Archived Story

The wrong time for politics

Published 8:39am Thursday, June 5, 2014

Several years ago, I submitted a letter to the editor in reference to politicians riding in the Memorial Day parade, advertising their political ambitions. I had not attended a parade since.

This year, I read in the Dowagiac Daily News that there was going to be a ceremony on the bridge on Riverside Drive for deceased naval veterans. I decided to attend since I am an eight-year veteran of the Navy. I was looking forward to this ceremony.

I, along with other vets, was very upset at what we witnessed. I was on the bridge with other naval veterans, and, to our surprise, right behind the band came this bright red convertible with signs on the side that read “Re-elect Bob Wagel for County Commissioner.”

Apparently Wagel does not realize the parade is to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice so he would enjoy freedom, not for him to beg for votes.

If that wasn’t upsetting enough to us veterans, the convertible stopped at the bridge with two occupants. Behind this red convertible were two more cars: one was occupied by Mayor Lyons and his wife, and the other by Dowagiac City Councilmembers.

The mayor, his wife and the councilmembers departed their cars and preceded to the bridge for the ceremony. In the convertible sat the two occupants, who did not attend the ceremony.

What a sorry display of patriotism.

Those who vote in Wagel’s district, I hope at election time you remember the actions of those in the red convertible that were asking for Wagel’s reelection.

Again, I ask the Dowagiac parade committee to bar politicians from advertising for votes during Memorial Day parades, as other cities do.

The Memorial Day Parade is not for the politicians, it’s to honor far more important Americans who gave their lives for our freedom.


Ron Ganger


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