Letters to the editor: Feb. 12, 2021

The good professor

Is the good professor now a guest writer? I’m referring to Steve Rutledge of course.

He’s a real lefty. And, of course, he bashed Trump.

The professor likes to tout his accomplishments.

There’s nothing wrong with accomplishments, and I admire his. But I think if would be more beneficial for him to encourage his students to pursue their own accomplishments rather than push his leftist  agenda. Aren’t schools supposed to teach critical thinking?

My critical thinking is to get opinions from all sides and then make up my own mind. That’s why I flip around and watch Fox News, CNN, ABC, NBC and so forth.

All except MSNBC. It’s too over-the-top disturbing for me, especially when it comes to Rachel Maddow.

My conclusion? Fox News is the one I trust the most.

By the way, some on the left are trying to shut down Fox. Why do you think that is?

As for older folks like me, if you are paying attention at all, you must realize this is not the Democratic Party your parents might have supported.

Recently on the local Nextdoor network, which many McMinnville residents belong to, there was a post about a Black Lives Matter sign being stolen. Well, I’ve also had signs stolen, and it’s unacceptable.

As far as I’m concerned, though, this is a terrorist group. Black people matter, but so do all people.

Both left and right have their terrorist groups — Black Lives Matter, Antifa, white supremacists, QAnon, Proud Boys. All should be denounced by both parties.

Judy Hromyko



Vote ’em out

From the sounds of the Friday trail article, it appears our newest county commissioner, “Mini-Mary” Lindsay, is out to make a name for herself by spewing forth a sentiment of: “I see no other side. I hear no other voices. Whatever you tell me is wrong. I have spoken.”

Berschauer’s cascade of vitriol toward county employees was vicious and uncalled for. To me, she lacks the skills and abilities required of a leader for this county.

Leslie Lewis had it right when she said, “If you’re not a long-term thinker in the transportation world, you’re not going to go anywhere.” And thus, it is now so in Yamhill County, courtesy of the extreme right-wing faction of the county commission group.Mary Starrett blamed past county boards — a category that includes her entire tenure thus far.

She claimed to be unhappy with her decision, but gosh, it was consistent with her last six years on this topic. As they say, consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds — ones that can’t think long term.

Hang onto your hats. You can expect more of the same from these two in the coming years — far-right, extreme, fringe and hyper-partisan in a position that is supposedly non-partisan.When you get the chance, vote these two out.

Judy Gerrard



Counseling patience

I was deeply disturbed by the tone of the guest commentary in Friday’s paper on vaccine priorities. 

Accusing the governor of being “depraved and indifferent” will not solve any of the problems facing her or the rest of us. Threats are not the way to deal with the almost impossible job our administrators are facing.

As a mother, grandmother, great-grandmother and senior citizen, I will gladly step out of line to let a teacher in.

If life has taught us anything, it is that wars, economic downturns and even pandemics cannot last forever. With patience and loving care for others, this too shall end.

Ann Bansen



Kudos, commissioners

I want to praise Commissioners Starrett and Berschauer for finally ending development of the Yamhelas Westsider Trail.

It took great courage for them to stop the project in the face of backlash from a segment of the community, but it was the correct decision. This trail proposal was always a matter of applying land-use criteria, not popularity.

This project has been grossly mishandled by county staff and previous commissioners. Starrett and Berschauer were put in an impossible position through no fault of their own.

Trail supporters will quickly point to the fact taxpayers are now on the hook to repay over $2 million in grants. However, the cost to taxpayers would be much greater to keep pursuing a project mired in legal issues. If previous commissioners had not moved forward so recklessly, we wouldn’t be in this position.

The county doesn’t have money to finish the first bridge. It’s hundreds of thousands of dollars away from completion, despite having eaten up nearly $1 million in grant money.

This kind of issue would continue far into the future, committing taxpayers to an endless pit of ongoing construction costs, maintenance costs and legal battles.

Commissioner Casey Kulla pleaded to continue the process and attempt mediation, promising to address farmers’ concerns. He fails to acknowledge farmers have spent the past three years trying to get commissioners to address their concerns.

It fell upon deaf ears as Kulla continually voted to move the project forward despite several remands from LUBA. What makes anyone think he would listen next time?

In the end, Oregon’s land-use laws, designed to protect family farms, were upheld.

The trail could never pass the required farm impact standards. Commissioners decided to cut their losses rather than keep throwing money at a failed project, and I commend them for that.

Cory VanDyke



Plant-based Lent

I miss Mardi Gras. I miss being in crowds on Fat Tuesday. I’m hoping for a speedy recovery from the pandemic so we can all congregate again. After Fat Tuesday, Lent begins.

Lent is the 40-day period before Easter when Christians stop eating meat and dairy in remembrance of Jesus’ 40 days of reflection. And as a Christian, Lent has meaning to me. I don’t eat meat and dairy. My plant-based diet helps reduce chronic disease, environmental degradation and animal abuse.

Countless reports have linked consumption of animal products with risk of heart failure, stroke, cancer and other diseases. A U.N. report named meat production as a source of greenhouse gases and water pollution. And investigations have revealed animals raised for food under horrible conditions of caging, crowding, drugging, and mutilation.

These actions go against what I believe. Lent offers an opportunity to honor Jesus’ powerful message of compassion and love for all living beings, to stop subsidizing the meat industry, and to choose a nonviolent plant-based diet — a diet that goes back to Genesis I:29, as it was observed in the Garden of Eden. Enter “plant-based Lent” in Google and explore hundreds of meat-free recipes.

