Recognizing members of the military for their service will always be the right thing to do, but a recent honor bestowed on Army veteran Jack Zimmerman was particularly gratifying to see since it came from a friend and involved a favorite pastime of auto racing.
Zimmerman’s friend and fellow auto racing enthusiast Chad Schroeder of Belle Plaine worked for months to design an stock car emblazoned with the logo for the 101st Airborn Division and several pictures of Zimmerman himself as a soldier.
Zimmerman lost his legs and some fingers after triggering an improvised explosive device (IED) on mission in Afghanistan.
Schroeder and Zimmerman have long been auto racing fans and Zimmerman spent a lot of time at the Arlington Raceway when he was growing up.
Schroeder also will donate half of his racing winnings this year to two programs for veterans that Zimmerman works with. Tiger Team 7 is part and the Independence Fund. Tiger Team 7 brings catastrophically wounded veterans together to talk about their experiences. Zimmerman is part of the group. The Independence Fund helps veterans with mobility services like wheel chairs.
Schroeder said he was motivated to help because he saw Zimmerman doing so much already in his efforts to help fellow veterans. Well done.
Thumbs up to the start of printing of 2020 census forms without a citizenship question included.
After the Supreme Court ruled that the Trump administration’s reasoning for seeking to put the question on the forms lacked credibility, printing of the forms began without the question being included. The president says he is still trying to find a way to include the question.
The administration clearly wishes to undercount those without citizenship, people who in many cases live in areas more favorable to Democrats. The constitutionally mandated census is to count all people living in the country, something a citizenship question would have prevented.
Thumbs down to pranksters who think “swatting” is entertaining.
The dangerous practice involves calling in a fake crime to law enforcement and reveling in the response it draws. In Minnetonka last weekend such a call could have been disastrous as the false report to police was that a murder had taken place and the suspect also wanted to kill police.
About 40 minutes after the arrival of at least six agencies, and jarring awake the sleeping couple inside the house where the false crime was reported, the response was called off. It was lucky no one was hurt.
Law enforcement officials say “swatting” incidents are on the rise. Measures need to be taken so that there are serious consequences for pulling such dangerous pranks.
Something to be MAD about
Thumbs down to the demise, for all practical purposes, of the satiric cartoon magazine MAD. For decades MAD’s self-identified “gang of idiots” served a valuable function by lampooning politicians, pop culture and hypocrites of all stripes.
MAD’s publisher this week announced that after September’s issue, the magazine will no longer be available on newstands. Future editions, mostly for subscribers, will be reruns of past features. The only new content will be for year-end editions.
A symptom of MAD’s decline came a few weeks ago when President Donald Trump tried to insult Democratic rival Pete Buttigieg by calling him “Alfred E. Neuman” — MAD’s goofy buck-toothed “What, Me Worry” mascot. The millennial Buttigeig had to turn to Google to find out what Trump meant. There could be no more obvious signal of MAD’s current irrelevance to the age bracket that was once its strong suit.