Letters Fight back by getting involved

To the editor:

Although the recent tragedy occurred far away from your community, the attack was on all Americans. It is a war "of minds � for minds" of the average citizen like us. The spirit of America is what is at stake, and we must be careful not to let it slip away when we're not looking.

Constantly watching television, listening to the radio or discussing it around the copier at the office really serve no good purpose. As the events unfolded before our eyes, it seems as though we became entranced by the horror. I believe too much repetition of the same tragic story only causes us to become desensitized and demoralized.

I have heard FEAR defined as F-fantasized E-experiences A-appearing R-real. However, as I was watching the actual ambush, I couldn't help but think of it as "Real Experiences Appearing Fantasized"! Does this mean we have already become desensitized from watching this type of horror routinely in movies and television? Now that it has happened once, will other acts of war of a lesser degree seem insignificant? Could it be possible for us to grow accustomed to living in fear of attack?

Our reaction to this situation is an indicator of our future well being. The more we think about it and talk about it, the more it becomes part of who we are. We must not allow the evil actions of a few to relentlessly permeate our thoughts and lower our standards, thus precipitating the moral decay of our society. Demoralization usually occurs without your realization and has caused the downfall of every great nation in history. Carefully consider how much impact your response will have on your family, friends and community, and use your actions to induce positive consequences.

What positive actions can we take? Get involved in a community organization (Rotary, for example, is one of many options) that supports your community, respects all humanity, promotes family values, encourages good business ethics, strongly believes in education and trusts the United States of America. Be a positive role model to others, stand up for what you believe is right, and pray for the families of the victims and the decision makers of our country.

I will never speak the name of the terrorists believed to have master minded this plan, because they relish in their fame. Neither will I honor them by becoming engrossed in all the negative publicity they have created. They enjoy the notoriety of their work and, thus have claimed the lives of thousands with this ghastly scheme of marketing for their evil ways.

If we come together as a nation and all people of the world to consider this a time to recount our blessings and promote good works, then our enemy is already defeated in his quest for the spirit of America.

Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me,

Shirley Hiller

Marshall, MN

district governor,

Rotary International

District #5610

Work with Nebraska to name bridge

To the editor:

The naming of the new bridge linking Nebraska and South Dakota has generated considerable comment. It would seem that the interests of both states would be better served if some compromise and agreement could be achieved. In any case, I think we should try to come to some understanding.

I had a recent conversation with John Kingsbury of nearby Ponca, NE. Mr. Kingsbury, a 1969 graduate of The University of South Dakota, is president of the Bank of Dixon County, and is chairman of the Nebraska State Highway Commission. With the opening of the bridge, Ponca will be Vermillion's very close neighbor.

Procedures in Nebraska require that requests to officially name highways, bridges, and other such structures be submitted to the Nebraska State Highway Commission by Sept. 1 of each year with a decision by the commission in October. The commission considers such proposals only once each year and only one name is selected from the applicants each year. Naming a bridge to a neighboring state also requires the concurrence of the other state. The Nebraska procedure has developed over the years into a more formal process, and the proposed name would require the approval of the Nebraska governor.

Mr. Kingsbury was of the view that the bridge will be dedicated without an official name. The bridge does not need to be officially named. A dedication plaque will be prepared commemorating completion and showing the Newcastle/Vermillion Bridge logo name. I am advised that it has been agreed to place the dedication plaque on the Nebraska overlook which will be turned over to the National Park Service. The plaque would recognize and commemorate the historic co-committee and the bridge project name.

He is of the view that the official name of the bridge should be uniquely descriptive to the area. Mr. Kingsbury noted that there are many specific locations with ties to Lewis and Clark. He believes that for the long-term promotion of the area, officially naming the bridge The Lewis and Clark Bridge does not best serve the interests of the area. Uniqueness of the Missouri River and the recreational opportunities associated with it can better be promoted with a more descriptive name. Mr. Kingsbury would encourage signs at both ends of the bridge which would read "Missouri National Recreational River" instead of the often seen small signs that simply say Missouri River.

Large signs would recognize our Congressional designated national river without requiring a formal official name for the bridge. It was my understanding from Mr. Kingsbury that Nebraska would agree to these signs which designate the river, and do not "officially name" the bridge.

We should take note of the more deliberate process adopted by Nebraska. We should seek to reach agreement with the Nebraska authorities who have the responsibilities for adopting an official name for the bridge.

It would appear that there has been less than adequate communication with Nebraska authorities in this matter.


Walter D. Reed

Attorney at Law


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