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Letters to the Editor 2017-3-30

TOO MANY PEOPLE

The root cause of current climate change must be addressed: human over-population in a world with finite resources.

Too many people equals a large appetite for energy, fresh water and arable land. In 1900, the world population was 1.5 billion. By 1965, it was 3.3 billion. Only 52 years later, 7 billion!

In 1983, we passed the tipping point of using more resources than the earth could regenerate, known as “ecological overshoot.” The solution? All methods of contraception should be available to every person on earth of childbearing age for free or at an affordable price, including surgical methods of voluntary tubal ligation, vasectomy and abortion. Abstinence is ineffective.

If we don’t curb our reproduction, human beings will face continued loss of habitat and extinction of our species. Wars over resources, political upheaval, income inequality, pandemics of new diseases, crop failures resulting in famines and animal extinction are only symptoms.

Instead of treating symptoms, treat the root cause. Developed nations have the technical wherewithal to address this issue and also to assist emerging nations. Education goes up. Empowerment goes up. Population goes down.

All we lack is the ethical political will unhindered by corruption and religious fanaticism. I’m not optimistic.

Charlotte Brandt, Eugene

 

NEWMAN FOR SCHOOL BOARD

As a retired superintendent, I know the importance of having highly qualified school-board members. Eugene School Board will find no one better than Judy Newman. She is a voice for social justice, fighting for equity and educational funding. She has a proven track record of leveraging resources through advocacy, partnerships and grant writing.

 Judy is an innovator. She was among the first to recognize that early childhood education is the key to individual student success. She developed an innovative and highly regarded model for supporting special needs children and their families. Recognized in the county, state, nation and world, she is sought after as an advisor, mentor and creative thinker.

 Judy works tirelessly to meet the needs of others. She has served on the boards of Shelter Care, Lane County United Way and numerous state-level working groups.

Judy is a strong student advocate. She has consistently demonstrated exemplary leadership, strong values and an unwavering commitment to providing a high-quality education for every student.  

Students in the 4J district deserve an excellent education and Judy Newman has the knowledge and expertise to make that happen. I enthusiastically endorse her for Eugene School District Board Position 3.

Nancy Golden, Springfield

 

FAKE LETTERS

Fake news has infected even letters to the editor.

Who are these idiots hissing and snarling in their echo chambers of vapidity? Have they been vetted? We need to know from whom the memes flow. Who taught them to talk? What educational ancestry (if any) they claim.

Otherwise we might fall prey to their seductive la-de-da and their lucid muse so amusing. Our hearts will be broken, our spirits riled. Beguiled by fake letters to the editor.

David Hugh Tyson, Eugene

 

GOD HELP US

A congressional hearing as a result of a POTUS tweet based on a Fox “News” report.

Frank Schnebly, Eugene

 

SCHOOL OF GREED

University of Oregon administrators have leaned a ladder against the tree of knowledge, climbed a few rungs and identified non-tenured professors, poor and hungry students and disabled persons without a leg to stand on as low-hanging fruit, slim but easy pickings as they teeter towards balancing an out-of-whack operating budget.

High-hanging and much riper fruit like senior-administration compensation, tail-wagging-dog athletics spending and edifice-raising donor dollars remain above the fray, safe and unpicked.

To wit: Seventy-five professors without due-process rights are getting the ax. In-state students face a 10.6-percent tuition hike. Student food service workers are required to pay for previously free shift meals. Disabled persons must purchase UO permits in order to park in ADA disabled parking spaces.

Meanwhile, President Schill earns $798,400 per year — ninth-highest paid of 220 public university leaders. The UO athletic department spends more than $100 million annually, more than a third on coaching staff compensation. Phil Knight is donating $500 million towards construction of a $1-billion eponymous science complex.

Common sense and a sense of fairness should lead UO administrators to real money that can really solve budget woes. The tree of knowledge was said to contain both good and evil. Pickers need to get back on the ladder, climb higher, and find the good: a kinder, gentler, smarter approach to financial sustainability.

Benton Elliott, Eugene

 

POISON DRIFT

I am writing in support of SB 892, a bill that would provide advanced notification before an aerial herbicide spray and information about what was sprayed.

Exposing unsuspecting citizens to possible carcinogens without fair warning is inhumane.

I reside one mile east of the city of Gold Beach, Oregon, and have been exposed to aerial spraying over the past years. I have encountered serious illness while on my property during aerial herbicide applications. 

I have incurred thousands of dollars in medical expenses in addition to a loss of a productive life while recovering from these herbicide exposures.

If I had been given advanced warning, I could have left my property to avoid the up-wind chemical drift. In some cases there was barely enough time for me to run back inside and to close the windows in my home.

Allowing aerial spraying should be a crime in itself; but subjecting individuals to these aerial assaults without warning is criminal. Even an aerial spray that is carried out according to the Oregon Forest Practices Act and Pesticide Law can result in drift to nearby properties.

By the time citizens like me report the problem to a state agency and an investigation is done, the harm to our health has already occurred.

Having advanced notification would go a long way to alleviating this problem.

The state has an obligation to protect its citizens. Please pass this bill.

I have documentation to support my allegations.

