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Letters to the Editor 6-23-2016

NEVER FORGET

In response to Keith Southworth’s letter “Rape Confusion” [June 9], I was shocked when I read it. I’m not disputing that police should investigate rape, but the rest of his letter doesn’t support that point.

If you want to discuss rape, you need to understand what the word means. Saying things like, “a woman is raped against her will” and “forget it” make it sound like you might not be clear on what rape is. Rape is sex without consent — a psychologically complex crime, and not one to be dismissed in 48 hours.

Creating the law you describe for reporting is absurd. After 48 hours, is a rape no longer a rape? That’s like saying a murder isn’t a murder, and that the victims of the Orlando shooting should go on with their lives. But they are dead, and many women after being raped feel like they have lost everything. Suggesting that a rape simply disappears after 48 hours is nonsense. This aspect of “male entitlement” must end. Stop supporting the rape culture in our country. You seem to be the one who is confused.

Anzo DeGiulio, Freshman at South Eugene High School, Eugene

 

DTURD NOT AN INSULT

Anya Dobrowolski’s personal attacks [Letters, June 16] are hypocritical. At the April 7 Friendly Area Neighbors South Willamette Special Area Zone committee meeting, Dobrowolski, as co-chair, expressed hurt feelings and a lost night’s sleep after receiving personal attacks in response to an article. She said personal attacks shouldn’t be made and from meeting notes: “It deepens the us-versus-them sentiments.” I agree. 

Also, DTURD’s not crass. It stands for Downtown Urban Renewal District. I didn’t make it up. It’s an abbreviation used for years, not an insult. 

In my June 2 letter, I disagreed with the funding method, which diverts my property tax dollars to benefit private properties and businesses, not the proposed downtown projects. I pay taxes for schools, libraries, parks, infrastructure, public safety, jails and community services.

After 49 years and $100 million, DTURD hasn’t been successful. The city manager reported the entire plan area is still blighted. City staff suggested finding grants and other funding sources. The June 16 Viewpoint “Ongoing Boondoggle” brings up many important issues that need thoughtful examination so city funding can be done correctly.

Anya, we can discuss the downtown projects, or better yet, South Willamette rezoning, which needs a community-based refinement plan for successful growth and development.

Janet Bevirt, Eugene

 

COST OF PSEUDOSCIENCE

I grew up in Texas. I am well acquainted with the wish to ignore science when it gives me answers I don’t like. I grew up surrounded by people who think exactly that way, and who are primed to gobble down junk science that tells them the ridiculous things they’re emotionally invested in are true. I don’t hate those people; they’re my friends and my family and I love them. But they’re wrong, and it matters, and their wrongheaded beliefs do real harm. Pseudoscience inflicts genuine pain and costs lives.

Almost 10 years ago, when I moved to Eugene, I thought I’d left all that behind. Here, people read. They think. They respect the scientific method. That was my favorite thing about Oregon in general, and Eugene in particular, and I told lots of folks that when I moved here from Texas, I traded up.

So what is it with all these anti-vaxxers here?

I will not darken the doorstep of the David Minor Theater to see Vaxxed, and shame on them for booking it. I imagine the same rationalizations they used to justify their decision would fit just as neatly with Holocaust denial, or with Stormfront’s educational materials on white supremacy. Pseudoscience is never hard to find.

But it does make me sad. I thought I’d left that behind when I left Texas.

Andrew Wakefield is a disgraced huckster. Do a little reading on his “research,” and why it was retracted, and why he lost his license to practice medicine. And don’t be gullible. Refusing immunizations is a deadly mistake. 

Don’t swallow the pseudoscience, and don’t give the David Minor Theater your business if their idea of how to make money is to hurt the community in pursuit of a buck.

Come on, Eugene. Get it together. Don’t make Texas look good.

Doyle Srader, Eugene

EDITOR'S NOTE: David Minor Theater writes on its website that the "views expressed in this film are not represented by this theater."

 

MISFIT COMMUNITY

I went to the Voivod concert on Thursday (with truly amazing opening bands King Parrot, Child Bite and Hiding). The music was a mix of thrash, prog, punk and black metal, and as I sweated with, slammed into and cheered alongside the crowd, I was as struck as I was by my very first punk/metal show — flooded by a sense of support, shared interest and mutual enjoyment, and as an almost perpetual outsider, that I’d found my misfit community! 

I just want to thank the incredible artists, the venue and basically the audience — my unique, cathartic, non-homogenous family, who might knock you down, but who are just as quick to pick you up and make sure you are OK! Thank you WOW Hall, Boreal, Old Nick’s, Wandering Goat and my crowd!

