Don’t Feed the Bears

And, letter writers say, do support education, stop global warming and support universal health care 


As a senior about to graduate from the University of Oregon, I know firsthand how important public university funding is for students, which is why I am asking the Legislature to fully fund our public universities this year.

During my time here at UO, I have found my ambition to study political science and history. Thanks to the resources available at UO, I have completed an honors thesis, led multiple discussion classes and interned for one of Oregon’s senators. I have been able to achieve success throughout these past four years thanks to the resources available at Oregon’s public universities. UO has given me a valuable education and has provided me with resources for my professional career which I wouldn’t have had access to anywhere else.

Almost half of my time at the UO was done remotely, online. Students have more needs coming out of the pandemic, and it is more important now than ever before that we fully fund our public universities. Every student deserves an opportunity to attend a four-year university like I did. Financial aid programs like the Oregon Opportunity Grant help students attend universities, but it is underfunded. As they are making important budget decisions in the coming weeks, I hope the Legislature will fully fund our public universities at $1.05 billion and prioritize funding for financial aid programs like the Oregon Opportunity Grant.

Erin Sturdivant


Do you love bears? Do you fear bears? Either way, you probably don’t want them in your backyard. There are 30,000 bears in Oregon. Don’t make that 29,999 by feeding them. 

Huh? When they emerge from hibernation, like right now, they are hungry and may satisfy that hunger by going through your trash. They are smart. When they find food at your place, they will keep coming back. If that happens enough, you or your neighbors will complain, the authorities will declare that bear a nuisance and will eliminate it. Forget about trapping it and taking it away to release it back into the wild. More than likely, that bear will become a dead bear. Is that what you want? Neither do I.

Be smarter than a bear. Keep your trash away from the bears. And the raccoons. And all those other innocent, hungry critters. Officials recommend taking these steps:

  • Lock trash cans in a shed or garage if possible.
  • Freeze odorous food scraps until garbage day.
  • Avoid putting trash cans at the curb until the morning of trash day.
  • Bring pet food indoors.
  • Clean barbecue grills thoroughly.

Bear lovers thank you. Yogi thanks you. Booboo thanks you. Smokey thanks you.

Dave Stone


A new report indicated that more than 600 rural hospitals, nearly 30 percent of rural hospitals nationwide, are at risk of closing in the near future. Hospitals must maintain a certain number of staffers 24 hours of every day, while reimbursement is based on the number of patients treated. GAO data indicates investor-owned hospitals were more likely to respond to shrinking profit margins. They are hurt by uninsured and underinsured patients. The insurance based, for-profit health care system is not working.

The obvious solution is for Oregon and Washington to join with California, to form a regional universal health care system for all, that would be about half the cost of our current insurance based system. This problem would be much worse if rural Oregon joined Idaho. The rural areas should be helped by the more prosperous urban areas.

Jerry Brule


I am very concerned about climate change. I believe that a series of extraordinary disasters will follow within the next decade if governments and financial leaders do not act immediately to stop the flow of CO2, methane and nitrous oxide into the atmosphere.

The post listed below describes the only remaining way that imminent physical disasters might be avoided. If our political and economic leaders fail us, massive ecological disruptions and the death of billions of people will occur within the lifetime of our grandchildren and their children.

I do not think that I am overreacting. Instead, I am taking a realistic position of the predicament we have created through our personal inertia in living the good life and our leaders’ lack of awareness and inaction to address the natural physical problems created by modern life. This is not an optimistic or hopeful view. It simply lays out the last available actions that might lessen the worst disasters caused by climate change. It does not address economic and political problems that will result from implementing the changes to prevent the physical disasters caused by atmospheric pollution.

However, for billions of humans to survive the ways of nature by stopping climate change, economic or political actions, which are amenable to human, not natural, physical processes, must remain subordinate.

I believe that this post explains the necessity for everyone to take immediate action. The evidence presented in the article is, to me, overwhelming. I recommend it to you as the most important article that you can read today:

Alvin Urquhart

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