In response to Jeff Salata’s letter “Where Did Eugene Go?” (EW 11/23), I’m sorry to say the answer seems to be, Hell.
There is no generational blame for the depreciation of the once charming Eugene. As a third generation Oregonian, I can say it’s been in decline for more than 50 years. There seem to be no standards for healthy enforcements so the city functions safely. Policy makers, especially our governor, are complacent and lack the steadfast grit to keep all of Oregon thriving, yet weirdly wonderful like it once was.
Few people show respect anymore, especially college students and often the homeless. Many, not all, homeless people litter, steal and are violent. Many college students also litter, including tossing furniture and garbage to the curb for someone else to clean up, and drive recklessly — especially on Game Day.
Eugene lacks all kinds of quality leadership. Leadership of our state and city government, our college with a blind eye to how they are impacting the rest of the city, including overpriced tuition and housing that only out of state wealth can afford, self-serving events like The Worlds and student accountability, our city planners making an absolute mess with affordable housing and homelessness, as well as the overpopulation issues creating a driving nightmare.
It’s overwhelming to know where to start, but if we are going to restore Eugene we need to rise from these hellish ashes and come together somehow.