Letters to the Editor: March 24, 2017

Read the signs

I would like to remind you of a very easy-to-miss, yet very frustrating, thing that has to do with driving.

We all know a while ago, the school zone 20 mph rules took place. Signs were up near every school. If you take the time to read these signs from top to bottom, they say one of two things: “School speed 20 mph when children are present” or “School speed 20 mph from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.”

The majority of the signs I’ve looked at state the “7 a.m. to 5 p.m.” rule. I find this more than a little frustrating when I am behind someone after 5 p.m. who sees the school sign and immediately freezes while failing to read the rest of then sign and then slows down, fearing that he or she will get pulled over and be given a ticket.

Please try to be more attentive to the world around you and any street signs for what they actually say.

Kassidy Kinion



Experience goes unrewarded

No one was more surprised than I to learn than Charles Hillistad and Jack Morgan were not reappointed by the McMinnville City Council to their positions on the planning commission.

In my experience, no standing commissioner seeking reappointment has ever been denied. While I occasionally disagreed with each of them, I found both to be thoughtful, serious commissioners, devoted public servants and fine gentlemen.

If the city councilors desire to stimulate the already adequate turnover on the planning commission with term limits, they should do so in an open and transparent process, sparing sitting commissioners the indignity, however slight, of having their offers to continue volunteering their time and effort publicly rejected by the council — with the subtle suggestion that, in spite of their experience, they are no longer or insufficiently fit to continue to serve.

It is also a disservice to the new planning commissioners, who deserve an appointment free from avoidable controversy.

Term limits for the city council itself may be a useful response to the increasingly insular sequence of recent actions by them.

John Tiedge



Fishy story

The fact check article on page A6 of the March 31 issue of the News-Register is about fish only, excluding shellfish. Perhaps fish are safe, if you can believe a federal government agency and the state of Alaska. (They have a lot to lose if true.)

Someone needs to do a story about the shellfish on our coast. Ask the fishermen on our coast, and follow the lab tests. I’m hearing that the levels in shellfish are rising to concerning levels.

Sheila Hunter



Fault not in our stars

In response to Ivan K. Brewer’s March 17 letter, I certainly agree with his principal point (I think) that practical, bipartisan problem-solving is needed. I share much of his frustration with misguided or misdirected efforts that all too often seem to emanate from those calling the shots.

Nonetheless, I question the sustainability of voting against individuals — especially “the elite.” An elite is someone from “the highest class” or someone controlling the lion’s share of influence or authority.

I know we do not have a classless society. Some may go where I cannot. However, I do recognize, begrudgingly at times, that people in the limelight often have more leverage than those leading less visible lives.

I don’t think those in the spotlight (the entertainer, the news anchor, the football star) should prompt me to vote for someone simply in opposition to their elitism. Society is capricious. The crop of current elites changes many times while political leaders await the next election.

Problem-solving starts at home by voting for those whose principles and policies one supports. We should insist our political leaders, old and new, clearly articulate such principles and policies as they seek our votes and follow through when in office.

Finally, I concur completely with Mr. Brewer that health care is truly a life-and-death matter for us all. As such, and as promised by President Trump, we should all not just have access to, but really be part of a health-care system that meets our needs.

John Moehl