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05/06/18 05:38 PM #4078    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

“I do not believe that just because you’re opposed to abortion, that makes you pro-life.  In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed.  

“And why would I think that you don’t?  Because you don’t want any tax money to go there.  That’s not pro-life.  That’s pro-birth.  We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is.”  

--Sister Joan Chittister,  a Benedictine nun, author and speaker-- and an advocate for women.  

Republican legislators continue to introduce and pass laws to shut down women’s health clinics and cut access to birth control.  The GOP has made 54 attempts to repeal the Affordable Care Act to destroy universal health reform which protects the needs of millions of American children.  



05/07/18 10:05 AM #4079    


Ronald I. Zager

Remember this guy?


05/07/18 11:54 AM #4080    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)


I guess I can accept the loss if it got you on the Forum to post news of Cardinals dramatic early morning sweep of Cubs... saw it all on ESPN.

Good to hear from you.



05/07/18 12:03 PM #4081    


Nancy Doyle (Sudlow)

As Janis said, it is good to hear from you again, Ron. However, not sure we need to hear about the player who should have remained with the Cubs.

05/08/18 01:36 PM #4082    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

Great way to commemorate VE Day-- breach an agreement with our allies.

Once again Trump shows his recklessness and that the only relationships he values are with dictators and tyrants.

Why should anyone trust the US?  

What credibility do we have?  

Russia and China continue to work with our allies.


05/09/18 08:11 AM #4083    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

Three US detainees were released by North Korea.

Two of the three men were arrested after Trump took office.

(North Korea captures prisoners to release them.)

North Korea releasing three prisoners is good news--

Important to remember that by "undoing" hostile action

Kim Jong-Un has leverage to position himself with the US.

Expectations are high for Trump’s summit with Kim Jong-Un,

uncertainty is higher.



05/09/18 11:07 AM #4084    


Ronald I. Zager

Janis and Nancy,

Good to hear back from you, but don't feel too bad about losing Fowler--he's currently batting .155 for the Cardinals.  Please say 'hi' for me if you make it to the June 11 gathering.

All the best,


05/09/18 11:08 AM #4085    


Marvin Irving Blusteln

Janis, your posts are great.

While many of us suffer 45, let us not forget those with the power to end the clown caravan who turn a blind eye.  Shame on Ryan and McConnell.  They are not patriots.

05/09/18 12:28 PM #4086    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

Marv and Ron,

The more people posting the better... good to hear your voices on the Forum.

back in November 2016-- if only one wish (of mine) could come true--

I'd have passed on the Cubs winning the World Series for Donald Trump NOT to become 45.

Baseball is a game. 

U.S. presidents have been the recognized leader of the free world. 

Donald Trump intentionally relinquished that responsibility-- and, Marv, as you note, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell turn a blind eye as Trump continues to squander the profound privilege to serve as President of the United States of America in favor of Trumpism.



05/11/18 12:22 PM #4087    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

In Chicago, fans can cheer for Cubs or Sox, but never for both.  “If the dual Cubs-Sox fan does exist, that person offers the possibility of being opposites simultaneously even though seen by observers as one or the other.  The decided and distinct split between Cubs and Sox is by design.  The Sox, from their inception, were forced to carve out their own niche and establish their own tribal following.”

Thursday a White House aide joked about whether Senator John McCain’s opposition to the CIA nominee matters with the comment “he’s dying anyway.”  That even any of John McCain’s final days - or weeks or months - are marked by this sort of language is maddening and disappointing... and even more-- depressing for the fact that this is the new normal-- we live in a time when people feel comfortable making a death joke about a man battling brain cancer.

Baseball is a game.

As citizens we have allowed ourselves to be separated by voices which have no sense of civility and show disdain for political correctness and the truth... too many have chosen to take sides as if in an athletic competition--

at its best, politics is not a contest... rather than joining together as a country to find solutions that work for the common good, we have isolated ourselves by tribe and blindly follow those whom we allow to do our thinking.

