Readers’ Views

Attend Township Day

To the Editor:

Nearly 1 million township residents in Minnesota will have the opportunity to participate in their local government by attending their township’s upcoming annual meeting.

On Township Day, held this year on Tuesday, March 10, citizens attending their local township meeting will discuss issues with their town board and vote on their annual tax levy. Many townships hold their township officer elections on Township Day as well.

This is true grassroots government, as township residents have an annual face-to-face meeting with their locally elected officials and the right to vote up or down the tax levy proposed by those officials.

If you are a township resident, I encourage you to take advantage of this exercise in participatory democracy. Mark your calendar, find the location and time by checking your local newspaper or contacting your township clerk, and bring your neighbors to your annual meeting on Township Day on March 10.

David W. Hann

executive director,

Minnesota Association

of Townships

St. Michael

Charity drives Knights

To the Editor:

The Knights of Columbus council is made up of Catholic men 18 years of age or older. The Fairmont Knights of Columbus Council 1575 currently has 244 members in its ranks.

Founded on the principles of charity, unity and fraternity, the Knights of Columbus was established in 1882 by Father Michael J. McGivney, and a group of parishioners of St. Mary’s Church in New Haven, Conn.

Father McGivney’s vision was to see Catholic men united in charity to form a brotherhood that would enable them to fulfill their mission to manifest Christ to others by their example. For Father McGivney, the path of charity, unity and fraternity was to be an enduring path of Christian discipleship for its members.

Charity is at the heart of our councils work and our faith and it always has been. For the Knights of Columbus, charity means supporting a variety of projects to help others.

Part of our council’s charitable projects last year generated more than $98,000. Our local council has disbursed assistance to the sick, handicapped, disaster victims, civic and community projects, our churches and school as well as other organizations and institutions.

The Knights of Columbus council offers the opportunity for fellowship with those who are of the same belief, who recognize the same duty to God, to family and to neighbor, and who stand side by side in defense of those beliefs.

Cary Villeneuve


Gun rights threatened

To the Editor:

On Thursday, Minnesota House Democrats passed legislation that seriously infringes on the rights of law-abiding gun owners.

Anybody who tries to change our Second Amendment rights is doing our citizens a grave injustice. Any bill that jeopardizes the right to bear arms in any way, I’m against.

The first bill, House File 8, would impose several new restrictions on the transfer of pistols and semi-automatic rifles. These strict new barriers will adversely impact law-abiding Minnesotans seeking to exercise their Second Amendment rights, and will do little to stop criminals who already do not follow the law and have no intention of doing so.

While the proponents of the bill claim that this is about background checks for gun purchases, the legislation ultimately creates new burdens for what used to be routine transfers between friends, and could inadvertently turn people into criminals if they do not follow the exact processes laid out in the bill.

According to a 2016 U.S. Department of Justice study, fewer than 1% of criminals obtain their guns at gun shows, and the vast majority of acquired guns are obtained from illegal sources. Another study in California by UC-Davis found no changes in firearm homicide or suicide rates 10 years after a universal background check bill was enacted there.

The second bill, House File 9, creates an “Extreme Risk Protection Order” or “red-flag” process to file a petition with the courts. So if someone believes you are a risk to self or others, they could have your firearms seized by law enforcement. This bill violates due process, and will not stop those who are intent on doing harm to others.

There’s not been one issue where I’ve received more phone calls and emails than the gun issue, and 99.5% of them tell me to leave gun laws alone.

State Rep. Bob Gunther


Keep Elsie in thoughts

To the Editor:

A sincere thank you to everyone who organized, worked, donated silent auction items or attended Elsie Swanson’s benefit on a snowy Sunday.

A big thanks to the Sherburn Lions Club for preparing the incredible breakfast, in addition to the Martin County West elementary students who made the adorable table decorations.

The generous support from our communities has been amazing and we’re truly grateful. Please keep Elsie in your thoughts and prayers as her treatment for neuroblastoma continues.

Evan Swanson and Ryley Becker,

parents of Elsie Swanson



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