10-29-2020 Letters and Commentary


In the October 22, 2020 issue of Tri-City Record, an error was made on Page 5 in the Letters to the Editor. The letter from Dan Hummel indicated he was affiliated with Coloma Community Schools. Mr. Hummel has no connection with the Coloma school district.

Tri-City Record is sorry for any inconvenience or confusion this error may have caused.

Watervliet Township Supervisor election clarification

To the voters of Watervliet Charter Township,

I am writing to clear up a question that has been asked by a number of people, which is can a person vote for a candidate for two offices? In certain circumstances the answer is yes.

A person cannot have his name printed on the ballot for more than one office. However, if a position on the ballot becomes vacated for some reason and there is no other candidate printed on the ballot, that office becomes a write-in vote. A candidate for another position is eligible to be a write-in candidate for the vacated position. If the individual is elected to both positions he must choose the position he is accepting and must resign from the other.

Please vote.

Joe Stepich

Kneeling players express 1st Amendment Rights

Dear Editor,

As a veteran of the United States Army and an educator at Coloma Community Schools for many years, I wanted to address several issues raised in Standup against disrespect for the United States of America; a letter printed in the Oct. 22 edition (Vol. 138 Issue #43).

In his letter, the author assumes that the Board of Education endorses kneeling for the National Anthem. Allowing student-athletes to kneel during the National Anthem isn’t about agreeing with their position ­it’s about standing firmly behind one of Coloma Community School’s core values: RESPECT. Just as we respect the author’s decision to write a letter expressing his opinion on this matter, the Board of Education and the school district are respecting the students’ Constitutional right guaranteed and protected under the First Amendment and affirmed by the United States Supreme Court in Tinker v. Des Moines Indep Sch Dist, 393 US 503 (1969). In short, these students kneeling do not cause a substantial disruption or material interference with school activities and as such is protected.

We cannot teach our students about being active members of a democracy and object if or when they express views that are different than ours. America, and our democracy, was built upon a core set of values and beliefs, which are too often thrown to the side by people who hold a differing opinion or set of ideas. To truly honor American values and beliefs, as outlined in this country’s Constitution, means we have to acknowledge a person’s right to advocate for that which we would spend a lifetime opposing.

The Board of Education is supportive of our veterans and those currently serving our country, thus allowing us myriad rights and freedoms guaranteed under our Constitution. Each year, during our Veterans Day breakfast, we honor and celebrate those who’ve served our country. We also seek out opportunities throughout the year to pay tribute to the brave men and women who have sacrificed so much to protect our freedoms. We value the dedication and service of these individuals to their country and know that they understand what their sacrifices mean for citizens of the United States of America.


David A. Ehlers, Superintendent

Response to stand up against disrespect for the United States of America

Dear Editor,

I’m a veteran and a graduate of Coloma High School Class of 1959. During my time in high school I played football. I always was under the impression playing sports built character, respect and maturity. After reading Mr. Tyler Streu’s letter to the editor [Oct. 22 issue of the Tri-City Record], apparently seven of our football players haven’t acquired these traits.

Not only did the players show total disrespect for their country, but a slap in the face to most citizens in the Coloma community.

As you young men mature into adulthood you’re expected to contribute to building America, not tearing it down. Be aware that your actions have consequences. Strive to be a leader … stay away from the misguided.

The 1st amendment provided you the right to take a knee. I feel the 1st amendment was drafted to be a positive … this was not!

Kudo’s to the Watervliet Football Program.