Letters to the Editor: January 13, 2023

Chaos on display

The Republicans lose again, this time within their own caucus.

I guess we can blame Hunter Biden and Anthony Fauci. OK, I say that in jest.

You have a score of Republicans who are insurrectionists, election deniers and anti-vaxxers. They chose to hold up the entire process, keeping us from organizing a Congress.

We know who they are, so there’s no reason to name them. They are committed to continuing chaos, letting the important issues of the day go by the wayside.
Going forward, they will be going after the FBI, IRS and U.S. Army for allegedly being “woke.” Sounds like more Benghazi to me.

This is proof how crazy the next two years will be. Total chaos under the influence of Donald Trump.

If they can’t control their own house, then how can they help us in our homes? Are they going to help us solve problems with gas, inflation or crime?

What about Russia? And then there’s George Santos.

Paul Angerano


A mad world

In 1963, the movie classic, “It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” was released.

Who thought that actually would become a reality? Well, it has.

America lost its soul in 1973. We’ve rejected our Christian heritage and are suffering the consequences.

Today, we have a U.S. Supreme Court justice who can’t say what a woman is. We have people who support unrestricted abortions. We have people who support mutilation of children under the banner of transgenderism.

We have people who promote sexualizing kids with perverted drag queen shows. We have rampant crime, uncontrolled spending, unmanageable debt, corrupt agencies. We elect imbeciles to positions of leadership.

These are indications that God has removed his protective hand of grace from America. The answer can be found in the Bible, but only if America heeds its commandments.

Robert Long


Déjà vu all over again

First windy, rainy night of the winter and — surprise, surprise! — our street floods. Water up to our front porch here on Cypress.

Nine years, nine floods. And this on the night our garbage cans were at the curb.

We end up with broken flower pots, tree bark and debris, and garbage from tipped over cans, all mixed in.

I called the city. The response: “We think that area is your responsibility.”

I’m almost 90, and this response is getting old, thank you.

Gary Frost


Portland revisited

We moved here 26 years ago due to the quaintness of the city, particularly Third Street with its local stores and shops. Now the hardware and appliance store is gone, along with most of the local shops, all replaced with wine business outposts.

We have a problem with the homeless, some of whom suffer mental issues. As a result, residents are being harassed and properties are being vandalized.

We have a drug problem, along with more burglaries and car prowls. We also have a gang problem, with walls and fences being tagged and gunshots ringing out in the night. We no longer feel safe in our homes.

Sadly, I don’t have a solution to these problems. But I am concerned that the quaintness is gone and we are slowly sinking into another Portland.

Don Bowie


Beware the taxman

I want to sound a warning regarding the fee the city is putting onto Water & Light bills.

We recently moved from McMinnville to West Salem. Here is an example of the fees Salem puts on my sewer and water bill: water volume, $16.20; water base, $12.07; wastewater volume, $16.24; wastewater base, $15.92; stormwater impervious area, $7.54; stormwater base, $12.22; franchise fee, $4.01; backflow prevention fee, $1.50; streetlight fee, $2.80; and city operations fee, $8.34.

So beware. It’s only started in McMinnville, where I still own property.

You also need to look out for these new “privilege” taxes, like a sales tax. They are already appearing on our natural gas bills and being assessed on our new car sales.

Merlin Bowman

West Salem

Mixed feelings

Reading about Oregon’s decision to throw out criminal guilty verdicts imposed by non-unanimous juries leaves me with mixed feelings.

On the one hand, I am proud of my state for acknowledging its acceptance of less-than-unanimous verdicts based solely on the unfounded fear that non-white, non-Christian jurors would be biased. That fear was, of course, itself biased. On the other hand, I served on a jury here in Yamhill County that returned a split verdict.

The trial itself was deplorable. Lies, incompetence, posturing, pretentiousness, and stupidity were all front and center in that trial. Not a single witness was immune. As one of my fellow jurors put it, we saw the worst of humanity during that trial.

But as he also noted, we saw the best of humanity during our jury deliberations. We worked long and hard to reach verdicts on several counts.

One juror couldn’t take the incredible pressure and dropped out, with our complete understanding. We worked together to bring the replacement up to speed.

Another juror had to be helped — but not pressured — to reach any decision at all. Eventually, we reached a guilty verdict — on an 11-to-1 vote.

That was all it took to put a real sleaze behind bars. Now that individual might be able to request a retrial, which troubles me.

If we had known we needed 12 votes, we would have worked harder to persuade the lone holdout that our position made more sense. And the holdout would have worked harder to convince us to see the other side.

We might not have been able to bridge the gap, but all of us would have tried.

Susan Watkins


Call out the lies

Everyone should be concerned about the new House majority, which couldn’t even select a speaker without historic chaos.

The House of Representatives is now controlled by MAGA Republicans. According to the Washington Post, more than 70% of House Republicans are election deniers, and they will use their power to enrich their corporate donors and advance their extreme agenda—including threatening our freedom to vote, criminalizing abortion and cutting Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

Judging by how the election went to select Kevin McCarthy as the speaker of the House, we should all be concerned about their ability to govern.

They’ve already shown their cards. In their first act, the MAGA forces in the House approved a rules package that gutted the nonpartisan Office of Congressional Ethics, and that’s just the beginning.

MAGA cronies like Kevin McCarthy, Jim Jordan, Steve Scalise and Marjorie Taylor Greene have indicated their top priority in 2023 will be sham investigations into the Biden administration and defenders of democracy, including those charged with investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

We must call out their lies at every turn and combat their far-right agenda to protect our freedoms and our democracy in 2023.

David Polite


Bringing joy

Thank you for the time you guys spend finding stories that can touch the heart.

Cuddling Kittens is an experience I am glad they are able to enjoy. I know that sometimes being able to love a kitten, or any fuzzy animal, can help the people it comes to.

I hope the News-Register can find more stories like this that bring joy to readers.

Quinn Hall




Laughable. Let’s do call out the lies. The thoughts that democracy dies when one political party does not fall lock step in line with the dictatorial demands of their dear leader is just that, laughable. Queen Nancy no more. We have a constitutional republic, not a monarchy. The D’s and R’s were very upset that it took so long, 14 votes, in town all week. It’s against their 4-5 hour work day and 4 day work week. Look into it.

And the D’s dying to get back to the peoples work! One of the 1st bills they push when back, the most important thing on their docket? Proposing a bust of Volodymyr Zelensky be commissioned for display in the house of representatives. Maybe they can put a slot in his forehead and tourists can slip their spare change in. Maybe he can retile the pool at the mansion he owns in Miami.

McCarthy is anything but MAGA, he stabbed Trump in the back so many times he keeps his knife in Trump’s back pocket.

And why was McCarthy so adamant that he had to be speaker? You would think that after losing 5 or 6 votes he would have thrown in the towel. It was almost like there were some very important people behind the scenes who paid good money for him to be SOTH, the same people who paid good money for Nancy to be SOTH. Why else sit there for 14 votes?

Here are a few of the evil concessions that the Freedom Caucus tortured everyone for by stonewalling McCarthy.

A promised vote on a balanced budget amendment, a term limit law, and a southern border plan.

Investigation into the politicization of the DOJ/FBI/CIA/// Read some of the Twitter files for their unconstitutional deeds. If you’re not sickened by it shame on you.

More single subject bills for vote instead of 1000 page trash heaps no one reads.

A 72-hour window for members (and us) to read any bill before a vote can be held.

A promise to refuse any increase in the debt ceiling in the next budget – stop spending more and more money.

Its called negotiations. And damn good ones.

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