To the Newton Independent:
There are a lot of people who want the hide of a man named Steven Bloom nailed to the wall. Steven is a professor at the University of Iowa and it seems that he has made some disparaging remarks about Iowa in the publication Atlantic.
But before you skin the guy you need to understand that a lot of what he wrote is the painful truth. I took note of the things he said about Keokuk because I was born there and lived there until I was 17. And I love that city and have been back there many times until my folks and my brothers passed away.
All through the last 59 years years, each time I visited my former home a little chunk of my heart was carved out. The last time I left that town about 10 years ago I had tears in my eyes as I drove out of town on Highway 218. I think depressing is an accurate description of what I last saw of that town.
When I was a boy, there were about 15,000 or 16,000 people living there. Now, there are only 12,000 or 13,000. But among that population there are many, many good, kind, gentle and loving human beings and they have as much right as anyone in this nation to judge who ought to be our president.
River towns have always been a little rough. And I can show you many towns that are in a state of decay all over Iowa.
I really don't know why the professor said the things he did about Keokuk but his remarks demand an answer to the question: Just how did that beautiful little city - and others - get to be the way he describes them and does the answer to that question negate their right to say who they think should be our president?
Olen W. Lambert