen, knudsenns@gmail.com, for more information.

Democrats Dinner

The Trousdale County Democratic Party will host a Campaign Kickoff dinner on Friday, Nov. 17 at 6 p.m. in the Community Center. Guest speakers will be governor’s candidates Karl Dean & Craig Fitzhugh and Senate candidate James Mackler. $15 per person. RSVP to Jim Falco by Nov. 10 at 615-374-0416 or email jimfalco@live.com.

Pancake Breakfast

American Legion Post 56 will hold a Pancake Breakfast fundraiser on Saturday, Nov. 18, from 7 a.m.-noon at Keller’s Restaurant. $6.50 per plate. All proceeds go to American Legion’s work to help local veterans.

Harvest Day

Key United Methodist Church will observe Harvest Day on Sunday, Nov. 26 with worship services at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. The pastor of Key UMC, Rev. William A. Jones, will deliver the 11 a.m. message. The 3 p.m. guests are Rev. Albert Strawther and Howard Chapel AME Church from Beech Hill.

Meals on Wheels

Meals on Wheels is looking for volunteer drivers to deliver meals to elderly within Hartsville city limits. Drivers especially needed on Fridays. Call Ruby, 615-374-3987.

American Legion

Attention all former military members! American Legion Post 56 of Trousdale County would like to invite you to come spend time with us and get information on the benefits the Legion has to offer. You served your country well, now let us know how the country and your community can help you! Call John LaFleur, 860-268-7303 for more information.

Adult Education

FREE GED/HiSET CLASSES! The Adult Learning Center holds adult education classes each Wednesday at the middle school. Call 615-374-1131 to schedule an appointment.

TROUSDALE SENIOR CENTER:

Thursday, Nov. 9

9:30 a.m. – Trip to Lebanon Outlet (lunch at Chick-fil-A)

Friday, Nov. 10

CENTER CLOSED – VETERANS DAY

Monday, Nov. 13

9 a.m. – Wii Bowling

11:30 a.m. – BINGO by Aging in Place

Tuesday, Nov. 14

9 a.m. – AFEP Exercise

10 a.m. – Yoga

11:30 a.m. – Bingocize by Adoration

Wednesday, Nov. 15

9 a.m. – Line Dancing

11 a.m. – Chair Exercise

Noon – Rook games

1 p.m. – Bible Study