Tuesday, September 11, 2001
Your editorial page comment on a casino in Cascade Locks was very timely and prompted me to write the following letter to Governor Kitzhaber.
Dear Governor Kitzhaber,
I am a contributing member of No Casino, I have written my letter to the Bureau of Indian Affairs and I have attended meetings, all for the purpose of preventing a casino being built on top of the Mark Hatfield trail head in the Gorge Scenic Area.
Two things have happened this Saturday morning,
1. I received a letter from the BIA telling me pretty much that a casino is going to be built in Hood River and that while my input was appreciated, it wasn't going to change any minds, particularly about the rights of the tribe.
2. I read a piece on the editorial page of the Hood River News with the headline "Common Sense points casino to Cascade Locks." The article was written by the president of the Cascade Locks Business Association. I am sure you are familiar with the arguments.
Now, I have been very much in a dilemma on this casino issue.
Ethically, I am in favor of a better deal for Native Americans.
On the other hand, ethically, I deplore gambling, particularly when offered by a combination of government and private enterprise in cahoots.
And, also, and I realize how slimy this statement is, no casino in my backyard!
Both the BIA letter and the letter from the Business Association mention your reluctance to grant permission for a casino in Cascade Locks. Yet, both the tribe and the town of Cascade Locks seem to desire one there on Government Island.
Cascade Locks offers a way to solve the dilemma.
It seems the ethical issue of gambling and the expansion of gambling has been lost.
Since a casino will be built, please allow the tribe and the community to have a casino in Cascade Locks where both the tribe and town would like to see it.
Richard Swart Hood River