To cry, in relief

Love, Amor, Amore: it is not a four-letter word, it is 24-carat in God.

We are made from love, the highest, most high creator crated us out of pure love. However, there is a corruption that has gone on for a long time. Sex is not love, it is a gift from our Creator. In Hood River, I gaze at farm families, Mexican families, men and women holding hands, as they walk and talk with their children, their mates; they make me smile. I love LOVE. True love, that we all crave, that all of our brains are hard-wired with.

Abusers are unloving, uncaring; they are bullies. They have a sickness that I cannot cure. They need to bully. In the spotlight are men who have power, money or fame; they abuse and they bully. Who believes a woman when she say, 20, 30, 40 years later, that she was sexually assaulted? “Why did she wait so long?” “What did she DO to deserve it?” “What was she wearing?” The accusations fly, on a corporate jet!

Did an 89-year-old Oregon woman deserve to be sexually tortured? Who dare blame her? Let’s put the blame where it belongs! Defenseless children, and the weaker vessel, the feminine women have no power against a man! Well, I don’t.

I cry out, not for myself, my experience was far different than that of the numerous, countless women today who came forth. I cry out for the children that are tortured and sexually abused. Sadly, with shame, men have to recount their sexual abuse. One man told of his experience, a long time ago, but the are many, many, many, many young boys, men, who need to cry out! How many?! Even if it shames them. It will be a big relief for them, in my “humble” estimation.

Carol Oji

Hood River

Vote Metta

Six men and one woman have filed for three positions on the Hood River City Council in the upcoming November 6 general election. We recommend Jessica Metta for her professional experience, civic-mindedness and enthusiasm for doing great things in our community. A resident of Hood River since 2005, Jessica came here after graduate school, where she studied urban planning. She has been instrumental in the Gorge Tech Alliance and you may have seen her on stage in a number of theatrical productions. A mother of three young children, she is dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in our town.

And no matter who you choose for city council, please do vote.

Paula and Tom Ascher

Hood River

Woman, mom for Helfrich

As a woman and mother of a child who will be entering the public school system next year, education is a big issue for me. And I believe Jeff Helfrich will support and make much needed changes to the public school system.

His opponent, Anna Williams, is promising voters that she will “improve” public education if she’s elected to the Oregon Legislature. Obviously, she must know that the education issue polls well with voters. Knowing this, I must say that I’m stunned that Anna chose to align herself with Kate Brown in this election. Last week, both Anna Williams’ (and Chrissy Reitz’s) social media campaign pages contained posts proclaiming themselves as proudly aligning themselves with Kate Brown under the banner of “strong women” and inviting readers to attend a First Friday event at a store on Oak Street where participants could join them.

As a woman and a mom, I certainly appreciate taking pride in who I am and what I’m capable of. But to willingly align yourself with this governor and her failed record of leadership is extremely concerning to me. Under Kate Brown’s leadership of public education since 2015, Oregon continues to rank very near the bottom in national statistics. Kate Brown also refuses to take leadership on the public pension crisis that year after year siphons resources away from our kids in the classroom, and has no clear vision for how to improve outcomes for students. This tells me that a vote for Anna is a vote for more of the same weak leadership that we have seen from Kate Brown.

As a woman and a mom, I’ll be casting my vote this November for Jeff Helfrich for state representative. I hope you’ll join me.

Keely Kopetz

Hood River

Protect park

I really appreciated your editorial entitled “Go Yard” on Oct. 3. We definitely have been negatively affected by high housing and rental prices, but I feel that preserving parks, open space, native oak trees and habitat are really important for our future. I would also like to see the discussion move towards other options of buildable non-park land, as you thoughtfully suggested.

I also noticed a different letter to the editor last week about the poor condition of the park, implying it was not worth saving, but I beg to differ. My employees, friends, and customers use the park frequently and enjoy disc golfing there. I have also enjoyed watching birds there high in the canopy of mature trees, especially in the late summer, as there is a small stream. While the park could definitely use some native habitat restoration, clean-up efforts and park improvements, I think it is a diamond in the rough and is an important community asset.

Look at how Nichols Basin was littered with garbage and not so picturesque just a few years ago. We used to bring our dog there and it was just old asphalt, a convenient place for people to launch jet skis, littered and fenced off in areas. Now it is a gem for paddlers and beach goers. Groups like Columbia Riverkeeper are working on restoring native habitat and using the basin to educate kids about the ecosystem. Let’s look at options that don’t involve shrinking our green space. Once it is gone, we can’t get it back.

Miko Ruhlen

Hood River

Re-elect Blackburn

Paul Blackburn is a responsive and caring mayor for Hood River. I have contacted him about a traffic issue and he responded quickly. Also, and very important to me, Blackburn is a mayor for all the people of our town. I have recently seen him participate in public events on behalf of the Latino population and the Indigenous Peoples of our area. I’m grateful for this and I will vote for Paul Blackburn for mayor.

