Saturday, September 05, 2015

Barry, Fox in a Dead Heat. Turn Out is all Important!

An independent poll commissioned by The Tennessean published Thursday morning shows this election is a dead heat, too close to call. With a razor thin margin dividing the candidates, the winner could be determined by any number of factors, such as will the Black community believe the despicable race-baiting campaign of the Democrat Party, will it rain on election day, will there be a last minute surprise?  While something could still sway voters, the most likely determinate in who wins this race is turnout.  Please, please, please do not fail to vote. Please encourage others to vote.

We often hear that this election is the most important election ever.  In Metro's history, I really believe this is the most important election ever.  I fear that if Megan Barry is elected we will see growing unsustainable debt, pandering to liberal special interest, policies that turn Nashville into the "San Francisco of the South" and major tax increases.  With Fox we will get wise and responsible management of our city and a reduction in our debt obligations and greater government efficiency and improvements in education. This election really does matter!

Please, if you have friends, co-workers, or family that may be inclined to vote for David Fox, please encourage them to go vote.  Every vote counts, but this time there could be just a hand full of votes difference between the candidates.

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UT Removes Web post on Gender-neutral Pronouns, Sort of Apologies, and Adopts New Policies.

Administrators at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville decided on Friday to remove a controversial Web post. Read Story

My comment: UT President Joe DiPietro has issued an appropriate comment that he was "deeply concerned about the attention this matter continues to receive and the harm it has had on the reputation of the University of Tennessee." Good for him.  He also has said that UT Chancellor Jimmy Cheek has instituted a new policy that will prohibit any of the schools Vice Chancellors from instituting policies without Cheek's approval. Good for him, again. While this is a good outcome so far, I still think the State Legislature should hold hearings and let UT know in no unmistakable terms that such politically correct silliness will not be tolerated and the State legislature should question if the University even needs an  Office for Diversity and Inclusion, or a Pride Center and if Donna Braquet is the kind of person who should be in a leadership position with the University. 

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Thursday, September 03, 2015

Statement from the David Fox Campaign on Megan Barry and the Tennessee Democratic Party's Race-Baiting Ads

Press Release, Nashville, Tenn. – "Fresh on the heels of The Tennessean poll, the new series of ads from Megan Barry and her allies are just one more sad and desperate attempt to hang on to a failing campaign. They are patently false and are race-baiting of the lowest order.

"The ads that are clearly designed to incite the African-American community will only backfire on the Barry campaign. African-American voters know when they are being manipulated, and the rest of Nashville will find them disgusting.

"David Fox was an inclusive and very successful school board chairman. So much so that Megan Barry and the other members of the Metro Council unanimously voted to honor David with lavish praise when he concluded his service: 

"We call on Megan Barry to immediately condemn and repudiate these outrageous ads or accept full responsibility for them." - Chris Turner, Campaign CEO, David Fox for Mayor

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Wednesday, September 02, 2015

News Coverage and Outrage over UT's Politically Correct, Gender Neutral Pronoun Policy

The creation by the University of Tennessee of new gender neutral pronouns and the effort to promote their use has been international news, the butt of jokes, and created angry push back from State law makers. Below is a sampling of what is being reported:

Top lawmakers promise action over UT pronouns post
by Adam Tamburin, The Tennessean, Sept. 1, 2015 - Top state and federal lawmakers are reacting with outrage, and promises of action, after a post on the University of Tennessee Knoxville website got national attention for encouraging students to use gender-neutral pronouns.

 Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey said on Facebook that the post, written by the director of UT's Pride Center, was "the clearest example of political correctness run amok that I have seen in quite some time." Ramsey, R-Blountville, said he expected the General Assembly to "weigh in on the issue" in January if UT doesn't "take quick action" first.

Call me 'ze,' not 'he': University wants everyone to use 'gender inclusive' pronouns by Todd Starnes, Fox News -  UPDATE: Rickey Hall, the vice chancellor for diversity and inclusion at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, said their quest for gender neutral pronouns is not an official university policy.

