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On ethics, morality and faith: The Redeemed Shall Walk


Fri, Feb 6th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

Do you remember when you, your parents, or grandparents, saved Gold Bond stamps or S & H Green stamps, given as an incentive to buy from a certain store or gas station? After we filled the required number of books, we could take them to a Redemption Center and trade them in for a premium of our choice, usually something useful that could improve our lives. It was a much-anticipated day, one we had saved for, bit by bit, stamp by stamp.

I can see the 2008 election year as a similar process. As the result of many, many years of effort and investments of lives, our country has reaped a partial redemption from racism and sexism. This is a result, not only of big blocks of "stamps" contributed by the Martin Luther King, Jrs., the women of Seneca Falls, the Rosa Parks and Abraham Lincolns of history, but individual or smaller numbers of "stamps" from the selfless and sacrificial acts of millions of ordinary people who sought a more just and loving way of relating to, and living with, the whole human race. All were willing to sacrifice and endure.

Is this the ultimate redemption? No way!

In my local contact with people, I still hear frequent racist jokes and comments, put-downs of women, religious slurs, and complaints about immigrants and other groups of our fellow children of God who may differ slightly from what many may consider the only RIGHT ways. Radio, T.V. and blogs often exacerbate these attitudes. We still have a long way to go and educating to do before we get rid of prejudice, hatred and arrogance. As a clergyperson, I believe that this can be accomplished by studying and truly following Jesus' example; as a former biology teacher, I also think society can be bettered by knowing the true facts about the sameness of all humans, regardless of variations in skin pigment, gender, talents, nationality, economic and social placement, or ways of relating to our Creator. As a member of a minority: pale-skinned Northern European heritage, these changes are essential to future existence.

The most hopeful part of the whole redemption process is that each of us can add "stamps" to the savings books that may eventually lead to the goal of accepting each other, as we are, as persons of worth, worthy of respect and kindness.

Isaiah talks in the 35th Chapter about a "highway called the "Holy Way" upon which "the redeemed shall walk." I believe we have taken just a few short steps on our society's journey up that road, that w .....
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Stop taxpayer funding of ethanol

Fri, Feb 6th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

Ethanol, in any form whether grain or cellulosic, will never economically replace petroleum. There just are not enough BTUs to justify it. Ethanol is about 20 to 30-percent less efficient than gasoline and about 50-percent less efficient than diesel ..... 
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One moment, please...

Fri, Feb 6th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

I really don't enjoy debating politics, because I'm too competitive and I always WIN; just like in the board game Monopoly against my wife and Karla Appel. I am kidding on all accounts, in case you were ready to challenge me.

In spite of my l ..... 
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Food Support cases up dramatically

Fri, Feb 6th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

PRESTON - On January 20, the day after the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday, the Fillmore County Social Services front desk logged 200 contacts - phone calls and walk-ins from residents in need.

Gail Bunge, Financial Assistance Supervisor ..... 
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Spending our money, Round II

Fri, Jan 30th, 2009
Posted in Commentary



It might be a stretch but it seems to me that the economic situation we now see around us is similar to being attacked by an unseen enemy. Like the 9/11 disaster, seemingly out of nowhere comes an unimaginable catastrophe. Sure, we know now ..... 
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A 'Welcome' Home

Fri, Jan 30th, 2009
Posted in Commentary



As my wife, Amanda Sethre, and I embark upon the adventure of publishing a weekly newspaper in this beautiful area of Southeast Minnesota, we would first like to thank you for being so welcoming.

The people and scenery of Fillmore C ..... 
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A Question of Energy

Fri, Jan 23rd, 2009
Posted in Commentary

On the night of January 10, we had the biggest and brightest full moon that we will see in 2009. A walk under this moon would have made streetlights unnecessary.

A big change for my husband and me with our recent move from the Big Woods into ..... 
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Wind farms in Fillmore County are a plus

Fri, Jan 23rd, 2009
Posted in Commentary

Over the past several decades we have developed an insatiable appetite for all that is electronic. This trend is not likely to be abated. Things that we now take for granted like central air conditioning, cordless phones, garage door openers, comput ..... 
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Barack Obama is the right person for the job

Fri, Jan 16th, 2009
Posted in Commentary

Before the election last fall, I had a conversation with a Republican friend about the qualifications of the major candidates. The topic of concern in the media at the time was whether Sarah Palin, a small town mayor and first term Alaska governor, ..... 
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