Letters to the Editor: March 2, 2018

Off-balance, ill-researched

I was disheartened to read the off-balanced, ill-researched “Immigration sweeps” commentary of Feb. 16, which compared the brave men and women enforcing our immigration laws to Nazis. It substituted hyperbole and emotion for facts and reason.

The author branded ICE a “police force operating outside the usual bounds of due process.” That’s absolutely untrue.

Upon arrest, every alien is provided with Form I-826, Notice of Rights and Request for Disposition. It advises him how to request a hearing, claim asylum or consent to voluntary return.

The author mentioned Isidro Andrade-Tafolla, a naturalized citizen briefly questioned outside a courthouse by plainclothes ICE agents. Once they determined he wasn’t their target, they let him go. It was just a stop to determine if he was the wanted individual, which police do every day.

Agents don’t hover outside courthouses searching for people who “might” be in the country illegally, as the author states. Once ICE has identified an alien in violation, however, a court date provides a set time and location facilitating apprehension.

Oregon’s sanctuary policy is self-defeating. With their databases, language skills and unique arrest authority, ICE agents serve as a huge force multiplier for local agencies.

Removing wanted criminal aliens from the community is a positive step, and being able to do it from the safety of a county courthouse and jail complex is preferred by everyone.

Ángel Maturino Reséndiz, the Railway Killer, was identified through fingerprints in an INS database. So was Lee Boyd Malvo, the D.C. Sniper.

The author argues aliens are being detained without constitutionally adequate hearings. Not true.

Arrests require probable cause. Hearings require free legal representation and fair bond determination.

Syed Ahmed Jamal, one of those mentioned in the article, absconded after being ordered out of the country in 2001. He’s lucky he wasn’t prosecuted criminally under Title 8 of federal criminal code.

This Viewpoint was light on facts and heavy on bias. I thought the public should be informed.

Clay Othic



Blame FBI, not NRA

A number of the recent school shootings have been facilitated by law enforcement negligence. And this last one is the ultimate.

The FBI is either pathetically inept or a deliberate contributor. At least two times, the agency was warned by concerned neighbors that this kid was dangerous, that he was likely to explode.

Local law enforcement wasn’t concerned either, even after 39 calls about irrational behavior. The last straw was having at least one deputy, if not more, hiding behind their cars outside the building while the shooting was still going on.

Meanwhile, courageous people lost their lives protecting students inside the building.

The left just waits for these law enforcement failures to attack the NRA.

It is trying to disarm honest citizens who have been guilty of none of these incidents. That would just make the country safer for criminals, who will always have guns.

Elmer M. Werth

Grand Ronde


Hope for change

The voices being raised in Florida in the wake of the latest school shooting have given me hope that change can happen in our gun-happy society.

I grew up in rural Pennsylvania, where I hunted and owned guns. But no one I knew hunted with a gun that could fire 50 rounds in a couple of minutes.
We need to raise our voices for common-sense gun laws.

Carl Breese



Proof etched in ice

Please help me understand why we accept verbiage and ignore research (“Caring about the planet,” Readers Forum, 2/18).

Climate change is continually being referred to as harmful to the environment. But scientific research is being ignored, so a very controversial issue is being distorted by the pro claimers, at our expense.

The Sept. 14 issue of The New American magazine, published by the John Birch Society, carried an article on scientific examination of Arctic ice samples. It revealed climate change occurring in cycles stretching back to the distant past. Surely we can’t blame emissions from cars or factories, as they didn’t exist.

The carbon tax being advocated in the Legislature would generate approximately $700 million, to be used for various projects. This tax — yes, that’s what it is — would be paid by the big energy companies.

We would end up paying this tax, as the price of company products would rise to compensate. And, as in the past, all revenue generated from it would end up in the general fund.

It’s to our advantage to research, be informed, proactive and vocal in holding our officials and legislators accountable and being good stewards of our money. It is our duty as citizens.

Mary Novak



We deserve safer schools

I own guns and enjoy shooting, so I’m not an anti-gun zealot. I also have kids and a grandkid, so I’d like to feel safe about the schools.

The Trump administration is currently suggesting solutions that have been heard before. And to be honest, that won’t change much.

Paul Ryan’s Congress is earning its keep from the NRA, so is resisting even those changes. If any of our so-called leaders really cared about school massacres, they would have spent money on needs like increased school security instead of giving a tax break to our wealthiest citizens.

