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Letters to the Editor: 6-26-2014

AGGRESSIVE MALES

The main reason for humans' existence on this planet is just like any other organism: procreate, raise the kids, die. Men and women are supposed to have as much sex as possible from about age 15 to 40 so that we fulfill our life cycle. Some males will get very aggressive during these sex-soaked years, especially if they are in a high-competition area like sports. Then throw some alcohol into the mix and now you have aggression coupled with inhibition. 

Any woman who puts herself into a scenario such as partying with the three UO basketball players and believes one or all of them won’t get sexually aggressive with her is a damn fool! The human brain is not fully formed until we’re in our late 20s, and this incident with the jocks proves it. 

Ladies, you’re not going to change biology but you can save yourself from stupid thinking. All I’m saying is: If you don’t want to get stung, don’t stick your hand in the bee’s nest! 

Annie Kayner, Eugene

 

REHAB CITY HALL

It is not too late to rescue our old City Hall at a bargain cost and return it to a functional and attractive building. The cost of upgrading the old City Hall of 70,000 sq. ft. can be achieved for as little as $6 million, according to impartial outside experts. This pales in comparison to the $42 million associated with the mini City Hall of only 20,000 sq. ft. now under design. The cost saving in rehabbing the old City Hall is enormous and could be redirected to other critical public projects such as Civic Stadium or the Farmers Market.

The old City Hall is a sound public investment and should never have been abandoned and neglected. This raises the question: How can the city be trusted with any new facility if it cannot properly maintain what we now have? Will we be doomed to another cycle of deferred maintenance and see another public investment trashed as a pretext for new construction?

The city needs to do some repair work on its facilities-planning credibility. It can start by repairing our existing City Hall. 

Marston Morgan, Eugene

 

ATTACKING CYCLISTS

In reference to Jeff Warren’s letter “Bike Path Obstacles” in last week's issue [6/19]: As this is the third letter in recent months that I have noticed going after cyclists, I feel compelled to respond. For me the real issue is courtesy and how we relate to and show awareness of each other in modern-day life.

These trails are both built and considered by planners to be multiple-use trails, not bike paths, and are meant to be shared by cyclists, runners and pedestrians equally.

On the trails we have a great deal of rude and thoughtless cyclists. There is no arguing this point, but it also can be said that pedestrians often sprawl all the way across the trails, leaving little or no room for runners or cyclists. The same goes for runners who take up the whole trail, leaving no room for bikers or the runners themselves who have to run wide to get by the pedestrians.

Here is a thought for all who wish to blame others: Blaming is easy; being mindful of our behaviors takes work and effort. Pedestrians can show courtesy by leaving reasonable amounts of room for both runners and cyclists to use. Yes, you have every right in the world to be able to walk, relax and enjoy our trails, but in my opinion you also have the same level of responsibilities as the cyclists and runners. Cyclists can show more courtesy by slowing down when they see runners and walkers and acknowledging the rights of both.

Let’s enjoy our beautiful trails, Eugene, and these wonderful summer days. By acknowledging and respecting each other, we can all have better days and lives, both on our trails and off.

Niles S. Burton, Eugene

 

OFFENSIVE IMAGE

Your cover [6/19] is absolutely insensitive and offensive in light of the recent death of Jarah Nicole Graham, who died skateboarding while not wearing a helmet. You should be ashamed of yourselves for further encouraging that type of behavior.

Benjamin Rodefer, Eugene

 

WALK ON THE LEFT

Regarding the June 19 letter “Bike Path Obstacles”: Why not change the flow/direction of bike path users? Here’s how. Pedestrians, strollers and joggers, no matter which direction they are traveling, walk on the left side of the path. Bicycles, no matter which direction they are traveling, ride on the right side of the path. So basically peds are walking against bike traffic, and when the two encounter each other they can make an on-the-spot, civil decision on how to avoid each other, much like the old rule of walking against automobile traffic on a street that has no sidewalk.

Parks and Open Space could post signage reminding folks of this rule/courtesy at access points of the bike paths, and paint said rule on the path with direction arrows at various intervals. This is how they do it along the American River bike/pedestrian paths in the Sacramento area and it works well. Just a thought.

Rob Powell, Eugene

 

MADRE CAN HELP

Extremist militants have swept across northern Iraq, seizing cities and triggering mass displacement. U.N. human rights official Navi Pillay expressed “extreme alarm” at what she termed summary executions, rape, reprisal killings and shelling of civilians.

In parts of Baghdad, people are afraid to leave their homes, even to buy food. No one is more at risk than those who have spoken out for human rights and against religious violence.

The Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq (OWFI) has shelters for women fleeing domestic violence in many areas now under siege, and is mobilizing to move women and children to safer areas. New York-based Madre is collecting donations to help. 

As Madre Director Yifat Susskind points out, “This surge of violence signals a return to the worst days of the sectarian fighting triggered by the U.S. invasion. In fact, these divisions are directly traceable to policies advanced by the U.S. that exacerbated distinctions between Sunni and Shia, and pushed Iraq away from a secular government.”

You can help. Go to madre.org to donate and for more information, or send a check earmarked for Iraqi Women’s Emergency to MADRE, 121 W. 27th St. #301, New York, NY 10001.

Robert Roth, Eugene

 

IMPORTANT QUESTIONS

UO VP Robin Holmes recently rejected a request for support for professor Jennifer Freyd’s survey of experiences and perceptions of the UO campus climate. This study has the interest and shared surveys of a U.S. Senate committee and a White House task force, who asked Dr. Freyd to assist in piloting their work. I am sure they are intrigued by the university’s response.

I have published survey development and research on abuse and related topics for more than 30 years. I reviewed the measures in the current survey, several used in my own work. There is nothing unusual, unethical or problematic about the proposed study, and it asks important questions about the impacts of institutional and interpersonal betrayal. 

To attack this project for an imagined potential for bias by Freyd further diminishes an administration embarrassed by recent decisions, in local and national press accounts. That scandal occurred after this project was in development; Freyd’s advocacy is the logical result of her many years of widely respected scholarly work. If a famed cancer scientist used her data to testify against smoking, would her research now be criticized? If a professor who had authored a scholarly book on disabilities then advocated for his autistic son, would his work be recast as “biased”? 

Scholars around the country are watching with concern that faculty and students who dare to speak out at UO will fall victim to suppression and criticism. Please keep us informed by your reporting. 

Kathryn Quina, Ph.D., Hope, R.I.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Kathryn Quina is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and a professor of psychology and gender and women’s studies and associate dean at the Feinstein Providence Campus of the University of Rhode Island.

 

 

 

BARD IN THE PARK

Summer is upon us and that means another great Roving Park Players production is illuminating a lovely park near you. The first of two plays this summer, Shakespeare’s Richard III, is updated in modern attire, a heavy metal soundtrack and blistering performances by some of Eugene’s best actors. 

Don’t let the pervasive humor fool you: The Bard’s timeless themes of intrigue, power-grabbing, seduction and betrayal with an occasional beheading will not disappoint those well-acquainted with this tragedy. For those less familiar with the story, a glance at a synopsis is all one needs, as the actors deftly convey the sense and meaning of Shakespeare’s brilliant text. Local fencing master Sean Hayes choreographed the culminating fight scenes (which can be seen in this Community TV promo filmed during a rehearsal: wkly.ws/1s4).

Gather thy kinsfolk, pack a picnic and hie thee to one of the performances this week. All performances begin at 6 pm, are free, and canopies are provided in case it should rain. Ahhh, summertime and theater in our parks is one of the great pleasures in life. Huzzah! For more information, visit rovingparkplayers.org

Eva Kronen, Eugene