Open Forum for week of July 25

EDITOR’S NOTE: Letters will be accepted for the Open Forum for publication in the next available issue after receipt. Letters may be sent to Forest Lake Times, 880 SW 15th St., Forest Lake, or by e-mail to [email protected] Letters should not exceed 250 words and must be signed with the writer’s name, address and telephone number. Deadline is noon Monday. The newspaper reserves the right to edit letters and assure that rules of libel and good taste are not violated.


Protest the Protest

The Westboro Baptist Church … Does the name ring a bell? Yep! That’s right! It’s the church group that spreads hatred against the U.S. military, LGBT Americans and everybody else who does not belong to their church.

On Aug. 1, from 11:40 a.m.-12:15 p.m., members of the Westboro Baptist Church will be on the front steps of the State Capitol to protest against the same-sex marriage bill that passed during the 2013 Legislative session.

I was proud to be there during the bill’s signing by Governor Mark Dayton.

The Westboro Baptist Church has called Minnesotans “the most evil people ever to populate the Earth.”

I call on citizens to organize and create a counter-protest against this group that spreads their anti-American rhetoric.

Maxwell C. Hall
Forest Lake


Candidate Questions

I see Stewart Mills III of Mills Fleet Farm is going to run against Congressman Rick Nolan in the 8th District next year.

I wonder how much thought the Mills family has put into this race, when Stewart Mills III makes statements like, “the hurdles, the barriers and the handicaps that are placed on us in job creation through government” and predicts that the health care situation would be an “even bigger train wreck” in the future because of Obamacare.

With these statements, he’s putting the family business right in the mix. How can he talk about hurdles when Mills Fleet Farm has gotten millions of dollars in government hand-outs in the form of TIF districts for construction of new stores and tax-exempt industrial revenue bonds for new stores?

The question then becomes: Why would Obamacare affect Mills Fleet Farm? If they provide health insurance for their 6,000 employees there should not be any changes. If they don’t provide insurance, why not? These are all legitimate questions for a company now in the spotlight and under a microscope.

I imagine their wages, benefits and health insurance will all be open for questions, especially when Stewart is in charge of them.

It is really too bad. I used to like Mills Fleet Farm.

Michael Madden
North Chisago Lake Township


A Cool Donation

Bruce’s Foods in Wyoming loaned a freezer and the Dairy Queens in Forest Lake and Wyoming plus Cotton Candy Ice Cream shop in Center City donated ice cream to a team in the Chisago County Relay for Life this year.

The partnership of these four businesses helped make the 2013 American Cancer Society’s event at the Almelund Threshing Grounds on July 19 a great success.

A big thank you goes out to them from the Butterflies of Hope Relay Team members: Martha Arnold, Karen Wolner, Theresa Casey Wolf, Sarah Rhoda, Cheryl Koch and Roxy McGill.

Martha Arnold
North Branch

  • Phil Fishman

    In response to Mr. Madden’s letter regarding Stewart Mills III running against Rick Nolan, I have the following thoughts. Perhaps Mr. Mills is not running simply to benefit Fleet Farm, which appears to be your assumption. Fleet Farm is doing fine on its own. Perhaps it might be because his principles include limiting government involvement so jobs can actually be created by private job creators instead of just through more spending by the government. If Obama and the Democrats have their way, nearly all jobs created will be by and through government spending. Hear his recent speech about his economic plan? Not surprisingly, it’s all about more government spending to create more jobs. Perhaps Mr. Mills doesn’t agree that the government should continue to grow at the expense of the private sector.

    With regards to Obamacare, I don’t even need to respond to your comments. It is a recognized and unmitigated disaster. Nearly every employer, from small business owner to larger companies would agree. People are being laid off from their jobs because of Obamacare. Those who voted for it didn’t even know what they were voting for and all of the unitended consequences it would cause. Maybe that’s why implementation of Obamacare is being delayed until our legislators can figure out what a mess they caused.

    Mr. Mills is simply taking principled stands on issues that affect us all. His practical business experience and common sense approach would be a welcome change.

  • Wendy Pellett

    This is a response to Mr. Madden’s comments. Mr. Madden, you obviously have not tried to find a job lately in Minnesota. The DFL rule has made this a very unfriendly climate for businesses. Mr. Madden, if you owned a business and got taxed to death in order to line the pockets of the DFL voting base, would you stay here? I have to be honest and say I don’t blame any business for moving to a state where the leaders actually have some common sense and welcome business and the prosperity and jobs that come with. It is time for people in this state to wake up and see what is really happening.

    • DJL44

      Minnesota has one of the lowest rates of unemployment in the country.