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Don’t teach kids how to kill

I read the article in the paper telling us how proud our S.D. Game, Fish & Parks are of killing off a large number of our small animals. I can understand trapping a troublesome predator on your ranch or farm, but I have a hard time with all-out war on our small animals.

Mother Nature gave us our beautiful hills and prairies, also a balance in nature with animals and birds. Do we really want our lands devoid of small animals? We all know the pheasant population is the concern here. They have a lot against them, chemicals, cover, hard springs — not only predators. And this program is not about the loss of the pheasant but the almighty dollar.

I can only hope the money spent on the crazy program is spent on something more worthwhile next spring. Those of you who feel like I do, make your voices heard. We don’t need to teach our kids about killing. They see enough of that every day on their computers and TV. Let’s teach them a love of our world of nature instead.

Jan Dietrich,

Hermosa

Restore reasonable petition rules

First Amendment rights are no longer assured in S.D. Nearly gone is our right to “petition government for redress of grievances.”

State law now conflicts with the 1787 Bill of Rights. Our state Legislature has for some years had a problem with grass-roots initiated measures. During the last couple of years, they’ve changed South Dakota law to make the process more complicated. Reduced timeframes for gathering signature have been imposed. Newly required circulator tasks and identification are insulting to many. Such requirements undermine people’s rights to peaceably assemble and engage with one another.

Two petitions are being circulated for the purpose of restoring reasonable rules to the process. Both measures must obtain over 17,000 valid signatures to qualify for the 2020 ballot. One measure revises existing state law by striking words-sentences-paragraphs, then adding words-sentences-paragraphs to existing state law. The second is a referendum seeking to nullify a truly obnoxious 2019 law called HB-1094.

Do you remember IM22? It was titled “The S.D. Accountability and Anti-Corruption Act.” It was a thorough piece of work. Voters passed it in 2016 — the Legislature killed it in 2017. Later initiatives came along. Payday loan rates got capped. In these and other cases, citizens accomplished what seemed unlikely to happen in Pierre.

The U.S. Constitution strongly emphasizes citizen participation in government (referred to as the Jacques Rousseau — Machiavelli effects). South Dakota’s voters need to give state government a push in that direction by signing these two petitions.

Dave L. Wegner,

Sioux Falls

Elect Steve Allender for mayor

For our city to be vibrant and healthy now and in the future we need leadership that recognizes the importance of economic development and has the vision to carry it out. Steve Allender is one of those leaders. He is energetic and willing to do the work to move our city forward.

Please re-elect Steve Allender for mayor.

Tim and Karen Raben

Rapid City

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