Steve Boggs, Eugene

 

VEXED ABOUT VAXXED

Before you spend money going to Vaxxed, read the reviews and read what happens if a person gets measles, mumps or rubella. You may decide to spend the money on a lottery ticket.

Dick Ricketts, Eugene

 

ISLAM VS CHRISTIANITY

Christians haven’t been running around killing people in the name of Christianity since the Crusades. The Muslims have been killing each other in the name of Mohammed since 700 AD. Now they are killing us, too. How can Tim Hilton [Letters, June 16] compare what Christians did then to what the Muslims are doing now? 

Tim is a moron. Sorry, Tim, but Christianity teaches to love your enemy and the Muslims teach it is their duty, or jihad, to kill infidels. That’s you and me, Tim. So Islam is worse than Christianity.

Thomas Laird Twyford II, Eugene

 

MISSING HAT

I am offering a reward for the return of Old Man Dancing’s hat with pins taken from my cart at the Seneca Goodwill Sunday afternoon, June 12. “Old Man Dancing” is still faintly visible under the front pins.

That hat is part of my dance. I need it back with all pins. The Weekly has my phone number for reward instructions. Please return it and get some good karma points. I am not angry and I have already forgiven you. 

In keeping it, you also have collected some bad karma points. I will give you some good ones and dance for you.

John H. Williamson, Old Man Dancing, Eugene

 

RAPE CULTURE

Keith Southworth’s letter “Rape Confusion” is a great example of how deeply entrenched rape culture is and how easily it can cloud clarity. It is not up for debate that at least one out of every four women are sexually assaulted during their lifetime. Many have said that that statistic is conservative, given how many women don’t actually report. Southworth’s ability to empathize must be brutalized if he is saying things like “Alleged rape victims should either report to the police or move on in life.”  

This is incredibly callous and reeks of male privilege. Do you know everything about post-rape life, Keith? Do you think reporting to the police or an institution like the UO  (which has proven itself more loyal to perpetrators of sexual violence than to survivors) is easy? 

My suggestion: Listen to more women. No, really listen. Eventually you might learn that the law and large, male-dominated institutions do not have the interests of women’s bodily safety at the front of their concerns.

Dillon Thomson ,Eugene

 

HESITANT TO REPORT

In response to Keith Southworth’s letter [“Rape Confusion,” June 9], I question his reasoning behind the statement that “rape victims should either report to the police or move on in life.” He suggests that women should be required to report rape within 48 hours, but doesn’t consider the reasons why they may be hesitant to do this.

 Maybe they feel ashamed, humiliated or terrified as a result of this traumatic event. Maybe the rapist has threatened to harm them or their family. Maybe they worry that their report wouldn’t be taken seriously, which is a valid concern. Is it possible that some people are falsely accused of rape? Yes. It’s also true that when rape is reported several years after the fact, it is difficult to prove anything one way or the other. 

However, I strongly disagree with Southworth’s assertion that American women are likely to go about “creating delusions” and “convincing themselves” that a consensual sexual encounter was actually a rape. This is not strictly an “American” issue, and it is, unfortunately, more likely that a woman (or man) will be pressured into believing the opposite: that a rape was in fact an “OK” and “normal” sexual experience.

Kendra Lady, Eugene

 

BIGOTED COVER

Eugene Weekly had a point going with the cover about immigration opponents’ arguments, until it chose to write “RESPECT ARE COUNTRY.” That is equivalent to saying the people who hold those positions are stupid, don’t know the language they are attempting to force on immigrants and hypocritical. That is a bigoted generalization by the staff of the Eugene Weekly.

And in the article itself, a racially based political group led by a Senyor [sic] Carrasco is quoted with his picture in emphasis, “Taking away the language is the last blow of colonialism.” What Carrasco seems to not understand is who is colonizing whom, and whose society is being changed by whom. To make these blunt analogies between the genocidal activities of European colonists and today’s U.S. citizens reacting to social change is a distortion, to say the least.

H. W. Hutchins,Eugene

EDITOR’S NOTE: As noted in the article, “Respect Are Country, Speak English,” complete with grammatical error, was taken from an actual protest sign at a Tea Party rally.

 

EUGENE TO ORLANDO

“Everybody get out of Pulse and keep running”

Those eight words were the first I saw and I will never forget them. June 12, 2016, 2 am, Orlando. It took hours to sink in, to understand, to feel. Once it did, the tears began to well. My heart sunk. Sixty-three hours and 46 minutes after that moment where dancing and laughing crumbled into bodies falling and cries for help — I have finally picked up my pen and paper in hopes to digest.

