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Our View: New sheriff takes on a big job (with video)

2:38 PM, May 10, 2013  |  Comments
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We know this: The Marathon County Sheriff's Department is crying out for leadership. We hope Scott Parks, the longtime chief deputy for the department who on Thursday assumed the role of sheriff, will be the person to provide that leadership.

Given the previous sheriff's track record of not showing up to work and failing to lead, it is fair to say that the burden of running the department from day to day has fallen to Parks for some time. But there's a world of difference between administering operations and being the leader who helps set policies and provide direction.

Parks on Thursday sketched a vision of the direction he wishes to take, and it is an encouraging one. We wish him well in the role. His staff, the county government and his constituents need him to succeed.

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For this Mother's Day weekend, a handful of other items in the week's news that are worth a mention:

Thumbs up

The YWCA in Wausau unveiled its Women of Vision awards at a luncheon ceremony on Wednesday , and the winners deserve our thanks and congratulations. They are: Kathy Garvey, a former member of the Wausau School Board and Wausau Conservatory of Music board of directors who also helped establish the Robert W. Monk Gardens; Sally Scinto-Reinertson, a volunteer at Greater Wausau Christian Services who teaches and works with jail inmates; and Rita Straub, a former family living educator at the University of Wisconsin-Extension who was involved in the Kiwanis Club and the United Way among other organizations.

All three of these women have given enormous amounts of their time to the goal of bettering the community. We're grateful to have them.

Thumbs down

We see no shortage of posturing and preening by politicians in Madison, but the decision by the Joint Finance Committee on Thursday to approve a law that would prevent any Wisconsin municipality from adopting a New York City-style ban on super-sized sodas takes the Big Gulp.

Nevermind prosaic concerns like whether this measure would do anything at all to create jobs. How about answering this simple question: What problem does this law solve? Are Wisconsin municipalities currently clamoring to limit our soda intake that now, just in the knick of time, will be forced to stand down? Of course not. It's purely, only for show.

To be perfectly clear: We don't support a soda ban. But we certainly don't support the over-the-top overreaction to a policy put in place in a distant city that surely has a right to govern itself. Obesity is an epidemic. It's not crazy to think that a little bit of policy experimentation in different places might eventually strike something that works. More to the point: Are giant-sized sodas really the hill we want to stand and fight on?

We know: First they came for our sodas, but I said nothing. But guess what: No one in Wisconsin is coming for your sodas. But never fear. The showboats in Madison are here to provide protections no one asked for.

Thumbs up

If you haven't gotten your mom a present for Mother's Day, then, first of all, shame on you. Second of all: Get moving. You still have time to purchase a bouquet of flowers or a spa certificate and plan a nice breakfast on Sunday for the mother in your life.

None of us would be here if it weren't for our mothers. So happy Mother's Day to all. You deserve it.

What's your take on the Packers Family Night change?

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27%
1014 votes
It doesn't matter to me.(Your vote)
34%
1271 votes

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If you've ever answered "Who has the ball?" with "It's halftime," you might recognize The Airhead. Check out the characters in our cartoon gallery of oddball fans.

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