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The 10 most-read letters to the editor from 2022


Abortion rights advocates march in Iowa City on Friday, June 24, 2022. — Jason Smith/Little Village

In the nearly 75 letters to the editor published by Little Village over the past 12 months, readers from across the state took aim at the policies of Sen. Chuck Grassley, Gov. Kim Reynolds and other Iowa leaders seeking reelection; endorsed their favorite candidates; bemoaned the behavior of some of their neighbors; advocated for gun reform, education and environmental justice; expressed grief and resolve after the overturning of Roe v. Wade; and imagined a better world.

Below are the 10 letters readers responded to the most in 2022. Have your own opinion? Submit a letter on any topic to editor@littlevillagemag.com to have it considered for publication.

Letters to the editor: A photo tweeted by Miller-Meeks’ campaign manager should concern voters (April 26)

Screenshot of @_hubbers on Twitter
By Don Paulson, Letts

All Iowans who live in the 20 counties of the new First Congressional District should be appalled and disgusted with Republican Congresswoman Mariannette Miller-Meeks.

Her campaign manager, Elliott Husbands, displays a photo on his Twitter page of a room draped with the flags of far-right extremist groups on the wall while volunteers hold up Miller-Meeks barn signs. One flag depicts the “Three Percenters” — people who believe in an anti-government concept and who apparently view themselves as modern-day Minutemen. Only they’re not yelling “the Redcoats are coming!”, they think the current U.S. government is tyrannical. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the ICCSD board: Period products should be free and accessible in schools (May 27)

Cliff Booth/Pexels
By Sara Brenneman, Iowa City

I have been a woman in the school district for 11 years. For six of those I have lacked feminine hygiene products when needed, which feels incredibly unjustified and unfair. I believe it is time for a change. Schools need to supply feminine hygiene products in our bathrooms. Not only is it causing a lack of presence in class, a lot of families in the district can’t afford period products, leaving their kids to struggle at home and school. It would also have a large positive impact on the high percentage of girls who menstruate at a young age. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the editor: Charles Grassley, ‘champion’ of the gun lobby (June 6)

Sen. Chuck Grassley speaks at the Iowa Republican Party’s 2015 Lincoln Dinner at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines, Iowa. — Gage Skidmore
By Trish Nelson, Iowa City

Sadly for Iowans, the gun lobby, in April, named Senator Grassley “Legislator of the Year,” calling Grassley a “champion of the firearm and ammunition industry on Capitol Hill.”

Minutes after President Biden addressed our nation about the gun violence that is devastating American families, a shooter opened fire on two women in Ames, killing them. Grassley responded by posting condolences and prayers on Twitter. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the editor: Iowa needs a new U.S. Senator (June 23)

Sen. Chuck Grassley, seated next to Sen. Joni Ernst, discusses derecho recovery with President Trump at the Eastern Iowa Airport in Cedar Rapids, Aug. 18, 2020. — Shealah Craighead/official White House photo
By Ellen Ballas, Iowa City

Iowa needs a new U.S. Senator: Mike Franken.

Americans want gun safety laws. Included in the bipartisan Senate bill: closing the boyfriend loophole and expanding background checks for buyers 18-21 years old. It’s a good start.

Voting against the “Bipartisan Safer Communities Act,” Senator Grassley seems confused about gun safety vs. Second Amendment rights. His gun lobby award is likely more important to him, “Legislator of the Year.” Continue reading…

 

Letter to the editor: Iowa City-area clergy recognize the sacred right to choose an abortion (June 29)

Rabbi Esther Hugenholtz speaks at the Bans Off Our Bodies protest. “My presence is not a political act. It is a moral stance, an expression of my deepest religious values, and a fulfillment of the obligations of Jewish ethics,” Hugenholtz said. “Religion can offer spiritual sustenance and moral guidance in ways that affirm life, grant choice, and center love, agency, health, wellbeing and holiness.” – Adria Carpenter/Little Village

On June 24, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a person’s right to choose an abortion and maintain bodily autonomy is not a protected right under the U.S. Constitution. As a group of local clergy persons representing various traditions and communities, we maintain that a pregnant person’s right to choose an abortion is a fundamental human, moral, and sacred one.

The June 24 decision disregards the human rights of pregnant people, privileging an unborn fetus over a pregnant person’s moral responsibility to protect their life and wellbeing, and amounts to the sanctioning of forced births, regardless of a person’s wishes, needs, or medical situation. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the editor: Fourth of July hooligans left Happy Hollow Park a mess (July 5)

Courtesy of Mike Fallon
By Mike Fallon, Iowa City

This morning, my neighborhood park (Happy Hollow) was a total pigsty. Yesterday, rabble-rousers lit off fireworks for hours and trashed the park. A visit to the park this morning revealed spent fireworks debris, spilled food waste, smeared charcoal stains, and lots and lots of trash. I watched city sanitation workers spend hours cleaning up the mess. The hooligans lit fireworks all over the park, in the grass, on the sidewalks and in the parking lot. They lit them on the adjacent private property, too. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the editor: Grassley leads the radical right (July 19)

Sen. Chuck Grassley accepts Trump’s endorsement, saying he “wouldn’t be too smart” to refuse it. Iowa State Fairgrounds, Oct. 9, 2021. — Jason Smith/Little Village
By Dave Bradley, West Liberty

Iowa U.S. Senate candidate, Mike Franken, supports constitutionally protected abortion.

Therefore, let’s consider Senator Chuck Grassley’s insidious role in the Supreme Court decision to end Roe.

As Senate Judiciary Chair in 2016 Grassley held open the Supreme Court seat, refusing to consider President Obama’s nominee, asserting it was the last year of Obama’s presidency. But in President Trump’s last weeks in office, Grassley advanced Amy Coney Barrett, who voted to end Roe. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the City of Iowa City: Data supports saving the Robert A. Lee pool (Aug. 24)

Swimming program attendees and lap lane swimmers at Robert A. Lee pool on June 6 at 8:15 a.m. — courtesy of Jill Fishbaugh 

We are writing to express our support for keeping the downtown Robert A. Lee (RAL) pool open and for making necessary repairs. Having attended several meetings of the City Council and the Parks & Recreation Department, and after reviewing relevant information provided to us in response to our records request, we feel it is important to identify the inaccuracies and inconsistencies in the recommendations that have been made to eliminate the RAL pool. Continue reading…

 

Letter from Joe Bolkcom: Reynolds isn’t really pro-life (Oct. 26)

Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds delivers final statements in the Oct. 18, 2022 debate with Democratic challenger Deidre DeJear, broadcast on Iowa PBS.

Governor Reynolds continues to take victory laps for how she has managed the pandemic. She touts her efforts to be the first state to command kids back to school and to keep Iowa “open for business” as Iowans were filling hospital beds and clinging to life on ventilators.

Iowa recently surpassed 10,000 COVID deaths. That amounts to approximately 315 deaths per 100,000 Iowans. By comparison, Minnesota and Wisconsin both have higher vaccination rates and took a more sensible, science-based approach to managing the pandemic. Continue reading…

 

Letter to the editor: Dangerous rail merger threatens rural Iowa (Nov. 30)

A Canadian Pacific Railway yard in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada, in 2011. — Roy Luck/Flickr
By Justin Hollinrake, Ames

If you ask folks in the Quad Cities about the proposed Canadian Pacific-Kansas City Southern railroad merger, they’ll likely cite worries about disrupting downtown areas or holding up rush hour traffic. But the proposed merger, currently going through the regulatory process, matters for rural Iowa, too. And as the midterms fall into the rear-view mirror, we must ask ourselves how to best support these parts of our state. Continue reading…


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