Letters to the Editor: Nov. 6, 2020

Maskless at Fairgrounds

I will be making a report to the Yamhill County Health Department and Oregon Health Authority about the Collectors West Gun & Knife Show held last weekend at the Yamhill County Fairgrounds. I was very concerned about the fact the organizers were not enforcing the statewide mask/facecovering mandate.

I brought this to the attention of the event staff and was told no one had any intention of asking people to either adhere to the state rule or face being asked to leave. In light of the new surge in COVID cases across the state and nation, this is a totally irresponsible and reckless way to manage large gatherings in a confined space, especially where social distancing cannot be maintained.

I am not going to let this drop, especially after the cavalier attitude and brush-off I received from the event staff. I will also be posting my experience on social media.

Get smart, people. Don’t be a part of the spread of the virus. Be part of the containment in the hopes even one life can be spared.

I am very much a gun enthusiast, so my argument is not about the event itself. It is about a large gathering of people not being managed as per proper health and safety rules regarding social distancing and face coverings, especially with what is going on in the world today regarding COVID-19.

Phillip Davis



Whither the money?

The fires, elections, COVID and so forth leave it hard to have a good perspective on the times and issues.

Our governor blamed the fires on climate, so we’ll probably have calls for more taxation.

A previous call failed when some legislators had enough concern for our welfare to oppose this taxation. They knew it would end up in the general fund and not go for the intended purpose. I thank them for being accountable to us citizens.

Some of the fires probably could have been avoided if the state paid the forestry department the thousands of unpaid obligations needed for forest upkeep.

Our tax statements reflect a charge for fire protection. Those of us living in forest areas are assessed an extra charge.

So where does this money go? Why the unpaid forestry obligations?

It appears we need a complete cleaning out of all those unaccountable for our wellbeing and replacement with those who are accountable — the ones who are concerned for our welfare. Wouldn’t you say?

Mary Novak



A bitter pill

It was with consternation I read myself quoted in the News-Register article about the Carlton subdivision.

At the planning commission meeting, I did state that I could not be happier that the developer was including landscape strips in the sidewalk design, and that I was pleased the planning staff and developer were listening to citizens with regard to open space.

The landscape strip between the sidewalk and street was my idea. It was something I personally pushed very hard for as a part of Complete Street design, so I was glad that it became part of the final plan.

A landscape strip between the street and sidewalk was a small but meaningful improvement to this subdivision. It will be a traffic calming element in the street design, as well as make the neighborhood more pedestrian-friendly by serving to buffer pedestrians from vehicle traffic.

It will create a more inviting and safer pedestrian experience. It should be duplicated in any further city development. And I make a practice of being grateful for specific positive outcomes.

Unfortunately, the News-Register applied my “could not be happier” quote to tree design and open space provisions as well, not just to sidewalk design as intended. In the process, the paper seemed to attach my quote to its own ideas about landscaping and subdivision plans.

I did not say and would never have said, as implied, that I was happy about the landscaping and subdivision plans overall. In fact, this subdivision, as conceived by the developer, was a bitter pill for me and this community to swallow.

I dedicated considerable effort to helping create a better outcome for something I wished wasn’t happening at all. Perhaps you can understand how upsetting it was, after so many hours of work, to be misrepresented as someone who is pleased with the entirety of the subdivision.

Susan Turrell



Unmasked at Grange

My lady friend and I went to the McMinnville Grange Friday night to dance and enjoy the Country Blend Band, as we did every Friday night before the Pandemic hit.

After a while, I noticed one lady not wearing a face mask. The person she was dancing with didn’t say anything.

They were dancing next to the Grange president and his wife, and they didn’t say anything either.

I went over to another Grange representative and told him. For this, he struck me with a closed fist.

I guess this is how the Grange keeps its guests safe from the virus.

Terry Davis




Jeb Bladine

The following comment inadvertently was deleted from display:

From Don Dix:

Mary Novak writes “Our governor blamed the fires on climate, so we'll probably have calls for more taxation.”

Gov. Brown's administration, in lock-step with a D dominated legislature, has done nothing but attempt to raise taxes, fees, and fines at every level. Vehicle registration, small business and corporate licenses, wildlife harvest licenses and tags, state park fees, gas taxes, gross receipt taxes, fines for traffic violations, carbon tax -- the list is long and growing.

And when questioned, deflection and denial are the explanation always given -- covid response (Trump), Portland rioting and vandalism (people exercising rights), wildfires (climate change) -- one correctly might assume Oregon's leadership is responsible for nothing. An old saying states, “if one can claim never making mistakes, then they can also claim to never have accomplished anything” -- fits like body paint, right?

Jeb Bladine

The following 2 comments inadvertently were deleted from display:

From montag:

Mary Novak fails to mention that the forest fires could have also been avoided if we had only heeded the sage advice of our anointed soon-to-be ex-President Donald Trump, who wisely urged us all to grab a rake and clear the forest floors of debris. I am going to greatly miss his wise and reasoned scientific counsel after January 20, 2021.

From Don Dix:

Those who actually manage the forests, to the degree they are allowed, also know a clean forest is much less likely to explode with fire as Oregon experienced this summer. But, apparently tree-huggers would rather the forests burn than admit they have been wrong all along (wildfire kills more forest dwelling species and destroys more habitat than any other environmental disaster).

The endangered species act, the clean air act, and other government enacted red-tape obstacles virtually prevent any controlled burns and forest floor cleanup -- so the forests burn frequently and hotter. One doesn't need be an expert or any kind of genius to make the correlation -- just an open mind and consideration of every time-tested, available option, no matter who joins the conversation.

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