Letter of the week

Rufous Redtail

My surprise when I saw the article in Outdoors by Stan Tekiela about the red-tailed hawks. They have been a conversation in our family for some years for different reasons. I come from a family of readers, and we always had newspapers, magazines and books everywhere. My deceased husband did not read books and was fascinated by how many books I read, and that I even wrote one. Whenever the subject came up in our family, he always said he had only read one book in his life, “Rufous the Red-tailed Hawk.” He was a very smart man and very successful but just not interested in reading books.

Well, my daughter went on a mission for his birthday present one year. She found a book online called “Rufous Redtail” by Helen Garrett. It was published in 1947 by the Viking Press. It was a used copy for sixty dollars. She purchased and mailed it to him for his birthday.

When he opened it, he looked at it and exclaimed, “Well, this is the one book I read! I can’t believe that your daughter found it!” He was quite thrilled. He went and sat down and read it, closed it, and said, “There, now I have read it twice.” We all still have a laugh and smile when we talk about it.

I had put the book away with other books but dug it out. There was a stamp in back from the Oxford Grade School Library. It was a discarded library book with the library card still in it with several names that had read it on the card. The last stamp was January 1988. Several boys had read it and one girl.

It was a good memory and I appreciated seeing the article in the Messenger. You never know what will interest your readers or catch their attention.

Pamela Bastien, Garrison

More thoughts on impeachment

It is my personal belief, based on evidence of the last three years, that President Trump has committed acts that fall into all three categories of impeachable acts.

Treason: I believe President Trump’s recent withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria and the resulting power vacuum in the region have allowed Russia to expand its sphere of influence, i.e., “Giving aid and comfort to the enemy.”

Bribery: the President’s offer to release military aid to Ukraine in return for an investigation of a political rival fits the definition of bribery even if the investigation is never done and the military aid is ultimately released.

High Crimes and Misdemeanors: numerous acts of President Trump fall in this category including profiting from the presidency, obstruction of justice, witness tampering, and abuse of power.

As citizens, we are responsible for keeping an eye on our government. That’s why the framers ultimately agreed to place impeachment in the constitution. In our current situation, we cannot afford to let actions like these become normalized…impeachment is a tool that should be strongly considered.

In the current impeachment hearing, virtually all of the witnesses to date (as of 11/21) have agreed that the behavior of President Trump on the Ukraine call was at least inappropriate or even criminal. So my question is this: if these acts are not found sufficient to remove the President from office, will future presidents not find that acts like these are now okay? This is a danger to the Constitution and a danger to the Republic.

Guy Roger, Isle

‘You can’t create a community based on winners and losers’

I refuse to live in fear of residing on the “wider” Mille Lacs Band of the Ojibwe’s land holdings. Rather, I seek a lasting peace between all Mille Lacs area neighbors, which will not be found in rulings by the Supreme Court.

Traditional Dakota (Sioux), the original inhabitants of the Mille Lacs area, use the term “Wasichu” to describe white people. One translation of this term is “he who lives by paper” which is not a traditional, indigenous peoples’ way of living. Sadly, there can be a wide gulf between legal justice and moral justice.

I believe this current litigation will not make the Mille Lacs area more hospitable for residents nor non-residents. If the county loses this lawsuit, another attorney may eventually convince commissioners that it can still be won if argued differently or if laws are changed, and the legal battle may be renewed. Wasichu have a long history of not respecting treaties with Native Americans. If the Board of Commissioners win their claim, our Ojibwe neighbors may believe they have been victimized once again by the Wasichu. Bottom line is that animosity between these feuding parties may grow regardless of this lawsuit’s outcome because you simply cannot create a community based on winners and losers.

Community requires mutual respect and safety to be oneself, which can only be created within individual souls and in positive personal relationships, not by words on legal documents.

Douglas Jacobson, Wahkon

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