No one is standing up and saying, “We must do better.”

“There is a vacuum in moral leadership-- the better angels of our nature are being drowned out by our demons.”



05/12/18 12:38 PM #4088    


Marvin Irving Blusteln

Well said, Janus.   Definitely a black hole.


05/14/18 01:58 PM #4089    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)


“Interesting time to live--

pro-lifers hear 'Stop shooting our kids'

as a liberal talking point.”


“Not a peep about arming teachers since they started showing up en masse surrounding state capitols.”


“Apparently there’s a (teacher) shortage.  Who could have predicted that demonizing teachers, cutting salaries and benefits, and reducing job security might make it a slightly less attractive option for people who might need student loans to get through school?”  --Where Did All the Teachers Go?

“What sort of person thinks there's nothing wrong asking the folks who teach our children to take a 20% cut on a $50,000 annual salary, but a terrible idea to ask millionaires to pay 3% more in taxes?”  


“Here in Canada, many of us believe we are witnessing the fall of the U.S. empire.”   -- Paul F. Haacker  “Would a civilized country limit health care or food assistance for the poor?  leave crops rotting in the fields while abusing desperate immigrants?  destroy the educational system?... ”


Why does the U.S. have money for bombs, prisons, and weekends at Mar-a-Lago?

but never money for healthcare, schools, or to replace the water pipes in Flint, Michigan?


Time to      BE        


walk the walk for kids.




05/16/18 02:31 PM #4090    


Ronald I. Zager

Tired of hearing about the Cubs and the Cardinals?  Here are some other "stats" based on participation in this Forum (a follow-up to my post #3500).  From #3501 to #4000 Janis continues to lead with 239 entries, up from 177 last time.  Steve remains in second with 70, down from his previous 127 posts.  Paul, with 46, remains in third, up from 33 last time.  These three classmates account for some 71% of the total, with an additional 30 participants accounting for the other 29%.  I upped my number to 13 entries or 2.6%.  Sharry and Vic get the prize for the "most meaningful" conversation.

C'mon all you lurkers and occasional readers--let's get involved!  Our 55th reunion is only a year away.  It doesn't have to be about politics all the time, maybe bettter if it isn't.  If nothing else, please let me know if I should just shut up about "keeping score" or do this again when we reach #4500.  And don't pull any punches.

Now back to the National League Central race...

05/17/18 12:28 PM #4091    


Trudi Ann Davis (Davis)

Ron, thanks for keeping the tally.  Let's see, my news would be.  

1.  I am retiring for the second but I think final time.  I was only working part time but it has started to interfere with things I would rather do.

2.  My youngest daughter, Amanda is having her third baby tomorrow. I am very excited about a new person in our family.  I am concerned however how difficult it is for young families today to make it all work, with the need for two incomes, all the activities that happen with growing children.  Childcare is such an expense.  I can't understand why we are the least supportive of families of all the economically secure countries.  Yesterday I read that even in the US the birthrate is going down.  Perhaps given the ban on immigrants along with a declining birth rate will make our legislators and corporations more interested in helping out young families, how sad.  They all need support NOW.

3  I just returned from Boston to celebrate my older daughter, Sarah receiving her Ph.d. from Boston University in African History.  Now she and her husband who is a charming Ph.d. in Music Composition are both unemployed in their fields.  Their future should be interesting but they are in love and Socialists so they don't really need much.

4.  I stopped coloring my hair and discovered I like the white much better.

5.  I bought a new for me used 2017 Nissan Rogue.

6.  I finished planting flowers on my balcony so anyone can stop by and sit on the balcony with me.

7.  I look forward to celebrating with Sharry Rugendorf the end of her incredibly awful divorce. I am so happy for her even though divorce is never a happy experience in itself.


