Racine County speaks up: Letters to the editor for the week of Jul. 22, 2022 (2022)

Table of Contents
Johnson stands up to Biden's agenda -- Robert Kolb Melissa Ratcliff is best for state Assembly -- Sandy Kintner Stop subsidizing carbon emissions -- Bruce Beck Wisconsin needs an honorable GOP -- Lester Bruns Ballot security is modern poll tax -- Ed Brown Nelson is best to defeat Johnson -- Chuck Litweiler Umpire has true love of the game -- Bill Dettman Supreme Court boosted Trump's lie -- Alan White Support Baraboo's Backpack Project -- Becky Hovde Liberals have lost their way, not court -- Gary Schoppenhorst 'It's the guns' may be needed slogan -- Jerry J. Murphy Alex Lasry has chance to defeat Ron Johnson -- Mary Johnson Imagination can fix overpopulation -- Craig Schultz Democracy must be our No. 1 issue -- David W. Cole Change state law for traffic cameras -- Steve Fitzsimmons Lighting helps keep Madison safe -- Val Schend Don't let GOP ruin our right to vote -- Jan Severson Time for GOP to move past Trump -- Mike Badger Court conflicts with will of people -- John Carey Godlewski is best choice for Senate -- John Hamilton Nelson can restore Wisconsin values -- Jim Hirsch Fireworks damage nature and wildlife -- Isobel Chee Developers should preserve history -- Leigh Barczi We need less hate and more debate -- John Voss 1849 abortion law ignores science -- Laura Flood The Glen Golf Park is a public asset -- Margaret Hrncirik Monona Golf Course needs some love -- Gary Spaeni COVID grant funds saved candy shop -- Robin Pharo Court could learn from local clerks -- John Finkler More like this... Related content Videos

Our weekly round-up of letters published in the Journal Times.

1 of 29

1

Johnson stands up to Biden's agenda -- Robert Kolb

President Joe Biden’s doublespeak on gas prices is doing nothing to solve the problem we are facing. He can’t on one hand promise to end the oil industry, and then on the other blame them for not doing enough.

Luckily, some in Washington, such as U.s. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh, are calling for commonsense solutions such as reducing overburdensome regulations on the energy industry, expanding leasing for drilling and building more pipelines to move the oil we need to be energy independent.

2

Melissa Ratcliff is best for state Assembly -- Sandy Kintner

I know most voters are not paying much attention to the upcoming Democratic primary election on Aug. 9 for state Assembly. But for me, Dane County Sup. Melissa Radcliff is a clear choice.

Let me tell you why. Sure, Ratcliff has experience, commitment, deep local ties and the work ethic we need in our next state representative. And she has plenty of experience serving on both the County Board and the Cottage Grove Village Board. But for me, the real difference is her focus on grassroots organizing and community involvement.

3

Stop subsidizing carbon emissions -- Bruce Beck

  • Updated

Our government should discontinue subsidies for fossil fuels because we now face rising costs of managing and adapting to damages from carbon emissions.

Residents of coastal cities should not be left to bear the full cost of adapting to rising sea levels while also subsidizing fossil fuels to help finance a faster rise in sea level.

4

Wisconsin needs an honorable GOP -- Lester Bruns

I am looking for a few honorable Republicans to run for political office. Since 2011, Republicans have been running the state of Wisconsin as their own personal realm. This has brought out the worst in political dishonor.

If Fred Prehn had any honor he would left his position on the Wisconsin Natural Resources Board when his term expired. If former Gov. Scott Walker had any honor he would not have encouraged Prehn to stay on the board. If the Republican-dominated state Legislature had any honor, it would not have gerrymandered the voting districts.

5

Ballot security is modern poll tax -- Ed Brown

Regarding the July 15 article"Ballots should be mailed by the voter," we are told this requirement is ballot and election security. Every stage from voter to election office must be secure.

We should expect therefore that the following system will be in place:

6

Nelson is best to defeat Johnson -- Chuck Litweiler

  • Updated

The primary is our chance to choose the person most likely to replace U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh. We need more than just the regular Democrats to vote in August.

Tom Nelson stands out from the supposed frontrunners. He has never asked for a big tax subsidy for a sports team. He can't self-fund any campaigns. He comes from a family with ordinary financial circumstances. He graduated from good schools. He remembered to vote in 2016. He knows that senators should not be allowed to invest in individual stocks. Thank God he never worked for Goldman Sachs.

