A response to Rich Mikrut


From: James Johnson

I’m about to enter dangerous letter-to-the-editor territory: the response letter to the response letter to the letter......

Rich Mikrut’s recent letter-to-the-editor finds fault with citizens who speak out against frac sand mining for not showing respect. He specifically finds fault with me for writing that “our city leaders have not shown us the same [respect] that they demand of us” in regards to transparency in the city’s frac sand moratorium study.

I agree with Mr. Mikrut that all people should be respected; that said, it is possible to respect someone’s personhood and emphatically disagree with their opinions and actions.

At a recent public hearing, I and others were threatened with arrest for “speaking off topic” about the mysterious exemption of the Port from our city’s frac sand moratorium - a clear conflict of interest since the city’s Port Authority profits off an industry the city is supposed to be studying and regulating.

In my opinion, respect for the earth and respect for open and honest government are two things our city leaders could use more of.

And most importantly, showing respect doesn’t mean being silent when you believe something is wrong. If citizens in Winona do not speak up against our city’s conflict of interest with frac sand at the Port, who will speak up for us?


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