05/18/18 09:51 AM #4092    


Ronald I. Zager

Trudi,  How nice to hear from you.  Our lives have a few parallels:

1)  I've been retired for 12 years but continue to work part-time as a substitute teacher, averaging about 75 days per school year.  Hope to continue so long as I'm young and healthy and  like kids.

2)  Two children but no grandkids (yet).  Hope you live close to yours.

3)  Both of miy kids are currently in Boston.  Bob will be getting married Labor Day weekend in Maine and Anne finishes her MSW at Smith College in August.  Bob already has every parent's dream--a job with benefits--and Anne is still looking, but we'll be happy if she is.

4)  White hair is great, especially when you've lost most of yours (speaking of me, of course).

5)  A '17 Rogue sounds much sportier than an '08 Suzuki Forenza station wagon.

6)  Flowers sound nice.  I've just reseeded part of my lawn--far less colorful.

7)  Sharry is a doll and deserves all the happiness she can find.  Some people come through a painful divorce and find a way to heal their wounds and thrive on the other side.  Hope she is one of them.



05/18/18 07:05 PM #4093    


Carol Helen Kretschmar (Riffner)

Ron (and Trudi)...How delightful to come here and see such special posts; ones having nothing to do with political opinions and agenda.  Hopefully it's not too late to turn things around, but even a short respite is appreciated.  Trudi, I love your white hair too.  Hope you all have a terrific time at the June gathering

05/19/18 03:11 AM #4094    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

Trudi, Bravo! for hearing Ron’s call and sharing happy news!  Congratulations on all. I am eager to hear about the new person in your family. 

Like you and Ron, I have a family graduation out east - my grandson is graduating from high school in Vermont and will depart for Japan on a student exchange program.  He of course will be flying, we will be traveling in our 2017 Nissan Rogue... which we bought last May to travel to Vermont for his brother’s high school graduation.

Have you noticed how many Nissan Rogues are on the road?

I have lots of hair-- I’m happy some of it is brown with the white since I have vitiligo. 

Ron, I take heart that your score keeping shows more classmates posting on the Forum and also prompts you to post more frequently.  I for one am not tired of the National League Central race, though I remind you it’s a long season-- also, as a recent Wisconsin resident I’m not about to overlook the Brewers.  I remain Cubbie Blue, but understand how it is that you and DK and Tim Taylor switched your loyalty--

I like Tim’s story about being at Wrigley watching the Cubs and Royals play and realizing his heart was with the Royals. (Earlier this year Tim traveled to Mesa to go to Sloan Park with Bob Olson.)

That’s life at its best... alive and open to broadening our horizons, grappling with new ideas and circumstances, and welcoming new persons into our lives.  

Happy Spring to All

P.S. Ron, my grandchildren from Oshkosh rave about City Museum in St. Louis.



05/19/18 04:24 PM #4095    


Paul Richard Hain


The latest batch of posts has been superb.  More variety. More about our real lives.  Nice work!

My addition to the forum is a dog story.  I introduced you to Maxwell, my Standard Poodle (actually, he is Dee's too) about three years ago.  He is half human.  He is so smart and knows how to read people, instantly making friends with everyone and other animals. 

He and I became a registered therapy dog team.  We have gone to assisted living residences, memory care units and schools.  He has worked with autistic children from Pre-K to high school seniors.  One gentleman with Alzheimer's about 92 years old lived in memory care.  When two nurse assistants helped him get out of the rest room, he would get violent.  I though he would have a stroke!  The nurse aide's told me he had been a POW in a Japanese prison camp during WWII.  The restroom reminded him of confinement and torture and the aides were prison guards.  That is why he struggled and fought with them.

One day this happened when Maxwell and I were there.  He shoved everybody away and sat screaming in a chair.  Max pulled to go over to him.  He stood in front of the man calmly looking at him.  In a few moments, the man noticed Max and reached out to pet him.  He calmed right down.  Max is 90 lbs and stands as tall as your waist.  So, the man hugged him when Max moved in closer.  This calming embrace restored the man.  It was amazing to watch this whole thing unfold.

