Time to step up, community
I am writing to voice support of the middle school lunchtime mentor program discussed in the Sept. 11 guest view authored by school Superintendents Kraig Sproles and Andy Dey.
I participated in the 4J program for several years prior to the COVID-19 school shutdown, and I look forward to resuming my mentoring. Having mentored a number of boys, I know that not every mentoring engagement is life-changing for the youth, but they all have been beneficial. In all cases, the experience was highly enriching to my life.
In my day job, I am involved in research and program dissemination that address many of the social challenges the superintendents mention in their column. While I’m not a research scientist, I conduct many interviews with educators and mental health professionals. The hurdles I hear about are daunting, but the opportunity to address these challenges through our involvement with youth ought to inspire all of us to get involved.
The middle school students in Bethel and 4J need the community to step up now to support them. I encourage you to do so.
Paul Berger, Eugene
The waiting is not the hardest part
I write regarding Bill Northrup’s letter about possible abuses of mail-in ballots in Oregon. The concern about mail-in ballot fraud came to a head with Donald Trump’s loss in the 2020 election. Ballot counts were looking good at the beginning for Trump. Then, we all had to wait for the mail-in ballots to be counted.
For native-born Oregonians, this wait is old hat. If Northrup has some evidence of ballot fraud, please produce it. Wanting fraud to be true doesn’t make it true. Garth Price, Eugene
Bring back in-person voting
Steven E. Hunnicutt’s letter of Sept. 14, “More than Trump in the news,” actually made me laugh out loud! He said it took the passing of Queen Elizabeth II to top Donald Trump in the news cycle. Maybe the media should stop bombarding us with constant “theories” on Trump. Also, I agree 100% with Bill Northrop’s letter, “The gold standard for elections.” I also would like to see voting in-person come back. There would be far less chance of fraud when you go to your precinct, sign in, show photo ID and proof of citizenship of our country! Beverly Bowker, Eugene
Vote-by-mail is proven reliable
Bill Northrup’s Sept. 14 letter offers a solution for a non-existent problem. There is zero credible evidence of any significant voting fraud anywhere in the United States, let alone here in the Pacific Northwest by way of our proven, reliable vote-by-mail system.
The only major attempt at vote fraud is by the Republican Party and its absurd, repeatedly disproven claims of a stolen 2020 presidential election.
And Northrup’s proposed change to our voting system isn’t naively innocent. It colludes with the Republican Party’s attempted fraud by suggesting that we have a problem or at least a potential problem, which we clearly do not have. It is a cynical attempt to undermine Oregonian’s confidence in our voting system so that, when extremist Republican candidates lose the upcoming election and the 2024 election, they can hide behind a claim of voter fraud instead of taking responsibility for the fact that their relentless march to the extreme political right is destroying their party, making it unelectable.
The only thing more pathetic than a sore loser is one without shame, one who blames the rules of the game and the officiating system for a loss they have brought upon themself.
Peter Straton, Eugene
Don’t forget to register to vote
National Voter Registration Day this year is Tuesday, Sept. 27, and it is a great day to make sure your voter registration is up to date.
If you will be 18 by Election Day and have not applied for a driver’s license or state ID, you will need to register to vote. If you have moved or changed your name or your party affiliation, your registration needs to be updated. The last day to register or update for the general election this year is Oct. 18. If you have an Oregon driver’s license or state ID card, you can update your information online at the Oregon secretary of state’s webpage. If not, the online registration form can be filled out, printed and then submitted in person or by mail to your local elections office.
Remember, your vote is your voice.
Paula Grisafi, Eugene
Can’t let our guard down
No, Steven E. Hunnicutt, there isn’t anything more important to our country than the havoc and chaos perpetrated by Trump and his bootlickers. The queen has never, far as I know, tried to eliminate our democratic form of government. Nor has she ever committed treason in the USA, as has Trump.
While I admire the queen, we cannot afford to let our guard down in the face of the very real threats we are experiencing!
Jean Lorenz, Eugene
The end-of-life party has two great candidates
Over the last decade, many efforts have been launched to place Oregon on a rational downward trajectory of greenhouse gas emissions causing global warming and stimulating wildfires that devastate our state. Time and again, these efforts have been thwarted in the Legislature. Two of the leading promoters of our wildfires are now seeking the state governorship.
The two opponents of climate action are Betsy Johnson and Christine Drazan. As chair of Ways and Means, Johnson repeatedly prevented sane legislative proposals from reaching the floors of the chambers. Meanwhile, House Minority Leader Drazan organized the last anti-democratic walk-out from the chamber to break the quorum and thwart passage of the climate bill and many other important proposals.
It’s simple! Oregonians wishing to promote the end of life as we know it on this planet should vote Johnson or Drazan. Those wishing to solve the climate crisis should vote for Tina Kotek.
Bruce Bauer, Medford
Point the bird
Instead of pointing fingers at politicians and policies for the rise in inflation, the middle finger should be pointed at the big conglomerates who own and control all of our food and energy sources. Ten corporations own every grocery item in our stores, with just four controlling all meat, pork and chicken production. COVID-19 and war have caused a spike in the cost of our basic needs and this spike is being used as a cloak for the corporations to jack up their prices for record profits.
Instead of paying their workers more they are using this windfall profit for stock buybacks and executive bonuses. 2021 was the most profitable year for big corporations since 1950. Exxon just posted the largest profit in history. Make America great again by passing the Ending Corporate Greed Act that taxes this windfall profiteering. Our lives and future literally depend upon it.
Michael T. Hinojosa, Drain
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