LETTER: Janklow had good traits, was also bullyThere was such an outpouring of praise for our former governor in all media that I was almost overwhelmed. It was like overdosing on sugar.
By: Vernon Kraft, Delmont
To the Editor:
In response to Joy Schley’s letter published Feb. 4, I agree that speaking only good of the deceased is polite. But there was such an outpouring of praise for our former governor in all media that I was almost overwhelmed. It was like overdosing on sugar.
Korrie Wenzel’s article was honest reporting. Gov. Janklow’s closing of USD/S caused great pain to the students enrolled, former students, staff, community and future students who were denied the opportunity to attend. Yet Janklow maintained to the end that it was the right call. His strong-arm tactics with legislators of the area convincing them to vote for the closure cut short the political life of several who knew they could never be elected again. The need for good vocational education has continued to grow since the college at Springfield closed. Example: New technical school in Sioux Falls.
Bill Janklow was a powerful and effective governor. Two of his positive accomplishments were saving some railroads and bringing additional employment to Sioux Falls.
Powerful men have their methods and his ability to humiliate those with whom he disagreed is legendary. A school administrator wrote a letter to the governor. The governor had an expert (maybe a college English professor) examine it for the grammatical and punctuation errors. If I remember correctly, the letter was then submitted to the media with all errors circled or underlined. As a former teacher, I know how humiliating that would be.
I cannot write only something nice, but I will try to be fair. Because of his strong-arm and bullying tactics, Gov. Janklow was no hero of mine, but I did have to vote for him in every election. Why? The other choice was always a candidate who was strongly pro-choice (pro-abortion). I remember Janklow saying that there are no guarantees in life, but everyone ought to have the opportunity to experience it. I greatly admire him yet for that compassionate position.