A collection of recent letters to the editor published in the Wisconsin State Journal.
Don't let memory of D-Day fade -- Jan Somerfeld
I had the good fortune of being raised by parents who were molded by the Depression and challenged by the war years. They were patriots like so many of their generation, willing to make the necessary sacrifices to ensure that our American democracy and freedoms survived.
Though I was only 2 years old on June 6, 1944, I always felt the significance of this historic day. As I watched the early morning coverage of the 75th anniversary of D-Day, I was not only reminded of the terrible loss of life at Normandy, but also the historical military achievement of the United States and the allied forces. With fewer than 500,000 World War II veterans still living, we must ensure their story of service and valor lives on for future generations.
Unfortunately, we now live in an era of removing monuments, discrediting past leaders and even deleting factual information that has shaped our country. History must be accurately represented and preserved. War is tragic and brutal.
It is not always politically popular, and our country has not always been on the winning side. But since the beginning of our country, war is interwoven in our history.
We can’t let any part of D-Day fade into obscurity. Only “vivid and meaningful” accounts of history will inspire younger generations of Americans to learn it. We owe that to the Greatest Generation.
Jan Somerfeld, Madison
State should legalize sports betting -- Ken Opin
When will a Wisconsin lawmaker introduce a bill legalizing sports betting? Keeping it illegal no longer makes any sense.
We will soon be able to bet in Iowa and Illinois, with all the economic advantages going to our neighboring states. Don't pretend that illegal gambling doesn't go on here. Let’s make it legal and regulated, and let it produce revenue for the state of Wisconsin.
Ken Opin, Madison
Gun laws needed to save 2nd Amendment -- Irwin Kass
It is easy, but irresponsible, to feel that a mass shooting is not Madison's problem because it happened somewhere else.
The Second Amendment needs protection. But our Founding Fathers would be aghast at how Congress is going about doing so.
Second Amendment supporters are against mass shootings. We are for preventing criminals from having guns. We are against the mentally unstable using guns. Targeted firearm legislation would protect the Second Amendment by ensuring that its intent to guard against tyranny is accomplished.
Mass shooters, criminals and the mentally unstable would be of no use in a battle against a tyrannical government. In fact, they would get in the way. So they should not have guns. Congress needs to finally say "no" to the gun lobby and pass legislation to protect the Second Amendment and at the same time protect Madison and the rest of America.
Irwin Kass, Madison
Attend hearings on ATC power lines -- Justin O’Brien
It’s not over yet.
The final public hearings on the American Transmission Company power line project will be held this month in Lancaster, Dodgeville and Madison. These hearings will be attended by representatives from the Public Service Commission and an administrative law judge accompanied by a court reporter. What is said at these hearings will become part of the official record.
Whether you choose to speak or not, your presence will matter.
Everyone is tired and frustrated by the long fight against this extremely costly and unnecessary boondoggle. But for those who feel strongly about this 125-mile swath of 17-story power lines and the irreparable damage it will cause to our farms, property values, tourism, the environment and our pocketbooks, it is important to attend the hearing nearest you in:
- Lancaster on June 25 at the Youth and Agriculture Center Auditorium, Grant County Fairgrounds, at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.
- Madison on June 26 at the PSC Hearing Room, S105, 4822 Madison Yards Way, at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.
- Dodgeville on June 27 at Dodger Bowl Lanes at 2 p.m. and 6 p.m.
These hearings are partly the result of the strong and well-reasoned public opposition to this project. Large crowds are certain to have an impact.
Justin O’Brien, Mineral Point