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Letter to the Editor: My yard signs do not speak for my daughters, or my wife—they speak for me. --by Todd Neal of Decorah

Posted: Thu, Aug 8, 2019 11:38 AM

(The following Letter to the Editor has been submitted by Todd Neal of Decorah):

"My father always said that if you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything. My signs condemn the current president, who I believe is a serious stain on America and the single largest instigator of division in our country. In hanging my signs, I also honor my father, Jeri M. Neal, a Vietnam veteran. In 1968, his draft notice arrived and he fulfilled his duty to this country. Trump received draft notices, but due to his wealth and status dodged the draft with his alleged bone spurs, 5 times!

My dad left the family farm and his terminally ill father to fight in Vietnam. He saw heavy combat, spilled his own blood and lost countless buddies. His service earned him 3 Purple Hearts, a Bronze Star and a Silver Star. His return home was to a life forever altered.

I first started to hang my signs when John McCain's service was denigrated by Trump and Putin was validated. He insulted Gold Star Families, and in so, he insulted my dad. His permeation of racism and division is an insult to my dad. When you insult my dad you insult me.

When my wife was considering running for City Council we talked about my signs. She didn't feel like I should have to sacrifice my First Amendment right because she wanted to run for city council. So, she did not ask me to stop…and I won't.

I'm so proud of Emily. She is one of the most passionate, caring, open-minded people I have ever known. She has a high intellect, character and energy to devote to the issues. I am confident my wife will serve Ward 2 with wisdom, integrity, and concern for her constituents, regardless of my signs."