Opinion » Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor: June 26- July 3

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In Response to, Parking Study: More of Bend's Residents Should Think Twice About a Car Commute (6/28)

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I would love it if the city was more bike friendly, but it's not. People's attitudes around here toward bicyclists is one of entitlement. As in, "Roads were made for cars! Get outta the way, pariah!"

Add to it, their already horrible driving skills! No thanks, I'd rather not die today. I'll drive and pay. And that's not to say that drivers are the only problem. A lot of cyclists don't follow rules very well either, which unfortunately, propagates that negativity toward them.

— Amber Chenault, via facebook.com

Great points in the article. Nothing is free and it is reasonable to change the current broken system.

— Arden Dettwyler, via facebook.com

Here's the problem: The bus system isn't an option for anyone who doesn't work first shift due to its hours and depending on where a person works it might not be safe to walk home in the dark. And, well there's the fact that this is Central Oregon not California and we have snow, ice and freezing fog. As for cycling, the drivers out here have enough trouble not hitting other vehicles, let alone plowing over a bike.

— Carley Smith, via facebook.com

Hope they use the money to up the already millions of dollars in pay and bonuses for cities top tier salaries. They're starving. P.S. I hit a pothole so hard my engine light turned off. Saved me a trip to the mechanics shop. Thanks Bend.

— Nicole Jackson, via facebook.com

In Response to, Eyes on the Money (6/28)

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Dollars for driveways, every new one built means additional cars on the roads. Is it possible to assess a tax on that?

— Vicki Pennock, via facebook.com

Gas tax, duh.

— William Van Buskirk, via facebook.com

In Response to, Portrait of a Patriot (6/28)

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Patriotism? The devil's dictionary might define this as the tendency of an ill-informed general public to focus on nostalgia, sentimentality and a proto-nationalism at odds with the reality they face.

Here's a good example. Older readers here might recall that investigative reporter Seymour Hersh broke the news about a U.S. perpetrated war crime during the Vietnam War called the My Lai Massacre. Right wingers declared Hersh to be anti-American and unpatriotic for pointing out our atrocities halfway across the planet. Similarly, Hersh broke the story of the shocking torture occurring at the Abu Ghraib prison during the Iraq War circa 2005. Again, government officials like Dick Cheney and propagandists like the Fox News crowd dismissed Hersh as being unpatriotic for pointing out the illegal behavior of our military and CIA thugs.

So what is patriotism? For many it is a convenient way to view America in the same light of the son who defends his mother "Whether drunk or sober". To this crowd, America can do no wrong. I firmly believe these people to be in error. I believe them to be a malevolent prototype of the sort of warped and selfish nationalism that has infected nations from time to time.

We are on that same path with our foreign policy again today. Recently, Sy Hersh has published an investigative report about the purported Syrian government use of Sarin gas in early April this year in northern Syria. Readers may recall that the Trump response was to hurl patriot missiles at a Syrian airbase in retribution. This is typical of America's response to foreign sovereign nations that we dislike because they don't toe the line for American corporate interests.

So who is the patriot, the uber-American throwing missiles at our competitors? Or the man who points out that this is a war crime? You can guess where I come down on this matter.

Hersh's report on the purported, propagandized and most-likely-fantasy sarin gas attack had one media cheerleader at NBC claiming that hurling missiles made the President finally look like a real man. How pathetic.

— Ray Duray, via bendsource.com

Nothing but Empty Promises from Greg Walden

Rep. Greg Walden has repeatedly vowed to make health care more affordable and accessible for families in Oregon's 2nd Congressional District. At the same time, Walden has been a key player in secretly crafting the American Health Care Act (AHCA) which the House of Representatives narrowly passed in May.

According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Walden's AHCA bill will make health care so expensive that 23 million people will be in jeopardy of losing health care by 2026. 465,000 of those people will be Oregonians.

Over the next 10 years, Walden's AHCA plan will slash $1.1 trillion from Medicaid and the ACA programs. It is sadly ironic that more people have enrolled in the Medicaid Expansion program in Walden's district than in any other Republican-led district in the U.S. and nearly four out of 10 people living in his district have health care through Medicaid or the ACA marketplace.

So, when it comes to health care, Walden's vows are nothing but a bunch of empty promises and his constituents will be among the biggest healthcare losers in America. These losers include older people, women, children, people with pre-existing conditions and people with disabilities.

The biggest winners in Rep. Walden's plan will be billionaires, private health insurers and pharmaceutical companies. These GOP favorites will be handed $663 billion in tax cuts. Even people with employer-based health insurance will not be immune to the negative impact of Greg Walden's AHCA proposal since employers will not be mandated to provide health insurance or could make it so expensive that it will be unaffordable.

— Mary Love

LETTER OF THE WEEK

Mary, thank you for dissecting the proposed Senate Health Care Bill, initially brought forth by Rep. Walden. Obamacare has problems — even proponents of the law would agree with that as premiums spike and insurers leave the market. But as the Congressional Budget Office pointed out — the proposed bill doesn't do nearly enough to solve these issues. As Senators try to scrape together enough votes to pass their health care overhaul and as #45 urges them to focus on repealing first and replacing at a later date, we, too, wonder what Walden will say to his constituents once the fallout occurs and Americans are left, quite possibly, with no system in place. Come in for your gift card to Palate!

— Magdalena Bokowa, Interim Editor


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