The newspaper is our ‘local anchor’

From Jim Thoreen, Glenwood 

Congratulation to our local news advertising leader coupled with best wishes for great success for many years to come. Moving to a single newspaper for our county is strategically smart without a loss of content or viewpoint. We in Glenwood and Starbuck will continue to receive news and photos about friends, community activities and important decisions in both the public and private arenas. In politics everything is local…regardless of party, elected position or candidates. In provision of news to local communities, the same applies but the important difference is we can hold in our hands the presentation of facts, ideas, comments and suppositions. The photo is right there in front of us. Heroes are celebrated. Mug shots can speak volumes about people.

Oh, yes, some of us read the daily “big city” newspaper of choice to better understand what is happening around the world and within our country. We get glances of some local “stuff” if it happens to be aired by radio or tv stations who summarize the occasional local tragedy. Or in the case of television, attempt to capture post-event the scene of sometimes grizzly or otherwise “spectacular” stories.

But our local anchor, our connection to one another and to those beyond the county borders will always be a newspaper. Clip the story and send it to Uncle Bill in Boise. Send three issues of the past week to cousins in Wisconsin, New York and Mexico City. People who worked in Starbuck or Glenwood and moved along to a warmer climate still want to know what’s going on in their hometown.

I, for one, believe that publisher Tim Douglass has accomplished a comfortable and pleasing solution to a vexing challenge…how to keep our local print voice both informative for us and profitable for ownership. That’s a tricky dilemma for many towns in rural America as we watch local newspapers by the dozens simply go out of business in this country. We need newspapers more than ever in these times.

Again, thank you Publisher/Editor for this positive development.


Is an obscenity-laden yard display really something we want here?

From John Messenger, Glenwood

Well, we’re in week #2 of the overpass project, and, other than a few curveballs courtesy of mother nature, the work is progressing. The detours are in place and easy to use–including one lesser-known route: 210th Avenue on the east edge of Glenwood.

Now, to my untrained eye, it appears this route is getting quite a bit of use. However, there is one rough stretch: that would be the stretch forcing you to pass by an obscenity-laden display of supposedly “political” signs, so-called “American” flags promoting various Q-Anonish beliefs and other far right drivel.

Is this the face of Glenwood and Pope County? Do we really want to be viewed as a place populated by ignorant yahoos? And, worst of all, busses full of school children have to pass by this display twice daily. That is sad and disgusting. Complaints about children being exposed to this are already being made.

As I pointed out in a previous letter on this very subject, as offensive as this display may be, it is free speech protected by the 1st Amendment. Free speech it may be, but it is akin to yelling “fire” in a crowded theater.

There is little or no legal recourse in this regard, so that leaves only one thing: public shaming. If you agree that this disgusting, obscenity-laden display must go, make your feelings known. There’s always the chance that the erectors of this display may realize their responsibility to our community.

If you wish to display your patriotism–fine. One nicely-kept old glory should suffice.