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Sound Off

Have something to say? SOUND OFF is an opinion feature. It is a forum-like opportunity to give everyone a voice.

Please refrain from personal attacks and libel. The Journal, Tri-County Journal and Southern Champaign County Today reserve the right to edit or omit comments and users. 

The Journal, Tri-County Journal and Southern Champaign County Today do not investigate or deem any topic as fact.


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  1. Anonymous on September 2, 2020 at 8:47 pm

    Very disappointed in the residents of Tuscola, we all need to get better about wearing our masks if we are ever going to turn this mess around.

  2. Anonymous on September 3, 2020 at 8:46 am

    With fall just around the corner beautiful mums at IGA and Do It Best.

  3. Anonymous on September 3, 2020 at 10:40 pm

    My husband and I have enjoyed spending time at Ervin Park in Tuscola. Sometimes we pick up a meal and enjoy it while sitting in the pavilion. But the last time we stopped by, there was trash all through the East end of the pavilion. I didn’t pick it up because I didn’t have any gloves. I think the park board should consider putting trash cans with lids, that are hinged. To keep birds and squirrels from pulling the trash out! But…..I know that isn’t a solution if humans are the ones littering! PEOPLE, PLEASE PICKUP AFTER YOURSELVES! TAKE PRIDE IN THIS PARK! THANK YOU!

  4. Anonymous on September 7, 2020 at 2:57 pm

    It has now been 2 weeks since the Get together at the Cast Iron Pub that caused the Health Department to publicly shame them in their reports, social media posts and the media. The incubation period is now up and the significant impact of this gathering has not evolved.

    Even to the last report the health department published it still refers to this event and lists one infected there and 2 possibly from there.

    2 things should happen. The should address hat they were wrong for publicly trying to negatively impact a local business by reporting the event over and over again and secondly they should stop the fear reporting. They state they don’t have time to report recoveries but can continue to re-report the Pub event over and over again.

    • Anonymous on September 14, 2020 at 4:15 pm

      Please continue to protect your health and those around you. COVID-19 numbers are continuing to be high. This is a new virus and even though most people are recovering or not even showing symptoms, there may be longer term consequences that we are not even aware of yet.

      I have found that the IDPH dashboard for schools and the Case Rate per 100k Metric is really useful. This is available by county here:

      For the person saying in last week’s paper that the case locations should be disclosed, you can get the information by zip code here:

  5. Anonymous on September 14, 2020 at 11:25 am

    Thank you to the Tuscola School district for trying your best during these unprecedented times. I was disappointed to read a social media post where a parent identified that if a child’s parent has an unpaid milk bill that the child is given water while the other Students drink their milk. This is wrong. Put the unpaid PARENT’S milk bill in the office, and we as the community can pay the bill. While we can not control every factor of a child’s success, its imperceptive that we give them equal opportunity for success. Allowing a child to be punished for the lack of actions of their parent is embarrassingly archaic, and not the Tuscola i will grow old in.

  6. Anonymous on September 21, 2020 at 10:13 pm

    I would like to ask for support to our nursing homes, assisted living, and senior living apartments at this time. There is a delicate balance between protecting the residents and allowing visitors to sit, hug and converse closely. The most important step to prevent COVID spread is to wear masks, and stay six feet apart. No hugs, kisses, singing or laughing close. This is how we usually show love, but now it can spread the disease which is deadly to the elderly. The majority of recent COVID cases have been spread at family gatherings, weddings and community events. How can a senior community trust that Grandma was not hugged, kissed and everyone stayed six feet apart?

    When we limit family visits to an outside area, masked and following contact tracing, it is to protect everyone. When we require reporting of exactly where a resident travels to ( the doctor’s office for example) and verify that safe practices were followed, it is to protect everyone. No judgement on anyone – just safety.

    One positive carrier, without symptoms hugging thier grandma, sitting close, unknowingly has infected not only Grandma but possibly others. Now Grandma has to be in quarantine, isolated from all her friends awaiting test results. This is the scenario at many resident homes and it can be avoided by cooperating with safety policies.

