... Ripon is by no means the epicenter of the political world, but if one were to snag a paper on their way out of the gas station, it would sure seem as if one of the dirtiest, most contentious mayoral races in the country is occurring.

Perhaps that is the sole issue in this debate and conceivably, the one that took a candidate out of the race.

Instead of allowing a spirited debate of issues and policy as these races seem to foster, there was a clear focus on the external, the arbitrary.

Of course the existence of a criminal past for a candidate is commonplace to examine and consider, but by the Ripon Commonwealth’s count, there have been no political arguments between any of the other contenders, only the glow of a spotlight on Jeremy Custer.

Why spend the time criticizing an individual for their non-violent and furthermore regrettable actions when there could be mature, responsible reporting focused on the issues, something that certainly has been lacking in the coverage of political affairs? ...

If the publishers of the Chicago Tribune ran an opinion piece on the shortcomings of a particular young man, I would guess that many would argue that that space in the paper could have been utilized in a much more effective manner, maybe using it to cover news, not heresay.

Mr. Lyke has surely proven himself to be a man of many words, most of which are drawn out and extremely repetitive. ...

Unless I’m mistaken, and being young and naïve like the recently retracted candidate aforementioned I might be proven to be by this fine newspaper, the political realm is filled with the ‘hard’ and the ‘soft.’

Mr. Lyke has seemed to side with the latter, and through his apparent fervor for slander and muckraking, he surely has convinced more than one.

— Tyler McMurray

Former campaign manager for Jeremy Custer

Geneva, Ill.

Read the full letter in the Jan. 7, 2010 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.

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