To the Editor:

Following publication of his story on the Green New Deal community columnist David Yost was informed that his columns would no longer be accepted as they did not fit the vision that the Lake Geneva Regional News held for its “Community and Commentary pages.” That begs the question as to what exactly is that vision? The threat of climate change was first announced in 1988 when NASA scientist James Hansen testified before a Senate committee that “ the greenhouse effect has been detected and its changing our climate now.”

However in 1977 one of Exxon’s senior scientists told the company’s top leaders “There is general scientific agreement that the most likely manner in which mankind is influencing the global climate is through carbon dioxide released from burning fossil fuels.”Thus a full 10 years before James Hansen’s Senate testimony, Exxon, the world’s largest oil company understood that its product was going to wreck the planet. A month after Hansen’s testimony an internal Exxon memo recommended that the company “emphasize the uncertainty” in the scientific data about climate change.

This began the most consequential lie that oil companies perpetuated upon the American public and it continues to this very day. If David Yost’s column does not fit the vision of local, state and national interests how does a letter titled “Democrats focused on hatred of Trump” reflect the paper’s vision? Is the paper’s goal to highlight polarized partisan elites who instead of bringing us together depict our differences in unbridgeable terms. Across the political spectrum people in positions of power and influence are setting us against one another. They tell us that our neighbors who disagree with us politically are ruining our country. This dogma that one side must utterly vanquish the other and leave our neighbors without a voice is senseless.

If we truly want to make America great, we must do it together. This divide that’s keeping us from speaking to one another, from understanding one another is not aided by eliminating publication of individual voices. Just because we disagree with something doesn’t make it untruthful or without merit nor the person saying it deviant.

I encourage the Lake Geneva Regional News to make known its vision for the paper and to include all viewpoints in these highly polarized political times. Bring us together in understanding not divide us in ignorance of one another.

Jerry Hanson