    We can work through this if we all do our part. Yes it is unfair. Yes it is unnatural. Yes, our “rights” have been diminished. I think it is a temporary, small price to pay for the greater good of suppressing this virus. Please be kind as you are asked to be masked, sit outside, or in a lobby to visit. As an owner of a senior living center, I thank all of the families, residents and staff who have co operated with the structure to keep our residents safe.

    Sally J Foote DVM, Jarman Center Senior Living Tuscola

  7. Anonymous on September 23, 2020 at 10:27 am

    While I agree with comments in last week’s paper that it is distasteful to see political signs with derogatory name calling against a female candidate, I think it is also very hypocritical to not consider the moral character of female candidates when their male counterparts are often vilified for their past transgressions whether falsely accused or otherwise. As a woman in the modern age, I feel I should be able to have a past, just as men do but if public figures are not allowed to have a past, then female candidates should be subject to the same scrutiny as men. Frankly, I am more interested in what they do for their country than what they do in their personal life.

  8. Anonymous on September 30, 2020 at 11:09 am

    The Presidential Debate was one the most embarrassing things I have ever watched. It made me ashamed that this is the image that we put forth to the world, that, this is what democracy should look like. Shame on both candidates. I wish there was a realistic alternative. I don’t want to vote for either candidate.

  9. Anonymous on October 12, 2020 at 10:29 am

    The current COVID-19 positivity rate in Douglas County is 9.3 percent. I know we all want the virus to go away, but just wishing it away won’t make that happen. I beg everyone to follow the guidance provided by lovely and hard-working health department to keep everyone in our county safe!

  10. Anonymous on October 12, 2020 at 10:29 am

    Congratulations to Makenna Fiscus and the rest of the Tuscola golfers on a great season thus far.

  11. Anonymous on October 12, 2020 at 10:30 am

    The speeding in town has gotten really out of hand lately. Please slow down!

  12. Anonymous on October 12, 2020 at 10:30 am

    Thank you Tony for your great articles every week, I am glad we have you share the Villa Grove news!

  13. Anonymous on October 19, 2020 at 6:56 am

    The Tuscola City Park needs a Skate Park for the middle age teens. Our children are all grown up so this is for other children in town.

  14. Anonymous on October 19, 2020 at 6:57 am

    Great season for the Villa Grove cross country and golf teams!

  15. Anonymous on October 19, 2020 at 7:00 am

    Kuddos to the Tuscola Fire Department for the last 2 weeks of fighting fields and battling the extremely high winds and dry conditions. Thank you for your dedication.

  16. Anonymous on October 29, 2020 at 9:58 am

    I say NO to the Governor and his closing stores. Who says he can pick and choose who says open and who closes. Restaurants have to close but Walmart and grocery stores can stay open. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want them to close either, but I don’t think people elected him to make these types of decisions. He’s not God. Let the public make up their own minds wether they should go out to dinner or not. Gov. Pritzker, stay out of our business. It’s our choice not yours.

  17. Anonymous on November 3, 2020 at 8:50 am

    I wanted to express how very disappointed I am in our local businesses! Every local business in Tuscola had a great opportunity to participate in Trunk or Treat at the park on Halloween for all the kids in Tuscola. All you had to do was decorate your car and buy some candy! Unfortunately only a few did. All we hear are small businesses complaining how people should shop local and support you so your business doesn’t close, But you don’t want to do anything to promote your business. You had the perfect opportunity to hand out flyers, coupons, etc. There were over 500 kids that came out. That’s a lot of parents that would have read about your business. Thank you to the 6-clubs, 2-banks, 1-preschool, 1-church and 2-businesses that took the time to make sure kids in Tuscola still had a great Halloween. Also thank you to the residents that handed out candy or put a bowl out for kids to take candy on Halloween. The kids shouldn’t have to give up Halloween because of COVID! Thank You City of Tuscola for doing Trunk or Treat!

