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LETTERS to the Editor

Adam’s story

To the editor,

There is nothing quite like a near death experience to change a person’s mind! Perhaps this account of a recent event will get some of you that have scoffed at the notion of getting the Covid 19 vaccine to reconsider that decision.

I have a 39-year-old, father of two, husband, family man farmer acquaintance who was against getting the Covid 19 vaccination. He and his wife, as well as many of his friends felt that Covid is over hyped and is basically like getting the flu, even if you do catch it. Being on the farm, there is little risk of infection and being young and healthy there is really nothing to worry about. That was about Oct. 9.

A day or two later, a persistent and troubling cough was present. He was tested for Covid and as you would surmise, he tested positive. He wasn’t planning on quarantining, being on the farm and all. He got worse, and shortly after his testing positive he was hospitalized — and not at the nearest hospital as it was full. The next day his oxygen level dropped and he was put on oxygen. The following day the MD had to increase the pressure of oxygen to his lungs as his lungs were simply not getting the job done. The following night the nurses prayed with him, clergy was notified, and a Zoom meeting with family was set up. The doctor wanted to put him on a ventilator, but none were available. Nobody was confident that he would see the morning. At that time, he told his family to tell his best friend to get the Covid shot.

“This is nothing to mess with,” he said. They replied that his best friends probably would not take their advice, but if he called his friend directly, it might make a difference. He did make the call, and his friend is now vaccinated with the first shot of the series. My acquaintance did live through the night, but continues to be at a high risk for complications and if he survives, will likely be hospitalized for some time to come, leaving his wife with two small children and a few friends to try to keep the farm running.

The regret for not getting the vaccine is profound.

I recall a saying that I heard a long time ago, and it has meaning today: “A fool learns only by making their own mistakes. A wise man learns from the mistakes of others.”

Steven E. Anderson Township of River Falls

Give voters a voice

To the editor, There’s nothing like fresh air and sunshine when it comes to making a room feel clean and healthy. Mold grows in dark, unventilated spaces.

Our clean and healthy system of government depends on openness and transparency, too.

The maps determining your federal and state representatives’ districts were drawn by a computer program that was fed voting data as the basis for your voting boundaries. Even legislators were not allowed to “watch the sausage being made” and had to sign nondisclosure agreements to view their districts.

Contrast this method with the People’s Maps Commission (PMC), composed of regular Wisconsin citizens.

The PMC held public hearings in every Congressional district in the state.

The PMC made mapping software available months ago so anyone in Wisconsin could sit down and draw a set of maps and submit it to them.

Even as our politicians were voting to hold themselves to the current set of gerrymandered maps, legislation that would require maps to be drawn in a nonpartisan fashion has been pointedly ignored, not even brought out of committee for a vote.

The PMC has drawn maps in accordance with fresh air and sunshine, but our politicians (Zimmerman, Stafsholt, Petryk are prime examples) keep opting for mold and mildew. Tell them you want the windows opened. You want maps drawn to give voters a voice. That’s scary for them. It means they’ll have to listen to constituents or lose their seats. Which is how the system is supposed to work.

Wanda Brown River Falls

Unfair maps is how reps keep jobs To the editor, When maps Are fair Our reps Will care.

Wisconsin residents can have clean water, better schools, and wider access to health care. We’ve told pollsters again and again that these are priorities.

We’ve also voted for and passed, by significant margins each time, 56 resolutions asking our legislators for a process that will create fair voting-district maps, maps that are drawn without access to partisan voting data.

The fact that the legislature is now proposing essentially the same (except somewhat more gerrymandered) maps that triggered these resolutions, through a process that is the opposite of what these resolutions asked for, proves how effective rigged maps are. Our representatives represent party bosses who get their funding and marching orders from corporate overlords, not us.

Zimmerman, Stafsholt, Petryk—they will vote for the rigged maps. That’s how they keep their jobs, by toeing the party line, not by serving you. They don’t have to care, because the maps are not fair.

Richard Purdy River Falls

October 27, 2021