Regarding last weeks column: If you didn’t catch it, you should have. No, it wasn’t an inadvertent screw-up on anybody’s part, and yes, I understand that people living in Northern Minnesota are not technically Canadians. But if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, etc. But that’s just me. Incidentally, I have several Canadian friends and enjoy their company, but they are different, eh?

Secondly, I’m going to use this week’s column to air out a grievance against our fair city, since I don’t want to clutter up the “Letters to the Editor” section. That complaint being the accessibility of the various city department staff personnel that oversee the functioning of this town. When those people being paid to serve the commonwealth isolate themselves and, through lack of communication with the citizens, become unresponsive to the communities needs, then something is big-time wrong.

This rant is in reference to my trying to find someone at City Hall to explain my concern regarding the lack of road repair on Monte Vista over a several-week-long period. Calling the numbers in our most recent phone book resulted in little more than a one way conversation with the city’s computer with a menu of choices that also did not work, seemingly centered around a standard answer and a request for your phone number and a promise of a prompt return call.

Just for openers, I don’t talk to computers. I feel that is the most degrading way to handle telephone traffic imaginable. I really don’t care if that’s the 21st century way, to me it’s like telling the callers they really don’t matter enough to interface with a live person.

Also, about that hokum about returning your call, it’s a “the check’s in the mail” type of response. Past experience indicates that you’d have better luck getting the Sheridan VA to return a call – something that would be, while not totally nonexistent, extremely rare.

So logical minds would ask, why didn’t you simply go down to city hall in person? Answer: A phone call should suffice. I shouldn’t have to sacrifice my daily routine because of their mis-placed desire to streamline their day.

Earlier this summer we had a private contractor working on Monte Vista street and a couple of adjacent alleys for a couple of weeks. I have no idea what they were doing but they dug a lot of holes, mostly in the alleys, but some in the street. Their project took a couple of weeks and when they left, they left two large rectangular holes open in the asphalt, roughly 18 inches on a side and 6-8 inches deep. Just big enough and deep enough to swallow a tire and really screw up a car’s front end.

Those holes existed, unmarked by traffic cones and untouched by repair, until a week or so ago, when some crew members returned and filled those axle-busting, front-end destroying holes with gravel. Not asphalt, but gravel. Gravel that lasted all of four or five days.

Granted, locals knew the holes were there and either became adept at dodging them or paid the price in vehicle repairs. Visitors to Valley View probably discovered the holes in a hurry, perhaps resulting in a unwanted trip to a repairman. And now, 10 weeks down the road, it’s too late to do an effective, lasting repair before next summer. Why? It was a simple fix.

With that off my chest for now, for those among the readership that lionize President Donald Trump, be advised that he’s on his way to being more effective at destroying your constitutional right to own and bear firearms than former president Barack Obama was. His remarks regarding the implementation of constitutionally arguable “Red Flag” laws says it all.

When liberal neighbors with an axe to grind, an angry ex-spouse or vindictive present spouse, or when even just the “Chicken Little” people who are afraid of modern sporting rifles and the color black, can have the police confiscate and impound your firearms on a manufactured pretext and keep you from legally acquiring replacements for however long it takes you to prove your innocence, that is just plain wrong and an affront to millions of law-abiding, gun-owning American citizens and to the military veterans who have defended this country.

Also, people who are constrained by this law will have to hire an attorney to prove their innocence and eventually get their legally owned property back. All of which will cost big bucks and take several months while the police “lock-up” your prized firearms. Police storage conditions are horrific and many firearms are “misplaced”, never to be seen again. Unwarranted confiscation and “guilty until proven innocent “ goes against every ideal this country was conceived to defend against, especially concerning our citizen’s right to resist a tyrannical government and power-seeking social engineers and greedy politicians.

I agree there needs to be a way to diminish or eliminate the problem of mass shootings, but if this takes the form of law, then I grieve for our nation. When that happens, the socialists have won. Our founding fathers will be doing multiple turns in their graves.

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