John's Open Letters Vol. 1 #32
July 20, 2002
Well, I tried to be patient and not send out this letter but the flow of correspondence and phone calls wouldn't let me. The temptation was too great.
Some of you may have received an e-mail from Vince Krepps, Editor Graybeards, dated July 16 to Ken Buckley and Expatriate Nick Pappas. Mr. Krepps e-mail is an attempt to explain his previous e-mails about what he said in regards to the Election and what he might do. It goes on to call some of our Members "nit-wits, liars, nasty letter writers, and do-nothing members". He also says "No Politics" in regard to him being the Editor of the Graybeards.
Mr. Krepps has joined the group who supports Mr. Coon and has taken up the same vile, insulting language like a lot of Coon's staunchest supporters. Then he says to Ken and Nick to not e-mail him or copy him on these e-mails. What he is saying is that he can say anything but you are not supposed to answer or defend yourself. He says more of the same if he is retained after the Election. That definitely means more censoring and one-sided information.
I think Mr. Krepps is running on emotion because if he would use his good sense he would remember that he is a hired and paid graybeards Editor of the KWVA and not a one-sided employee of the wishes of Mr. Coon. His pay as Editor is about $12,000 per year.
I think the thousands of Members, who are dues paying, have an interest in our national magazine. He works for all of us, and is not underpaid. His allowing the Graybeards to be used exclusively for Mr. Coon and the publishing of the phony picture about the KWVA "Headquarters" is sufficient reason to have him fired from is job as Editor.
The letters of praise about the Graybeards magazine appear to have gone to his head. It's not only what is put in it, but also what has been left out (censored). His editing might be allowed in some sleaze newspaper or magazine but we don't need it in the Graybeards.
Mr. Krepps' remarks calling Ken Buckley and anybody else who doesn't agree with him "nit-wits" proves that he does not intend to accept others' views. I was positive I knew what a "nit-wit" was but to make sure I looked up the definition in my trusty dictionary: NIT-WIT: scatterbrained or stupid. I must admit I have been dumb in some of my actions but never scatterbrained or stupid. Our good friend and hard working Member in Bangor, Maine, Ken Buckley, surely is neither scatterbrained or stupid. And that goes for a hell of a lot of our great Members in the KWVA. From some of the insulting, nonsensical e-mails I have received from Mr. Coon's supporters I feel Mr. Krepps must be referring to them. The calling of Ken and others as "do-nothing" Members is further insult to all the hard working men and women in our Association.
It is time for Mr. Krepps to be replaced for he is not in touch with the Members and repeatedly lost the trust we should have in him as Editor. Hopefully this will stop the name-calling and bring respect to our Members.
By his last request which said, "do not e-mail me or copy me on these e-mails." I respect his wishes but I feel free to pass on any and all e-mails that are freely given to me, with their permission, regardless of the source. This is called the Freedom of the Press. My Open letters are not like the censored Graybeards magazine.
Now on a lighter note. Some time back Mr. Blair Cross called me to assist him in getting support in Congress from the Illinois Representatives. I made up a letter requesting their support, and at my own personal expense contacted all twenty-three officials. I received several letters in support of Bill H.R.952 that when passed would grant a Federal Charter to the Korean War Veterans Association. A letter from Congressman Rod R. Blagojevich, 5th District, Illinois was sent to me July 9 in support of this important legislation. For whatever reason the Bill has been referred to the House Subcommittee on Immigration and Claims. It has been held up by this Committee for a long time.
Congressman Blagojevich states, "Please know that I am a co-sponsor of the legislation and like you, feel that those who loyally served the United States during the 'Forgotten War' should not become known as America's 'Forgotten Veterans' ". He is now running for Illinois Governor. Also our newest (third) Chapter in Maine has the support of their local Congressman Mr. Tom Allen who will co-sponsor the KWVA Charter Bill. Since Mr. Cross has never officially or personally thanked anyone for their efforts to get a Federal Charter I feel there should be someone in his office that should be more thankful and appreciative for these efforts made by many of our Members. All I've heard from Mr. Cross is that the Members are not doing their share.
