No Good Deed Goes Unpunished 

Thank you for “Unable to Help” (EW 7-9). Pat Hadley and Eric Jackson are the kind of people I always imagined I would meet in Eugene. They embody our best values. Hadley can hold forth on a millennium’s worth of literature while grinning at you like a sailor. Jackson inspires brightly and loves loudly. For over a year, I’ve counted on them both for support, understanding and granola bars. I agree that Jackson polarizes, but only because a chunk of Eugene has adopted its leaders’ disdain of the poor.

With this code compliance nonsense, the city again fails to nimbly respond to crisis. Just an hour up the road, our governor will soon call another special session, during which the ability of localities to fast track emergency COVID-19 shelters will hopefully be extended for 90 days, as will the eviction moratorium passed in April. But meanwhile in Eugene, the fairgrounds shelter that housed hundreds daily has mostly closed, CDC-recommended encampments have been swept, and the city threatens to fine a family that’s willing to help out. 

They say that no good deed goes unpunished; at least we have good citizens stepping in when an emergency tests our elected leaders’ responsiveness. 

Robert Patterson


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