Thursday, July 28, 2011

Congressman Walsh - My Pleas to You

  • Stop locking yourself into nonsensical pledges
  • Stop hot dogging and start listening to history, knowledgeable economists and your more experienced colleagues
  • Stop spending your time and my tax dollars doing MSNBC and other cable news spots (you are job interviewing with Fox News on my time)
  • Stop dwelling in ideology and start working for the people in your district and for the American people
  • Start getting it done
  • Start looking at your job with the objective of intelligent reform, while acknowledging reality
  • Start thinking for yourself
  • Start looking at facts and not the facts as you would like them to be
  • Stop blindly spewing Heritage Foundation and other very strategic pieces of bile

This is your employer speaking Mr. Walsh....start caring about my needs and the needs of this country.


Tonia Becker VerShaw
Wildwood, IL
District 8

E-mailed to Congressman Walsh 7/28/2011 via his website.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Teacher Layoffs and School Funding....A National Emergency

Sent to: President Obama, Congresswoman Melissa Bean (8th District Illinois), Senator Dick Durbin, Governor Ted Strickland, Senator Sherrod Brown, Senator George Voinovich, Congressman Michael Turner

This afternoon I was deeply saddened to learn that my sister’s position as Kindergarten teacher at Mark Twain Elementary School, Miamisburg, OH was eliminated due to budget cuts.

My sister has spent her career serving her community, her state and her nation—first as a Greene Country Children’s Services social worker for several years, then after going back to school to complete her Masters in Education she has spent the last two years serving as a Kindergarten teacher.

I will openly confess to being a bit biased, but my sister is an excellent teacher. She is smart, creative, compassionate, energetic, loves children and is deeply motivated by the prospect of enriching the lives of her students. If only more of us could be so committed to our professions, perhaps our country and our world would be a better place.

If it were just my sister losing her job, I would feel for her. But, the fact that thousands upon thousands of teachers across the nation—many of them talented teachers like my sister— will be terminated at the end of this school year is alarming. It is, in my opinion, a national emergency.

I can think of few higher priorities than assuring a strong education system. As you know, our education system has suffered in recent decades. We are falling behind as a nation compared to other countries around the world. In addition, due to state and local funding challenges, I worry that we will lose a generation or disservice a generation—the kids currently in school.

Many teacher positions and other public service jobs were saved last year via stimulus fund allocation. I urge you and Congress to consider allocating another portion of the stimulus funds to this purpose so that massive teacher layoffs may once again be avoided.

Allocating stimulus funds, of course, is a temporary solution—an emergency measure similar to the manner we might fund relief efforts for other national emergencies. After the emergency symptoms are treated, I ask for you to consider ways that you and your administration might be able to provide leadership and counsel to each state in order that our educational systems will be strengthened for the long-term.

Thank you for both you consideration and your service to our nation.


Tonia Becker VerShaw
Grayslake, IL

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Health Care Legislation--Only an Initial Step

Sent to Congresswoman Melissa Bean, Senator Dick Durbin, President Obama

I am pleased that it looks as though the pending health care legislation has very promising chances of passing.

It is my most sincere fact it is my expectation that the legislation that seems likely to pass will be considered an initial step.

The health care journey began on the premise that all Americans deserve access to quality health care. Access to health care is not only a moral issue, it is a practical issue—a society cannot thrive without a healthy populace. I still believe deeply in this premise.

Although I see some positive aspects of the current legislation, it must be viewed as a first step. I do understand that governing requires compromise. Necessary compromises have been made and smaller compromises will still be required. However, we cannot pass this legislation, declare a victory and move on.

The outcomes/results of the legislation—both successes and failures—will need to be evaluated. Future legislation will most certainly be required to improve various aspects.

Of greatest concern to me is that there seems to be little included in the legislation to restrain rising costs. In fact, given that insurance companies will no longer be allowed to deny coverage based on preexisting conditions, the cost of health coverage may rise. This uncertainty will need to be monitored and future legislation required.

