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Letters to the editor: Please do NOT relicense the dams; Consider John Calabrese

Dementia strikes every 6 seconds


Someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease every 6 seconds in America. That number includes more than 1,200 residents of St. Croix County who are living with dementia and that number does not include those yet to be diagnosed.

Along with that are the thousands more who are living with, working with and caring for those with the disease.

More than 90 caregivers, professionals and volunteers recently participated in the Virtual Dementia Tour in Hudson. The tour is the creation of Second Wind Dreams and is based on 20 years of research into dementia. The tour gave participants the chance to experience what living with dementia and memory loss is like and insight into some of the difficult behaviors that result from the disease.

The tour also included a chance for participants to discuss their tour experience with St. Croix County Dementia Care Specialist Nancy Abrahamson. The National Association of Elder Abuse and Neglect states that caregivers educated about how to provide good care are less likely to physically or emotionally abuse or neglect the person in their care.

WCCO television filmed a report from the tour that can be seen at searching Liz Collin/Alzheimer's dementia. The tour was the result of collaboration between St. Croix County Adult Protection and the Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC), Azura Memory Care, Christian Community Home, Comfort Keepers, Comforts of Home, Woodland Hills, Red

Cedar Canyon and the YMCA and the First Presbyterian Church of Hudson.

There are plans to present the Virtual Dementia Tour in other communities around the county. Information about dementia and memory loss is available county-wide from Dementia Care Specialist Abrahamson through the ADRC where a wide variety of services are available. St. Croix County Adult Protective Services also work in connection with Abrahamson to insure that anyone at risk with dementia receives help. Abuse and neglect may be preventable if families and those diagnosed with dementia seek information and support. For assistance, contact Abrahamson at 715-381-4411.

In addition, Western Wisconsin Journal is airing a series of interviews called Living with Dementia on the River Channel, channel 15, in the Hudson area. The series features interviews with several family caregivers, an elder law specialist, the medical director from an area memory care unit and a dementia care specialist.

Bonnie Edlund and Jo Anne Friedell

St. Croix County Adult Protection Workers

Zimmerman deserves your vote


Please remember to vote on Dec. 19 for Shannon Zimmerman as State Senator for the 10th Senate District. I've personally known Shannon and his family for over 10 years and always admired his personal drive and integrity.

Shannon's success as the current 30th Assembly District Representative and owner of two local businesses is based on his core values of putting families, healthcare, jobs, education, and veterans/current military first.

Putting these same core values first is what's made Western Wisconsin a stable, vibrant contributor to the great state of Wisconsin. Shannon is, and will continue to be, a representative you can depend on to do the right thing.

Brian Gresback

River Falls

Please do NOT relicense the dams


"Nationwide, 1,384 dams have been removed from 1912 through 2016."

"Dam removal brings a variety of benefits to local communities, including restoring river health and clean water, revitalizing fish and wildlife, improving public safety and recreation, and enhancing local economies." From

I certainly hope our city council decides to remove our two dams.

If the dams are NOT relicensed, the dams could continue to produce the 1-2 percent of our energy until Aug. 21, 2023. This is another six years of this minimal 1-2 percent energy production, to see what kind of costs we continue to incur through their operation, as this will not be free.

I truly believe that if the dams are NOT relicensed, and our Kinni is put back into its original free-flowing form, our tourism trade will increase immensely.

Not only will the residents of the City of River Falls benefit from a free-flowing Kinni, but also the surrounding communities, and people that visit our fine city to enjoy the Kinni from far and wide will benefit as well.

Many "non" City of River Falls residents, that visit our City daily, support our local businesses.

The "freeing" of the Kinni, will only enhance our Main Street business and attract tourist to town.

Let's bring the FALLS back to River Falls.

David Fehringer

River Falls

A massive give-away to the rich


Anyone who has been paying attention knows that the GOP tax "reform" bill in its House and Senate versions is basically a massive give-away to the richest Americans at the expense of everyone else.

Impervious to the warnings voiced by hundreds of economists, educators, health care professionals, and advocates for children and the poor, the Republican-controlled Congress appears hell-bent on ramming through a bill of potentially disastrous consequences that most of our representatives and senators will not even have read.

This is bad enough in itself, but even worse is the calculating animosity driving it. Stephen Moore of the conservative Heritage Foundation, President Trump's economic advisor, has approvingly called the tax bill "death to Democrats." Its provisions are intentionally designed to hurt more liberal areas of the country.

Moore says the tax cuts "go after state and local taxes, which weakens public employee unions. They go after university endowments, and universities have become play pens of the left. And getting rid of the mandate is to eventually dismantle Obamacare."

I would like to know when we stopped being "one nation indivisible" and when it became OK for one party to collectively punish the constituency that didn't vote for it. Under the 1949 Geneva Convention, collective punishment of an enemy is a war crime. How is the GOP's collective punishment of Democratic constituencies not a war crime against the American people?

In his Second Inaugural Address, an earlier Republican President spoke of "binding up the nation's wounds, with malice toward none, with charity for all." Our current President instead appears dedicated to tearing our wounded country apart.

GOP, the season of traditional "good will" and generosity toward others is upon us. Look into your hearts. Is this cruel new America the country you want and claim to love?

Thomas R. Smith

River Falls

Consider John Calabrese


I organized a meet-and-greet opportunity for John Calabrese because I think it is important for those of us who will be voting in the primary on Dec. 19 to get to know the candidates so we can make informed decisions.

John Calabrese impressed me very much. He is quiet, resolute in his determination to take a stand against corruption in Wisconsin and our country, interested in the concerns of those he'll represent, and well informed enough about where and to whom money flows in our state to create disquiet in the establishment.

I hope you'll look at John's website ( and come to your own conclusion. He wants to take the money out of politics. I think politics would be more comfortable without John Calabrese. Is that what we want?

Maureen Ash

Town of River Falls

A new kind of tax reform


Our Congress has been trying to come up with tax reforms that are equitable, that stimulate the economy by adding jobs, and put more spending money back in people's pockets. Such a plan already exists! It's called Carbon Fee & Dividend-- an approach to combat climate change supported by Citizens' Climate Lobby. This plan sounds a lot like tax reform—with the added benefit of curbing carbon pollution and quickly reducing global warming.

The Carbon Fee acts as an economic stimulus by placing a steadily rising amount on carbon emissions from the use of fossil fuels. This way, the fossil fuel industry will start paying for the harm to the environment and public health from their carbon pollution. At present, they are not forced to pick up the tab for the damages, giving the fossil fuel industry an unfair advantage in the marketplace. A level playing field will allow manufacturers to compete on equal terms, stimulating rapid growth in clean, renewable energy production and development of low carbon products, creating millions of new jobs.

The Dividend part of the Carbon Fee & Dividend plan is like tax relief.

The money from the Fee is returned to each US citizen equally as a Dividend every month. This is money in everyone's pocket to pay for rising energy costs. Most low and middle-income households will have money left over after paying for their energy needs. That is how we provide equitable "tax relief" for everyone, while encouraging economic growth in manufacturing and job creation. It is a non-partisan, revenue-neutral, market-based plan.

If the Carbon Fee & Dividend plan sounds like a win-win plan for our economy, our health, our choices, our world, and the future for our children and grandchildren, learn more at: If you want your representatives in Congress to pass a Carbon Fee and Dividend bill to reform how we favor the fossil fuel industry at the expense of the rest of the world and its inhabitants, call: Rep. Sean Duffy 202-225- 3365; Sen. Ron Johnson 202-224- 5323; Sen. Tammy Baldwin 202-224- 5653

Linda Herscher