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Letters to the Editor

May 8, 2014 01:00 AM


May 1, 2014 01:00 AM


Donating $400,000 to help unhoused people in the Eugene area is a very positive step in a humane direction, but so much more needs to happen. For example, Utah has moved 2,000 people off the streets and reduced chronic homelessness by 78 percent in the last eight years by simply providing people with apartments.

April 24, 2014 01:00 AM


Seldom does anyone get up in the morning and say, “I think I am going to sleep on the sidewalk, lose all my possessions over and over again, beg for money and listen to people shout obscene things at me.” 

Here are some answers given to me when I interviewed some of our homeless population. With the exception of the few mentally ill homeless I talked with, all that would talk with me have had past or current drug and alcohol problems.

April 17, 2014 01:00 AM


It has not been a longstanding intention of the City Council to close Whoville before April 15 or even by April 15. The following statements were made on Feb. 18:

“Our intent is not to just to go in and shut down the site, our intent is to provide time for people to transition to whatever site that Council chooses, and so that is what our intent is as we go forward.” — Jon Ruiz, city manager.

April 10, 2014 01:00 AM


As I came to your location on my daily visit to you and the trains, you were pretty much gone. The big machines were doing their job of scooping up everything in their path and slamming it in the waiting Dumpster. The police were gathered out front, their numbers indicating a “point” was being made. The “jail” van was still there, blocking Hilyard (it was sealed off from both directions).

April 3, 2014 01:00 AM


Exporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) will lead to more drilling [see news story last week]. And more drilling means more fracking, more air and water pollution and more climate-fueled weather disasters like last year’s record fires, droughts and superstorms.

The proposed Jordan Cove Coos Bay LNG is an environmental disaster of hazardous proportions.

March 27, 2014 01:00 AM


Thank you, Kevin Sullivan, for writing the article (“Increase in Cougar Killing is Preventable,” 3/20) and for your compassion. Mountain lions who find their way into urban or residential areas such as Hendricks Park are typically just passing through. If left alone and given time, they will leave town on their own.

March 20, 2014 01:00 AM


March 13, 2014 01:00 AM


Though unintentional, Jerry Diethelm’s history of city governance’s relationship with its constituents is misleading [“Design Matters,” 3/6]. Twice, in May 1994 and then in November 1994, voters rejected the new library measure. Did City Hall give voters a chance for final approval? Similarly, Eugeneans twice voted and twice voted down a new police facility. Again, was it funded with voter approval?

March 6, 2014 01:00 AM


I grew up a broke, male WASP (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant) who regularly attended a fairly conservative church. Many of my friends in church, as it happened, were gay and subsequently pushed from our congregation via informal excommunication, to borrow a Catholic phrase, and were no longer welcome.

February 27, 2014 01:00 AM


Concerned citizens following recent Eugene City Council discussion around preservation of the Amazon Headwaters are wondering about the role of city management.

At the Feb. 19 work session, staff repeatedly stated that the Deerbrook PUD has been approved. This is false. The application received a tentative approval. The property owners have chosen to delay applying for other approvals needed before any development can begin. Why was council misled on this point?

February 20, 2014 01:00 AM


February 13, 2014 01:00 AM


The teachers are on strike in Medford, and to fight the strike and stonewall negotiations the Medford School District is reaching out to substitute teachers in District 4J, and probably other districts, looking for what, in my day, we called scabs — hiring teachers to cross the picket line and weaken the strike.

February 6, 2014 01:00 AM


I first noticed it several years ago at a community forum on health care. “It” came in the form of a union representative arguing against an inclusive single-payer health care model that would benefit us all. I wondered why unions would not support such progressive policy. Others in attendance educated me: Health insurance is a bargaining issue. Unions include it in contracts and appreciative members pay their union dues.

January 30, 2014 01:00 AM


I appreciate the valuable services the YMCA contributes to the community. However, they should not be entrusted with development of valuable public lands like Civic Stadium.

January 23, 2014 01:00 AM


The most world-respected literary personage from our area is Ken Kesey. He is principally known for his novel One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1962). It develops a common theme where individual and group clash, both losing. In this case, we like to give the edge to the skill of the first-person artist who renders us the depiction.

January 16, 2014 01:00 AM


“Does that burger taste funny to you?” Recently I learned that fracking chemicals might be in the meat and produce being distributed to a grocery store near me and near you.

“On a North Dakota farm, five cows died after fracking began in 32 wells within three miles from the farm,” according to Food and Water Watch. In New Mexico, petroleum residues were found in 54 out of 56 animals tested. Some cows lost their tails!

January 9, 2014 01:00 AM


Time to ring in a brand new year! It finds me still tryin’ to make friends with fear. Learning to let go, let life steer. Life is not for the weak of heart, my dear. The Whit seems to be the place for a beer. And our downtown is definitely threatening to reappear. Let’s come together and kick this thing into a higher gear. 

January 2, 2014 01:00 AM


I thank Catherine Burke-Maher for her thoughtful reply [12/19] to my letter [12/12] on the “Cuckoo’s Nest Option” for cleaning up downtown Eugene. While I do not feel wise, I am old enough to be the father of any reader here up to 70 years of age.

December 26, 2013 01:00 AM


I am a teacher and a conversation I had in line at the bank steered towards bilingual education. The person I was speaking with expressed dismay at monolinguals who spoke only Spanish. 

“They are in America now, and in America we speak English.”

December 19, 2013 01:00 AM


Last week, we experienced the lowest temperatures in 40 years. We also used more electricity than anytime during the last decade. At one point, Eugene was consuming 557 megawatts to stay warm. Overall energy consumption was 30 percent to 50 percent above a typical December day as many residents hunkered down at home and kept the heat turned up.

December 12, 2013 01:00 AM


Eugene is a fine city. Many volunteer organizations take care of the homeless population in fair and foul weather. But too few citizens have direct contact. In spite of best intentions, I read that many volunteers cannot work with mentally disturbed people, especially when police presence is inadequate. If a substantial fraction of homeless people are mentally disturbed, this makes it difficult to accommodate all homeless in the same program.

December 5, 2013 01:00 AM


Chop. Chop. Tim-ber! Whether you hear it or not, that’s the sound of a tree being felled in the forest. And if Rep. Peter DeFazio’s and Sen. Ron Wyden’s proposed O&C timber lands legislation becomes law, you will definitely hear it loud and clear as 1.6 million acres of public forests are turned over to private industry for chopping. How bad is this legislation? After DeFazio’s bill passed in the majority Republican House, Democrat President Barack Obama vowed to veto it as bad environmental policy.

November 27, 2013 01:00 AM


I talk to many people in Eugene about air quality and their health. This fall, Beyond Toxics completed our second large door-to-door survey in west Eugene. Among the trends we found, this one is troubling: 37 percent of the parents we interviewed said that they judge the quality of the air before they allow their children to go outside to play.