We could have substantially increased security in every school in America. Instead, the money went to people who live in secure homes and send their children to private schools that already have very good security.

Upgrading school security would indirectly benefit gun owners as well, by reducing incidents that threaten gun ownership.If our so-called leaders had any sense of decency, they’d repeal the tax cut and spend every dime on increasing security at our schools. Then they wouldn’t have to offer thoughts and prayers so often.

Fred Fawcett



Give education primacy

Regarding your Feb. 23 editorial, “Reps never seem to run short of bad ideas...”

There are three main services we taxpayers expect from our local and state governments: honest law enforcement, safe roads and transit, and public education for the vast majority of our next generation.

If your opinion is right that there is not enough money to pay teachers well and also keep class sizes down, the answer is not to further weaken the few unions that have not yet expired in our profit-mad market economy. It is to raise more money.

Managers and owners already have far more power than workers in all phases of American life. If unions were not nearly dead, minimum wage laws wouldn’t have become a matter of life and death for America’s economic underclass.

How about a luxury tax on those products poor people don’t need to survive? Yes, that would be a sales tax. But sales taxes are widely used in civilized parts of the world without cataclysms or social disintegration.

Your paper is a classic example of the deeply ingrained anti-intellectual culture of America. Education does not come first. Sports is paramount.
I take your paper at face value.

In that same issue, your paper spent several pages on local athletes, as in every issue, while giving Fullbright scholars less than half a column of type. And two intellectual talks at Linfield College got less than nine column inches of type each. That clearly illustrates how your newspaper values local schools — as a place to play games.

Until we value scientists, scholars, doctors and artists as much as we value CEOs, sports figures and the stars of violent movies, we will continue to devalue our kids and their education.

Smaller classrooms mean teachers can do a better job for each pupil. Knowledge and critical thinking are necessary if future Americans are not to face a tomorrow of minimum wages and lost dreams.

Harry Fuller



Can’t count on Boquist

Last week, the Oregon Legislature passed HB 4145, closing the boyfriend loophole in gun purchase restrictions. Among the nays were Sen. Boquist and Reps. Nearman and Noble.

According to a staff member in Boquist’s office, he stated at a Carlton town hall that HB 4145 was a good bill. If he actually believed HB 4145 was a good bill, he should have voted for it, not against it.

How can Sen. Boquist’s constituents trust what he says?

Alisa Owen



Honoring our heritage

Tom Henderson’s “Only Nazis get to be Nazis” commentary in the Feb. 16 News-Register was way out of line. There is no comparison to the United States, or to Oregon, in any manner.

I remember all too well the gold stars in the windows during the World War II years. I also remember well the reports of the U.S. forces storming the shores of distant places, and the price that was paid. And I remember the effort to supply human and material support, coming at great sacrifice.

Tom Henderson should not equate the United States and Nazism even in the slightest way.

The people of the United States gave so much to defeat Germany and Japan, and then helped them recover. It would be a good education for his son.
As to the sanctuary cities issue, just put it to a vote of the people of Oregon. That would be the democratic way to resolve the issue. That would bring us together and tell us what the people of Oregon expect.

Overstaying visas, which he glosses over, is not a minor offense. Those who do so are just thumbing their noses at our laws. They know exactly what they are doing.

It should not be considered an OK way to gain entrance and remain in this country. Those who want to stay in our country need to get busy and properly apply for citizenship. They need to work to keep this country the great place that it is.

John W. Englebrecht



Saving the soil

I enjoyed the Viewpoints article on protecting topsoil. I recognize many farmers in this area are practicing the very latest in no-till and cover-crop procedures. However, this caused me to reflect on how different areas of the country are slower or quicker to accept new techniques.

My nephew, a farmer in Nebraska, was visiting last week when the article was published. He indicated the County Soil and Water Conservation District where he farms purchased a small no-till drill and made it available to farmers in the county approximately 15 years ago.

He has personally come to own a 40-foot no-till drill — too big, obviously, for an orchard. But he and a grown son recently looked at farmland for sale in West Texas and Oklahoma, and found it subject to an almost total lack of best practices.

One of the greatest benefits of no-till is the fact the resultant surface mulch aids in retention of moisture.

Here in Oregon, we have so much moisture that this is of no great concern. But where my nephew farms, reliance on deep-well irrigation began when I was a child in the late 1940s.