The reality is, the only way I see to restrain rising costs is to reduce the tremendous inefficiencies and wasteful areas within our health care system. Given the fact that the system is not making improvements on its own, the government will need to step in. The process of bringing wastefulness in line will take enormous political fortitude and will require thoughtful support of the American people.

Hopefully, the current legislation will pass and you will continue to fight for the full scope of the needs of the American people.

Thank you for your service and I wish you and your family a very happy holiday season.


Tonia Becker VerShaw
Grayslake, IL

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Much Thanks Senator Snowe

Sent to Senator Snowe via e-mail.

Dear Senator Snowe,

I am writing to thank you for your support of the Senate Finance Committee’s health care reform bill.

Your courageous decision to break from your party and to play a key role in continuing the critical work of health care reform is admirable and for this I am grateful.

In recent years I have become increasingly concerned by the extremely divisive “party line” politics that has consumed Washington. The American people deserve more from our elected officials than the playing of high-stakes games in which self-interests, party-interests and special-interests come before the welfare of the people.

Disagreement and debate as we work as a people to steer our nation is good and vital to the health of United States of America. However, earnest disagreement and debate is quite different than the manipulation, game playing and meek conduct that far too often pervades our system.

Senator Snowe, you are a patriot and a servant to our nation.

With Much Thanks and Gratitude,

Tonia Becker VerShaw
Grayslake, IL

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Healthcare Ideas for Your Consideration.....Please Keep "Us" First

For thoughts and ideas on the current healthcare debate, please access the full blog post.

Sent to:

Congresswoman Melissa Bean
Senator Dick Durbin
President Barack Obama (via
Huffington Post

When permitted, I sent entire blog post. When not permitted (too many characters) I sent a portion of the post, then referred to the URL.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: We Must Actively Support a Two-State Solution

E-mailed 4/5/09 via

Dear President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton,

I truly admire the work you are doing during these extraordinarily challenging times. Thank you.

As a humanitarian and one who dreams of peace, I am greatly disturbed by the on going Israeli-Palestinian tensions.

An Israeli-Palestinian peace settlement is not a luxury, but a necessity for hope of peace in the Middle East. I see no other viable path than a two-state solution in which Israel withdraws to its 1967 borders, true recognition of Palestinian autonomy, shared governance of the holy sites within Jerusalem, and Arab/Muslim states recognition of Israel's right to exist within its legal borders.

Israel has a right to exist in peace within its legal boundaries, as does Palestine. Palestinian extremists have committed horrible and indefensible acts. These acts are well publicized in our press and, I believe, well known to the American people.

However, the atrocities which have been committed by the Israelis against the Palestinians for now decades are not well known to Americans. Yes, the Israelis are our most loyal and closest allies in the Middle East. Judeo-Christian religions and cultures which are in the majority in the United States, share a special reverence for Israel. Finally, there is still, with justification, a sentiment that the Jewish people suffered horribly during the Holocaust and deserve their ancient homeland.

The Jewish people have suffered horrible, inhumane treatment at the hand of the Nazis as well by numerous other regimes throughout the centuries.

However, this painful and tragic history does not justify similar treatment of the Palestinians. Can a people with deep and still all too fresh memories of walls being build around its communities, justify the building of walls? Can a people who were starved to death and slaughtered justify this treatment toward their neighbors? I think not.

Despite the U.S./Israel relationship, the U.S. cannot continue to turn a blind eye to Israel's offenses any more than we can ignore unprovoked attacks by Palestinians.

I pray that the political courage can be mustered to address this truly situation. Resolution is vital to peace in the Middle East and it is vital to security and peace for many nations outside of the Middle East.


Tonia Becker VerShaw
Grayslake, IL

Friday, March 20, 2009

Spring is Here. Will the Recession Melt Along with the Ice?