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7

Umpire has true love of the game -- Bill Dettman

Thank you to reporter Sean Davis for the positive, local and well-written article on Portage native Steve Rohrbeck.

Rohrbeck's contributions as an umpire for baseball and softball are noteworthy and legendary. He flat out loves the game. As we continue to struggle to find newcomers for this challenging job, we might ponder what keeps bringingRohrbeck back to the diamond each year. I think it’s a passion and love for a game that can bring joy into a young athlete’s life. What can be a better gift to all of us?

8

Supreme Court boosted Trump's lie -- Alan White

When they decided that absentee ballot drop boxes were illegal, our state Supreme Court became one of the first courts in the nation to give credibility to former President Donald Trump's conspiracy scheme to throw our electoral system into chaos.

Typically -- and especially so in Supreme Court cases -- a court answers only enough of an issue to decide a case. Here, the majority travels into Trump's Never, Neverland and bolsters his claim of election fraud. Shame on them.

9

Support Baraboo's Backpack Project -- Becky Hovde

School supplies have appeared in stores, and it is again time for the Backpack Project, which helps Baraboo students facing challenges in their lives to be prepared for that first day of school with the supplies they need.

If your family is facing difficulties such as unemployment, health problems, disability, military service, grandparents raising grandchildren, the death of a parent, homelessness, COVID-related illness, a house fire or free or reduced lunch, we want to help.

Liberals have lost their way, not court -- Gary Schoppenhorst

Too many people weren’t taught or haven’t read the U.S. Constitution.

The July 13 letter to the editor "Supreme Court has lost its way" complains that many of our U.S. Supreme Court justices are people of faith. The letter complains about the lack of experience of the justices, but it fails to mention that the newest justice is there primarily because she’s a Black female.

11

'It's the guns' may be needed slogan -- Jerry J. Murphy

In 1992, James Carville, a strategist who worked on Bill Clinton's campaign that year, coined the phrase: "It's the economy, stupid." That phrase helped Clinton win the election that year. Words can and do make a difference.

In the aftermath of the recent mass murders, mostly using high-capacity, high-velocity, semi-automatic weapons, many NRA-bought-and-paid-for politicians (U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., come to mind) are placing blame on "mental illness." This tactic is meant to distract the public from looking too close at the means of carrying out the mass killings.

12

Alex Lasry has chance to defeat Ron Johnson -- Mary Johnson

The Wisconsin primary among Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate will take place on Aug. 9. The top two Democratic candidates to oppose U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh, have different backgrounds.

Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes was raised by two hardworking parents. He was elected to the Wisconsin Assembly in 2013 and became lieutenant governor in 2019. No further background was provided by his Facebook page.

(Video) WATCH: Every Jan. 6 committee hearing, explained

13

Imagination can fix overpopulation -- Craig Schultz

Some claim the world has an overpopulation problem, but it is more of a "underthinking" problem.

Consider that about 1.6 million people are living in 22.8 square miles of Manhattan in New York. That's a population density of around 70,000 people per square mile.

14

Democracy must be our No. 1 issue -- David W. Cole

  • Updated

My former boss could never grasp that, while there could be several high priorities, only one could be No. 1.

I remember that as I think of some of the challenges facing our nation this year -- inflation, abortion and gun control. They are all important issues -- my former boss could make them all No. 1s, but he’d be wrong each time.

15

Change state law for traffic cameras -- Steve Fitzsimmons

  • Updated

A letter to the editor in the July 12 State Journal contends that traffic cameras would free up cops. I ask: Free up who again? When’s the last time you saw a Madison police officer or Dane County Sheriff's deputy pulling someone over?

Speeding and reckless driving are serious problems here. Where traffic cameras can help is in saving lives, injury and damages from the needless accidents these thoughtless drivers create. The problem is that these traffic cameras are not legal in Wisconsin, so the law must be changed before the cameras can go up. Then you will see the positive results.

16

Lighting helps keep Madison safe -- Val Schend

  • Updated

The Madison City Council has lost its way. The recent ordinance to limit city lighting is ludicrous.

Madison Police are stretched to their limits, and residential burglaries and thefts are out of control. Citizens have been encouraged to leave their outdoor lights on to discourage would-be thieves.

17

Don't let GOP ruin our right to vote -- Jan Severson

As I filled out my absentee ballot for the primary, due to age and health issues, I thought how lucky we are to live in a country where we have this right to vote. Please don't let the Republican Party ruin this.

