Letters to the Editor: March 9, 2018

Saving the neighborhood

There’s been a lot said and written recently about individuals living in RVs on Doran Drive.

My wife and I bought a new house on Hidden Meadow Drive in 2015. It backs up on an orchard that lies in a flood plain, so can never be subdivided. We thought it would be a good investment.

I’m semi-retired, so have limited resources. I worked hard all of my life, and the house is my greatest asset.

I don’t want to disparage those choosing another lifestyle. Live and let live. But people living on the street is unsightly and potentially unsafe, thus negatively affects my property values.

I grew up in the ‘50s and ‘60’s with groundless fears that people of color moving in would hurt property values. Let me be clear: This is not that.

These people are not adding value to my community. They are not contributing. They are taking money out of my wallet because they feel entitled to squat.

The well-intentioned citizens expressing compassion at city council should give some thought to their neighbors. The coverage made it sound like residents here are selfish, unfeeling and un-Christian, but I call BS.

I’m armed to the teeth and exercise my Second Amendment rights freely. But I’m a lifelong Democrat who believes social services should be in place to help the less fortunate. And I don’t mind paying taxes for that. So I’d be classified as a liberal.

The fact is, I worked hard to live here. I pay my taxes. I keep my yard clean and groomed. I obey the laws and do my best to be a good citizen. And I don’t want vagrants parking, camping or living in my neighborhood.

It’s high time for something concrete to be done to address this situation.

Joe Wall



Wants neighborhood back

I’ve lived in my home for 30 years.

Our neighborhood used to be fairly nice. Now I am forced to look out my front window to a mass of old motorhomes and cars people are living in. And drug deals go down in broad daylight every single day.

Most of the vehicles people are living in have expired tags, but the police tell me citations can’t be issued unless offices catch them underway. Well, they didn’t just drop out of the sky and land there. And every few days, they move about 300 feet — about from one end of our dead end street to the other.

As my property values continue to drop, I seem to get no help, no solution.

We park in our garage so it’s harder to tell if we are home or not. It’s a safety measure.

However, these people sit there day and night. They see us come and go and learn our patterns. So I no longer feel safe.
There’s also the health hazard from garbage and human waste to consider.

I’m sick of dealing with this every single day with no relief. Something’s got to change. I’m a taxpayer and they aren’t.

I installed a security camera. I recorded videos of drug deals and took them to the police station but got no help.
What’s it going to take to get this under control?

I refuse to move. This is my neighborhood. I want it back!

Julie VanDyke White



Something must change

I’m a gun owner who views guns as tools. I don’t collect or fetishize them, and don’t support the NRA.

I don’t believe the more guns there are, the safer we will be. Given the number of gun deaths in this country, it’s hard to credibly support that point of view. Nor do I believe the fantasy that a good guy with a gun is going to shoot the bad guy and save the day.

I struggle to understand the theory that citizens should be armed as a militia with semi-automatic high-capacity weapons.

To fight whom? The United States military? Invading forces?

That seems a dark perception of American life to hold onto while hundreds of school-age children are slaughtered.

Granted, fully automatic weapons are illegal to possess. But a modified semi-automatic is not a far step from that.

Guns will not disappear in our society, but more restrictive access to them via licensing, tracking and background checks is not a chink in the armor of the second amendment. It is a common-sense approach to the American idea — life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Something must change. What we have now is not working. In the meantime, I will continue to donate blood.

Stuart Gunness



What will it take?

Who would trade the life of a child, teacher, student or parishioner for the right to own an assault weapon?

Apparently, many people. They seem to value their individual rights over an individual life — or multiple individual lives.

The individual rights of people have been tread upon — 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, 58 at a concert in Las Vegas, and groups of churchgoers in Texas and South Carolina and college students in Oregon. Actually, the rights of those individuals have been extinguished, as they are dead.

he question of trading a life or lives for a right to own a weapon leaves us baffled. We’re baffled at those who support the right to own an assault weapon over the right to a life free from terror. Baffled at our inability to create legal protections that save lives. Baffled at ourselves for not finding a solution.

What can we do to save people from being shot in places we believe to be safe sanctuaries — schools, churches, concerts and softball games, for example? The Oregon Senate passed a bill this session that aims to provide us protection from people who commit domestic violence. It’s a small beginning.

Do we need to wait for the next terrorist attack in a school, church, concert or ballgame to take the next small step? Or can we move forward with legislation that requires and funds comprehensive background checks, bans assault weapons and denies gun access to the mentally ill and abusive, thus protecting our individual right to safety and sanctuary?

Jennifer Scott & Russell Weaver



Maybe the enemy is us

I’ve read and re-read the Second Amendment to the Constitution, and am still not clear about the true meaning.

I’m assuming the words, “A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state” refer to something such as our National Guard units. However, those words are the first part of a sentence, the two parts being separated by a comma.

The second part asserts that “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” That appears to refer to people belonging to the well-regulated militia.

If the authors had known how many ways their wording would be construed, perhaps they might have more clearly defined their wording.

The first 10 amendments to the Constitution were written in 1791. I’m sure the authors had no idea what weaponry would become, with assault rifles, attachments to make them fire more rapidly and so forth.

We live in a totally different world, a world with all kinds of mass destruction.

The fact that assault rifles are so readily available to so many poses a scary thought: Perhaps our enemies won’t have to invade us. Perhaps we’ll implode! Perhaps that’s what our enemies have planned for us!

