Open Forum for Feb. 23, 2017

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, 146 N. Lake St., Suite 125, 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.

Let’s be up front

It was both heartening and encouraging to see and listen to supporters of the Forest Lake Police Department during the Open Forum at the Feb. 13 City Council meeting. Unfortunately, Mr. Howard’s account of the testimony in the Feb. 16 edition of The Times failed to capture the commitment and emotion of the local speakers.

What do you think would have happened in the mayoral election if candidate Winnick had made known that the city’s first order of business would be to seek an RFP and possibly disband the FLPD? He would have lost badly to Mark Finneman. Some great candidates in Rich Weber, John Bodine and Bruce Anderson lost because of perceived ties to Winnick. The crystal clear agendas of candidates Bain and Husnik led to clear-cut victories in November.

Mayor Winnick and councilmen Eigner and Freer claim to hear from an equal number of residents on both sides of the issue. Where are the individuals who agree with this unnecessary pursuit of an RFP? If there are indeed a large number of these people, let’s have these citizens stand up and be counted.

Councilman Freer cautioned councilmembers Bain and Husnik and the FLPD supporters to be patient and have open minds about the process. He has a colossal amount of nerve to lecture us when he, Winnick and Eigner act as if there aren’t legitimate concerns about the process. Disbanding the FLPD has no place in making Forest Lake an attractive, desirable place for families, businesses and visitors.

Russell Peterson
Forest Lake

A different breed

Despite President Trump’s view of the press, I feel the news organizations and reporters here in Minnesota are of a different breed. The recent stadium embarrassment could have resulted in the elder Mondale being pestered about the faults of his son, this restraint is commendable, and so is their empathy when addressing the governor’s gaffes due to his medical condition.

This is part of our Minnesota “nice” attitude, as in, “If you can’t say anything nice about someone, say nothing.”

Tom Obst


Reader Steitz (in the Feb. 16 letter, “Dump Emmer!”) wants to “dump” the messengers. He doesn’t realize half the job of keeping out Islamic terrorists is already done. History has shown terrorists are often of Middle-eastern origin, Muslim and sometimes darker complexioned. This works heavily in our favor. If all terrorists were pink, obviously banning immigrants from Pinkland would be a quick temporary action that might stop a pink terrorist. Since we know that not all pink people are terrorists but most terrorists are pink, one can see how this could help until a better process is in place. Of course, there are those that scream unfair color profiling! So which is more important, worrying about hurting some feelings or keeping our citizens safe from violent murder? Seems like an absurd question to ask. Trump is not anti-immigrant, but he is anti-terror. This is a president’s job.

Jon Wycislak

Please stop

To councilmen Freer and Eigner and Mayor Winnick,

An officer’s loyalty lies in the badge on their chest and the patch they wear on their shoulder. They solemnly swear under oath to serve and protect that agency/community to the best of their abilities. Washington County deputies do that for Washington County; Forest Lake officers do it for Forest Lake. However, in stark contrast, one serves an agency, the other, a community. This is the difference between contract law enforcement and local law enforcement. When you serve a community, you are a career stakeholder, not just in your agency, but also your local community. A contract deputy is a career stakeholder in their agency, but only a temporary stakeholder in the community in which they serve. Washington County is an agency that contracts with many communities. Forest Lake would be just another contract for their agency. Please stop seeking law enforcement services elsewhere when we already have what we need and want right here in our community.

Bob Morehead
Forest Lake