Letters to the Editor for November 10

HRMS students warn against drinking and drugs

John

The holidays are a time when people tend to drink. A lot. We need to be more careful of what choices we make, despite the opportunities.

You can say no, do something else, or just leave if you feel that you can’t make the right decision. DUIs are up to $10,000 and no one should take that risk by making a bad decision.

John Beckman,

8th grade

Alexa

You shouldn’t drink and drive during Thanksgiving. If you are going to drive, don’t drink, and if you are going to drink, don’t drive.

You can just ask somebody to drive you home or sleep over.

Alexa Ramos,

6th grade

Sylvaine

Drugs and alcohol tend to increase violence. When children do drugs and drink, they have a better chance of becoming addicted to it, which will cause them to possibly be more violent.

Drunk driving also increases danger, because people can crash if they are driving while drunk.

I think people should ditch drugs and alcohol, and pay more attention to helping their society, and keeping loved ones safe.

If people stopped drinking and doing drugs, everyone would be kinder, and the world would be a better place.

Sylvaine Farr,

6th grade

Sam

Underage drinking costs the state of Oregon an estimated $600 million per year. Oregon doesn’t want to pay for this, and this is taxpayer money being used.

Make sure to encourage your kids, their friends, or even your friends to not drink before 21 if you don’t want your money being used for others’ bad decisions.

Sam Fauth,

8th grade

Brooke

Hi, my name is Brooke and I am 11 years old. I go to the Hood River Middle School and I want to say eat more pie, don’t get high.

Please don’t do drugs or drink and drive.

Brooke Page,

6th grade

Post-election thoughts

It is mid-day on November 6. In a few hours, we will know who will lead the country at local, state and federal (Congress) levels. Results will matter deeply! They will shape the U.S., and the world, in fundamental ways.

When we reach the aftermath of the election, let’s not forget that we are more alike than we are different — as the late Senator John McCain so poignantly reminded us.

No matter whom we voted for, or who wins, let’s commit to some simple fundamentals:

Dialogue is the most powerful bridge between different views

Family and community come before politics

Focal actions matter

Democracy is worth preserving and requires continued participation of all citizens

There is a tomorrow. Let’s make it bright, above and beyond an imperfect political system.

Antonio Baptista

Mt. Hood

Truth? Really?

I read the Nov. 7 letter to the editor, “No truth,” and wondered if it was written by someone other than the highly intelligent, retired physician Donald Rose. I wonder which regulations Mr. Rose found disturbing enough to prompt his letter?

He cites one expert who stated that 31 separate models generated by other experts are all wrong. Would a doctor expect a patient to accept his opinion when 31 other doctors came to the opposite conclusion? We should speak about the truth and history when we consider whether regulations are beneficial for MOST people.

Science confirms that burning coal releases mercury, lead, arsenic and cadmium, among other toxins.

Should we still push to maximize coal mining and burning when it is probably the most harmful form of energy production?

Several public water supplies around the world have become toxic through mining operations.

Should we eliminate regulations for water discharge from mining because regulations affect a few hundred jobs, but provide safe water to thousands?

President Trump and the EPA recently opened the Arctic for underwater oil drilling. Arctic waters are some of the most pristine in the world. Twenty-five years after the Exxon Valdez oil spill, the area has still not recovered.

BP paid out $20 billion for the damage it caused in the Gulf, yet trades at $43 a share today. It seems greed and billion-dollar corporations trump protection for the people and planet.

History repeatedly shows that business decisions aimed at maximizing profits continue to hurt the environment irrevocably.

Given the lying, cheating and greed, it feels we are heading in the wrong direction regarding regulations. We surely cannot depend on business leaders to make the right choices.

Steve Kaplan

Hood River

‘Weaponized’?

I was taken aback by Greg Walden’s comment in the Hood River News interview when he said, “Town halls were being weaponized by Indivisible and resistance movements.”

Weaponized? What an outrageous choice of words to characterize the First Amendment right of the governed to peaceably assemble and to petition the government for a redress of grievances; a right that is supposedly guaranteed by our First Amendment, but apparently not by our Second District government representative.

Weaponized? I can’t for the life of me see how having to listen to angry constituents is anything close to the gun violence and weaponization of synagogues, nightclubs, concerts, schools, churches, theaters and workplaces that Americans have suffered through just this year. A level of violence that no other advanced nation experiences, and against which our national politicians have done exactly nothing.

Jennifer Ouzonian

Hood River

Face HRC budget facts

First, I want to shout out a big thank-you to our county commissioners who have gone the extra mile to keep residents of Hood River County informed about the budget crisis that our county is now in.

I attended the budget workshop at the Hood River Valley Adult Center and came away with a clear understanding of what the crisis is, and what our options are to address it.

The bottom line is, we need roughly $5 million more in revenue per year to ensure that our needs as residents can continue to be met to the level we enjoy now.

Of course we may, as residents, feel we don’t need as many services as the county provides.

But I am not one of those who might think that way. I value and appreciate the services I receive, and want them to continue.

Given the data I saw tonight, cutting services is not the way to go. Despite the fact that demands on services have increased over the last 10 years, the county has been able to keep its costs relatively flat over that same period of time. That’s pretty remarkable, and a tribute to the hard-working people who are employed by our county.

Tributes aside, it’s clear from the numbers that our county is running on bare-bones, and that there’s really nothing that can be cut … unless we’re willing to do without many of the services the county now provides.

I, for one, am not interested in going that route.

That leaves increasing revenues. How do we do it?

Aside from cutting costs, four revenue-increasing options were presented. Two involved putting a levy on properties (essentially a property tax), and two involved implementing a sales tax.

A sales tax would be the least burdensome, in that all residents, as well as tourists, would share in the cost.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who is not happy about the situation that we’re in. The reasons are complex. Regardless, the fact remains, it’s clear that we need to deal with it. So, we need to face the facts.

Pat Case

Hood River

Kindness appreciated

Last Friday afternoon, we went to Walmart to buy shorts; unfortunately, our money was left at school. Thank you to the kind gentleman who paid for our purchase. He was nice to us.

Trish Leighton and

Skyler Cutshall

Hood River

Slow down

I doubt that you care about the wildlife that you hit and kill with your car, but the next time, it could be someone’s pet or (God forbid) their child trying to cross the street. Please take a moment to think about something other than yourself and slow down.

Julie Trantham

Hood River



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