Hopes to digest the fact that this world that holds so much love and beauty is the same one that holds a kind of hate that isn’t any way close to human. To hope to digest how sick and heartbroken my beautiful LGBTQ brothers and sisters feel. My heart and hands reach out to you all at this time. Your pain does not go unnoticed.

To the victims: Your names will not be forgotten, your potential will never not be missed and your tragedy will not be invalidated. What has happened to you has shook me to my core. The images I have painted in my head of you ducking on the ground and hiding in those bathroom stalls are all I can see. Forty-nine of you didn’t make it out of that club. 

To the ones who did: I can’t even begin to imagine the trauma you are suffering. I hope you can find a way to heal your internal wounds.

To the shooter, whose name I don’t even want to speak: I’m not going to say I hate you. I’m not going to say these things because even they have an underline of emotion. What you did held no emotion. What you did was not human. I only am not saying I hate you because now is not the time for hate. That is all I will say to you, whatever kind of monster you are.

Finally, to my people: my loved ones, my community, the ones who I dance with on Saturday nights. Now is the time to join hands, to spread love and to fight against the spewing hatred. My mind is scared, my spirit is sad, but my heart is full.

From Eugene to Orlando: I promise you your light is being honored.

 Quincy Wise-Dorbolo,Eugene

 

 

VAXXED AGAIN

Vaxxed is a must-see documentary for anyone concerned about the exponential rise in autism occurring in our children today. The film looks at the hard proof the CDC doesn’t want you to know because it destroyed data showing a significant risk of autism for babies vaccinated with he MMR vaccine, notably African-American males. 

How did this information come to light if the CDC published its findings in 2004 showing no link in the risk of autism? That’s the question this film answers with the testimony and hard data from the lead scientist, Dr. William Thompson. He is recorded admitting they found significant links between the MMR and autism yet the other four scientists colluded to hide and destroy the evidence. Thankfully, Dr. Thompson saved the original data. It infuriates me that CDC would commit fraud against the American public. How can I best weigh the health risks and benefits for my children when I’m being lied to from the top down? I have the right to know the truth about what goes into my child’s body. I am so glad the David Minor Theater is showing this and has extended the showing another week. Go see this movie!

Nicole DeGraff, Springfield

 

END SELFISHNESS

The obstacles to a new and better world for people everywhere can be summed up in one word, selfishness —national, racial, political, religious, economic and individual selfishness. There is a growing movement of aspiration towards a new vision for better ways of life for all people everywhere in the world. New values to live by are desperately needed if our planet as we know it is to survive. Selfishness can be transcended and the vision of a better world can become factual.

What are some values people and nations can cultivate in order to insure a more compassionate and equitable world? A sense of justice, which recognizes the rights and needs of all. A spirit of cooperation based on practicing goodwill. A sense of personal responsibility for group, community, national and global affairs. A love of truth essential for a just and progressive society. Serving the common good through the sacrifice of selfishness, because what is good for all is good for each individual. The principle of sharing, because there is enough for everyone if the resources of the planet are distributed fairly and justly. 

We must work together to break the chains of injustice, economic disparity, racism, inequality and exploitation of people and the planet. We can choose to work together for a better community, nation and planet and do so with a spirit of selflessness. For the sake of our planet and for future generations we must demand these values from our leaders and practice them ourselves.

Christopher Michaels,Eugene

 

SUPPORT REGGAE

I just want to first off say that I am a long time reader of Eugene Weekly. It is certainly a great way to find out what’s going on here in Eugene. 

I noticed in the most recent issue an ad regarding an upcoming show in Eugene at the Hi-Fi Music Hall. In your most recent issue I noticed that the upcoming Israel Vibration show at the venue was advertised as a June 17 show. The Israel Vibration show is actually scheduled for June 22 (I know because I already have my ticket).

In the world of reggae music, Israel Vibration is one of the foundation bands that helped solidify the genre. Israel Vibration has been touring the world and playing in front of sold-out events around the globe for generations. To have such a band come to play in our small town is truly awesome. 

The reggae genre has been suffering in the Northwest in the past few years and can use all the help it can get to get the word out when such events take place, hence my writing this. I do hope there is some sort of correction made, in a proper way that will be noticed by Eugene Weekly readers.

A band of this magnitude is worthy of a Eugene Weekly cover! If there is no room for the cover slot, I would hope a full page or at least an ad the size of the current Hi-Fi Music Hall ad would be in order. Let’s let the people know of this great band coming to our town. 

William DeWitt, Eugene