As you vote, please consider what that party has done to hamper our voting privileges, making it harder for people to vote. Our governor and president are doing what they can to get our country back on track, despite opposition from the Republicans. Are they doing everything right? Probably not. How do you please people who won't listen to reason or even attempt to meet half way.

18

Time for GOP to move past Trump -- Mike Badger

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With the primary for governor just around the corner, I encourage my fellow Republicans to vote against candidates endorsed by former President Donald Trump. It's time we move on.

I voted for Trump twice as the lesser of two evils. The final nail in the coffin for me was Trump's reaction after the 2020 election. Jan. 6 was disgusting. But even more impactful was his suppression of the Republican vote in Georgia in the January 2020 U.S. Senate runoff. He gave control of the Senate to Democrats who promptly killed off most of his policy successes. He was more concerned with his own power than keeping conservatives in the Senate.

19

Court conflicts with will of people -- John Carey

It is sad that our undemocratic U.S. Supreme Court is dragging us back to the days of septic abortion wards.

Five of the justices on the Supreme Court were appointed by presidents who lost the popular vote in the presidential election. John Roberts and Samuel Alito were appointed by George W. Bush, who lost to the popular vote to Al Gore in 2000. Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett were placed on the court by Donald Trump, who lost the popular vote to Hillary Clinton in 2016.

20

National progressives U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., have anointed Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes as the Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate. But we should look at the choices from a Wisconsin perspective.

I find the men running to be pretty hollow candidates, routine, tepid, measured and driven by paid consultants. Barnes has the vulnerability of having lied about his education.

21

Nelson can restore Wisconsin values -- Jim Hirsch

I’m supporting Tom Nelson, county executive of Outagamie County since 2011 and state representative for six years before that, in the upcoming Democratic primary for U.S. Senate.

Nelson is a true public servant of the old school. His commitment to working families and rural Wisconsin, based on his upbringing as a fifth generation Wisconsinite, is heartfelt and real.

22

Fireworks damage nature and wildlife -- Isobel Chee

I am writing to put a spotlight on the environmental damages caused by fireworks in the Madison area. Fireworks are enjoyed by many without thought to air quality, waterbodies and wildlife.

They cause explosions that release dangerous gases and also scatter particles across large areas. The areas affected include lakes, forests and grasslands, where both humans and wildlife reside. The chemicals from the fireworks leech into the soil and water, which creates a toxic environment that affect humans and wildlife that can be fatal. To make matters worse, animals act erratic when they hear fireworks, which can lead to death.

23

Developers should preserve history -- Leigh Barczi

What a wonderful surprise in last Sunday's paper to see the article "Farmhouse set for next act," about how the historic 132-year-old farmhouse that formerly housed an Uno Pizzeria and Grill in Madison is being saved.

Kudos to Northpointe Development for its dedication to repurposing historic buildings. A similar stance was taken a few years back with the decision to keep the farmhouse across from Oakwood on Mineral Point. Both times the developers incorporated the old structures into the new developments.

24

We need less hate and more debate -- John Voss

The letter to the editor last Sunday, "Urban liberals must fight back," angrily stated the following, "The GOP hates women, people of color, LGBTQ individuals and democracy, among other groups and ideals."

(Video) NOW Tonight with Joshua Johnson - April 22 | NBC News NOW

I would offer the following counterpoints.

25

1849 abortion law ignores science -- Laura Flood

The recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning Roe v. Wade has turned this country on its head. And Wisconsin is among the worst, with a law from 1849 on the books.

Our law has not kept up with the science, nor our morals. Our laws suggest a father isn't responsible for anything until the baby's live birth, but the mother is responsible from the moment of conception, leaving pregnant women without financial support needed during this time.

26

The Glen Golf Park is a public asset -- Margaret Hrncirik

My husband and I walked The Glen Golf Park recently and marveled at the scope of change in the course.

Thank you to Michael and Jocelyn Keiser for reimagining an inclusive and beautifully designed public space. More residents will have access to the variety of offerings at The Glen Golf Park, and golfers will have a newly renovated site to ply their sport.

27

Monona Golf Course needs some love -- Gary Spaeni

It is good to see private money going into our local golf courses. The Keiser family has contributed generously to the Glenway project. Cherokee Country Club is being transformed into a top tier golf course by Steve Stricker and the Tiziani family.

That's all good stuff.

28

COVID grant funds saved candy shop -- Robin Pharo

  • Updated

Life is like candy. Sometimes it’s sweet. Sometimes it’s sour.

Last September, we had just opened our candy store, the Sugar Troll, in Mount Horeb. Then a spike in COVID-19 cases occurred. Times were very sour.

