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Letter to the editor

Senator fails to represent UWRF

November 8, 2007

State Senator Sheila Harsdorf, in 2005 voted to place a constitutional amendment that banned the equal marriage rights of people in Wisconsin on the ballot in Wisconsin. At the time Harsdorf defended her actions by saying she was simply putting the issue before the voters, not restricting the rights herself. The civil, constitutional rights of a minority are not things that we should allow to be taken away through the inappropriate use of our legal and governmental system. America is the land of the free, not the land of those who would take away our freedoms. At the time of this vote many asked, “If people will not defend others rights, how long before it is me and my rights that are chosen to be sold down the river?”

Students at UW-River Falls learned that their turn to be sold out came this year, when Harsdorf voted against a budget bill that funded Wisconsin Higher Education Grants and the University of Wisconsin System.

This week, Harsdorf came to the UWRF campus to defend her actions in not voting to fund education. She offered many reasons unrelated to education for not voting for the budget bill while hiding behind a statement saying that she supported the educational funding part of it. This is simply not true—the budget offered by Senator Harsdorf and the Republicans in Madison would have drastically slashed our education budget compared to the bill that finally passed. Again, we see excuses made instead of real action to work for our citizens and the future of Wisconsin.

This week has been Ally week at UWRF, an event sponsored by the UWRF Gay Straight Alliance. The night Harsdorf came to campus, there was a speaker talking about the repercussions discrimination has had upon him. During this week Harsdorf has the audacity to come to the UWRF campus and again say she has failed to work for the rights of all.

I would ask UWRF students to reflect on what has been done to split and divide our nation, taking away rights and our future one piece at a time. How long before more of our rights and our future is sold down the river by these “leaders,” while they try to tell us they didn’t make the choice to do such?

Ben Plunkett
Student