---- — I take no pleasure in composing this letter. Once again another year, the Ottumwa police have made their draconian edict of setting the date and hours for beggars night. It's too bad that even a volunteer kids' holiday has fallen under the auspices of a mindless robot society. When I was a child, my best friend and myself usually went out for two nights from dusk to 9 a.m. or later, as did most kids. It was expected then, what's the harm? Sometimes we stretched it to three by starting on the 29th. If the police apprehended a child soliciting candy now one minute before 6 p.m. or one minute after 8 p.m., will they get a citation for begging without a permit? Why, this might rank up there with other high state crimes as parking on your front grass. My father once said that if the government finds out you're having a little fun or making some extra money, they will either outlaw it or tax it. I might add that they will also regulate it to be sure you're not having too much harmless joy. To quote a famous American actor in 1969, “You know, this used to be a helluva good country. I can't understand what's wrong with it.”
There is entirely too many tyrants oppressing the good citizens of Wapello County. So much for the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness as stated in our Declaration of Independence so long ago.
Freedom to the people.