“It’s not policy,” he said. “It’s about inclusive practice.”
Hall told me the gender neutral pronouns were a way of “exposing our students (to an) increasingly diverse and global world.”
Gender-neutral terms encouraged at UT, criticized by legislators 
Knoxville News Sentinel - Staff and students in the University of Tennessee Office for Diversity and Inclusion want people to think beyond the "he/she" pronouns and are encouraging use of gender-neutral pronouns such as "xe," "xym" and "xyr."
University of Tennessee switches gender-specific pronouns 'he' and 'she' for 'xe' and 'ze' to promote inclusivity
by Jess Staufenberg,The Independent (a British national morning newspaper published in London)- Gender-neutral pronouns for transgender and queer-identifying people - such as "xe" and "ze" - are being encouraged at a second university in the US. The University of Tennessee has asked tutors to consider asking students which pronouns they wish to be addressed by, warning against assuming gender-binary pronouns "he" and "she". Donna Braquet, director of the Pride Center at the university in Knoxville, has posted advice to respect that some students may identify differently to the gender assigned them on the register. "The more we make sharing of pronouns a universal practice, the more inclusive we will be as a campus," writes Ms Braquet.
 USA Today: 'she' don't apply: University promotes gender-neutral pronouns
 Say what? University of Tennessee invents pronouns ‘ze, hir, hirs’ New York Daily News - ...Tennessee students and teachers who are unable to use the neutral pronouns should politely ask "Oh, nice to you (insert name). What pronouns should I use?" Braquet said.

Oh, please, say critics who think that is taking things much too far.

"We have paid people a lot of money to sit around and come up with this nonsense," said state Rep. Bill Dunn, a Republican from Knoxville.
"If you say I'm going to meet 'ze,' someone's going to think you're going to meet someone from another planet," he told WATE-TV this week.
This is only a sample.  It is covered in The Huffington Post, Red State, The Daily Caller, and various news programs and newspapers across the country and many blogs have picked up the story. Daily Motion, the French video-sharing website, has a video that is humorous but sympathetic to the new pronouns in the Comedy & Entertainment category (link).

I think the State Legislature should take serious action.  A University employee with time on their hands to come up with something this stupid has too much time on their hands and maybe their position needs to be defunded. Parents should ask themselves is this is where they really want to send their children to college, and alumni should ask themselves if their alma mater is worthy of their financial support.

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Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Councilman Phil Claiborne endorses David Fox

Phil Claiborne
by Councilman Phil Claiborne - Once again I’m writing in response to numerous inquiries about the names on the run-off ballot for Council at Large and Mayor. I’m sending this in the hope that you will forward it as my link to the neighborhood that you represent. Regardless of whom you may or may not favor I would hope that you would be willing to give those who are your neighbors the chance to make their choice based on information they may not presently have. It’s my goal here to present factual information that will allow readers to identify more accurately with the candidates on the list they are to chose from.

Let me begin by saying that for the first time in Metro’s 52 year history the choices are crystal clear in terms of political thought and philosophy. Even thought the Council and Mayor’s Office is supposed to be non-partisan per the Metro Charter, this year’s ballot offers candidates that are clearly aligned with political thought and ideology. It very clear that those active in local Democratic Party politics are rallying around candidates that have emerged from the ranks of the party. Megan Berry is a prime example. As the Councilman elected first to represent District 15 in 2007 I have served with Megan for 8 years and know that she has always been at the forefront of legislation that pushed the reach of Metro government into areas related to social issues and government regulation designed to tell the private sector what it can or cannot do. She has left a record of votes behind her that she was in full agreement with the decisions Dean administration and which demonstrate that she is among the most liberal of Council members who have served in the past two terms. It should also be of interest that husband, Bruce Berry, who teaches at Vanderbilt, also serves on the ACLU-Tennessee Board of Directors in the role of Treasurer.

My knowledge of David Fox began with his election to the School Board and his tenure as the chairman of the Board. This was during a time when Metro Schools were in disarray. Tensions were high due to an unpopular Superintendent, spending was out of control, performance was low and the state was considering taking over the system. David exercised the leadership necessary during that time to keep the state a bay, get control of the spending and move Board decisions in the direction that Metro Schools are now moving in. He made decisions that were unpopular with many but which were in the best interest of the system and the students inside the school house walls. That ability grew out his years of experience as a businessman and as one who understand finance principles.

