Opinions not accepted

To the Editor:

First of all I would like to state what my idea of a town board meeting means to me. A town board meeting is a time where all citizens of a particular town are invited to discuss topics of interest with the representatives of the particular town or city. I believe at these meetings citizens of the town should be free to express opinions that they have and the town representatives are given the opportunity to justify any situation or make any changes to better suit the town. Like I said before this is my “opinion” which as a Patriot Town Citizen an “opinion” is not acceptable subject matter and is also judged by any division a citizen may be involved in.

Yes, my mother, Linda Fisk, is the Clerk Treasurer for the Town of Patriot and some may believe that my opinions are biased but I believe I have some valid points to make. I also believe that a large percentage of the town citizens would stand behind my points of view and be in agreement.

For a very long time there have been some pretty serious issues within the town all due to personal issues between citizens. Just like any city or town in the world there are always going to be people that dislike other people – so be it; but when it comes to a community let’s be a community and work together and work toward a common goal. This is very difficult in the small town of Patriot – a town with a population of approximately 200 people. So what’s the problem? The problem is the lack of communication between certain representatives of the town and the townspeople.

For a perfect example: The town board meeting on July 6th, 2010 that took place at the Patriot Town Hall. During the meeting a member of the board, the Clerk, and a citizen of the community had issues to discuss pertaining to the Fourth of July festivities that had taken place on July 4th, 2010 during the parade and also at the community celebration at the Harris Park. The “Town Board President” quickly jumped to a conclusion and stated “Well it seems to me the only people that are complaining about anything are on the fire department.” The funny part of this is that none of the complaints pertained to the fire department in any way, shape, or form. The complaints were about the dunking booth at the park, a particular parade entry that didn’t suit well for the narrow streets in our town, and access to a particular building owned by the Town of Patriot. After the comment made by Town Board President the complaining individuals stated that they were not on the fire department and then there was an argument ending with the Town Board President adjourning the meeting. The meeting was adjourned very abruptly and before several items on the agenda were covered. To a resident of the community this gives the impression that opinions are not welcomed nor is there a reason to bring issues to the table because you will be shot down depending on who you are or which volunteer units you are involved with.

I have grown up in the small town of Patriot and I don’t ever recall there being turmoil that there seems to be in the community like there is today. It’s ridiculous. No one can get along and it seems like everywhere you go you hear a different story about discussions that rarely include any facts. The turmoil that has been brought forward is a shame. We are a small community with many reasons to be proud. Maybe it will help if those of you are not here to take pride in our community but to take pride in bringing us down should step back and see what this town was before you were involved. Because as I recall everyone worked together, there was never arguing and going behind others’ backs. If there were issues they were brought forward and resolved in a calm and reassuring manner.

My family has had a huge part in the Town of Patriot for many, many years which has given those of us that still live here the pride we have in our small town. I take pride in the community and am flat out embarrassed by the way some individuals treat others for no reason.

I wanted to get this information out there because I believe that the things that go on in this community should be known to the public and hopefully the residents of Patriot will decide to come together and be a community. That’s all that we can do.

We live in a democracy; not a dictatorship. There is freedom of speech.

Amber Fisk


Progress in Patriot

To the Editor:

A lot of the changes in Patriot are highly visible: the absence of the dilapidated old service station at the corner of Highways 156 and 250 and the presence instead of a paved parking lot tastefully decorated with flags and landscaping and featuring a public, handicapped accessible restroom. 

Other changes are not as visible: the developing sense of community by many and the progressive planning of the Patriot Town Board, the Patriot/Posey Township Park Board and Patriot Main Street.

This year’s 4th of July Festivities under the auspices of the Patriot Town Board and the Patriot/Posey Township Park Board were bigger and better than any other to date.

In addition, the cooperation of many on many different levels developed for the betterment of all. For the first time, the Posey Township Volunteer Fire Department  assisted with the Festivities.  As best said by Park Board President Vern Waltz, “It’s the Patriot/Posey Township Park Board, so why not?”

Change is good. Progress is good. Cooperation is better.   

Here’s to a 4th of July day of festivities that everyone enjoyed and will remember with smiles and laughter.

Proud to be involved.

 Kay E. Cook


Get involved

To the Editor:

Last week I posted a notice in the newspaper of our efforts to start organizing a Citizens Advisory Committee.  Maybe you saw it, maybe not.

We really need to hear from interested residents of Switzerland County who care about the crafting of our next comprehensive plan. There will be a new plan; it is up to you to get involved to help make it a good one. 

Our commissioners have requested a public input group to collect the ideas and concerns of diverse residents, and have promised to work with that group.

So far, we have been a small but dedicated group. To get a solid representation, more people in various fields are needed. 

I understand that many folks here are reluctant to speak up. Some are just the quiet, thoughtful type (who often give the most wise, common sense advice when called upon).  Others fear retaliation if they speak up and “rock the boat.”  There are those who believe that it is pointless to speak up, because their voice will change nothing.  Still more are sitting back, trusting the powers that be to do the work.

I have put my name on the front line in this project, but it is not my project. It belongs to all of you who want to see a sensible, reasonable plan that protects this community’s health and safety. Your involvement is critical to forming a well-rounded, thoughtful organization. 

Frankly, I need to hear from more of you. We have set up a Facebook account under “Switzerland County Citizens Advisory Committee” and an email account under scvoices@yahoo.com. There is also a discussion forum under: http://tribes.tribe.net/switzerlandcounty/thread/240eec0d-cb39-48f9-a583-15aa1893c326.


                                                           Traci Weber

                                                            Switzerland County

Sixth graders

To the Editor:

I am a retired teacher who taught 30 years in the Switzerland County School Corporation. In my career I taught in both elementary schools and retired from Switzerland County Middle School.

From my experience, I believe that the sixth grade students would be best served by spending another year in an elementary school setting. They are not mature enough for the pressure of changing classes, dealing with lockers, four minute passing periods and seven different teachers, not to mention, peer pressure of older students. They have to walk to the high school for some classes.

When I taught elementary school, the classroom could be more flexible than a set 55 minute period. If the class was beginning to grasp a concept I was teaching, we could keep going until they understood. This gives the students more time to ask questions and explore ideas.

As a Middle School teacher, I watched the sixth grade students come to school and they were afraid they could not get to class on time, get their locker open and find their way around the building. It took nine weeks for the students to get settled in and feel more comfortable.

I believe another year in an elementary setting would give the students another year to mature and become more familiar with the combining of both elementary schools’ students.

Helen Parks

Near East Enterprise

Golf scramble

To the Editor:

I am a nursing student at Ivy Tech Community College in Madison. As part of our course curriculum we are doing a service learning project to develop leadership skills, encourage health promotion, and investigate community health resources.

My group has chosen to help raise awareness about domestic violence to benefit Turning Point Domestic Violence Services, a not-for-profit organization. This organization helps victims of domestic violence realize that there are options available. Emergency shelter, education, prevention, training, community outreach, legal advocacy programs, goal planning, and children’s programs are offered. Our group is holding a golf scramble, called “We’re TEED Off About Domestic Violence,” raising awareness and funds to support this valuable program is our focus. Spring Hills Golf Course in Hanover has generously allowed us the use of their course for this event on Sunday, July 18th. Several businesses have offered various auction items for our silent auction. We are now looking for sponsors for one of the 18 holes that Spring Hills has to offer.

All sponsors will receive recognition during the golf scramble, service learning presentation and on the golf shirts. All proceeds will go to Turning Point. Our goal is to raise $2,000. Sponsorship of each hole is $100 and silent auction items will also be accepted.

Thank you for your consideration of this worthy cause.

Danielle Griffin