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I HEARD THE NEWS TODAY, OH BOY
BRAD'S DESK 12/8/10
AS SOMEBODY WHO'S BEEN A FAN OF THE BEATLES SINCE THEY FIRST APPEARED ON THE ED SULLIVAN SHOW, I TEND TO THINK ABOUT JOHN LENNON WHENEVER DECEMBER 8TH COMES AROUND. IT'S STILL HARD TO BELIEVE THAT LENNON WAS SHOT 30 YEARS AGO TODAY, WHILE HE HAD THE NUMBER ONE RECORD ON THE CHARTS AT AGE 40. AND IT'S STILL HARD TO BELIEVE THAT I SPENT MORE THAN AN HOUR WATCHING T-V THE NIGHT OF THE SHOOTING, WELL AFTER THE NEWS BROKE, AND DIDN'T HEAR A THING ABOUT IT.
I SAW THAT E-S-P-N HAS DONE A REPORT ON HOW IT HAPPENED THAT MOST OF AMERICA HEARD ABOUT LENNON'S DEATH FIRST FROM HOWARD COSELL, DURING A MONDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL GAME. THAT REMINDS ME OF HOW MUCH THE MEDIA HAVE GROWN IN JUST 30 YEARS. THIS WAS WAY BEFORE TWITTER, AND THE INTERNET, AND THE 24-HOUR CABLE NEWS CYCLE.
I DIDN'T EVEN HAVE CABLE THAT NIGHT IN 1980, IN ROCKFORD, ILLINOIS, WHEN I CAME HOME FROM COVERING A SCHOOL BOARD MEETING TO WATCH SOME T-V. THE LOCAL NEWS WAS ENDING ON THE CBS CHANNEL, AND I WATCHED THE 'MASH' RERUN THEY HAD AFTERWARD. THEN, 'THE WILD WILD WEST' ON THE SAME CHANNEL. THEN, I SWITCHED TO NBC, WHERE TOM SNYDER ON THE TOMORROW SHOW MENTIONED THE LIGHTING OF THE ROCKEFELLER CENTER CHRISTMAS TREE, AND TALKED WITH MORLEY SAFER OF '60 MINUTES' ABOUT HIS HOBBY OF PAINTING PICTURES OF THE MOTEL ROOMS WHERE HE HAS STAYED. WHEN I WENT TO BED, I TURNED ON THE RADIO, AND ALMOST IMMEDIATELY HEARD THAT JOHN LENNON HAD BEEN SHOT AND KILLED IN NEW YORK. I COULDN'T SLEEP AFTER THAT. I KEPT THE RADIO ON TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE SHOOTING.
IT STILL SURPRISES ME THAT ALL THE T-V NETWORKS DIDN'T DISRUPT THEIR PROGRAMMING THAT MONDAY NIGHT TO TALK ABOUT JOHN LENNON, CONSIDERING IT WAS THE LEAD STORY ON NETWORK NEWS THE NEXT DAY.
NEWS CAN SPREAD VERY FAST THESE DAYS, WHICH MAKES IT MORE AMAZING TO CONSIDER HOW THE WORLD HAS CHANGED SINCE THE DAYS OF THE BEATLES.
For some, it's a mystery why La Crosse would need a warming center for the homeless who suffer from alcohol and drug addiction. For many others, it's a surprise that there hasn't been such a place in the city before now. Kevin Solarte, with Lutheran Social Services, says it takes some time for a need to become apparent in a community. Homelessness especially, he says, is often hidden and goes unseen by the public until something tragic happens. His organization, with others, are shooting for a permit from the La Crosse city council this week that would allow them to start a warming center in the city.
Much has changed in la Crosse in the last thirty years. Including the number of police. But La Crosse police chief Ed Kondracki has warned that lingering vacancies in his department are shrinking the force to 1970's levels. And that's taking a toll on public safety. He cites the dwindling number of tickets and arrests made by his department as indication that current vacancies are taking a toll. There's seven vacanices right now. With two retirements coming in the department by the end of the year. Five more by summer. The city council votes tonight on allowing Kondracki to fill some of those positions tonight. Mayor Matt Harter tells us, if he had wanted those jobs filled, he would have authorized them.
Sneaking drugs into jail can get you more time in the clink. It can also get someone killed.
That's the case with 25 year old Alexandra Lueck of Tomah. She was given five more months behind bars after a jail inmate died from snorting drugs she snuck in.
The woman pleaded no contest in Monroe County court to two counts in relation to delivering the drug Suboxone to 37 year old Adrianna Seroy back in January. Lueck snuck the drug back into the jail after being released for Huber privileges.
Seroy died on January 26th of what is now being called a mixed drug overdose. Suboxone is used to treat opiate addiction.