In recent years, increasing restrictions have been imposed on the number of acre inches that can be provided. This has provided a major incentive for farmers there to adopt no-till and cover-crop practices, as they can get the same production with less water.

My nephew said they are now moving to variants of no-till, known as zone-till and strip-till. Both apply primarily to row crops. And he’s optimistic use of new cover-crop mixes may be able to overcome issues related to Roundup herbicide resistance.

It’s easy to think of farming as an unchanging endeavor. However, rapid changes go far beyond the introduction of incredibly expensive GPS-operated equipment, extending to farming techniques such as those so well described in the Viewpoints article.

Les Howsden



Don Dix

Mary Novak -- the climate changers have been cherry-picking or altering data since before Al Gore predicted in 2007 that all arctic ice would be gone by 2014. Instead of admitting he was factually wrong (it has increased), Gore, typical of scare-mongers, moved the goalposts to a later date (hoping he will someday be correct).

The atmosphere consists of these molecules: nitrogen (78%), oxygen (21%), argon (1%), and then trace amounts of carbon dioxide, neon, helium, methane, krypton, hydrogen, nitrous oxide, xenon, ozone, iodine, carbon monoxide, and ammonia. Those ice core samples reveal CO2 'always follow' temperature rise by 600 - 1000 years (every case). The same results are also found in studies of ocean sediment and tree rings. Oregon leaders simply ignore anything that gets in the way of new taxes.

Understand, Oregon's government is dominated by minions of the public unions, who in turn are always searching for more ways to tax the residents. Most of the tax measures on any ballot in this state are written by the unions, specifically for their benefit. If the carbon tax passes and ends up in the general fund, it's elementary thought as to the destination of most of those dollars. Taxing a 'trace gas' -- and Oregon's government cannot get started soon enough!


AMEN Harry Fuller!!!!!

Horse with no name

Thank you Harry Fuller! It is true the Emperor is not wearing any clothes and hypocrisy reigns supreme in the land of make believe. Idiocracy is the coin of the realm and look what kind of world we get when we follow that trajectory. You don't have to look far to see the result's of a lack of critical education.


Harry athletics in grade school,middle school and high school are every bit as important as any class room. Athletes learn team work,respect,work ethic,organization and about being competitive in the real world among a host of other things that aren't being taught in a lot of homes in this day and age. I'll guarantee you that if there were no sports in our schools the drop out rate would be much higher than it is. Professional sports is a whole other subject.

Horse with no name

OK Jim this is the part where you have to hang on tight, I don't see anyone suggesting the elimination of sports or just healthy exercise, in fact exercise, sleep and nutrition are important for a successful student.

There isn't a thing you listed as being learned by athletes that can't be learned by a math club member or a quilting bee, plus a whole lot more that isn't being taught in homes in this day and age (whatever that means). The point is the priorities and the priorities should be critical thinking and problem-solving skills, that's what solves big problems, not just who hits the most homers.

Focus on those priorities is part of teaching kids what's important for their future. The News Register shows with its priorities, which are don't rock the boat and keep the revenue coming. It's not just the News Register, but typical of a lot of folks and businesses in Yamhill County that don't won't to think too much and just eat a pizza and watch a game. "Bread and circuses" - Juvenal circa A.D. 100 won't make the world a better place, but a kid that studies hard could.


Horse have a look around and see how many people that are successful in their lives are former athletes. A very large percentage of men and women running Fortune 500 Company's are former athletes. But I'm sure it takes no critical thinking or problem solving to run one of those companies. I'm not saying that you don't need the formal education to evolve in this world,athletics just help with that education. I don't think you get the same pressure from solving a math problem as you get from making a snap decision on the field of athletics. Just my observation.

Don Dix

Athletics and education -- Formal education is not for everyone, nor are athletics. Both add to the 'experience', depending on the individual, but neither are necessarily the only path to future success.

Paul Allen, Bill Gates, Richard Branson. Walt Disney, Frank Lloyd Wright, Michael Dell, Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Milton Hershey -- all dropped out of high school or college (or never attended either).


Rae Carruth, Michael Vick and Aaron Hernandez.


When we only focus on academics and athletics only we are leaving a large number of kids behind. This video presents a very interesting point of view about how we educate our kids out of their creativity.
Sir Ken Robinson - TED talk

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