Viewpoints

Wed
21
Dec

Word for Word 12/21/16

We all have our favorite Christmas songs, songs we want to make sure to hear during Advent and Christmastime. My favorite Christmas hymn is What Child is This? I love it for the quiet, meditative tune it is set to, Greensleeves. The music could be described as haunting, I certainly find it sets me in a reflective mood. But of course it’s the marriage of the tune with the lyrics that makes it a favorite of mine.

Wed
21
Dec

Letter to the Editor: Overwhelmed with generous response

To the Editor:

Many of your readers are likely familiar with Holiday Lights Magical Nights, the lights display at Decorah Pulpit Rock Campground, benefiting Helping Services for Youth & Families. It’s easy to see the bright lights and displays but forget about why the event exists.

I was reminded of this when a young child visiting the Lights told Santa Claus that all he wanted for Christmas was for his family to be happy. Sometimes it takes a child to remind us of what is most important during the holidays.

Wed
14
Dec

And then I wrote...

by Dick Schilling, "Editor Emeritus"

... that I have been fixated by rodents in recent days, some amusing, some annoying.

Before the weekend snowstorm, each day was characterized by frenzied activities of squirrels in my neighborhood. And there are lots of them.

There was an abundance of walnuts this year, and so there is an abundance of squirrels. I remember when a teacher noted that a squirrel is of the same family as the rat, and since I had no appetite for rat meat, I was forced to absorb the fact that we were shooting and eating lots of squirrels each fall, and even canned them for winter’s use. But I would not have considered eating a rat!

Wed
14
Dec

Word for Word 12/14/16

On a snowy, December 4 Sunday when we didn’t have a lot of people brave the slick streets and roads for the 10 a.m. Mass, we did have a wonderful musical introduction: the Waukon High School choral singers sang beautifully.

On a day when I am sure plans were complicated by the snow, the students and the parents accompanying them gave us a special treat for the Advent season. Thanks to the students, their director Sarah Palmer, and all the people who made this possible.  What a nice tradition for our area churches!

Fr. Mark Osterhaus
St. Patrick Catholic Church, Waukon

 

Wed
14
Dec

Letter to the Editor: Happy holidays?

To the Editor:

Just to let you know, Christmas and winter are not Catfish Annie’s favorite time of year. Expectations and disappointments abound as we all pretend we are not having them. Also, this year the truth about climate change has been screaming at us, and we are afraid of trying not to ignore it.

What a strange beast we humans have become. We want to live, but don’t seem to care about what we are going to live on or for how long. I would suggest we try living one day at a time for a while, well maybe just for a week or so. It’s likely to be exhausting as we try keeping our current mode of living out of our heads. However, this is not about our heads. It’s about the heart, the human heart, that has lost so much and gained so little as a species.

Wed
14
Dec

Letter to the Editor: Pray with great concern for our country

To the Editor:

The election is over but Trump needs our support and prayers more than ever. I’ve had many people say Trump was a godsend.

Both the Democrats and Republicans spent millions to downgrade Trump in every way they could, yet Trump won by a landslide. The Democrats have dumbed down people to a point where almost every city is a tinder box waiting to explode.

I feel really sorry for those people, they need jobs but who’s going to hire them? Can Trump create a program that would enthuse them to work? If he can, he will truly be a hero. He will have to raise their morals and respect for fellow citizens before they are employable.

It’s really sad how many people get rich dumbing down these helpless people - people like Sharpton, Jackson, Reed, Pelosi, Harkin, Hillary and Billy - all are scammers. Hillary and Bill have scammed our people and got very rich - from broke to millions.

Wed
14
Dec

Letter to the Editor: Above and beyond the call of duty

To the Editor:

I want to acknowledge and express my appreciation to the Quilts of Valor Foundation and to all the ladies who worked so hard to see that all Veterans have a quilt. I also appreciate the teachers that had everything organized and the artwork the little children made and passed out at the Waterville School on Veterans Day. I am also grateful to Post 722 for their presentation.

Earl Jones
Harpers Ferry

Wed
07
Dec

And then I wrote...

by Dick Schilling, "Editor Emeritus"

... that just typing in as the tag line for this column, for December 7, caused a bit of reflection.

That’s particularly true ... I almost wrote “in the wake of the past election” except for some the election apparently is still not over. The attack by the Japanese at Pearl Harbor that day in 1941 signaled the official start of World War II, which I maintain was the last war in which all of us were invested on the same side.

Contrast that to today, after a very divisive election which seemed to result in the election of Donald Trump by virtue of Electoral College totals, even though his opponent, Hillary Clinton, racked up a higher popular vote total.

Clinton said right away: “Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and a chance to lead.” But maybe not so fast.

Wed
07
Dec

Letter to the Editor: When was Yahshua born?

To the Editor:

I am sure there are some people that celebrate Christmas with the idea that Yahshua, better known as Jesus, was born December 25. Yahshua is the only begotten Son of the most high living God. His name is Yahweh. The letters of his name in the Hebrew alphabet are YOD Hay VAV HAY. There is no “J” or “G” sound in the Hebrew alphabet.

Yahshua was born in a little town in Israel by the name of Bethlehem. How can we be sure when He was born? Your Bible will tell you when. In your Bible, the book of Luke will verify what you are about to read. There is much greater information there.

An angel appeared to Zacharia, a priest who belonged to the priestly division of Abiyah, assigned the 8th course of temple service, the 10th week of the biblical year. The angel told him his wife Elishevah, better known as Elizabeth, would bear him a son and his name would be Yahochanon, known by you as John, John the Baptist.

Wed
30
Nov

And then I wrote...

... that a friend loaned me a book about a month before the election, and I dearly wanted to quote some things from it, but did not at the time lest I be accused of trying to influence voters.

As if that could happen!

Anyway, the name of the book is An Accidental Life: An Editor’s Notes on Writing and Writers. It is by Terry McDonell and was published by Alfred A. Knopf in 2016. McDonell was editor of a number of well known publications, and he discusses them and many of the writers with whom he dealt.

He quotes David Carr on what it takes to be an editor: “Educate yourself and then pass it on.”

What an editor needs is best covered by the French word sang froid, that is, cold blood - calmness, composure and coolness but also audacity in order to handle pressure, he suggests.

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