A peek behind the curtain

Tama County’s 2023 Government Day

Two cool Legion renegades including Clutier American Legion Commander Richard Wiebbecke, left, stride into the Tama County Administration building for the annual Government Day on April 26. PHOTO BY MICHAEL D. DAVIS

TOLEDO – Wednesday, April 26, was Government Day in Tama County for many local high school students, sponsored by local American Legion and Auxiliary units.

The group of students – which included North Tama high schoolers – started their day with a mock vote at the Reinig Center in Toledo before descending on the county’s government buildings.

The kids talked to the county supervisors learning the particulars of being in charge of the county’s budget. They visited the Conservation office, the Clerk of Court, also the Tama County Sheriff’s’ office and the jail.

At the Tama County Public Health and Home Care office, the students learned about the duties of the Board of Health. Also at the Public Health office, kids were given cards describing fictional citizens with ailments which they had to match with the illnesses posted around the room, then see if they lived or died. This reporter played along but sadly died of diphtheria.

The students enjoyed lunch down at the Reinig Center before witnessing a flag folding demonstration by Legion members and listening to a panel discussion between multiple governmental department heads.

The Tama County Supervisors including (far back, l–r) Curt Hilmer, Bill Fairbloth, and Dan Anderson talk about their duties with local high school students as part of Government Day on April 26. PHOTO BY MICHAEL D. DAVIS

The results from the mock election held earlier in the day were also read aloud to the students and include below:

-Do you think college debt should be canceled? YES 21 NO 14

-Should members of congress have term limits? YES 32 NO 3

-Should voting rights be restored to released felons? YES 24 No 11

-Should we decriminalize marijuana use? YES 25 NO 10

A group of students in the Tama County Public Health Office. PHOTO BY MICHAEL D. DAVIS

-Should felons convicted of marijuana use be released from jail? YES 23 NO 12

-Is it important for the U.S. to maintain a strategically strong military? YES 34 NO 1

-Do you favor open borders? YES 9 NO 26

-Should purchasing smoking materials be against the law until age 21? YES 23 NO 12

-Is the word “racist” being used too freely and a ploy to shut down our basic freedom of speech? YES 21 NO 14

The flag folding demonstration by the American Legion and Auxiliary. PHOTO BY MICHAEL D. DAVIS