Maxwell is in the struggle of his short (6 years) life.  He became infected with an uncommon deadly fungus, Blastomycosis.  It can be healed.  Usually, by the time it is diagnosed it will kill the dog.  We had local and specialty vets work on him.  The latter did a rinoscope and fluid samples to determine definitely that he had the infection. It had not gone in his lungs or to his brain.  Many people put their pet down, not knowing the outcome.  Max has been in treatment since November 2017 with antibiotics and a human drug called Itraconazole.  

He has made amazing progress.  Last Saturday, we took him to the University of Wisconsin, Madison Veterinary School for treatment of an acne outbreak around his tail.  A change in his antibiotic seems to be healing the dermatitis.

Through it all, his personality and energy has not changed.  After one visit to the local vet, he jumped in the car. His hind leg slipped off the seat and he fell backwards putting all his weight on his left rear leg.  Snap!! He broke his ACL.  That's another thing we have to get fixed after he is clear of the Blasto.  Normally, the treatment is for six months.  Yesterday, the vets decided to test to see if he was clear next week.  It looks that good to them and to us.  The fungal drug, Itraconazole generic reportedly varies by manufacturer.  We needed to get him started.  Walmart wanted $3,970 for a 30-day supply of the brand name, and that was discounted!  We found a generic at COSTCO for $435 and got him started.  I inquired at a Canadian pharmacy and was able to buy the brand name for $362.18.  What is wrong here in America?  Since then, he has been on the brand name drug.

So, I've told you a long tale taking up too much space.  But, I wanted you to know how much Max means to me and Dee and that this special dog is getting better each day.  We're not out of the woods yet, but it is looking better all the time.  In a few months, I hope to restart the adventures of Maxwell, the Therapy Dog.  

Peace and love to all,




05/19/18 06:11 PM #4096    


Beverlee Ann Arpan (Marshall)

Ron, I agree with Trudi that you should keep periodically reporting the Message Forum "stats". It will be interesting to see how the tally changes when we reach 4500. 

White hair is fine with me.  The majority of mine is above my ears, the location I inherited from my mom, and what she used to call her wings.

When my daughter recently started her mobile equine vet practice, she "requisitioned" my 2009 Chevy Tahoe to accommodate all of her equipment and "traded" her 2016 Subaru Outback to me in return...not a bad deal. Speaking of cars, if anyone is interested in my fully restored 1957 Olds, just text or call my twin brother, John, for the details @ (847) 977-6278.

Flowers in our Estes Park, CO neighborhood are wild, but sparse, and what little grass there is looks like straw.  We do get tumbleweed, and the wind sometimes rolls it into balls, which is western pretty.  One of the things I miss most by living here is the smell of a newly mown lawn.

I, too, am so glad for Sharry that her lengthy divorce is over.  No one should have to go through such pain, especially our dear Sharry.  

Paul, I hope all turns out well for Max.  Therapy animals are very special.

05/20/18 05:53 PM #4097    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

#Orange Ribbons for Jaime 

Good to hear from classmates who take time to share their personal stories and invitations on the Forum. 

My seven grandchildren are nearing the end of another academic school year-- all of them have regular lockdown and active shooter drills, all of them have been in active lockdown situations, 5 have been evacuated from their schools, 3 have had school closures for safety, 2 were held in the school cafeteria during a walkout because it was deemed unsafe to exit the school building.

This is our America.  Tell me how real it's NOT to be texting with grandchildren on lockdown waiting to be evacuated.  

If school shootings are too political and sound like an agenda to you, I thank God they're not more real than they are for me.             


"I wasn't surprised, I was scared," said a Santa Fe, Texas student on Friday.


My grandchildren know fear for their lives at school.

The Parkland students flipped the script... we learned their names, not the name of the killer.  

Texas Gov. Abbott has joined the chorus, says, "We need to do more than just pray for the victims and their families."

