Confederate flags and statues
TO THE EDITOR
I don't have a problem with the display of Confederate flags and statues of Confederate generals...as long as they aren't displayed on public lands. Fly your Confederate flags on your private flag pole and put your statues on private land.
Or perhaps as a compromise, in a country where compromise appears to have vanished from the political process, we could keep the Confederate general statues and beside them place an additional statue of a lynched black person. Displaying the two images side-by-side might help educate Americans about the history of what the Confederate statue and flag debate is all about.
Perhaps the statues could be of specific individuals who were lynched because of the color of their side. Imagine such a statue erected next to Robert E. Lee in a park or public square and the conversations about history that would happen with families out on an outing.
Maybe this could be part of President Trump's infrastructure and jobs program? Back in the Great Depression, FDR created the New Deal arts project. The program provided jobs for unemployed artists who were chartered to depict the "abundant life" in America.
Since President Trump is now mourning the loss of these "beautiful statues and monuments," perhaps this would give him a chance to preserve these statues and create jobs. That seems like a win-win proposition for the President and all Americans.
President Trump has tweeted that Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee are important historical figures in the South. The only reason they are important or even remembered is because they were generals in a war of succession against the United States that took the lives of 360,222 Union combatants and 258,000 Confederate combatants. Statues for members of the losing side of the most deadly war in U.S. history strikes me as an example of the "participation trophies" that Trump quacks about in his battle against "political correctness."
The reason for the Civil War was to keep that "peculiar institution" of slavery going in the South. To keep that "peculiar institution" going, it required 500,000 Africans to be forcibly removed from Africa and forced to be a captive workforce on Southern plantations. My guess is the descendants of these 500,000 Africans don't consider Lee and Stonewall to be a positive part of their heritage.
By adding a statue of a lynched black person next to every Confederate General statue, it would truly helped to highlight the true heritage of the South and would provide equal representation to the history surrounding this raging debate.
James P. Nelson
Town of Richmond
Don't go after soldiers
TO THE EDITOR
As a retired soldier, I feel obligated to express some reality into the hatred and ignorance expressed against Confederate soldiers. They served their country just as other soldiers have fought and died for centuries. Reality is that the Civil War was started because some of the states did not want to become part of the Union. Initially, the war had nothing to do with perpetuating slavery. The concept of slavery became, much later, a political issue.
Think of their situation just as England did not want to be part of the European Union. We are not calling the English traitors. To dishonor the Confederate soldier is an insult to all soldiers. I doubt that any enlisted Confederate soldier had slaves. I strongly believe this should become an issue for all veterans and especially organized veterans groups, such as the VFW, DAV, American Legion, etc. I intend to present this concern to my VFW post members at our next meeting. If people want to go after politicians, so be it. But not the soldiers. The memorials to the Confederate soldier should stay honored.
As you may recall, a few years ago, the state of Texas wanted to leave the Union. We did not hate all Texans. Finally, 50 years from now, we do not want U.S. citizens tearing down a memorial like the Vietnam Memorial because of some political reason or hatred.
Robert Aufderhar, Sgt. Major
US Army, Retired
Hillside Series Wraps up Successful Summer
TO THE EDITOR
To this community, I'd like to extend my heartfelt thanks to all of you that came out this summer to enjoy some live music at The Heritage Hillside Series. It's hard to believe we just wrapped up our 13th year of this fun and popular series!
We enjoyed some wonderful music, by local musicians as well as talented bands from communities close by. Our wonderful sponsors are the ones that make it all possible—thank you all for not only supporting us financially but also for adding to the fun of the evening by bringing treats for everyone.
Thanks to all the families that came to spend the evening doing something fun together, and to the kids that got up and danced.
Thank you, Tyra, for making popcorn and thanks to my wonderful helpers (you know who you are!) that stayed and helped put away school house toys. I love putting this series together every year, but it's because of all of you that come out and support it, and support live music, that make me love it so much. See you next summer!
TO THE EDITOR
For the last few years I've heard the saying "Make America Great Again." I've asked many, what does that mean?
In my life I've seen my German relatives return from fighting relatives in WW2. A brother returning from a Mash Unit in Korea in the early 50's and we still seem to be having issues there. Another brother was a MP in the Vietnam War fighting and now Vietnam is our friend after 67,000 plus American soldiers died there plus the wounded.
Wars and fighting have been an ongoing happening ever since I remember. The only action that seems to be a continuous movement was to press on with the fact that all humans are created equal. Discrimination of many types has haunted this country and many others for years. One reason for it is fear of losing authority over others which in some people's minds lowers their self-worth. Some people feel "If I can't raise myself up I want to pull others down to my level."
It amazes me how many people preach equal rights and all are created equal and then turn right around and discriminate according to their personal preference or beliefs. They must feel they get credit for preaching it but not following what they preach. The "Do as I say but not as I do" mentality excuse.
Remember, if you're not part of the solution you are the PROBLEM.
Tony R. Huppert
Mental health & addiction
TO THE EDITOR
You may have heard about the opioid crisis in America, but in fact opioids addiction is only part of a far bigger crisis. In our own St, Croix County, the causes of preventable death are as follows: #1 Suicide, #2 Overdose, #3 falls related to alcohol and at #4 car accidents. It's worth noting that not long ago, car accidents were number one. Something has gone very wrong in America and our county.
On Thursday, Sept. 14 at 7 p.m. St Croix County Medical Examiner Patty Schachtner will speak on the topic of "mental health and addiction in our county." She will be talking about both the degree of our problem, as she encounters it and how we can start to tackle it. It's a topic that affects us all, one way or another.
When: Thursday, Sept. 14. Free food and social hour at 6 p.m., presentation at 7 p.m.
Where: The Chalet at Badlands Snow Park, 772 Kinney Road, Hudson.
Directions: I-94 to Highway 12 exit north, to Badlands Road east, to Kinney Road south, entrance on west side of road.
Sponsored by the St Croix County Democrats as a community service.