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In this age of social media, it’s amazing that dozens of our readers continue to take the time to write a letter to the editor.

Think about it: You have to write your name, address, phone number and email for verification — and your name is attached to your letter for publication in print and online.

So, there’s nothing anonymous.

You have a word limit (250). You have a frequency limit (once every 30 days). For the most part, we limit letters to our readership area.

With all of that, it’s incredible that in recent weeks, the La Crosse Tribune has been swamped with local letters to the editor and guest columns — dozens of letters representing hundreds of column inches in recent weeks.

It shows why newspapers continue to play an important role: People still want to be heard by the neighbor down the street. You want to share your opinion (hence, the word at the top of the page) and you’re not afraid to have your neighbors know it.

And, as you’ll see in another column on this page, even former governors choose these columns in hopes of molding opinion and unifying support.

Your submissions include a rich diversity of opinion — and no influence from Russian bots.

We’ve published all sides about the “Hiawatha” statue — from tearing it down to preserving it at all costs.

We’ve published letters that suggest arming teachers is the best way to stop school shootings — and letters stating that arming teachers would be a horrible idea.

From national politics to state aid for Foxconn to local potholes, you’ve shared your voices and opinions.

Agree, disagree — it truly doesn’t matter. The point is to provide a village square for community conversation — and it’s gratifying to see the response.

No, we don’t publish them all. Some are simply offensive. Some are simply a personal beef or consumer complaint or unsubstantiated allegations. Others are repetitive. Many that are hand-written are illegible and often don’t have a name or contact information (submitting via email means a much higher chance of appearing in print in a timely fashion). Some people submit weekly — never mind the limit on frequency, which is designed to allow for more voices on the page. Some speak in code, acronym and tongues (which is a topic for another column).

As we always have, we devote the time and space to publish a vast majority of your submissions because your words add to the vibrancy of community debate.

Rusty Cunningham is executive editor of the La Crosse Tribune and River Valley Media Group.


(18) comments


I have no issue with the opinion page and agree it is a valuable service. The problem lies in the Tribune editors not knowing where the opinion page begins and ends. The opinion page should have finite boundaries, should it not?

The Tribune's constant distortion of hard news reporting to support of all things liberal and politically correct is both predictable and nauseating. The entire paper is the opinion page (the editors' opinion).

And by the way, La Crosse is not Madison.


I would like to thank Rusty for providing a format that allows wackos like veteran and buggs to show case their beliefs. The columns the average joe writes in the printed edition are important and often educational. He even lets buggs have space to let off some hot air. It is important for the local community to hear the concerns of their neighbors, whether they agree or not. Only buggs and veteran can take a positive like the local letters written to the editor and turn it into something negative. Always whining and crying about the tribune but still they support it with their dollars and with this digital format. Doesn't make sense to most, but not much of what they write does make sense. Go to your alt. media and post your concerns, or start your own newspaper, see how far that gets ya.

Buggs Raplin

I subscribe so I can criticize. Also many of the comics are extremely funny, and oftentimes the obituaries are interesting. I never reads any articles from the AssoCIAted Press.

A Veteran

My opinion is that Rusty should be run out of town ,the sooner the better!!!!!!

Buggs Raplin

Rusty and The Tribune are a cog in the fake news mainstream media. Its agenda: 1)Get rid of Trump 2)promote an open border with Mexico 3)promote the global warming hoax, and 4)destroy the 2nd Amendment with more gun control. Rusty has also defended Big Pharma by censoring a letter of mine on the danger of the MMR vaccine and its causal relation to autism, as evidenced in the William Thompson situation at the CDC, and the documentary, "Vaxxed" where you have numerous parents with happy, healthy babies, who then get the MMR vaccine, and become brain damaged (autism). Rusty censored a letter of mine on that, which was written in reply to another letter encouraging parents to get their children the MMR vaccine. (Sarcasm) Way to go Rusty. You're consistently following the lead of the fake news mainstream media, whose main sponsors, by the way, are Big Pharma. It's sickening, just sickening-the corruption going on in the fake news mainstream media. There's no truth in it on all issues that really matter. The Parkland tragedy is just the latest example-eyewitness reports of multiple gunmen, the FBI doing nothing when warned Cruz wanted to be a school shooter; the failure of a Broward County sheriff's deputy to go to the rescue of the students, and now the media manufactured 'children's crusade ' against the NRA. Stay tuned, Vet, the Tribune will be publicizing this considerably in the coming weeks. We may not like Rusty or his propaganda, but the powers that be think he's doing a great job.-Chip DeNure


at least Rusty didn't have to pay off an adult film star 130,000 to keep quiet so he can keep his job. Yet you support the idiot in the white house who did. who is the one who should be run out of town?