If you are satisfied with the direction Metro government has moved in for the last 8 years, candidate Berry should be your choice. There is every reason to believe that she will continue many of the initiatives of the current administration which includes a focus on the downtown core while giving lip service attention to the outlying communities. Both candidates will be forced to address the issue of transportation but both will not give equal attention to debt, infrastructure (streets, sidewalks and water and sewer line update/replacement) and city services.

If you’re not satisfied with the direction of the last 8 years, David Fox should be your choice. His history and his record would indicate a more moderate role of government in terms of social issues and government control as related to the private sector. He has stated that it is important to keep the momentum of the city moving but at a slower pace and that dollars which have almost exclusively been dedicated to the city center be more evenly appropriated to the ring communities. His background in finance would lead me to believe his approach to the cities debt would be deliberate and cautious.

The fact is that if the city did not acquire any more debt than it currently has, our annual payment of principle and interest is in the neighborhood of $210 million. That remains steady thru 2019 before any decline would occur. That means regardless of whoever is elected as Mayor, their first term is going to be impacted by existing debt and the manner in which they handle adding additional obligations will impact whether, or how soon, a property tax increase will be proposed to the Council.

The choice is clear; Megan Berry is a progressive, liberal Democrat and David Fox is a fiscally conservative, moderate independent who leans to the right on many of the issues Mrs, Berry is far left on. I’ve made my choice, now you must make yours.

As to the Council at Large candidates, 5 have identified themselves to one degree or the other with candidate Berry and her positions. Those 5 are Erin Coleman, Congressman Jim Cooper’s brother, John Cooper, Erica Gilmore, Sharon Hurt and Bob Mendes. Robert Duval has a record on the Council as being a conservative in his views. Jason Holleman has described himself as a practical Centrist who is socially progressive and fiscally responsible. Jim Shulman previously served on the Council and was known for his balanced approach in representing the needs and concerns of the district he represented.

Its important that each person exercise their right to vote. This run-off is in reality more important that the election that was held earlier in the month. This is not the time to sit on the sidelines and let others choose for you. This is the time to vote for the person(s) you feel best represent your thoughts and values and to do all you can to get them elected.

Feel free to pass this on to others to whom you think it might be of value.

Phil Claiborne
Councilman, District 15 615.889.2907

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Gov. Winfield Dunn and Sen. Douglas Henry Team to Turnout Vote for David Fox

Gov. Winfield Dunn
Nashville, Tenn. – David Fox announced today that two of Nashville’s most beloved statesmen, former Gov. Winfield Dunn (R) and Sen. Douglas Henry (D), are on the phones reminding Nashville voters to vote for David Fox as Nashville's next Mayor.

“I could not be more pleased and thankful to have such an outstanding and bipartisan pair of Nashville leaders as Gov. Dunn and Sen. Henry helping us get out the vote. They are two of Tennessee’s finest, and I am honored to have their support.” Fox said.

“And the work they are doing is very important,” Fox said. “Our internal polls show that this race is currently a dead heat among those voters who are definitely going to vote and have already decided who to vote for.”

“But now the push is on for those who are still undecided or need a reminder to go to the polls. So I am deeply grateful to Gov. Dunn, Sen. Henry, and our thousands of supporters and volunteers in every neighborhood across the county, who are reminding their friends, families, co-workers and neighbors to vote for David Fox.”

Early voting in the mayor’s race continues through this Saturday, September 5. Election day in the mayoral run-off is Thursday, September 10.

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Monday, August 31, 2015

New pronouns created by UT Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. Xe should have xem job eliminated.

You just can't make this stuff up! When I thought political correctness and queer sensitivity could not get any more ridiculous, it did. This is a press release from the University of Tennessee:

Inclusive Practice: Pronoun Usage

By Donna Braquet, Director of the Pride Center
With the new semester beginning and an influx of new students on campus, it is important to participate in making our campus welcoming and inclusive for all. One way to do that is to use a student’s chosen name and their correct pronouns.
We should not assume someone’s gender by their appearance, nor by what is listed on a roster or in student information systems. Transgender people and people who do not identity within the gender binary may use a different name than their legal name and pronouns of their gender identity, rather than the pronouns of the sex they were assigned at birth.