It's (long past) time to turn grief into action.  


As Americans we choose to have guns-- we have failed to learn how to live with guns without devaluing life.    

No child should live with such fear.  



05/20/18 10:16 PM #4098    


Carol Helen Kretschmar (Riffner)

Janis, Do you really believe our classmates don't care about school shootings and the senseless loss of young lifes?  Do you also believe we don't care about prejudice and what is happening in America?  Because people don't choose to constantly post their take (agenda) on these issues here does not mean they care less than you do.  Some may just feel it's respectful to keep their opinions to themselves.  Ron inspired a very special discourse here and then...

05/20/18 11:52 PM #4099    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

Carol, thank you for your respectful message. Ron and I have been communicating since Ron’s post after Dale Panchesin abandoned the Forum. I encouraged Ron to reach out to Dale and have continued to encourage Ron to become more active on the Forum for that many months. Classmates come and go. When’s the last time Steve Hirschtick, Jacqui Brandt, David Bantz or Carolyn Alport posted?  

I am sad the rancor between you and me has been an impediment on the Forum.  I am disappointed no one responded to Trudi’s concern about young families struggling to juggle work and family.  Bev expressed best wishes for Max; Bev and Trudi and Ron expressed support for Sharry and a life change Sharry has barely touched on the website and Forum.  I am grateful for all the support I received on the website and Forum during my breast cancer treatment.  I am 72 years old-- my concern about the safety of my grandchildren far exceeds my concern about my breast cancer.  With early detection and good medical attention, women today can survive breast cancer.  Children are dying in school shootings-- their classmates and families and communities are victims too.  Did you stop to consider what I shared?  Add that stress to young families for whom Trudi expressed concern, a concern I share.  I have experience texting with grandchildren in lockdown waiting to be evacuated from school-- that’s a bit more than opinion or agenda-- All children in America live with the trauma and threat of mass murder.  My story with my grandchildren is worthy sharing on the Forum.  No one lost their opportunity to post their joy or concern.  

Live every moment, Laugh every day, Love beyond words.

Peace to all, Janis



05/21/18 09:46 AM #4100    


Carol Helen Kretschmar (Riffner)

Peace to you as well, Janis.

05/21/18 11:48 PM #4101    


Beverlee Ann Arpan (Marshall)






05/23/18 01:07 PM #4102    


Janis Kliphardt (Emery)

“Almost no one agrees with us.”  

For rural students, gun safety can be a lonely cause... Speaking out in a place like Marshall County, Kentucky (where, on January 23rd, a 15 year old with his stepfather’s handgun wanting to see how his classmates would react, opened fire and turned the high school’s student commons into a killing ground) carries a price-- frayed friendships, arguments with parents, and animosity within the same walls where classmates were gunned down.  

Marshall County students who speak out for “gun safety” understand the consequences of bucking an issue as personal and emotional as guns.  

Across the country, about 60% of rural households own a gun-- double the rate of city households.  Before the shooting at their HS, many Marshall County students said they had barely thought about the gun debate-- after the shooting, the gulf between their views (and their parents’) are impossible to ignore.  

Korbin Brandon, 16, who fired a high-powered rifle when he was 8, says he’s always thought of himself as a Second Amendment supporter and a sportsman.  

January 23rd, his life changed.  Looking through the glass walls into the student commons his classmates were being cut down-- “I saw some stuff” is how he puts it.  

Korbin supports guns, but thinks they should be harder to buy, he still calls himself a conservative-- focused on promoting gun safety.  When he returned to class after giving a speech that confronted the NRA, one friend yelled at him; others took a group photo without him; a deacon at his church warned him that he sounds like a Democrat.  Korbin shrugs off the backlash-- he knows many who have suffered deeply from gun violence.  

Our young in America are fighting for their lives-- respectfully I choose to fight with them.  


with attribution to Jack Healy, May 22, 2018   The New York Times



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