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home : opinion archive : the agenda July 9, 2014 

What do you think of Mount Carmel native Scott Siepker's 'Iowa Nice' video?
A Mount Carmel native and Carroll High School alum stars in a nationally recognized YouTube video that has garnered major media attention for its creative, laugh-out-loud defense of the Hawkeye State.

Scott Siepker’s “Iowa Nice” short film — produced on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day in response to stereotyping of Iowa by the media — has well over 1 million views (and counting).

The two-minute video seeks to debunk certain coastal narratives about Iowa being a cultural monolith of prejudiced reactionaries. The more popular version (874,000 hits) contains some profanity, but Siepker’s team has posted a sanitized version as well (265,000 hits).

“Iowa is not what you think it is,” Siepker said in an interview with The Daily  Times Herald. “There are so many misconceptions out there.”

Siepker, 29, and “Iowa Nice” director, his longtime theatrical collaborator, Paul D. Benedict, have seen their work go viral with features on CNN International, MSNBC and BBC World News.

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow termed “Iowa Nice” “the single-most-entertaining ad to come out of Iowa this political season.”

What is your reaction to the video?

Click here
to watch the popular version with some profanity and click here to watch the clean version.


What are your thoughts on the new school calendar and early start for 2012-2013?
Carroll Community School Board on Monday approved 3-2 an early start for the 2012-13 school year.

The early-start calendar will make the first day of next school year Tuesday, Aug. 14, with the first semester ending Friday, Dec. 21, before the start of winter break.

Second semester will begin Monday, Jan. 7, 2013, and the school year will end Wednesday, May 15, 2013.

Is this the right decision?


What should be city of Carroll's priorities in the next year?
The Carroll City Council on Monday approved a framework for a Capital Improvement Plan to lead into discussions early next year about the city budget, and other matters related to the future of the community. What should the council and mayor consider in these deliberations? What should the top priorities be for Carroll?

Should Iowa ban texting while driving and/or cell phone use in cars and trucks?
What do you think? Should the State of Iowa ban texting for all drivers or just teens? Or should Iowa go further and ban all cell phone use in motor vehicles, even hands-free devices? Or should government simply stay out the matter and accept cell phone use on the road as a way of life with its attendant beneifts and risks?


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