Saturday, September 30, 2017
Why so little help?
Many of our citizens are without water, power, food, shelter and the means to communicate, facing weeks or months of waiting for these services to be restored. I speak of citizens in Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and other islanders in the eastern Caribbean. These are poor places at best — many live in what amounts to large boxes, the better ones with windows. The islands have been devastated and there’s virtually no response, particularly when compared to Houston or Florida.
The question is why is our country not responding to those citizens who are in dire need? I’ve never been to Puerto Rico, but spent time in the U.S. Virgins. One of the first things we noticed there, beside that it was so beautiful, is that you’ve entered a society in which we were the minority in terms of color.
Nuts in the White House
I just left a message with Greg Walden’s Washington, D.C., office. My daughter is just beginning her Masters in social work at the University of Hawaii. She is a great young woman who works as an outreach counselor for children at a non-profit organization in Hawaii. She tends to hold her Facebook posting to non-political subjects, but today she posted about the Nut in N. Korea wanting to “bomb” Guam, along with Hawaii. I told him, “I am so scared.”
And “please, please stand up to this president and his malicious tweets that are stirring up hatred all over the planet. I am disgusted with your stance on health care, but I am begging you on this one.“
Never thought I would beg anyone in my life, but I just can’t sit here and be quiet.
No need to be rude
The rude letter by Mr. Michalek in this column last week regarding Congressman Walden’s Gorge Restoration Bill is just too much! Who is going to be swayed by that kind of divisive garbage anyway? Thankfully, the vast majority of people in our community would never consider writing this kind of letter in our local paper. Let’s try and keep it that way.
Congressman Walden has a lot of experience with forest fires on public lands and he knows that the inevitable flurry of lawsuits will prevent any restorative work ever being done in the Gorge. Just look at the ugly gray skirt that Mount Hood now wears around its north flank from the last fire. Do we want the same sad repeat with the Columbia Gorge?
Walden’s bill requires the Forest Service to develop a cleanup and reforestation plan within 30 days of a natural disaster. Things need to happen fast. We don’t have time to wait for the courts and years of appeals that will ultimately follow. Trees need to be salvaged in a few months before they go to waste. Seedlings need to be planted the following spring to prevent erosion and so on.
We are lucky to have such an experienced and well-connected congressman as Greg Walden in Washington. You may not agree and that’s okay, but maybe we can all agree on one thing: Let’s keep the obviously organized and disrespectful crucifying of our local politicians out of the media!
Bibles in schools
To our parents and children for this coming week! It is on Thursday, Oct. 5, “Bring Your Bible to School Day”!
I am praying to see this happening here in Hood River schools, Horizon Christian, Cascade Locks and the other schools in the Gorge. It is one of freedoms from the U.S. Constitution.
A question for Trump
“As greenhouse gas emissions increase, sea levels are rising, average global temperatures are increasing, and severe weather patterns are accelerating. These changes, coupled with other global dynamics … will devastate homes, land and infrastructure.” — 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review, U.S. Department of Defense.
With wildfires raging across the west, and in the aftermath of the terrible destruction caused by hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, there is a question that I would like to see asked of President Trump: “As Commander in Chief, and in light of your penchant for selecting generals to serve in your administration, why do you ignore the stark warnings by the U.S. military on climate change?”
This is clearly an important time for superpower leadership on this issue.
Oak Creek, Wisc.