Why do we spend so much time, energy and money trying to look younger? The only possible answer is because it is better to be younger than it is to be older. How can this be? The only possible answer is because there is nothing to gain from living in this culture … you lose more than you gain from prolonged exposure. Let that sink in. That is tragic. Is this really what we want?
Thank you, Mayor Blackburn and the Hood River City Council, for adopting the Inclusive City Resolution. We are proud to live in Hood River!
Jack and Linda Sprague
This letter is in response to letters by Bill Davis, Jerry Patricio and Paul Nevin that appeared in the Jan. 28 edition of the Hood River News. Bill, I will pay you $3 to walk through downtown Hood River and you don’t have to wear a suit of armor. You just have to wear a sign showing your support for Donald Trump. That way if you do get knocked down, you won’t need to wait for two conservatives to lift you back up again. After all, I thought you conservatives were big believers in everybody taking care of themselves.
To Jerry and Paul I would say, why would I want to wait any amount of time to “let the new administration do their job” when it is very clear to me that they are intent on passing racist, discriminatory and bigoted legislation that will have very long-term negative effects on our country and our society? I consider it my civic duty to start “complaining” (I would prefer to call it protesting) as soon as possible and keep complaining until the last day they are in office.
To Paul I would also say this: which mess that was created by a past administration of eight years are you talking about? The last Republican (Bush) administration that started a war that cost countless lives and billions of dollars and that was also in charge during one of the worst recessions in history? Or the Obama administration that gave us eight years of economic growth while also getting us almost completely out of the war the previous administration started and managing not to get us into any new wars that we cannot afford? If you are referring to the Obama administration, please describe what the “mess” is that you are referring to because I didn’t see anything in the past eight years that came even close to the “mess” the Bush administration created. In fact, I would say the Obama administration did a great job of cleaning up the Bush administration mess despite getting nothing but resistance from the Republican congress.
‘Draining the Swamp?’
Donald Trump has repeatedly said when he became president he would “Drain the Swamp.” Look hard at his appointees and you will find he is not draining it, but stocking it with alligators. His choice for his White House strategist, Steve Bannon, is a white supremacist neo-Nazi; to head up the Environmental Protection Agency, Scott Pruitt, a long-term lackey for the fossil fuel industry who is suing the Federal Government to block action on mercury, arsenic and carbon pollution proven to be a very dangerous threat to the children of this country.
Trump’s pick for secretary of Health and Human Services, Tom Price, demands privatization of Medicare, is anti-ACA and women’s health choices. His choice for Treasury Secretary, Steve Manchin, is a Goldman Sachs banker who made a fortune running the bank’s Foreclosure Machine, scamming Americans out of their homes. Ben Carson, a preacher with zero public office experience, is his choice for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, who has said “poverty is really more of a choice than anything else” and fair housing is a “social engendering scheme.“ His choice for Attorney General is Senator Jeff Sessions, who has a decades-long history of apposing equal rights and equality. Voted for a constitutional amendment to ban same sex marriage, voted against laws expanding hate crimes to include sexual orientation. Maybe worst of all he says protections for disabled children is ruining American schools. These are just a few of his alligators.
Time to settle
Why is Congress ignoring the simple, obvious solution to the healthcare crisis? I never hear anyone in Congress complain about cost or access to healthcare. I am ready to settle for whatever plan they have without question or complaint. Who is with me?
How can Greg Walden claim to represent the people in this loving, caring and inclusive community when he supports President Trump’s Executive Order? Despite public denial, it needs to be called what it is: a Muslim ban driven by a white nationalist agenda. Does he believe the blanket suspicion of 205 million people from the affected countries is justified in any way or form? Does our elected official really lack the integrity to do the right thing and stand up to such inhumane, misguided and counterproductive orders? What’s next? Let’s debate politics all day long, but when it comes to human decency, there must be some common ground to reject politics of hate and fear. I think the clear majority here — Trump voters or not — are good people who are on the side of humanity and will not stand by such un-American behavior.
When in doubt, read what is written at the Statue of Liberty again.
Affects us all
Four months ago, my significant other quit her job at a major hospital (she’s a doctor) and opened an office of her own for those in need who are over 65 and don’t do drugs. Her office accepts Medicare and Medicaid. Our long-time Rep. Greg Walden is in the process of trying to redo our medical system along with many others in Congress. This won’t just affect you as an individual who has Medicare or Medicaid, but all of us. Much of the money that supports hospitals and clinics comes from those two government programs along with money from Obamacare (the ACA). All three programs could use improvement, but they are what we have. If replacement isn’t done with extreme caution, you will not only have poorer or no coverage, but you’ll have no place to go as that money is what supports our local hospital, clinics and doctors. It’s not just us as individuals that could suffer, but we could experience the implosion of the entire health system sans the Veterans Admin and hospitals.
America wins award
Before handing him the car keys, an old friend joked with his impatient young son to take care while driving, and not win “The Darwin Award.” By this joke, he meant to use humor to point out that “the survival of the fittest” starts with avoiding obvious self-destructive behavior, like drunk driving or driving too fast on icy roads. Our impatient nation’s desire for change and its wish to be “Great Again” has just given Mr. Trump America’s car keys. But in Trump’s election win, I fear that we also may have won “The Darwin Award.”
The election has newly energized and legitimized a truly stark and self-serving capitalistic economic model personal and corporate behavior. This is a unique Darwinian moment in American politics and business, a “survival of the fittest” moment, indeed. Whether we voted red or blue, we all voted for change. But will our species survive the change our votes now bring?
This election created a strong new alliance among self-serving corporate interests and an entrenched self-serving governing body in Washington, D.C., a Congress which will waste no time de-regulating industry and business, freeing it from the constraints of many environmental laws. I fear that 62,000,000 Americans have just voted to become unwitting Darwinian change agents, unwittingly voting for unwanted changes to future air quality and water quality, if not climate change itself.
The politics of business in support of the business of politics has trumped the consensus of worldwide scientific wisdom that climate change is real, and that it threatens life as we know it. Overnight, the swamp in D.C. has been drained and replaced by a stunning Trump administration bubble of “alternative facts” and “true lies.” But some kinds of truths are hard to deny.
The fossil record does not lie. All creatures become extinct when they cannot adapt quickly enough to a changing environment. A Darwinian experiment is in progress, and sadly, we are it. America has won “The Darwin Award.” Shame on us; I thought we were old enough to know better.
White Salmon, Wash.
In a recent propaganda piece masquerading as a news article (written by Walden sidekick Raelynn Ricarte; see Hood River News, Oct. 21, 2016), our congressman, Greg Walden, was quoted as saying that he is “is highly concerned … with a continuing overreach of authority that threatens the separation of powers in the U.S. Constitution.” Of course, Walden and many other Republicans were condemning the use of executive orders by President Obama. Walden went on to say “his actions are certainly restricting the economy and our freedoms” and he hoped that the new president would “restore the balance between the legislative, executive and judicial branches of the federal government.”
Now Trump has issued 20 Executive Orders in the first 10 days. And no end in sight to the endless decrees from the oval office. Where is Walden’s outrage? Where is his condemnation of the president ruling by executive order? Where is his concern for the constitutional balance of powers? No comment, not a whimper! Just goes to show us that Walden cares not for the constitution when his guy is in power. Can I get you a robe, Mr. Walden, as you seem incapable of seeing that the “emperor has no clothes?”