DL News Staff
Like many citizens in western Minnesota, I consider myself an independent. I carefully weigh the strengths and weaknesses of candidates and make my choices based on character, experience, intelligence and leadership qualities. As a lifelong resident of the Red River Valley and an owner of a fifth generation family farm, it is important for me to have a senator who shares my deep lifetime love and respect for this land, and the people of all ages and stations in life who live here. Public service is a calling, not just a bucket list check off. Kent Eken, like Sen. Langseth and Sen.
My husband, Kurt Bills, is running for U.S. Senate. I don't want to bring up issues -- just challenge you. We've never been a political family or had aspirations to run for elected office. I'm a licensed, in-home child-care provider, and Kurt is an economics teacher. However, involvement in government and political affairs isn't someone else's job. It's our right and responsibility. That's how it all began for us.
For the past several years I have been offering my opinions based on life experience (which can be verified by collections of pictures, letters and records acquired over the years). My sources are varied, from business channels to legitimate journalists, newspapers and cable news. No talk radio, no Internet conspiracy nonsense. Multiple sources which I consider fair and balanced or single source is nothing more than laziness of thought and curiosity.
I only want to know the negatives about a political candidate if they are 100 percent true -- I loathe being lied to... and I despise being manipulated... and I bristle at being bullied. The media, along with some politicians and their "committee" cronies, are not listening to the public. Vast millions upon millions of Americans holding the power to cast our votes or withhold our votes do not want to read or hear political attack ads anymore...
A quote from the Mr. Lynn Hummel commentary of 17th October: "It may be true that only stuffed shirts and fuddy duddies whine about the direction of our language and common usage, but hear me out." Yes, please "hear me out" (and call me whatever you may want). In my Linguistic Anthropology class at MSUM, the question of "language integrity" arises. Do things stay put in a language form and meaning, or is language meant to be malleable in a generally unrestricted sense?
Regarding the Minnesota Marriage Protection Amendment: As a retired teacher and mother of four, I have experienced the importance of a Mom and Dad being involved in a child's life -- attending school conferences, musical programs, athletic events -- I've seen children's eyes search the crowd looking for their very own parents. I've seen the joy light up their face when they see them, and when eye contact is made, the enthusiastic wave (or if the child is older, a more subdued nod of the head).
I wonder if anyone has thought about what Paul Ryan's agenda would be if Mitt Romney were elected, and if something unforeseen happened to Mitt Romney, and Paul Ryan ascended to the presidency. The reason I am writing this is that I have not heard this spoken of in all the programs and commercials I have listened to. Would Mr. Ryan follow the same ideology that Mitt Romney is stating (although he, Mitt Romney, has stated varying explanations of what he himself would do if he were elected)? Would Mr. Ryan's agenda be pretty much to the far right?
I'm a senior citizen and I keep an eye on what goes on at the Minnesota State Capitol that could well affect me in the future. It troubles me that in the last session, the Republican controlled legislature implemented a 20 percent cut in pay for personal care attendants. PCAs are family members who provide services to the elderly or those who have serious disabilities. While we all hope to live long and healthy lives, none of us knows what's ahead and what our needs may be.
If laws were passed forbidding doctors to save the lives of an ethnic group, there would be tremendous horror and outcry. Why isn't there any horror over the anti-women laws passed since 2010 that mandate letting women die? H.R.1216 -- Withhold federal funding for medical schools that teach D&C techniques because they can also be used for abortions. (Women can bleed to death without a D&C.) Republicans voted 231 "Yes;" Democrats,181 "No." HR358 -- Amend current law to let hospitals deny women an emergency life-saving abortion.
As I visit with Minnesotans across the state, many are surprised to learn that they never get to see the actual language of the two proposed changes to our state's Constitution on their ballot. This seems odd to many voters, given the importance of the Constitution as our state's highest law but that is our current procedure.