Open Forum for week of March 20

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 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.

For Local Control

In the Minnesota Senate, the anti-bullying bill HF826 is jumping from one committee to another.

This bill, officially known as the Safe and Supportive Minnesota Schools Act, is anything but safe and supportive. It will create a whole new level of state bureaucracy called a School Climate Center, which will oversee and dictate just what will be taught to our children with regard to bullying.

Our local school board, superintendent, teachers and parents know and understand the issues facing our children here in Forest Lake much better than some person in St. Paul.  Our local K-12 anti-bullying program is working well.

This is just one of the many disturbing aspects about this bill – it takes control away from our district, from those that know our children best.

Please, as a parent, take the time to read the bill at (search for bill number 826).

Mary Stolz
Forest Lake

A Great Visit

I would like to thank LATV for the great field trip they gave my den of Wolf Scouts. We try to get a few field trips in each year, so we’re always looking for something new and interesting. The tour of the television station was both informative and fun for these second-grade boys and their parents.

Our theme for the month was “Know Your Home and Community.” The boys were able to learn about how LATV serves our community by providing regular broadcasts of city meetings, sports games and many other local events. Tim Schingen showed them the equipment and the studio set, and even recorded them reciting a short intro to be used for the Rangers’ hockey games for the week. They were very excited about that!

In addition to being a Scout leader, I’m also a school parent. I’m very grateful that LATV films and sells our school’s musical productions each year and, thanks to LATV, I have started a wonderful collection of DVDs that my family will cherish for years to come.

Jason Dunlap
Pack 487 Den Leader


Apology Required

It is not often I rush to the defense of a Republican, but Canadian-born Ted Cruz has crossed the line in his recent attack on retired Kansas Sen. Bob Dole at the annual CPAC hate-fest.

Perhaps if Texas Sen. Cruz had bothered to enlist in our military and serve his country he would have some regard and respect for our war-wounded veterans such as Bob Dole and their heroic defense of our country.

I guess Sen. Cruz’s father’s support in installing Fidel Castro as president of Cuba then fleeing the country in a cowardly manner may prove the old adage: The nut doesn’t fall far from the tree.

As a veteran I must say that politically, I did not always agree with Sen. Dole, but I have always had the greatest respect for his courage, decency, integrity and, most of all, his service to our country.

Mr. Cruz owes Bob Dole and all of the American heroes that left a piece of themselves on the battlefield an apology. His unpatriotic and un-American rant insulting a national hero to whom we owe our respect and gratitude is disgusting.

Max Anderson


Fiscally conservative?

I was as surprised as anyone else about Senator Nienow owing us taxpayers $750,000. I’m also curious to know how the Small Business Administration backed a loan for $631,000 with a $120,000 house for collateral…friends in high places? If you or I tried to do that, the SBA would have laughed us out of the office.

Especially for a business that lines campers up with camps, he could have built that database in two weeks at home.

Yet the more I think about it, this is a pattern of one of the most conservative senators in Minnesota. When he first went into the Senate in 2003, his per diem was $66 per day; now it’s $86. That’s over a 30 percent pay increase in these tough years.

Of course Senator Nienow stands up and rails that government should be run more like a business or a family … I don’t think he’s a very good example of that! He’s one of the top spenders on his communications reimbursement, and the real kicker is we are paying over $12,000 a year for him to have a year-round apartment in the Cities when most of his constituents drive back and forth to the Cities each day (and the legislature is only in session five months or less).

Don’t look for him to do the right thing and resign since his actions are 180 degrees from his rhetoric. Hope he has a good lawyer friend.

Greg Combs
North Branch