In the first weeks of classes, instead of calling roll, ask everyone to provide their name and pronouns. This ensures you are not singling out transgender or non-binary students. The name a student uses may not be the one on the official roster, and the roster name may not be the same gender as the one the student now uses.
This practice works outside of the classroom as well. You can start meetings with requesting introductions that include names and pronouns, introduce yourself with your name and chosen pronouns, or when providing nametags, ask attendees to write in their name and pronouns.

Gender-neutral pronouns

We are familiar with the singular pronouns she, her, hers and he, him, his, but those are not the only singular pronouns. In fact, there are dozens of gender-neutral pronouns.
A few of the most common singular gender-neutral pronouns are they, them, their (used as singular), ze, hir, hirs, and xe, xem, xyr.
These may sound a little funny at first, but only because they are new. The she and he pronouns would sound strange too if we had been taught ze when growing up.

How do you know?

How do you know what pronoun someone uses? If you cannot use the methods mentioned above, you can always politely ask. “Oh, nice to meet you, [insert name]. What pronouns should I use?” is a perfectly fine question to ask.
The more we make sharing of pronouns a universal practice, the more inclusive we will be as a campus. When our organizational culture shifts to where asking for chosen names and pronouns is the standard practice, it alleviates a heavy burden for persons already marginalized by their gender expression or identity.

Learn more

To learn more about gender identity, gender-neutral pronouns, or transgender topics, consider signing up for a Safe Zone workshop at
While this is said to be voluntary and just a suggestion, you can be sure that at some point, and probably pretty soon, this will become the norm for the University.  Then you can expect it to become the norm in companies that do business with UT and when UT graduates enter the work force, it will spread to the general population.

In my professional life, I have on occasion succumbed to the fashion of  using the awkward "he/she," especially when writing grants.  I did not want to lose points in a grant application because some politically correct person may be reviewing my grant proposal. The use of "he/she" has been pretty much standard government-speak for about twenty years.  So, instead of using the singular pronoun in a sentence, such as "everyone brought his lunch," I would use the awkward, "everyone brought his/her lunch," or use the plural form and say, "they all brought their lunch."

It was bad enough just not trying to offend people who thought that "his or he" were sexist pronouns. Now one must be concerned about people who think they are neither "he" nor "she" and want to change the language to reflect that nonsense. If the University of Tennessee has enough money to try to change the culture by inventing new politically correct pronouns, the University of Tennessee has too much money. 

The state legislature should reduce the funding for the University of Tennessee by the amount of money going to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and the governor should replace the members of the UT Board of Trustees and put people on the Board who will not tolerate such silliness. Donna Braquet should lose zir job and zir position should be eliminated.

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Darrell Waltrip, Sterling Marlin endorse Fox for mayor

by Joey Garrison, The Tennessean, August 31, 2015- Former NASCAR drivers Darrell Waltrip and Sterling Marlin on Monday endorsed David Fox for mayor of Nashville, becoming the latest names to back his candidacy over the Metro-owned fairgrounds and racetrack.

Waltrip and Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville racing operator Tony Formosa joined Fox outside the Wildhorse Saloon on Monday for a news conference to announce their backing. Behind them was a race car sporting the "Fox for Mayor" logo. (link)

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Former NASCAR driver Darrell Waltrip endorses David Fox

This morning, former NASCAR driver Darrell Waltrip announced Monday he is endorsing David Fox for Nashville mayor. The announcement was made just before noon outside of the Wild Horse Saloon in downtown Nashville.

Darrell Waltrip is an American motorsports analyst, author, national television broadcaster, as well as a former racing car driver. He is a three-time NASCAR Cup Series champion and a three-time NASCAR Cup Series runner-up. He is one of the top winning NASCAR drivers ever. He still holds many NASCAR records, more than a decade after his retirement as an active driver. Waltrip is one of several former weekly drivers who raced at the Nashville Speedway, to reach the upper levels of NASCAR. 

David Fox supports maintaining and improving the fairgrounds and the Speedway and Megan Barry Megan was among the main proponents of selling off the fair grounds and redeveloping the property into a mixed use office park. Barry was the lead sponsor of a bill to demolish the speedway. When Mayor Karl Dean appointed Eric Malo, an advocate of destroying the fairgrounds, to serve on the Fair Board the council, in a rare move, voted to not confirm the appointment.  Megan Barry voted in favor of confirming Malo's appointment.

Last week Fox picked up an endorsement of the Save Our Fairgrounds organization.

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