Lani Roberts

Hood River

Affordable housing?

Here we are in the Bowe Addition, suffering from the noise and vibration of Belmont being torn up again. The city indicated recently the repaving of the east/west section would end such work for at least two years. Oops! Let’s tear up and trench the same north/south section that has been removed, trenched, curbed and repaved several times before. Ah, the opportunity to disrupt traffic some more ...

Who pays for this disorganized comedy? The taxpayer in wasted tax use or the ultimate buyer through increased fees, higher sales commissions and/or participants who speculate on their own projects. As much support as this topic receives, all moneyed participants appear to “collude” to remove the possibility.

Gary McFarlen

Hood River

Ask questions

Having just read the UN Climate Report, I think all of us should ask two questions of candidates running for local, state and national office: Do you believe in human-caused climate change? If elected, how will you address this issue?

If we cannot make progress on this, all other issues will become very insignificant.

Tom Bottman

Hood River

Uniting idea

Thank you Kirby Neumann-Rea and the Hood River News for encouraging the city, the Housing Authority and the State of Oregon to put affordable housing at West Cascade (ODOT) Yard and preserve Morrison Park. It unites us all.

Lawrence Jones

Hood River

Thick D.C. dome

For 15 years, my wife Carolou and I lived in and near two of our national capitals, Annapolis and Washington, D.C., plus several national monuments like Gettysburg. We were frequent visitors to take in the history that had never quite come to life in our west coast grade school class rooms and texts.

Our favorite outing was to hop the Metro to D.C. to stroll the National Mall. Of course, the annual cherry tree display was awesome, but it was the poetry of our nation’s greats, engraved in stone, with their likenesses looking over our shoulders that brought all the words on the page to life.

The Mall is a two-mile long rectangle with the domed Capitol at the east, anchored by the imposing monument to George Washington at its center, and overseen by Abraham Lincoln from his elevated seat on the west. The north and south are flanked by world class museums of natural and social history, science and engineering, arts and letters, archaeology and more. A day at the Mall creates an itch that’s with one for life.

Lincoln’s location has provided him with an unrestricted view of the millions of citizens and visitors who have flocked to the Mall to celebrate the promise of our constitutional government and to object when it fails to meet its obligations to all Americans. What must he be feeling as he wonders what is going on under the great dome to the east?

Are the walls too thick and the windows too shuttered for the inhabitants to see what’s going on outside? Are they too dependent on the descriptions relayed to them by the denizens of K Street when they do lunch?

Russ Hurlburt

Hood River

Pray, then vote

It is time to pray. It is time to claim our oneness as created beings.

It is time to get back to our church, our temple, our synagogue, our wooded path. It is time to choose the peace that comes from knowing we are not in charge, from knowing that despite our differences, we are all one in our shared humanity.

Audre Lorde, Our Dead Behind Us: Poems, “It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.”

My prayer for our nation, our community of Hood River, is that we come together for the common good, act justly, love mercy and walk humbly together.

So take a moment, pray or think, or meditate; whatever you do, and then vote — for both are such a privilege!

Dorothy Sherwood

Hood River

Firearm safety

People with varying opinions about gun safety nearly all agree that anyone who is legally prohibited from purchasing a gun shouldn’t have access to one.

In the Oct. 5 Greg Walden/Jamie McLeod Skinner debate, Walden boasted about “fixing” a problem responsible for a Texas church shooting last year. The shooter had been convicted by court martial of domestic violence, but the Air Force failed to send this information to the nation’s instant background check system (NICS). He shouldn’t have been able to purchase his gun, but he was, and many died.

Walden voted in favor of bipartisan H.R. 1625 this year. He and other Republicans hail the bill as their great contribution to gun safety, but the two main points of the bill (the NICS and the National Violent Death Reporting System) were already law. H.R. 1625 did provide additional funding for them, but it’s a stretch for Walden to boast about his “fix.”

More importantly, Walden’s recent legislative record makes it clear that gun safety is not his one of his interests.

He voted to permit concealed carry reciprocity between states (H.R. 38), which the NRA had called its “highest legislative priority in Congress.”

The bill allows anyone authorized by their home state to carry a concealed handgun to also carry it in any other state that permits the carrying of concealed weapons — even people from the 15 states that allow domestic abusers to carry a handgun.

Walden also voted to prevent the Veterans Administration from submitting records of veterans with severe mental illnesses to the federal criminal background check system (H.R. 1181), thus allowing a person judged mentally incompetent by VA healthcare providers to purchase a gun.

He also voted to block a rule keeping firearms out of the hands of people deemed mentally incompetent by the Social Security Administration (H.J. Res. 40).

