On common ground

On common ground

By Stanley Campbell

On common ground

I am honored to be selected as a columnist for The Rock River Times. At least, I think it’s an honor. So many people have said that they’ve seen me in The Rock River Times that I feel I’ve been on their staff since they opened. Maybe it’s because Frank’s been so generous with his space for my press releases and letters to the editor.

Anyway, I will take pen in hand and join the select company of Judy Howard, Dan Slattery, M.L. Simon and Richard Heller. Hmmmm! Maybe Frank is asking me to write because he’s got so many conservatives already on his staff.

What The Rock River Times Editor Frank Schier really needs, though (and I mentioned this at his testimonial) is an editor. Some of these articles are too long! He needs to trim back. Of course, he needs to trim back everyone else but me!

I also enjoy how Frank rails against the government subsidies, and then gets a lot of legal notices in his advertising budget. If you really support this newspaper, you should take out a classified or display ad.

I hope I don’t lose credibility with my liberal friends. We have agreed, though, on a lot of issues. I was one of those opposed to the Perryville extension, the road that was going to plow its way from the sprawling east side of Rockford up to the Wisconsin border, dragging its suburban development and strip malls along with it. I saw that most of the Rock River Times’ columnists were against Perryville.

Aren’t conservatives adamantly in favor of the rights of private property owners to do whatever they want with their God-given, stolen from the Indian, land, even if that meant siting a nuclear waste dump next to a kindergarten? Maybe that’s why Winnebago County gave up on the project: when right-wing property rights owners team up with left-wing tree huggers, developers get scared.

We also seem to agree on the bombing campaign in the fight against terrorism. If we want to stop terrorism, we have to arrest the terrorists, not bomb dirt-poor countries back to the Stone Age (which may create more terrorists in the future).

I must say I appreciate The Rock River Times as an alternate voice, and I also appreciate you, the reader, for seeking out, finding and reading, and then responding to this paper. It’s what makes this community and America great.

So, unless Frank edits this (fat chance), I feel welcome as your new columnist.

Stanley Campbell is director of Rockford Urban Ministries, an outreach of 19 United Methodist and six other denominational churches in the Rockford area.

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