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Open Forum: Who should be taking bullying classes?

Who should really be taking bullying classes?

How ironic that in Union Grove, Wis., Dawn BoBo, a former teacher, had just opened the doors of her small new dollar store, when some women came in with a poster they wanted to put in her store window. The poster stated this store supported the teachers’ union. Dawn politely said, “No, I just opened my business and I will not discriminate against my customers as to whether or not they are pro or con on unions.” They are all welcomed. The women thanked her and left. Several days later, Dawn received a letter from a union representative stating her store would be boycotted because of her refusal to support the union. Dawn has started this store all on her own; she could not afford to hire an employee but received help from friends in order to open up. When word got out about boycotting by the union, Dawn was simply amazed by the support received from people who even drove across state lines to shop and support her against the union. She put a sign in her store window which read, “I support Union Grove not bullies!” It seems rather ironic that so many schools now have classes for students on bullying yet, here is a case of adults bullying small businesses for refusing to support union demands. Granted, when unions first started they had the best of interests of workers at heart by eliminating child labor, long hours, short pay and safety issues but times have changed. Today, there are only two things union leaders are concerned about: Power and collecting dues from 3.2 million teacher union members, many of whom have no say on how their dues are spent. Of course, this could never happen to you, right?

Dolores Zaske

Pine River

Sincerity isn’t enough

I listen with interest as our leaders in the Legislature say that they think it is an unthinkable that a small cut in revenue for a department will have a large change in the out come. Anyone that has any business experience knows that there are fixed costs involved with everything. Most government programs or departments have highly fixed costs. You have salaries, pensions, health care, up keep of buildings and vehicles, garbage pickup, phones, electricity. Many of these are in St Paul and every page of every report that is ordered by the Legislature comes at a high cost. Every plan that is ordered and prepared also costs. So telling the park service that they have to cut their budget by 2 percent means that the only thing that they have left to cut is operations of the parks. If the new legislators can’t understand that the amount of end product suffers exponentially from a cut they need a lot better high school education.They certainly don’t qualify as business managers and they better get up to speed on their jobs at the Legislature. They don’t seem to have much understanding or knowledge of what they are doing. 

I don’t doubt that these legislators are sincere; they have strong belief that their ideology is right.But when something is wrong it makes no difference if you sincerely believe that it is right or not. You can’t use a 3/16s wrench on a 3/8s bolt and expect it to work no matter how much you believe, that it will fit, it won’t, you either need someone with eyes to give you the right size wrench or to hire someone who knows what he or she is doing to do the job. 

Jesse Nix


Groundskeeper’s observations

Recently I have been wrongly accused of being the reason our school athletic facilities and grounds look so beautiful. Truth is the reasons are many. First and foremost are the talented, hardworking co-workers I have had the privilege of working alongside over the years. I regret not being able to mention them individually, but the list would fill pages. Next in line would be student athletes and their dedicated teaching and coaching staff, never afraid to roll up their sleeves and work alongside us to make our facility the best it can be.

Lastly a community of volunteers, parents and organizations willing to lend a hand when called upon.

I could not sign off without a special thank you to coaches Lowell Scearcy, Ron Stolski, groundskeepers Brandon Beach and Dale Carry for their friendship and help over the years.

As Paul Harvey would say, “Now you know the rest of the story. Good day!”

Steve Shellum


Becca Clemens
After graduating high school in 2004, I attended Central Lakes College in Staples, MN for 2 years where I got a diploma in Communication Art and Design. I then transfered up to Bemidji State University in, you guessed it, Bemidji, MN. In the spring of 2009, I graduated from BSU. Then in the fall of 2009 I got a job at Echo Publishing, a sister company to the Brainerd Dispatch.