Perpetrator may be victim in case

About the "victim" in Tuesday's B1 story, "Man gets eight years for sexual battery:"

I don't understand why the 69-year-old man is called a "victim." He asked an underage stranger on a street to engage in a sexual act. What does he think is going to happen?

He is not a victim. He is 69. I am sure this is not his first time around the block, and he knew he was putting himself into a risky situation.

This child was 17, which may be close to 18, but many 17-year-olds are much closer to 13 than 18 in maturity and decision-making. I don't believe at 17 a child is able to deal appropriately with a same-sex encounter with a much older adult, even if they think they are.

Why is the 69-year-old man not being charged with anything?

Diontae Smartt does not need jail time. He needs counseling, education and support.

Deontae is the victim if there is one in this story.

Lynn Seeger, Red Bank


Plight of elderly veteran stirs response

My letter is in response to a reader's letter published on May 27 (titled "Leaders' servants to capitalism"). The letter touched my heart, not because I agreed with his position on capitalism, but rather that this is an elderly veteran who needs help.

We have so many private and government services, as well as churches, surely one of them can help him.

Could you please let readers know that this poor, lonely and handicapped man has gotten some assistance and people who can visit him to help him out?

Donna M. Brewer, Ooltewah


Proposed Signal zoning would hurt community

Charlotte, North Carolina-based Keith Corp. wants the Signal Mountain Town Council to zone 617 Cauthen Way to highway commercial — the highest intensity zoning. There would be no transitional zone between highway commercial and low intensity residential, a departure from planning norms.

Traditional zoning does not promote this scenario, instead requiring a transition zone between the highest and the lowest classifications, allowing a natural transition between where people live vs. where they conduct commerce.

In other words, it is a norm because high intensity commercial zoning in the middle of a residential/low impact commercial zone does not make sense. Highway commercial allows deliveries at all hours of the day and night, noise nuisance, light pollution, garbage collection, etc.

Finally this request would set a new precedent on Signal Mountain. If regular zoning norms are ignored or modified, it will be difficult to stop adjoining properties from doing the same thing. This creates a domino effect, altering the way of life on our mountain forever.

If the council votes in favor of the developer over the wishes of their constituents, the result is a breach of public trust. This cannot be tolerated.

Susannah R. Murdock, Signal Mountain