Open Forum for June 1, 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. Letters by the same writer will not be published more than once per calendar month.

A great place

Forest Lake — Wow, what a great place to live! I graduated here, married my high school sweetheart, raised four children and have pastored in this community for 36 years. We have just experienced the greatest time of stress, anxiety and intense emotion in the public square I can recall.

Strong emotions were felt on each side of the police issue. We now stand poised on the edge of yet another stress-filled and emotional time; the aftermath of decision.

Free speech is an incredible privilege, one that carries an equally incredible responsibility. We voice our opinion, our thoughts and our wishes, hoping to win others to join us. But after all is said and done, we must not speak libel or endanger public safety towards anyone.

Free speech’s incredible privilege and incredible responsibility must continue after decisions are made by working hard to maintain, defend and protect every individual’s personal freedom. Unity does not mean sameness. In fact, it is diversity of thought that makes us stronger. It is my opinion that if we villainize anyone because they don’t agree with us, we have missed the point. Victory is not the word I would use for either side of this issue, unless we use the word understanding our goal: For every decision to result in a victory for Forest Lake. The Golden Rule is a noble challenge for everyone, “to treat others the way you want to be treated.”

Forest Lake — Wow, what a great place to live!

Michael Haseltine
Senior Pastor, Maranatha Church