Walden’s “A” grade from the NRA also makes it clear: The NRA is getting what it pays for.

We need a representative who will work for firearm safety, rather than taking payments from the NRA to advance their “highest legislative priorities.” I’m voting for Jamie.

Sheila Gallagher


Working for who?

I have to laugh whenever I see Congressman Greg Walden’s billboards announcing that he is “working for us.”

Walden chaired the House Committee that voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act, including defunding Planned Parenthood. If his bill had passed, more than 400,000 low-income Oregonians would have lost their health care. I fail to see how that would have “worked for us.”

We need someone in Congress who will protect and expand affordable health care for all, not lead the effort to dismantle access to health care. That’s one of many reasons I’m voting for Jamie McLeod-Skinner.

Tracie Hornung


Charity help

For centuries, people have been donating to charity, supporting the causes and organizations most important to them. Sadly, charities are facing a crisis now — the number of people giving to charity is shrinking. Most charities rely on individual giving to survive. A new bill recently introduced in Congress, called the Everyday Philanthropist Act, helps make giving easier.

The Everyday Philanthropist Act allows employees to designate part of their paycheck to be given to charities of their choice pre-tax through a Flexible Giving Account. You, your family, or your coworkers could lower your taxes by giving to your favorite charity through your employer.

Help make charitable giving easier for the Everyday Philanthropist. Visit to learn more.

Jennifer Zisser, director,

The Greater Give

Madison, Wisc.

Destroyers Destroy! That’s what those dishonorable “proud-to-be-a-Democrat” Democrats were doing to our “proud Republican judge,” the Honorable Judge Kavanaugh. They were attempting to destroy his character, shaming that old adage that says, “Every man is innocent until proven guilty.”

But, being a “God fearing man,” they failed! Judge Kavanaugh did get “teary eyed” when he quoted his 10-year-old daughter, ”Daddy, do you want me to pray for Dr. Ford?”

Next month, we will have that, “what makes America great” privilege, via exercising our right to vote, choosing our citizens whom will best rebuild and lead our city, state and country, back on track: They are:

For Mayor of Hood River, vote Susan Johnson

For Oregon’s Congressional District 2, vote Greg Walden

For our State Representative, vote Jeff Helfrich

For our State Senator, vote Chuck Thomsen

For our Governor, vote Knute Buehler

Vote yes on Measures 105 and 106, to make Oregon greater!

I am proud to be an Oregon Republican, too! Aren’t you?

Alan Winans

Hood River

For Corry

Tuesday evening, last, I had the distinct pleasure of attending an informal fundraising gathering at the home of one of our local political leaders.

The purpose of this gathering was to meet Chris Corry, our candidate for our 14-1 legislative district and to listen to his ideas and thoughts regarding the ever-growing debt in Olympia. Also present were several other like-minded conscientious conservatives and our retiring Washington District 14-1 representative, Norm Johnson.

After having previously met Chris and wife and three children at the Trout Lake community parade, and during their visit to my home, I gladly offered my support to Chris and his campaign. I fully endorse and support his candidacy as the most competent and qualified candidate to fill the shoes of retiring Representative Norm Johnson.

Contrary to Chris’ uber-liberal opponent, Sasha Bentley, a tax-and-spend Democrat who seems to have an affinity for taxpayer funded “free stuff” with little knowledge and no regard as to how her program ideas and promises would be funded, Chris Corry would bring much needed business experience and business experience to the legislature. The Washington State taxpayers do not need or want another clueless tax-and-spend Democrat without economic policy understanding and lacking applicable business experience.

The state’s experience with Gov. Jay Inslee and the current Democrat-controlled legislature should be reason enough to support candidates like Chris Corry to bring fiscal sanity and responsible leadership to Olympia. You can help eliminate the milestone of tax-and-spend fiscal policies the Democrats have hung around our necks by supporting highly qualified, conservative candidates like Chris Corry. It’s your money being wasted!

I encourage you to support Chris Corry and his sound, experienced fiscal responsibility policies that will help bring much needed fiscal sanity to Olympia.

If you agree or require more information on Chris and his campaign experience, goals and policies, visit his website,

Tom Reynolds

Trout Lake

In support

We write in support of our editor’s op ed about Morrison Park. Community space is vital. Others have written opinions about the low sale price; we write about the importance of preserving open space, not only for current city and county residents, but for all future generations who live and visit here. Morrison Park is a treasure on the Columbia River. Can a value be placed on that? Open space here is at a premium and we need to conserve what we have.

We are willing to step up and help maintain Morrison Park, and ask other concerned people to join in that effort.

Please join us in sharing your input and your labor to keep this jewel in our town. Do you think our local governments are not hearing what residents think is important? Please let them know.

Victor and Pamela Roberge

Hood River

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