Letters in the Editor's Mailbag.
Barnhart only choice
When Secretary of State Bill Bradbury created the new House District 11, he put two sitting state representatives inside it. That means that voters have to choose between Phil Barnhart and Al King in the May primary election.
The choice is easy for me: Barnhart is the clear choice to continue representing us in Salem.
Barnhart knows that good jobs start with a good education, and that's why Barnhart fought for adequate funding for our schools. He knows that a healthy community is a safer community and that's why Barnhart has fought against cuts to health services for seniors and for prescription drug benefits. If you value good jobs, health care and great schools, Barnhart is the only choice.
Please join me in casting your vote for Phil Barnhart in House District 11.
Propaganda clouds past
I was bemused by the advice given by one of The Register-Guard's readers (letters, April 26) that Israel should "return the West Bank to Jordan, the Golan Heights to Syria and the Gaza Strip to Egypt so the Palestinians could use all three areas as their home state."
After the Six Day War, I served as a United Nations translator in Gaza City. The conditions imposed on the Palestinian population by Egypt were something I recall in my worst nightmares. When Israel returned Sinai to Egypt following the Camp David Peace accord, Egypt showed no interest in continuing to administer Gaza.
In the early 1970s, King Hussein expelled Yasser Arafat and the Palestine Liberation Organization from Jordan, slaughtering thousands of Palestinians in the "Black September" massacre. Ironically, this predominantly Palestinian kingdom of Jordan is not seeking to re-administer the stormy West Bank.
When the Syrians gained control of the Golan Heights with the fall of the Turkish empire, they turned it into one huge army base - a stronghold against both Israel and neighboring Jordan.
How quickly we forget all this under the barrage of propaganda. Historically, there has never been a Palestinian state. Just the tragic manipulation of these people, by their own people, into never-ending camps and murderous martyrdom.
I call on all people of good will, Israelis and Palestinians, to make a clear declaration for peace and co-existence. Only this can ensure the survival - and thriving - of both sides. Those who seek to continue the path of hatred, violence, murder and terror must be compelled to leave. The solution proposed by the newspaper's reader is surely well-intended but lacks familiarity with the complex economic and cultural realities of the Middle East.
An easy decision
The Register-Guard's April 28 editorial addressing opportunities to protect more of Oregon's remaining pristine public lands raises a valid question: Why have surrounding states included more land in America's national parks system than we have? Crater Lake National Park was established in 1902. One hundred years later, we should rightly wonder if there isn't more we could do.
Is Oregon less beautiful or ecologically significant than Washington and California? Do we Oregonians have less concern for our natural wonders than citizens in other states? Of course not. The answer to both questions is a resounding no.
One of the most prominent proposals for a worthy addition to America's national parks system is right here in Oregon - Hells Canyon. The Hells Canyon-Wallowa Mountain country in northeast Oregon has inspired every person who has ever seen it. Without question, it is one of the most rugged, ecologically diverse and recreationally bountiful places on earth, and it has been proposed as a national parks system addition since the 1930s.
The legacy of Chief Joseph, the majesty of the deepest canyon on Earth, and the ecological pathway for wolves and other endangered species deserves better than what has been afforded by the U.S. Forest Service. The mismanagement of Hells Canyon has been a matter of major controversy for years, and that in itself cries for the designation of the proposed Hells Canyon/Chief Joseph National Preserve.
The Register-Guard's editors are right - this is not a difficult decision.
Profit may not be motive
Carolyn Chambers is a smart business woman and a generous contributor to our community. I like that in a community leader.
Regarding her purchase of the Springfield property (Register-Guard, April 30), it occurs to me, without an ounce of inside information, that making a profit may not be her motive. I'd like to think this is another instance of her generosity. In this case because she knows about property, and is willing to invest in an iffy proposition, she understands what the community needs and wants to support those efforts.
It is her way also of giving a wake-up call to other wealthy people in this area. "Give back to your community" is what she is saying. After all, how much can any one of us accumulate before it becomes just too much?
Protect Island Park
The article on development next to Island Park (Register-Guard, April 30) failed to mention the numerous beautiful large trees and wildlife habitat that the developers could choose to destroy in order to provide "upscale" development for us "down-to-earth" Springfield residents.
Island Park, with its abundance of trees and wildlife, including herons and occasional bald eagles, is a beautiful place. The north end of the site (between West A and B Streets) now has unobtrusive medical buildings with big trees and nice landscaping, creating additional wildlife habitat that blends in very nicely with Island Park and the river.
I urge everyone who cares at all about trees and birds to visit this site and give their input to the city of Springfield and the Chambers Communications Corp. Additionally, Springfield's "down-to-earth charm" and relative lack of upscale, unaffordable development is what I think makes it a nice place to live, and I do not see the need for upscale, multistory development, especially by a river that should be accessible to all.
Hunnicutt a wise choice
David Hunnicutt is the wise choice for Oregon Court of Appeals in the May primary election. Hunnicutt has been the property rights attorney at Oregonians In Action for six years. He has fought in the courts and within state agencies for landowners who are having their private property rights stolen from them.
Hunnicutt promoted Measure 7 to compensate property owners whose property values are substantially lowered by land use laws. Many attorneys believe Hunnicutt's opponent for the Oregon Court of Appeals presented a very weak and inadequate defense of Measure 7, which resulted in a court ruling that has kept Measure 7 from going into effect.
Hunnicutt knows that our constitution says that people make the law, not the courts. To choose wisely, choose Dave Hunnicutt for Oregon Court of Appeals.
Bush's knowledge deficit
The problem with letting the Republicans run the country is that when they take over, the surplus disappears, they try to pay for their tax cuts for the rich by cancelling college student loan programs, and the only promise they seem capable of keeping is that we will be in a perpetual state of war.
Speaking of our perpetual state of war, why haven't the U.S. media discussed the interesting fact that our military bases in Afghanistan line up along Unocal's long hoped-for oil pipeline route?
Oh, I forgot - they have no reason to do that because this war isn't about oil, it's about making the entire world safe for Americans. What it is accomplishing is to make the world spectacularly unsafe for anyone living in it.
There is a serious knowledge deficit in the thinking of the present administration. Its members need to be informed of the basic fact that until the world is safe for everyone, no one will be safe. Since President Bush's understanding of foreign policy seems to be limited to what his speech writers tell him to say, it's too bad no one thought to tell him that.
Oily red herring
Rumor has it that the Bush administration's failed attempt to drill for oil and gas in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was a red herring, throwing Americans off the scent of a broader attack on their public lands in the name of federal "energy policy." We need to sniff (or snuff) it out!
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|Publication:||The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)|
|Date:||May 4, 2002|
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