Mr. Krepps and Mr. Cross should open their eyes and their minds to see what these "do-nothing" Members are really doing.
Somewhere I was told that each Officially Called Meeting would have an Agenda. There was no Agenda put in the Graybeards for the upcoming Meeting. Also the Special Meeting that was called by Mr. Coon was supposed to be requested at least "fourteen days" prior to the date of the proposed meeting but the notification was sent out to a select group of Board Members (not all) about eleven days before the date this meeting is to be held. Can this be a legally called Meeting? Why weren't all the Board Members notified? When are the By-Laws and rules going to be followed? I once had a boss who called a meeting without giving sufficient notice. Nobody showed up. Later he would notify everybody a week in advance.
Mr. Coon in his memo to all Members says we have eighteen thousand Members and one hundred sixty Chapters. Someone should tell him there are fewer Members who have paid their dues and there are over two hundred sixty-five Chapters in the KWVA.
Now that the balloting is officially closed as of July 10, I feel it my duty to report what I was told. This information came to me some time back and I can't remember where I heard it. The voting up until that time was very heavy and the CPA needed a roster to check that the Member voting had paid his dues. My concern is that there were quite a few late voters and I am hoping the CPA has an up-to-date roster. I know of some new Members who wanted to vote that were told there were no more ballots available. This was several weeks ago.
A memo from Mr. Coon states the results of the Election will be reported after the Treasurer's Report.
There are just a few days left before the Meeting and from the phone messages I have received there should be a quorum at the General Meeting. I have made no predictions of the outcome of this important Election but I feel a change for the better is necessary so the KWVA can move forward with dignity.
In my communicating with a large number of our well meaning Members I have found Mr. Krepps' name calling surely should not include those who are working hard for the KWVA. Many helped organize new Chapters, recruited Members, assisted other Korean War Veterans and worked hard in supporting the KWVA. Are these Members some of the "do-nothing" people he is talking about? I think not. I feel Mr. Krepps has locked his mind up in his position and other than what he puts in the Graybeards he is not aware what so many men and women in our organization are doing. I personally thank them for a job well done.
I can name a hundred Members who work very hard for the good of the KWVA but, out of respect for them, I will not print their names even though I have been granted permission to do so. Not once have I seen these dedicated Members' names in the Graybeards, nor do I know that they have ever been given credit for their accomplishments.
The prior National Election, two years ago, was decided by a total of two thousand forty votes. Who knows how many have cast their ballots this time? I'm sure this report will be given at the meeting. My own personal information is that the voting is much heavier this time. It is nice to see so many more Members voting.
I am sure most of you have read I am a Life Member and that I will be as long as I am here but the disrespect towards the Members with the name calling from so many of our elected officials and unidentified senders of bogus e-mails makes me want to barf. My respect for the many dedicated and well meaning Members gives me the drive to continue these Open letters. The Election will determine whether I will continue them. Some have said they would support whoever is elected, which is their prerogative, but I could never support anyone who is an insulting name-caller or someone who does not live up to the By-Laws of the KWVA.
I wish I could join my fellow Members at the Meeting but, as most of you know , I am not physically able to do so.
Some time back I received an e-mail stating Mr. Coon's term ends at midnight July 27. I was wondering about this because I was told the new Officers were to be sworn in on the 27th. This morning, July 18, I got an e-mail from a Director stating Mr. Coon's "term ends at midnight on July 26th. Bylaws page 6." Mr. Coon's call for a Special Meeting of the Board should not be allowed if he is no longer in office. I just wonder if he was confused about the dates that he had in his e-mail. This latest e-mail from a Director says for the past year Coon has continued to send out false and misleading information. The Director went on to thank those who really care about the organization. I have withheld the Director's name out of respect for him.
Please make your plans to attend the National Meeting in July. It is important.
Your personal opinion is greatly appreciated. Freedom is not free and it never was.
Respectfully, John Kronenberger