Change needed in Legion

To the editor:

At 7 p.m. on Monday, May 13, 2013, the New Ulm American Legion Post and its affiliated organizations will hold annual elections at the Legion club rooms. If you are a member of our local post #132, it is both your right and duty to attend that meeting and vote for our next year’s officers. Your vote matters, so it is important that everyone gets out to vote!

Over the last year, many troubling things have happened to the New Ulm American Legion that have affected our post’s image in the community. We currently have a post commander, and his officers, who have run the club with an iron hand. If you do not like things that have been going on at the club, but feel uneasy expressing your opinions; and/or you anticipate being made to feel uncomfortable at the club, or even banned for a period of time, then now is the time to act with your vote.

These things have actually happened to members of the New Ulm American Legion Post. Many phone calls have been made to Second District members concerning the many issues occurring at the local post. Unfortunately, they felt they could not openly identify themselves by getting involved with solutions. This kind of leadership is not leadership. Your vote can make all the difference.

A very dedicated, active, lifetime member of the Auxiliary, who has been active for over 35 years, was accused of talking about Legion officers and employees. She then received a letter from the commander, signed by him, a few of his officers and several auxiliary officers, stating that she is banned from the legion post and all of its functions for having a negative attitude! After this ban directive was delivered, this auxiliary member felt so passionate about her organization that she ignored the ban and attended last month’s Auxiliary meeting only to be removed from the premises by police escort!

This is not the only person that the current Post’s officers have treated inappropriately. For example, past managers have been banned from the Legion. Within 30 days of the current executive board taking office, the bar managers, two bartenders, a gambling employee, and the kitchen manager all quit because of the working environment. This group also fired a bartender who is a young father and a veteran of the Iraqi War. He was told he could not continue working there because he remained friends with past management. Our government has asked everyone to provide employment to our troops who are reentering civilian life. Incentives have been provided to businesses that provide employment to these returning soldiers. The local American Legion Post has a sign in front of the building that says “Support Our Troops.”

The current commander told an auxiliary member she doesn’t help with any legion functions. Here is a quick rundown of what she has done over the last 35 years:

Managed the Steak Fry for 2.5 years

Made four capes for the Auxiliary Color Guard

Repaired flags that fly on the “Avenue of Flags”

Marched with the color guard for over 20 years

Worked her way up to serve as 2nd District Auxiliary President

Held many different positions within the local and district auxiliary

Personally provided dinner on Christmas Day for over 30 people at the Fischer House (located at the Mpls- St. Paul VA Hospital) at her expense

Patronized the legion in its many different product sales events, Bingo, and frequent meals

It’s time to get involved! Asking all members to please go to the New Ulm American Legion Post on Monday to VOTE! Every vote counts. WE NEED CHANGES!

Phyllis M. Postel

New Ulm

Member, NU Unit #132 Auxiliary

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