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Letter to the Editor: Why did Thomas Hansen block me from posting on the Winneshiek County Republican Party's Facebook page?

Posted: Thu, Oct 3, 2019 12:22 PM

(The following Letter to the Editor has been submitted by Tim Wagner of Decorah):

""Recently I posted comments on the Winneshiek County Republican Party's Facebook page, taking issue with a posted claim made by party chair Thomas Hansen regarding the Ukraine investigation and former Vice President Joe Biden.   After doing so, Hansen removed my comments and blocked my ability to provide comments to his posts in the future. He did the same with another person who also questioned Thomas's claim. I should point out that neither of us resorted to personal attacks or insults in our disagreement with his position. We just took issue with his claims, based on a plethora of solid journalism that shows Hansen's claim was simply a non-factual conspiracy theory. I even provided two in-depth independent stories with many cited sources.

Personally, I don't care that Hansen blocked me. What concerns me is that someone who holds a title as chair of one of two major political parties in our county, who has often claimed publicly that some have tried to silence him and/or his party at public events or somehow violated his free speech rights by prohibiting a display of MAGA signs on Water Street, would choose to silence local dissent and conversation on the party's Facebook page. Why? One can only speculate. Regardless, the hypocrisy is glaring.

I would suggest to anyone who holds such a position like Thomas Hansen to embrace the spirit of our democracy and the expression of ideas and conversation, rather than try to restrict them. When we are proven right, great. When we get something wrong and someone corrects us, thank them and move on. Why? Because facts actually matter. Truth and the sharing of information is what our democracy is supposed to be all about. In the end, we are all better for it."