Dear editor,

"Kindness changes everything." These were the words that jumped at me as I traveled past the signboard at Northwood School on Highway 53, several miles north of Minong.

At that moment, I was mentally composing a letter to Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson. A day earlier on national TV, he had veered away from a simple question, loudly talking over the moderator who asked it. He expressed his longstanding mistrust of FBI and CIA officials. Without facts to back him up, he bolstered some citizens' belief that our crucial U.S. intelligence agencies are part of a conspiracy to unseat the president. By implication, he discredited the past and present work of thousands of FBI and CIA employees who serve to keep us safe, sometimes with their own lives at risk.

A Northwood School educator had the heart and wisdom to post on a signboard for students and hundreds of passing motorists to see: "Kindness changes everything." It is Sen. Johnson's job to help heal the deep political divisions in our state and across the country. He can unite rather than divide by sharing a clear vision of how to address issues of concern to all Wisconsin residents — issues like affordable health care, prescription drugs, housing and sound education, including school safety, that looks to the future.

He can speak with thought and kindness to our better angels.