  18. Anonymous on November 10, 2020 at 5:07 pm

    The Tanger Outlets CEO says, “A crisis doesn’t build character, it reveals it.” During the past nine months we’ve witnessed this firsthand in our community. We’ve seen our family and friends text and call to check in on us more. But we’ve also noticed some stop talking to us because of our political views. We’ve witnessed businesses pivot and readjust to stay open for us. But we’ve also been encouraged to turn in a business that isn’t following some certain protocol. We’ve been blessed with pastors who vowed to keep the doors to the church open for the sake of our souls. But we’ve also seen people fear temporal death more than eternal death. During this crisis, our community’s character has definitely been revealed.
    “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave to every living heart and hearthstone all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.” — Abraham Lincoln’s first inaugural address
    Lauren Braaten

  19. Anonymous on December 7, 2020 at 11:25 am

    The decorations around the toon look wonderful and bring cheer during a tough year. Thank you to everyone who put them together!

  20. Anonymous on December 20, 2020 at 3:42 pm

    Happy holidays and Merry Christmas to all the readers. Thank you to the staff of The Journal for another year of news!

  21. Anonymous on December 20, 2020 at 3:52 pm

    I would like to take a moment and thank all the businesses and individuals who have given their best efforts to keep our community safe during this winter. We have lost far to many people to this pandemic, and it is the efforts of many that have help keep many of us safe. While the pandemic is not over, its reassuring to have people doing their best.

  22. Anonymous on January 4, 2021 at 9:41 pm

    Happy new year everyone! Sending you all warm thoughts and well wishes for health and happiness!

  23. Anonymous on January 4, 2021 at 9:46 pm

    It was so nice to see the picture of Mr. Powell in last week’s Journal. He is such a kind soul, and I’m sure the Pre-K class loved having him!

  24. Anonymous on January 4, 2021 at 9:47 pm

    I was disheartened to see the passing of Keli. Sending healing prayers to her family and the community as we lost such mend the loss of such a wonderful person.

  25. Anonymous on January 4, 2021 at 9:49 pm

    It had been a while since I had driven by Ervin Park in Tuscola and seen the addition of the Tuscola Serves signs. They are very well done and a beautiful tribute. Thank you to Mrs. Morgan, the Tuscola city council, and to all those who serve from Tuscola and beyond!

  26. Anonymous on January 11, 2021 at 10:13 pm

    Thank you Mr. Lohr for your years of service to the Tuscola community. Very sad to hear of your and Mrs. Lohr’s passing.

  27. Anonymous on January 11, 2021 at 10:13 pm

    I love the addition of the Night Sky in The Journal. I am a total astronomy nerd so it is so fun to see it included in my local paper.

  28. Anonymous on January 11, 2021 at 10:13 pm

    This week’s events at The Capital were horrific and unjust. I am so sad to see the state that America is now in. I hope we can soon come together to heal instead of continuing to tear each other apart.

  29. Anonymous on January 27, 2021 at 4:50 pm

    VILLA GROVE STINKS: Several years ago the city of Villa Grove constructed a new water treatment facility. The cost was four million dollars. This option was chosen over the cheaper option of importing Illinois American Water into town. This water has won numerous awards for quality and taste. Maintenance and labor would have been greatly reduced. The taxpayers were told the new plant would provide soft odorless water and the smell of the old plant reduced. The city paid the engineering firm hundreds of thousands of dollars to test the water, design the plant and the water is no better. If you live downwind of the new plant the odor is so offensive it becomes nauseating. Engineering firm requests the city pay for new options. After completely bungling the water plant facility the city continues to use the same engineering firm for other major projects.. Something stinks…

  30. Anonymous on March 16, 2021 at 10:10 am

    I have seen a lot of chatter on Facebook over the cancelling of Dr. Suess and wanted to throw in my two cents too. Last Tuesday, his estate, Dr. Suess Enterprises, announced that “it had made the decision last year to take six of Dr. Suess’ books —And To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, If I Ran the Zoo, McElligot’s Pool, On Beyond Zebra!, Scrambled Eggs Super!, and The Cat’s Quizzer— out of print.” The reason stated was that “these books portray people in ways that are hurtful and wrong,” including several instances of what today would be considered racist imagery. My opinion? It is okay to still love Dr. Suess and read it to your kids. He has so many other wonderful and educational works. All throughout history we have seen children’s books being censored and revised, many things you wouldn’t even realize. Recognizing where we have made mistakes throughout history and correcting them is what allows us to grow and become a better, and to cultivate a better world for those after us.

