The American-News welcomes letters of opinion from our readers. Letters regarding current local and national news items are encouraged. All letters are subject to editing for length and style. Letters containing potentially libelous or obscene statements will not be published. Letters must contain name, address and phone number for verification and in case of questions. E-mail letters to: Letters may also be mailed to: Editor, Montevideo Publishing, P.O. Box 99, Montevideo, MN 56265

The American-News welcomes letters of opinion from our readers. Letters regarding current local and national news items are encouraged. All letters are subject to editing for length and style. Letters containing potentially libelous or obscene statements will not be published. Letters must contain name, address and phone number for verification and in case of questions. E-mail letters to: Letters may also be mailed to:  Editor, Montevideo Publishing, P.O. Box 99, Montevideo, MN 56265

Obama not held accountable
Myles Spicer’s guest commentary in the Oct. 10, 2013, edition of the Montevideo American-News was the perfect example of what to do when you can’t win in the arena of ideas. When unable to defend your viewpoint, shout “racist!” so your opponent will shut up and sit down.    

Barack Obama has been our president for nearly five years and yet no one holds him accountable for the state of our nation. He has cleverly separated himself from his own actions by giving speeches blaming “Washington” for his destructive policies. He deflects criticism by playing the victim. No one wants to blame the victim, we want to protect the victim; which is exactly what Mr. Spicer was doing in his guest commentary. Mr. Spicer must not have been on the planet during the George Bush presidency since he thinks what he is hearing now is “extra vitriol.”  Guess all those folks hated Texans, or maybe people named George; it couldn’t have been anything he did!  

If you would like to experience true vitriol, walk in the shoes of people like Judge Clarence Thomas, Dr. Thomas Sowell, Dr. Benjamin Carson or Rep. Allen West, to name just a few. These people are openly hated and maligned by folks in Mr. Spicer’s camp simply because they are principled conservatives. I haven’t read anything from Mr. Spicer protecting these people. Of course not, they don’t play the victim card.

Many criticisms of Barack Obama are based on his inability to tell the truth, he chooses which laws to enforce, he punishes his enemies and rewards his friends, he is detached from the American people and has obvious disdain for the United States as founded. He did tell one truth; he promised to fundamentally transform the United States and he is well on his way. People are losing jobs or working fewer hours thanks to “Obamacare,” millions depend on food stamps, race relations are worse than they’ve been in decades, our allies can’t trust us and our enemies don’t fear us.   

—Patty Hahn

Helping us out of our freedom
Power is a commodity that has always been very difficult for human beings to deal with, and since governments are made up of human beings it has been historically very difficult for governments to deal with it as well.

This has been the undoing of societies going back to Babel’s Tower. Never being satisfied with the status quo, they consciously, even unconsciously strive toward absolute power. Power corrupts, and more power accumulated brings increased corruption until, like an apple left on the kitchen counter for a month, it gradually rots away.

The framers of our constitution understood that and built many safeguards into their system, including the idea of there bring no professional politicians, but only citizens who would sacrificially serve for a short time the general interests and then return to their vocations. Professional politicians and a large monolithic federal government was never their intention.

The federal takeover of the health care system is a seizure of one-sixth of our total economy and I wonder if it doesn’t have more to do with accruing power and socialist redistribution of wealth than it does health care. If they have your health care, they have got you.

I may be a very untrusting soul and perhaps I should not have read so much history, but it bothers me that the administration is so bothered by an armed civilian populace. Every time some incident of an unbalanced or malignant shooting takes place, they try to put more restrictions on those who are law abiding. Gun registration historically has generally involved confiscation somewhere down the road.

I was especially unnerved by White House Chief of
staff Rahm Emanuel’s statement that one should always take advantage of a good crisis, since Dr. Joseph Goebbels made exactly the same statement in the National Socialist Party’s push for power in the 1930s. A poor choice of words by Mr. Immanuel and a shock to any student of history who noted it.

Perhaps there has never been such lying slash-and-burn politics with the object not being advantage, but the total destruction of the opposition. The complete destruction of one political party by another would not be a good thing for the United States of America unless one was so ideologically motivated to accrue power that they wished to fundamentally change American life.

In regard to the administration’s lying and covering up for political purposes, let me quote Friedrich Nietzsche: “I’m not upset that you lied to me, I’m upset that from now on I can’t believe you.”

We must remember that the goal of big government is big power. They will always express the sweetest ministrations toward their intended, but with the web of countless regulations and the spinning of new laws, they will help us, alright. They will help us right out of our freedom.

—Doug Hodge

Show support for CARES
The spring of ’97 saw one of the worst floods in Montevideo history. Smith Addition was evacuated and an orange and white orphaned cat showed up outside the Gallery back door. She hung around and soon it became very obvious that she was soon to be a mother. Not wanting a litter of kittens born in the wild, I borrowed a friend’s airline kennel and kept her inside my workshop. The day after my birthday, Aug. 5 to be exact, she presented us with a litter of four kittens.

We found proper homes for the mother and two kittens and kept the biggest one and a playmate for ourselves, Tuffy and Socks. The Gallery cats had arrived. Their antics, outgoing personalities and companionship made them loved by us and customers alike. Often times a customer walked in and said, “Hi Bob, where are your cats?” Obviously I was playing second fiddle to a pair of felines. We featured them in much of our advertising as the PR guys for the Gallery on 1st.

Unfortunately, Socks died long before his time and Tuffy became “lord of the realm.” He became our official greeter, meeting people at the door and could often be found purring happily in a person’s lap while they received a perm or color. One day a little girl who was waiting for her father showed up with Tuffy in her arms, wrapped up in here coat, tail dragging on the floor and purring up a storm.

Tuffy’s greatest passion was white frosted French donuts. An 18-pound cat with a lust for your French donut can make quite a statement.

Time moves on and Tuffy was joined by Shadow and Alley, two more rescue cats. I became active in CARES, our local animal support group. CARES promotes spaying, neutering and vaccinating all pets. Money donated to CARES is used for awarding vouchers for spaying and neutering to those who cannot afford it.

A cat can produce several litter per year and they reach sexual maturity at a relatively young age. Feral cats are an invasive species and a perfect predator. Cats in the wild kill untold numbers of young pheasants and songbirds.

When Tuffy reached the ripe old age of 13, we celebrated his birthday with cake, balloons and the works. I did a special framing promotion tied to CARES and we raised hundreds of dollars.

This past year, Tuffy began losing weight and showing his 16 years of age. Dr. Toft took good care of him and reminded me that Tuffy was about the same age as an 85- to 90-year-old person.

Tuffy went downhill rather quickly after that and one Saturday morning I called Dr. Toft. She didn’t have staff on hand and I told her that was OK. I was there when he was born and I’d be here when he left us. I held and petted him while Dr. Toft filled out the papers. We took him to an exam room. Dr. Toft prepped him and talked to both us. One injection in a paw and he was gone instantly and painlessly.

Tuffy gave us 16 years of wonderful times and great memories. Customers have often said that if there is reincarnation, they would prefer to come back as a Gallery cat.

As for myself, I know that I will never be able to eat a French donut with white frosting without remembering Tuffy.

If you feel so motivated by Tuffy’s story, we would appreciate your donation to one of CARES’ collection jars located in stores around town or make a check payable to CARES at 911 Lincoln Ave. East, Montevideo, MN 56265.

—Bob Christensen