Letters

Letters Three legislators should be commended

We are writing to commend the three Democratic legislators, Pat Haley, Gil Koetzle, and Charlie Flowers, who have brought to the public's attention that all is far from well in the juvenile corrections system in South Dakota. That policies in place in an institution entrusted with the care of children resulted in the death of one of them is unspeakable and we need to be made aware of this situation. We would hope that all of our legislators would do their utmost to correct what's wrong.

This sad situation is a shameful embarrassment to our state. South Dakotans take pride in telling the rest of the world about how much we care about one another and that we are interested preserving a certain quality of life to maintain the well-being of every one of our citizens, but if we continue to turn our backs on the plight of the children in the state corrections system, do you think the rest of the world will stay convinced of that?

Allen and Maxine Johnson

Vermillion

Letter clarifies ServSafe seminars

To the editor:

The Vermillion Plain Talk recently published an article regarding ServSafe food safety seminars scheduled for southeastern South Dakota in October and November. The article mentioned that the Restaurant Division of the South Dakota Retailers Association, Hogg Restaurant Service, and independent consultants are presenting the programs for a fee of $100 per person.

The article went on to state that, for information or a registration form, businesses should contact Tamela Matuska in Lake Andes.

I'm not sure where the information for the article originated, but Ms. Matuska is not affiliated with the South Dakota Retailers Association in any way.

Business operators reading the article may assume that they can register for our program through Tamela Matuska. However, for more information on the ServSafe programs offered by the South Dakota Retailers Association, or to obtain a registration form for our programs, businesses should contact us directly. Our toll-free number in Pierre is 1-800-658-5545. Members of our association can attend our ServSafe programs for $75 per person; the fee for non members is $110 per person.

We cannot speak for Hogg Restaurant Service or any other independent consultants as to the fees they charge, or how to register for their programs.

Donna Leslie

Communications director

South Dakota Retailers Association

Pierre

Editor's note: The Plain Talk received the article dated Sept. 20 from Tamela Matuska, Lake Andes.

Information about Vermillion requested

To the editor:

For a book on the American college town, I would appreciate hearing from anyone with insights or information relevant to the evolution and contemporary character of Vermillion as a college town. I would welcome personal observations and reminiscences, correspondence, diary entrees, photographs, clippings, student research papers, and citations to published sources on the subject.

I am especially interested in the following topics; the evolution of the campus and its use for non-academic activities, the impact of the growth of the school on the city, town-grown relations, student-oriented commercial areas, off-campus student residential areas (e.g., "fraternity row" and the "student ghetto"), traditional faculty neighborhoods, college-related industrial development, the legacy of the 1960s, the college town as a place of personal discovery, the impact of college sports on local life, college town eccentrics, the seasonality of life in college towns, an images of college towns in literature and film.

I am interested in a broader sense in what life is like in college towns and how college towns differ from other cities. Please respond to Blake Gumprecht, Department of Geography, University of Oklahoma, 684 Sarkeys Energy Center, Norman, OK 73019-1007, gumprecht@ou.edu.

Thank you for your consideration.

Blake Gumprecht

Norman, OK

Apology seems rather hollow

To Brandon Wilsey, president, and the members of Lambda Chi Alpha, Vermillion:

There is no doubt that you owe an apology to residents and children of Vermillion for pumpkin theft this Halloween. However, as residents in your immediate neighborhood, your apology and statements seem rather hollow. As your neighbors, your statement "It seems that it is always the few that ruin it for the many," sounds rather elusive. It is our experience that those acts you describe as "blatantly stupid, immature, and very embarrassing" seem characteristic of Lambda Chi neighborhood behavior, not the exception that you imply.

In the last 12 months the loud music and yelling at 3 a.m. that wakes neighbors a block away, the trash-strewn yard, vehicles parked on the sidewalk, inadequate snow removal on heavily trafficked sidewalks, broken glass from beer bottles that remain on the sidewalk for weeks, and the nude fraternity pledge walking down the street at 4 o'clock in the afternoon with buddies shouting profanities at the neighbors do not seem to be the behaviors of "the few."

These are just some of the indicators that suggests your fraternity, as a group, is either unaware of the fact that you are located in a residential neighborhood where families are raising children or you just don't care.

Your apology may have been a nice thing to do, but what did it really mean? There have been and presently are daily opportunities for your chapter to overcome that "already rocky reputation," but those are the kinds of opportunities that take daily responsible decision-making and neighborly consideration. From a neighbors perspective, your apology sounds like you are taking the opportunity to scapegoat six fraternity members and their recent behaviors rather than hold all of your members accountable for a lifestyle that is, to use your words once again, "blatantly stupid, immature, and very embarrassing."

Your apology sounds more like a public relations action than a sincerely felt concern for the community.

Gene Lunn

Kate Stewart

Vermillion

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