29

Court could learn from local clerks -- John Finkler

The Wisconsin Supreme Court had a choice that should have been easy: Trust hundreds of municipal clerks all across Wisconsin who did an incredible job with the 2020 election,or once again side with the Republican promoters of the "big lie."

The issue is the use of ballot drop boxes in Wisconsin. The drop boxes were actually a big success in the 2020 election. As municipal clerks often said, the boxes were safe, secure, convenient and accessible.

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Everybody should be taught to love themselves just as God made them.. "New construction likely to bring more cases (of crime).". An interesting article appeared in The Journal Times (online) July 8.. I respectfully ask that you do not pass or put into effect this ordinance.. Tell us why, when asked about a White House visit, Megan Rapinoe, co-captain of the Women's USA World Cup Champions said, "And I would encourage my teammates to think hard about leading that platform or having that co-opted by an administration that doesn't feel the same way and doesn't fight for the same things that we fight for."

However, if we don't support our local paper, it will eventually go away; and we will be left with no local news.. Support your local paper.. When Wisconsin residents head to the polls for the April 2020 election, they will face an important question: do they support additional rights for Wisconsin crime victims?. The proposals came out of a bipartisan commission chaired by former Republican Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and call for an additional $3.75 million in state investment per year for programs aimed at fighting homelessness, bringing total state spending to $7.5 million per year.. Animals would appear to have more value than humans' babies, that by some accounts are not only aborted but in some instances left to die when an abortion fails.. The proposals came out of a bipartisan commission chaired by former Republican Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and call for an additional $3.75 million in state investment per year for programs aimed at fighting homelessness, bringing total state spending to $7.5 million per year.

I can’t believe the City of Racine cannot support updated stores like other cities in this state.. The Journal Times proceeded to write an entire article about this “wacky weather” with its polar vortex and extremes of rain and snow without once mentioning “climate change” or even “climate.”. Sandy fought not only for what she believed was right but also for what was best for the City of Racine.. I can’t believe the City of Racine cannot support updated stores like other cities in this state.. The Journal Times proceeded to write an entire article about this “wacky weather” with its polar vortex and extremes of rain and snow without once mentioning “climate change” or even “climate.”. Sandy fought not only for what she believed was right but also for what was best for the City of Racine.. I can’t believe the city of Racine cannot support updated stores like other cities in this state.. I can’t believe the City of Racine cannot support updated stores like other cities in this state.. Sandy fought not only for what she believed was right but also for what was best for the City of Racine.. I can’t believe the city of Racine cannot support updated stores like other cities in this state.

That decision led to some service participants in our program transitioning out of their paid positions into an unpaid skills building vocational program.. Foreshadowing what a second term of a Trump administration would be like, Trump has gotten in his “wayback machine” and said people who don’t agree with him hate America and should go back to the countries of their ancestral origins.. McConnell, Graham and most Senate GOP members abet Trump, confirming his far-right, conflicted and unqualified officials and judges while refusing to pass laws most Americans support like gun safety and election security and reform.. I have several ideas for the use of the State Farm building in downtown Bloomington.. The State Farm building isn’t the Pantheon, but it is made of many of the same materials, and also deserves such an extra effort to be protected.. So, the State Farm building in downtown Bloomington.. Foreshadowing what a second term of a Trump administration would be like, Trump has gotten in his “wayback machine” and said people who don’t agree with him hate America and should go back to the countries of their ancestral origins.. McConnell, Graham and most Senate GOP members abet Trump, confirming his far-right, conflicted and unqualified officials and judges while refusing to pass laws most Americans support like gun safety and election security and reform.. The State Farm building isn’t the Pantheon, but it is made of many of the same materials, and also deserves such an extra effort to be protected.

He has been elected and reelected in a normally Republican area.. If the Republican Legislature had any honor, it would have, in the least, voted on all of Gov.. Please elect honorable Republicans into office and vote out the dishonorable ones.. The Wisconsin primary among Democratic candidates for the U.S. Senate will take place on Aug. 9.. It will never happen if we don't move on from President Trump.. Nelson is a true public servant of the old school.. The issue is the use of ballot drop boxes in Wisconsin.. The drop boxes were not just in Democratic areas such as Madison and Milwaukee.

