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Byline: The Register-Guard

Do what needs to be done

What is it exactly the Lane County commissioners are planning to do?

The city of Eugene has a police oversight committee. I recommend that we vote in a county commissioner oversight committee, pay them all $20,000 a year and take away any perks they currently get. They seem to not be able to make decisions at their current pay rate. Why waste the money that could be better used by opening beds back up at the jail and putting deputies back to work?

It is childish and stupid that they are wanting to add assistants at a time like this. Will the assistants help the county? No! We don't need them. Let's put this money where it will help clean up crime in Lane County and put hardworking men and women back to work. Let's quit wasting time trying to make a decision; there's been a year to plan for.

Come on, commissioners - wake up and do what needs to be done. Quit making excuses to put the money where it needs to go.

Adam Hart


Time for a recall or three?

Criminals of Lane County, rejoice! Three of our county commissioners, in their infinite wisdom, have decided that having personal assistants is more important than following Oregon law and keeping violent offenders locked up. The arrogance and lack of regard for the well-being of those who voted them into office is truly appalling.

I think the commissioners and their families should hope and pray that their addresses aren't public information, in case the released violent offenders show up on their doorsteps to offer their thanks in person.

Is it time for a recall, or three?

Toni Cleland


Commissioners act like big banks

The majority of the Lane County commissioners - Pete Sorenson, Rob Handy and Bill Fleenor - are misbehaving as badly as the big banks.

The banks took our bailout money and squirreled it away, doing little to relieve the credit crunch. The county commissioners have taken $120 million in federal (that is, taxpayers') money over the next four years. What are they doing with this money?

Just like the big banks, the county commissioners are squirreling the money away. They can't bring themselves to spend even 10 percent of this money to beef up our jail capacity to keep felons off the street. And, to make matters even worse, they are expanding their personal staffs.

Shame on them.

Ed Kemp


Could concerts save California?

I'm wondering if this would work.

Since California is in need of being bailed out by U.S. taxpayers, why couldn't there be a benefit concert for that debt-plagued state?

There are many talented stars who live in the Hollywood Hills. Perhaps Bruce Springsteen and other performers could each hold a concert around this nation, with the proceeds going to get California out of debt.

Maybe performers who live elsewhere, such Willie Nelson and all the country-western stars who perform in Tennessee or the regulars who have shows in Las Vegas could join in this project.

That way, those who want to attend a star-studded show would be happy to purchase tickets and wouldn't consider themselves being taxed.

People going to Las Vegas would not be guilt-ridden if they went there to bail out a needy state.

Sounds like a "win-win" solution to me.

Julie Brown Eugene

Sports argument doesn't wash

I was once a rabid sports fan. Not so much over collegiate competitions did I enthuse as the science and psychology of professional athletes. Therein, it seemed to me, the grand drama of the human condition could be inspected in all its mazy complexity.

Football, in its season, was the adrenaline drip to my imagination. The fantasy of the fantastic interception, reversing offense and defense, the roar of the crowd - this was my precious, personal daydream.

The years have modified my sports mania considerably. This past decade, I haven't given a whit for the outcome of the Super Bowls. The ridiculous uniforms and preposterous posings of the players all now seem like the little toy soldiers of a childish morality.

For the realization has come that sports, like war and crime, occupy a shadow world of morality. The rules of ordinary civilized behavior are set aside, or considerably distorted, for these sorts of activities.

Sports advocates will argue that far from impeding civilization, sports augment civil behavior by providing an escape valve for the often-extreme pressure humans experience to gang together and go rumble with rival gangs.

Such an outlet, they point out, sublimates our fascination with amorality in a controlled environment where it can provide harmless entertainment for millions who might otherwise turn to crime or war. That is to say: "The amorality of sports makes it easier for sports fans to behave morally in their everyday activities."

I, for one, don't buy this argument for a second.

David H. Tyson


Deputies can work at the counter

There are more than 400 beds vacant in our penal system of Lane County. Commissioner Pete Sorenson said there were only two or three persons who requested opening the 84 jail beds.