Jim Sweeney, Gold Beach

 

OVERTURN DEVOS

Betsy DeVos as the U.S. Secretary of Education — what a joke! She has very little or no public education experience but is worth millions! Money is probably her only claim to fame!

I agree with Mary Leighton and Jerry Rosiek. Hopefully, U.S. voters and our congresspersons will overturn the appointment of Betsy DeVos!

 Stace Webb, Eugene

 

WEB LETTERS

 

WE ARE ALL IMMIGRANTS

I am deeply disturbed by the latest immigration policy by the Trump Administration. The Mexican people are a gentle people. I lived in California for years and appreciated their culture. Many of them are peasants and are just trying to give their children a better life.

We've all come from somewhere else; Oregonians didn't spring up like mushrooms. Many came from the east and, before that, from Europe, and before that, who knows?

The human story is the story of migration. We migrated for better hunting, for water, for jobs, for opportunities that could not be found where we came from. Some of us were criminals, too, just like some of the Mexican people are criminals, and they need to be dealt with — sent back to Mexico but not for a misdemeanor.

Let's target the gang members and other violent criminals. We need to decide how much time, effort and money we are willing to spend to enforce this mean-spirited policy that will only degrade us a people, as Americans.

The Trump Administration is dangerous because it is not thoughtful and does not see that all actions have consequences.

K. James, Eugene

 

TAX-FREE TRUMP

It’s a real plane in the ass.

In December when Donnie was told the cost of a new Air Force One would be five times that of a stripped-down 747. He expressed rage at Boeing, screech tweeting “costs are out of control, more than $4 billion. Cancel order.” Our apprentice soon-to-be-leader assured us he was watching out for American taxpayers.

Yeah, right. Before you could say “take a seat in coach,” he creates a new presidential tradition ending his work week in faux-billionaire style as the Eagle sets down in Palm Beach, Florida, leaving taxpayers with a bill of roughly $3 million for each fun-filled weekend, not including any greens fees.

Outrageous? Sure is. Especially considering big talking 45 doesn’t bother paying taxes himself. Talk about a free ride. It’s those of us who voted for this freeloader and those of us who did not who are being taken for a ride.

Just weeks ago he accused Boeing of “doing a little bit of a number.” Now newly settled in office, it’s clear DT is doing more than a little bit of a number himself. Using babbling rhetoric chockfull of alternative facts, he promises millions of new jobs, national security, amazing health care and secure futures for our children. As the hot air settles we see it just isn’t so.

Clearly we’ve not only been delivered a plane in the ass. America now finds itself with an ass in the plane.

Michael DeLuise, Eugene

 

THE LIBERTARIAN CHALLENGE

Democrats say: We want to control your money, but you can control your actions.

Republicans say: We want to control your actions, but you can control your money.

Libertarians say: We trust you to make your own decisions. We want you to control your money and your actions.

Libertarians promote individual freedom and protect civil liberties. Yet Libertarians are dismissed as the crazy ones. Go figure. Probably because Libertarians want to take over the world and leave you alone.

Donny: Here’s an idea for you to ignore. Instead of building a wall, we could solve the illegal immigration issue by removing the welfare magnet that attracts millions of people to cross the border illegally. We could also stop destabilizing the Middle East with endless wars and end the stupid, silly, pathetic drug war that rewards smugglers who cross the border.

Joe Canfield, Springfield

 

PRIEST SENTENCING

To the DA and judge in the MacKay prostitution case: Nice job on the conviction though of course [Daniel] MacKay probably did more for this girl then they ever will. Let's see … they disrupted her business and coerced her into testifying by threatening her with imprisonment. She's 18 now so probably kicked out of whatever program she got press ganged into. To all non-functioning adults living on the street: remember to just say no to drugs and prostitution. Still, nice job on the conviction.

Jordan Butler, Eugene

 

TELEVANGELISM

Pat Robertson, Jimmy Swaggart, Jim Baker and Oral Roberts — a pantheon of evangelical greatness.

These men achieved wealth and power, yet there I was at TDI in Gulfport, Mississippi, considering truck driving school with what was left of my bankroll after the ’90s dustbowl.

Becoming a TV evangelist was lucrative business down south. “Tax exempt glory” meant throwing away that moral compass and scientific reasoning for a carpetbag and swindling.

Temptation became a feverish choice — lie to the gullible or drive 34 cents a mile.

Speaking in tongues, mixing bourbon with cod-liver snake-oil, stage crafting circus tent miracles and being “sincerely” insincere had to be easier than driving 55 mph in California or grinding gears.

Get caught? Do wrong? Beg forgiveness. Need tears? Pull a few nose hairs out with pliers. Swagger taught the masters class.

Would Jesus wear a Rolex? Darn tootin’.

Mega-church dreams and political aspirations don’t come cheap. Like my grill? Remember, sell the sizzle, keep the steak.

“Promise moondust but deliver only fire and brimstone” — a tip from storefront preacher “Diamond Jim.”

Keep that change, tadpole! Diamond sure could talk.

If it was frozen he could walk on water.

Selling faith and pixie dust was for soft hands, not pallet splinters or chain binders.

Based on retreads and mud-flap salvation — I’ve been holding steering wheels for 20 years, praise Jesus.

Glenn Jones, Eugene