Buggs Raplin

Better Trump than Hillary

A Veteran

kingman--Your obsession with Trump and the film star makes one wonder if you are jealous (maybe you have some shortages in certain areas) or you are just the run of the mill sick individual along with being a long winded LOON!!!!


just pointing out the facts there veteran. They are not alt. facts, they are the real facts. Hillary didn't pay a p*orn star to be quiet, or brag about assaulting the opposite sex, or get married three times and have kids from all three marriages. Gee if a black man does that, people like you would look down on that. Why is it that Trump gets a pass on all this from you?


Stop it kingman! Stop it right now, you long winded LOON, you! How dare you challenge anything that is so clearly and truthfully stated when followed by at least four exclamation points!!!! A Veteran (of no known military organization) so far as my admittedly faulty memory goes, never, ever gave a pass to Trump on his serial marriages and even more serial cheating on his wives. But be honest. Comparing Trump to black guys is apples to oranges. Very few of THEM have strange comb over, overly dyed hair, and not too many of them are rich, either! So THERE!!!!! (notice FIVE exclamation points).

A Veteran

kingman ==Tell me when I gave Trump a pass on this ,and I have repeatedly said all I cared about was the truth. But the LOON that you are you either do not understand that or you can no longer recognize the truth.As far as Hillary she has done far more to harm this country than any person seeking the presidency ,they was not worried about getting caught because she was sure she was going to win.I f she would have won we would know none of the things we are slowly learning.So let the investigation continue I do not think you are going to like the ending!!!!!


Gosh, A Veteran (of no known military unit), it is always so exhilarating to read your deeply informed, carefully explained and sourced opinions. That way, once we know where you're coming from, we don't have to think about the issue, we just say, "I'm with A Veteran (of no known military branch) on this one!"

Buggs Raplin

Talk about banal. Seriously, what is the point here? Was this column really necessary? Rusty, don't you know you could have given this space in the paper to another of the religionists out to save the planet from global warming. By my count, in the last 3-4 years, there have been some 40 columns advocating the hoax, and one telling the truth. By the by, you've made the Tribune on-line edition a lot less interesting by not allowing comments to the letters to the editor.


Oh, come off it, Buggs. EVERYBODY knows Rusty Cunningham is a key member of the international elite cabal trying to impose a carbon tax on all people in their quest to Communize the world under one government led by and for the benefit only the elites, who will become rich as pashas on carbon tax funding. THAT is why he stopped the comments after letters to the editor. Are you blind?

Buggs Raplin

Typical oldhomey. Exaggerate. Rusty is part of the MSM, which is a corrupt propaganda operation supporting the elite agenda.


OMG! I have been called out by Buggs Raplin as a serial exaggerator! I take that as a compliment coming from somebody who subscribes to every hyper-exaggerated conspiracy website on the Internet. The man who tells us Alex Jones is informed, reasonable and truthful! The man who will hang his hat on climate change denial opinions held by comedians, t.v. happy talk weathermen and physicists who never studied climate and confess to have no interest in it. I should be honored.


For heaven's sake! Day after day of this constant obsession you have with Buggs. Of course you'll insist you're not obsessed but the dozens of messages directed only to Buggs and your breathless replies to Buggs' every utterance tell a different story, oldhomey. Stop denying what everyone can see. Just kiss him and get it over with! [love][love][love]

You have his address and phone number! Maybe you should stop stalking him online and call him. We can see that you adore the man.


Are you feeling jilted because I haven't paid enough attention to you, crank? I have noticed that you have been rather shy, not making many appearances here, lately. I guess I AM guilty of stalking the loony people on these posts who try to retail outlandishly false information. You know, Buggs, new2, snow, the late, lamented Hey19 and a host of others, including yourself. It would be impossible to become amorous with any one of you, because you all so forcefully try to kiss off any advances I make on you. Either that, or you go hide from me in the weeds. Sorry for my stalking, but I just can't help myself, because I think the truth is important. But what would you call my stalking of loons such as yourself, a loonyanderer (as opposed to philanderer)?

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