Melvin Nysser



Rare treasure

My husband and I travel the country to hike and bike ride on trails like the one proposed here in Yamhill County.

We have never seen people off the trail damaging adjoining property. People who use trails like this are respectful and gracious.

The Westsider Trail would put Yamhill County on the map for others like us who search out such opportunities. We support moving forward to develop this trail.

Susan Chambers



Devil’s playbook

For four years, I watched one man take blame and have hate piled on him because he was different.

Donald Trump was a legally elected president of the United States, but not a mainstream politician. He was not educated in the same method of thinking as the political machine he had to work with to move this nation forward. Because of this difference, he was immediately targeted.

The hatred the governing bodies of our great nation displayed for President Trump during his term in office was nothing short of unbelievable. “One nation, under God,” can’t be found in this attitude, which is still being played out today.

The funny thing about hate is how it continues to lurk in the deep veins of our lives. We have seen this time and time again this past year.

We are no longer under the protective hand of God. The devil’s playbook is in action.

Our moral compass should require each of us to look inward to evaluate where we allow hate to reside, as we must change ourselves. America does not need to change, but Americans do, and that includes me.

Mary Wimer



Don’t forget

Keep in mind that the people responsible for shutting down our economy have not missed a paycheck since it all started.

Remember that when it’s time to vote — or you have the opportunity to sign a recall petition.

Rich Roberts




Ms. Wimer

You presented your opinion and observations with respect and I want to respond in kind. I respectfully take exception to the assertion that Trump had “hate piled on him because he was different.” He is DEFINITELY “different” but I do not believe that is what caused the horrified response to the way he “governed.” His administration was characterized by scandal and grift - and punctuated with cruelty. His appointments to cabinet posts were reckless and took a horrible toll on the whole of government. He spent four years spewing hateful rhetoric and ultimately inflamed his followers to violently assault our democracy. I saw NOTHING he did that represented any version of time-honored American values. Nor do I believe he had any interest in moving our nation forward. He only ever cared about himself…..not you, not me, and most certainly NOT our nation.

I have been deeply ashamed of what was done IN MY NAME as an American citizen. I acknowledge that I found all of that loathsome – and have often said so. I sincerely agree with your observations about the need for a moral compass and I too disavow hate. As my wise old mother used to counsel: “Hate only eats away at the vessel that holds it.”

Don Dix

Ann Bansen -- from the article (Governor Displays Depraved Indifference) -- 'now that Brown has put them (teachers) at the front of the line, teachers unions in most of Oregon’s largest districts say that even with vaccinations, their teachers — so-called essential workers — won’t go back to school. They will continue to stay home and collect their public salaries and generous retirement and health care benefits.'

'Oregon’s senior citizens are, by far, at greater risk than anyone else of dying of COVID-19. By far.'

The fact that teachers may not return to many classrooms despite the vaccinations is just another failure (of many) by this inept administration.

Rich Roberts' submission reminds -- 'the people responsible for shutting down our economy have not missed a paycheck since it all started.'

The gov. has twisted the 'science' to fit her political agenda -- it's right there to see.


Fox News Judy?

Says it all. As your president would say, SAD!


Hello Judy. A couple of things to address your concerns.

1. You can teach and do opinion pieces at the same time and many of us do - Juan Cole is one of the best examples of this. Historians have a particular duty to share their knowledge and experience with the public - as do scientists, lawyers, and others with specialty knowledge.
2. I don't consider myself political - there is history, science, the law, sociology, economics, and you know them and develop conclusions and policy based on them.
3. As for Fox, many of its broadcasts are not allowed in, for example , the UK, because it markets in, well, outright falsehoods, and they have laws against lying on their public airwaves; a number of studies have shown Fox News viewers are less informed than those who watch no news at all.
4. BLM and Antifa were incorrectly called terror organizations by the former president. The FBI does not recognize them as such since they do not indulge in armed violence directly against the government. This is known as false equivalency.

I hope this addresses your concerns and appreciate your letter.


Bear in mind, Mary, how Trump feels about women. What he has said previously (which he dismissed as "locker room talk,") is even on tape. For the record. Look it up. So if you're not a Botoxed puffed up Barbie doll doppelganger, he's not interested in what you think or how you feel. Only your money.


Judy Hromyko, you state that your opinions and critical thinking skills are formed by watching various news outlets. Fair enough. However, the fact that you choose FOX News as the outlet that you trust the most, speaks volumes about your critical thinking skills.


Judy H ....you do realize you come off as a fool! Right now FOX is trying to portray the crowds waving at Trump when he went golfing on President’s Day as spontaneous, it most definitely WAS NOT! It was promoted for weeks. Brochures mentioned date,time,what to bring with you. In defending a defamation lawsuit against Tucker Carlson, their defense was in part, that no-one who tunes into Carlson and expects to hear the truth! Even FOX acknowledges they do not tell the truth, you must have missed that part.

Bill B

@yamhillbilly, you said; "Even FOX acknowledges they do not tell the truth, you must have missed that part." That can be said of all the networks. CNN stopped broadcasting the actual news years ago.


Bill...in your opinion “that could be said of all networks”. Do you have any examples of any other network defending itself in court with the excuse no-one expects to hear our presenters tell the truth? How do you defend,excuse the FOX approach of outright lying to their viewers? Maybe you can enlighten me with some facts instead of boring me with your opinion?