Anita VanDatta



Godsend for pain-afflicted

I would like to address the wire story in the Feb. 27 News-Register on Kratom (“FDA cracks down on Kratom products”). I think the article was irresponsible and the writer uninformed.

Kratom is shown in a negative light in some reports, but no one is quoting the many benefits that have been proven. If you look on any search engine, you will find many articles from reputable magazines and newspapers that actually report scientific data contradicting this article’s blanket ignorance.

The FDA and DEA are trying to institute a ban on this substance based on limited data.There might be one actual death from Kratom, but others attributed to Kratom have always involved other substances as well.

I have seen the effects of Kratom, and it has been a lifegiver for my daughter. She had been on opioids for 10 years for back pain and a failed surgery that left her worse off than before.

Suddenly, the nation succumbed to the Opioid Epidemic, first cutting back, then denying altogether, the pain relief so many had become dependent on. But Kratom has given my daughter her life back.

Kratom delivered her from a doctor-imposed withdrawal. As a result, she is no longer enslaved to opioids. In fact, she is better off on Kratom than she ever was on opioids.

Chronic pain is a terrible tyrant. The use of Kratom quiets the beast.

She does not get high. In fact, she is more focused and functioning than she has been for years. 

As we reach for our morning coffee, afternoon cigarette or evening beer, let us remember that these, too, are drugs. And more deaths have occurred because of alcohol and cigarettes than we will ever see from Kratom.

I think more research needs to be done before the DEA and FDA ban this substance.There are far more harmful things the American people face, and they are still legal, despite evidence of their danger

I urge people to do their own research, not rely on snippets from nameless authors claiming unsubstantiated facts.

Pamela Fenley



Consumer last in Oregon

Oregon consumers are being deceived every day in ways that are illegal in many other states.

Sales that advertise outrageous discounts of 40 percent to 80 percent have to be justified in states like Washington, which says the discounted item must have been sold at least once at the stated pre-discount price. Otherwise, the offending store may be subject to a substantial fine for making a false claim.

In Oregon, a store may claim sale prices that are actually higher than other stores’ regular prices. A consumer may be dissuaded from doing any comparison shopping in light of the huge discount he thinks he’s getting.

Oregon legislators need to enact a consumer protection law similar to what Washington and other states have had for years.

David Lewis




Thank you Joe and Julie. I am tired of the homeowners being made out to be the bad guys in this situation. We are not all uncaring monsters but it is not as if the homeless population just appeared out of thin air! It has been growing and becoming an issue all over town for years, more than enough time for the city to "study the issue" and come up with some solutions.

Don Dix

racemom -- at some point 'study time is over' -- time to 'take the test'!


Jennifer Scott & Russell Weaver -"Who would trade the life of a child, teacher, student or parishioner for the right to own an assault weapon?"

The NRA...that's who. I read somewhere that the tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of kindergarteners, high school kids, movie, nightclub, and concert goers.

It is truly sad indeed when my uterus is more highly regulated than guns.


Everybody wants to rewrite the second amendment because they think our forefathers did not have the perception of what modern day weaponry would look like. You know what? I believe they knew the world would progress over time. By the way, the supreme court already interpreted what a well regulated militia was (we the people). Look it up!
Are you as open to having the first amendment rewritten as you are the second? Or, as far as that goes, any of the amendments to the constitution?
I didn't think so........
And yeah, Planned Parenthood gets 5 million bucks of taxpayer money for abortions and people complain about the NRA donating money to politicians to support the 2nd amendment. What's wrong with that picture?


Airman__ In the interest of truth, Abortions amount to 3% of Planned parenthood services, and Federal money cannot be used for abortions by law.....


Airman...you need to study the Hyde Amendment passed in 1976.


Airman - 5 million goes to PP to help poor people get the health care they need. Do you also have a problem with Trump's military parade that is estimated (by Mick Mulvaney) to cost as much as 50 million? How many veterans could be given real help for 50 million? Do you have a problem with taxpayer funds being used by our dear leader for an ego driven display befitting a dictator?


Mudstump, I'm very much aware of the Hyde amendment. Those of you that want to put Planned Parenthood on a pedestal.......I have a bridge I'd like to sell to you.


We could use a few retroactive abortions.


Not sure being truthful about Planned Parenthood should be considered putting them on a pedestal.....on the other hand, spreading an intentionally false narrative doesn't help your credibility.


Airman - "Mudstump, I'm very much aware of the Hyde amendment. Those of you that want to put Planned Parenthood on a pedestal.......I have a bridge I'd like to sell to you."

Then you were incorrect and your point was irrelevant.


Mudstump- "Then you were incorrect and your point was irrelevant"

Just because the Hyde amendment exists does not mean they follow it. My point is very relevant.


Airman—you stated “Planned Parenthood gets 5 million bucks of taxpayer money for abortions”....I think you know that’s incorrect....


Tagup- "Airman—you stated “Planned Parenthood gets 5 million bucks of taxpayer money for abortions”....I think you know that’s incorrect...."

Granted, my statement may have been too finite, however I do question what all that tax money gets used for legally. Their bookkeeping system must be quite a quagmire keeping tax dollars, cash donations, and any patient charges all separate. It depends on what you want to believe. There's two sides to a story. Google can be your friend....

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