I was one of more than 90 people who gave testimony that public safety is No. 1. I don't know which meeting he was at. I appreciate that the budget committee and commissioners added five more deputy sheriffs, but what will they do? They can not put criminals in jail! We have a revolving door as it is. I guess they could work at the counter to process concealed weapon permits.

They also voted in additional assistants for the commissioners. Even Rep. Peter DeFazio is outraged!

Thanks to Commissioners Bill Dwyer and Faye Stewart for declining the additional help.

I am glad they are able to go get their own coffee and steno pad!

Margaret Thumel


Help homeless young people

On May 18, youth and adults from Looking Glass New Roads traveled to Salem for a Runaway and Homeless Youth rally on the steps of the Capitol. New Roads is a drop-in center for at-risk youth where youth can connect with adult mentors who will help them find a stable housing situation, a new job, counseling or whatever they need to better their lives. New Roads also has a school for those seeking their high school equivalency degrees and a clinic for immediate and free health care. Our mission is to help these teens get back on their feet and to realize their dreams that at times seem so unattainable.

While it is a fact that during these hard times some programs need to be cut, we must remember that there are 24,000 homeless youth in Oregon. Contrary to the stereotype that youth are homeless because they want to be, most are fleeing abusive situations. They leave their homes to survive.

Many realize that homelessness needs to be solved now, including Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy, who spoke at the rally. However, in order to solve youth homelessness, we need the support of the whole community.

Melissa Ruhl Eugene

Don't cut trees for EmX

International Way is a small loop just outside of the Gateway complex. It's a low traffic area well served by Lane Transit District bus and shaded by rows of beautiful trees - for just a little bit longer. Destruction teams have begun chopping down dozens of trees, whole swaths of them in fact, to install EmX bus lanes! EmX lanes exist to allow these buses to avoid being delayed by traffic, but International Way has no traffic!

Considering the number of trees to be destroyed and the millions that will be spent on this boondoggle, I believe we have an example of the government efficiently engaging in larceny and vandalism simultaneously.

Stop this criminal destruction of this beautiful area, and stop wasting our money!

Ben Hallert


Prayer example not persuasive

Regarding the May 20 letter by Tony McElfresh: This was interesting reading, until the part where his prayer saved his life. So what happened to the more than 50 people who were killed in the eruptions of Mount St. Helens? Did they not pray? Did they pray to the wrong god? Were they of the wrong religion, sect, denomination or other factors? Were they unworthy of being saved?

We can claim that God called them to heaven, which is often used when people die in such incidents. Maybe McElfresh should be disappointed that God did not claim him.

These stories of being saved read well for the believers, but to nonbelievers they are a farce. One has to wonder if The Register-Guard prints such letters just to see what response they may generate.

Ironically, an insurance company would say that such death and destruction was "an act of God."

Frank Keavy


Better mileage, but more miles

Environmental groups and the media are treating President Obama's bill to raise fuel efficiency standards from 27.5 mpg to 35.5 mpg as a solution to climate change.

A Register-Guard editorial even says this will lower consumption by the equivalent of "taking 177 million cars off the road" (we have 200 million cars in this country).

What people fail to recognize is that since the dawn of the industrial age, when James Watt patented his first steam engine in 1769, efficiency hasn't lowered energy consumption; it has raised it.

In 1865, English economist Stanley Jevons noticed that since Watt's steam engine was five times as efficient as previous models, it led to robust economic growth, thereby increasing overall consumption. This observation led to what is now known as the Jevon's Paradox.

We have doubled both vehicle efficiency and oil consumption in this country since the 1970s.

Wind, solar, nuclear and a carbon tax to encourage conservation are the way to go, not efficiency alone.

Zachary Moitoza


The big `O' is appropriate

I find the big gold "O" an appropriate and dignified identification of the university stadium. It is in proper scale for that huge building; it clarifies that this is a distinct part of the University of Oregon; and its design is in good taste. I don't care for the commercial signs within the stadium, but the outside symbol is not an advertising gimmick.

The big "O" tells a visitor that this sprawling gray mass of a building has some character and belongs to a university family.

Larry Gruman

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Title Annotation:Letters Editorial
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:May 23, 2009
Next Article:Planners aim to buy more time in city deal.

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