  31. Anonymous on March 16, 2021 at 10:10 am

    Thank you to the Douglas County Health Department for all of your hard work with everything, especially the Covid situation. I attended a vaccine clinic a couple of weeks ago and the process was quick and painless. I was also lucky to experience no side effects!

  32. Anonymous on March 29, 2021 at 10:36 pm

    Thank you Mother Nature for the beautiful weather on Saturday! I hope everyone was able to get out and enjoy.

  33. Anonymous on March 29, 2021 at 10:37 pm

    Huge S/O to the Douglas County Health Department for all of their hard work! The vaccine signup is complicated, but I know that they are working their hardest to get all of Douglas County vaccinated!

  34. Anonymous on March 29, 2021 at 10:38 pm

    Thank you to all involved at TCHS for a beautiful homecoming celebration. Although this time is unlike any other, it was a wonderful week. You can tell all of the love and hard work that they put in for our kids!

  35. Anonymous on March 29, 2021 at 10:38 pm

    Thank you to The Journal for your candidate coverage! I appreciate you for keeping us informed voters.

  36. Anonymous on May 2, 2021 at 4:27 pm

    It is about time we recognized the true heroes of the Republican Party. They are not the dopey louts who rampaged through our nation’s capital and the moral cowards who still cover for them. They are not the ranting demagogues exploiting the emotions of the resentful. They were the unsung people not seeking attention, but doing their jobs: from poll workers to police officers. They were Republican state legislators and governors who did not bend to pressure to overturn the elections in their state. They were Republican judges who did not allow mere allegations unsupported by credible evidence to deny votes that happened. They were Republican congressional representatives and senators who did not fear to hold their own president accountable and dared to stand on their conscience instead of follow the majority of their party. They did not win. But they showed more bravery than the majority in their party who did.

  37. Anonymous on February 16, 2023 at 10:33 pm

    Who do you trust? I’m not thinking of political leaders. I’m referring to people. Whether they go to church is as irrelevant as their political party. What matters is whether they put their beliefs above evidence. Do they put Tribe above Truth? If they are unwilling to look at evidence, then the answer is beware. We all choose what we believe. But if we’re unwilling to put evidence above ourselves, we can’t even trust ourselves. We’re all tempted to do it. You know who I am talking about because we are related to them. They are our friends and neighbors. They are nice people.
    Need examples? Think of someone you know who will believe allegations from their favorite “fact” source. But not watch testimony sworn under oath if they think it threatens their belief. Telling lies is not against the law. False testimony under oath is. That’s why some people do everything they can to avoid it. Cross-examination makes the veracity even stronger. If it’s the truth you fear, don’t watch.
    Do you know anyone who would refuse to watch the January 6th hearings, even if they had an opportunity? I know lots of them. Some even send me uncorroborated stories they find on the internet. If it conforms to what they want to believe, they swallow it like the gospel truth.
    All propogandists know if you repeat a lie often enough, people will believe it. We witness today the ease of spreading lies. Millions believe the last presidential election was stolen based on allegations without evidence. Joseph Goebbels once said: “The more absurd the lie, the more people will believe it.” Q-Anon conspiracy anyone? Voltaire wrote during the reign of terror following the French Revolution over 200 years ago: “If you can get people to believe absurdities, you can get them to commit atrocities.” Remember January 6th. Times may have changed. But people haven’t.
    If you have been following the evidence, you know the former president knew he lost the 2020 election while he was (and still is) telling people he didn’t. He knows his audience. He actually has two: Those who believe what he says because they need to be lied to; and those who don’t care if it’s true because they want power. So, don’t blame poor Donald anymore. He was merely the original tumor. The tumor has metastasized. And they are easy to spot.
    James Tweed

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