Letters to the Editor: January 26, 2018

Undue influence

I have supported People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals for years, with the understanding it was working to solve animal abuse cases. But no longer, as I’ve discovered PETA is allied with the Animal Legal Defense Fund, which recently funded prosecution of friend Nicole Wood on bogus abuse charges.

She killed two dogs that had been killing her animals. The case was prosecuted by an out-of-town lawyer on the ALDF payroll. Apparently counties deputize him to handle cases for them.

Nicole found animals were being killed by two dogs living with the complainant on adjacent acreage. She called to let him know and warn him she would shoot them if they came over again.

The dogs did come again and she shot them. The complainant called the sheriff’s office, which filed animal abuse charges.

The case was turned over the the district attorney’s office. It decided to bring in the roving prosecutor affiliated with ALDF, which regularly partners with PETA on various types of legal action.

I live not far from the two parties. I am required to have a license for my dog and keep her on a leash.

Had the owner done the responsible thing, he would have either kept the dogs leashed or fenced. When Nicole called him to let him know his dogs were out yet again, his actions were tantamount to telling her to take her best shot, which she did.

I think Nicole did the ethical thing. She warned the neighbor his dogs were killing other animals. But even after being warned, he continued to expose his neighbors to the danger.

I have owned dogs most of my life. Protecting them from their natural instincts seems the ethical, responsible thing to do. I can’t support organizations that would prosecute a person for doing the right thing.

Patricia Cole



Planning pays off

Bravo Zulu to the Hill Road Project Team.

Since the start of the project, I have been observing the process daily, with both interest and admiration, as I travel into town on Baker Creek Road. While I have no road construction experience, I do have a background in industrial and commercial construction, and appreciate the effort that goes into a detailed project plan.

I believe the Hill Road Project Team has nailed the planning process, judging form its phasing, sequencing and execution thus far.

While planning is challenging on any construction project, it is particularly so on a road project requiring continuous vehicular traffic flow, with minimum impact to drivers and residents. This team has clearly prepared well for this tough project, performing in an outstanding manner in all areas. As for us drivers, the best we can do to support the Project Team in this difficult job is to be patient, keep our speed at 25 mph and always watch for workers.

Too many road workers are hit by vehicles each year in Oregon. Let’s not allow that to happen here.

The Project Team has a way to go, and the upcoming complexity of the traffic circle construction will require added caution from all of us. Be courteous and safe.
And let’s not forget our Mac neighbors in the area affected by detours. Let’s show our appreciation for their patience during this time of inconvenience by being respectful as we drive through their neighborhoods.

To project manager Larry Sherwood and general contractor Pacific Excavation, to McMinnville Water & Light and specialty contractors, I offer praise all around. I also wish to offer a salute to the boots on the ground, getting the job done during a typically wet Oregon winter.

Congratulations! Stay safe out there!

Alfredo Arguedas




Patricia Cole....You seem to have a pretty warped view of what is “ethical”. The ethical thing for Nicole Wood would have been to follow the law. How has it gone from Nicole suspecting these dogs of killing her cat to now you say the dogs were killing her animals? If these dogs were killing animals all over your Peavine neighborhood, where are the complaints on file? Is your reasoning that breaking two laws makes it right? Maybe the county decided a different prosecutor would be a good idea since their record for prosecuting animal abuse cases has been somewhat dismal. Also, how ethical is constantly changing your story on the part of Nicole? It seems a lot of folks today could use a good lesson on what ethics is.


So, let me understand: according to you, the dog's owner gave Nicole the (tantamount) okay to blast away in her role of vigilante-terminator? What you know about ethics, Ms. Cold, could fit on the head of a pin.


I always find it interesting to read well-written, painstakingly-thought-out letters that still manage to completely miss the point. Maybe unyielding stubbornness is the best illustration of humankind's inability to divorce itself from its own skewed perspective, even for a minute.

Patricia Cole's letter is a great example. Using Cole's logic, an angry driver could be forgiven for intentionally striking a neighbor child with her car because "I warned his parents if he played in the street again, he'd get hit." While such a driver might feel a visceral sense of moral justice in her actions, the rest of us would be horrified. Fortunately, it's not Cole who gets to decide whether such actions are right or wrong.

One neighbor's failure shouldn't excuse another neighbor's vengeance -- responsible adults in a civilized society don't behave that way. Sounds like some grown-ups need to be put in charge of the Cole/Woods neighborhood. Firearms and hot-headed immaturity are a bad blend.


Patricia Cole - What if instead of dogs it was the neighbor's 13 year-old son who was coming onto the Woods property to shoot wildlife with his new rifle? What if he just kept sneaking back over even after his parents were told that he wasn't welcome? Would Nicole Wood be justified in shooting him....would she be justified in going back with a second firearm to finish him off because the first shot didn't kill him?

Sorry Ms. Cole...but, we don't get to take the law into our own hands...no matter how frustrated or angry we get. Nicole Wood made the wrong choice and now she must live with the consequences. She had a number of other lawful choices she could have taken...but didn't sadly.

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