Your ongoing series of stories follows the continuing legal saga of 14 Oregon counties — including Benton — suing the state of Oregon claiming they are owed “lost timber revenues,” now estimated at $674 million from state forest lands, 2004-2019.. They argue that the Oregon Department of Forestry didn’t do enough clear-cutting on state forest lands to maximize forest revenues, a large percentage of which these counties receive under contract.. Other expert witnesses have explained the need to scale back logging on these public lands to conserve other natural services — such as recreation, water filtration, wildlife habitat and carbon storage — things that the public cares about.. As someone who has said things I wish I could take back, the situation with former Corvallis School Board member Brandy Fortson is a good lesson for all.. I was disappointed by the community and Corvallis School Board rapid response to Brandy Fortson.. On this Veterans Day, an unusual thought came to mind: As we celebrate those who put their lives on the line in our nation's service, it is time to give equal status to the individuals and groups who have worked, for many decades, to put an end to war.. Yet just this week Trump announced that the U.S. is officially withdrawing from the Paris climate accord at the same time lawyers representing Benton County advocated for managing state forests on an industrial scale 40-year cut rotation in order to maximize monetary profits at the expense of all other potential forest uses.. It is disappointing to see Fortson resign but understandable given our community's lackluster response and failure to stand by a valuable, duly-elected school board member.. Instead, the board "pinched its nose” in initially distancing itself from Fortson; updating its social media guidelines was just another ipso facto incrimination of Fortson, who had already and preliminarily defined their Twitter account as personal.. Your ongoing series of stories follows the continuing legal saga of 14 Oregon counties — including Benton — suing the state of Oregon claiming they are owed “lost timber revenues,” now estimated at $674 million from state forest lands, 2004-2019.. They argue that the Oregon Department of Forestry didn’t do enough clear-cutting on state forest lands to maximize forest revenues, a large percentage of which these counties receive under contract.. Other expert witnesses have explained the need to scale back logging on these public lands to conserve other natural services — such as recreation, water filtration, wildlife habitat and carbon storage — things that the public cares about.. On this Veterans Day, an unusual thought came to mind: As we celebrate those who put their lives on the line in our nation's service, it is time to give equal status to the individuals and groups who have worked, for many decades, to put an end to war.. It is disappointing to see Fortson resign but understandable given our community's lackluster response and failure to stand by a valuable, duly-elected school board member.. Instead, the board "pinched its nose” in initially distancing itself from Fortson; updating its social media guidelines was just another ipso facto incrimination of Fortson, who had already and preliminarily defined their Twitter account as personal.

Even your own colleagues understand this and are co-sponsoring these bills, understanding that Russia in not stopping and other countries are attempting to stop our precious endeavor, our cherished democracy that our Founding Fathers left for us to protect and defend.. Both of these judges held court in Henry County and Mercer County, as well as the Rock Island County Courthouse.. The poor should pay the smallest percentage of their income, and the rich pay should pay a larger amount of state and federal taxes.. You may not like Donald Trump or his language, but at least he cares about us, the poor working Americans.. At the Rock Island County Board’s July monthly meeting, I made the following statement about the old county courthouse lawsuit:. Even your own colleagues understand this and are co-sponsoring these bills, understanding that Russia in not stopping and other countries are attempting to stop our precious endeavor, our cherished democracy that our Founding Fathers left for us to protect and defend.. The poor should pay the smallest percentage of their income, and the rich pay should pay a larger amount of state and federal taxes.. At the Rock Island County Board’s July monthly meeting, I made the following statement about the old county courthouse lawsuit:

It is time for a change in leadership in Dane County.. County Executive Joe Parisi is the guy who has been in charge of Dane County since 2011, and the citizens still don't have a new jail.. It's time to retire Parisi -- he has no concept of reality when it comes to public safety.. He's buying prairie grass for the citizens of Dane County when the real need is a public safety building.. Whomever was sleeping at the wheel when they built the current jail -- which doesn't allow them to add on -- should be held accountable.. It's time for Parisi to go so we can find a real solution to our jail problem.. Thomas Willan, Cottage Grove

Videos

1. Watch: TODAY All Day - April 22
(TODAY)
2. The Breakfast Club FULL SHOW: 7-20-2022
(Breakfast Club Power 105.1 FM)
3. WATCH LIVE: Jan. 6 Committee hearings - Day 4
(PBS NewsHour)
4. Jan. 6 Committee Holds Public Hearing On 2021 Capitol Attack | NBC News
(NBC News)
5. "Kenosha Voices," Bob Ibsen/Member and Manager of Danish Brotherhood, recorded April 1, 2022.
(Kenosha History Center)
6. PBS NewsHour full episode, April 26, 2022
(PBS NewsHour)

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