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Letters 10/19-10/26


Walden is Wrong

The Source Weekly has endorsed Democrat Jim Crary to replace Republican Congressman Greg Walden.

Thank you for recognizing that Mr. Walden is not delivering the kind of representation many people in this district want. Over the last 12 years Congressman Walden has acted like he's doing a wonderful job. I believe that when he came to office, he had good intentions. But the corrosive effect of vast amounts of money have changed his priorities and I don't believe he has our best interests at heart any longer.

This change of focus became acutely evident during the occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge outside of Burns. Mr. Walden on numerous occasions appeared to side with the outlaw Bundy faction now on trial in Federal Court in Portland. Giving our Federal Lands back to the state is not what the majority of people in Burns wanted, and it's not what the majority of Central Oregonians want either.

Taking the side of people who use the wearing of firearms in public to intimidate local citizens is wrong. Taking the side of people who view force as a solution is wrong. Taking large sums of money from people like the Koch Brothers is wrong. Finally, Mr. Walden has said nothing while Donald Trump has turned the GOP campaign into a spectacle where he regularly incites political violence, and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims...1.6 Billion members of an entire religion from entering the U.S.

That is wrong! Make change happen now. Vote for Jim Crary for Congress.

—Dave Stalker

Measure 100

We strongly support Measure 100 to stop the sale of parts and products from endangered species within the state of Oregon. Action is required immediately if we are to save these vanishing species for future generations. Here are a few statistics that make the case for voting Yes on 100:

35,000 elephants are killed every year. There are only 300,000 left in Africa. The United States is second to China in the retail market for ivory contributing greatly to the decimation of the elephant population.

There are only 3,200 tigers left in the wild.

In 2015 alone, poachers killed more than 1,300 rhinos in South Africa out of a population of 28,000

All sea turtle species (seven in total) are threatened with extinction.

Wildlife trafficking is a multi-billion dollar business. Well financed and connected networks of poachers, traffickers and corrupt officials exploit weak governance and insufficient enforcement controls to profit from illegally-traded wildlife goods. This trafficking fuels transnational crime and undermines global security. Support of Measure 100 will help combat these wildlife crimes and save at-risk species from trade in their parts and products in the Oregon market.

Having seen many of these magnificent species, we, as parents and grandparents, wish to preserve them for our children and grandchildren. Please vote Yes on 100 in November!

—Tim and Christine White

In Response to, "Stuck in the Muck," (10/6)

When it was announced that local private developers had purchased the ground beneath Mirror Pond, it looked like it was as a public service or gift to the community.

Then we learned that the developers were considering residential or commercial development in and around Mirror Pond. Really, not a big surprise.

Now we know that they want the community, City of Bend primarily and the Parks and Recreation Department to help finance their project. I say "Not one dam dime for Mirror Pond" because the City of Bend does not have the money for this project.

The current challenge for the City is that there are about 5,311 non-compliant or non-existent ADA curbs and ramps in the City. There are at least 3,000 miles of non-compliant or non-existent ADA compliant sidewalks in the City. These numbers come directly from the City of Bend.

This does not account for the proposed 2,300 acres for the Urban Growth Boundary which will be decided in the next few months. It also does not include the ADA requirement for the "Maintenance of Accessible Features i.e. facilities built since 1990, that require ongoing maintenance and rehabilitation.

It is likely that this work will cost taxpayers of Bend about $175 Million Dollars over twenty years. Once again, these current construction cost estimates for curb ramps and sidewalks were provided by the City of Bend and private contractors with an annual 3 percent standard increase.

The real answer for the funding of Mirror Pond maintenance and preservation is a Local Improvement District (LID).

The boundaries for the District should be Newport Avenue on the north, Reed Market Road on the south, Third Street on the east and the Deschutes National Forest on the west, which would include the Tetherow Development which is part of the proposed expansion of the Urban Growth Boundary, and which will likely be annexed by the City after the Urban Growth Boundary is approved.

The LID will provide funding for the maintenance and preservation of Mirror Pont for perpetuity, and those who benefit directly from its existence will be paying their fair share of the cost. If this proposal cannot be enacted, then the river should be set free.

—Brian M. Douglass

In Response to, "Ganja Grows Up," (9/28)

Isn't it ironic we now have white people getting rich doing exactly the same thing we have for years been putting people of color in prison for (manufacture, distribution and sale of marijuana) by the extremely targeted intentional public policy of mass incarceration. Now we have large disproportional number of people of color, particularly young adult males, in this country who can now be legally discriminated against because they have a felony conviction on their record. We can and do legally deny them housing, employment, education, public benefits and right to vote, continuing the cycle of oppression and racism.

Where is the outrage, particularly among the legalize marijuana advocates, many of whom consider themselves to be Liberals?

—Edward Schmidt

Edward—Ironic and outrageous, indeed. Check out our Smoke Signals column from Sept. 14 for info on commuting past sentences at the state and federal level–which could at least get some people out of prison sooner. And stop on by for your gift card to Palate.

- Nicole Vulcan, Editor

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