Letters to the Editor 2/08/2022


Last updated 2/9/2022 at Noon

Nonpartisan county commission

To the Editor:

On January 3, the Deschutes County Clerk’s Office updated the voter registration database. At that time there were 153,912 voters across the county registered to vote in federal elections. Of these, 31 percent are registered for the Democratic Party and 29 percent for the Republican Party. The remaining 40 percent are not affiliated with either of the two major parties in the state: 33 percent are nonaffiliated voters (NAV) and 7 percent are registered for one of the seven minor parties (e.g., Independent, Libertarian, etc.).

Many of these voters may not realize that their May 2022 primary ballot will only have nonpartisan seats on their ballots. For example, two of the three Deschutes County Commissioner seats are up for reelection in May and only those voters who are registered for one of the two major parties will see the partisan (D or R) candidates on their ballots.

Then, in the November 2022 general election, all voters see all candidates. The 40 percent have no say during the primary.

To correct this situation, last year we started a grassroots effort to make our county commissioner seats and elections nonpartisan. This petition requests the elections of county commissioners be nonpartisan, like all other elective county positions. Currently in Oregon, 72 percent of the 36 counties have nonpartisan elections of commissioners. If on the ballot and passed, Deschutes would follow the trend that Oregonians prefer, and making it 75 percent of all counties.

Along with a small army of volunteer circulators, and in spite of COVID restrictions, we have managed to collect 66 percent of the minimum required signatures (5,766). With 1,967 to go, we are in an all-out push to find potential petition signers, places to sit and collect signatures (tabling), and more volunteer circulators.

Should this measure pass, it will make it possible for all voters to have a voice in the elections of our county commissioners. We hoped to have Initiative 2021-01-I before the voters in May 2022. If we fall short of the goal for May election, we will continue to work until the August deadline for the November 2022 election.

In the next few weeks, we will be out in as many places around the county as we can. We would love for others to join our group of circulators, sign the petition (if you have not already), and offer places for us to table to seek potential signers. If you want to learn more, track our progress, read the initiative text, or contact us, please go to https://www.nonpartisan-deschutes.org. The Nonpartisan Deschutes County (NCC) Committee would also like to remind voters to check their registration status before the April 26 voter registration deadline.

Susan Cobb

Decline of CNN

To the Editor:

As we observe the apparent decline of CNN in viewership, could it be due to their honesty, integrity, and strict adherence to the Journalistic Code of Ethics? I guess you may think so if still addicted to 24/7 messages of hate, racist rhetoric, lies, disinformation, believe Adam Schiff still has Russia evidence on Trump, or that Michael Avenatti would be a perfect presidential candidate.

Personally, I think CNN is experiencing the result of their behavior as “everything but honest journalism.” Or, to put it another way, “the chickens have come home to roost.”

I am not inclined to gloat about their misfortune. Rather, it would be nice to see humility and an apology from new leadership to Americans for CNN’s past; and a new commitment to the freedom granted by the Constitution in a manner established by our founders. Hopefully, this may even affect other major players in media. Maybe it’s already starting: “NYT sues State Dept. to get Hunter Biden emails.” Remember how the Hunter laptop story was handled right before the election?

We need a media that works for “we the people,” not special interests or a specific political party.

The treatment of Trump vs. Biden has made that point more clear than any time I can remember in the last 50-plus years.

Additionally, we now have an agenda of censorship like never seen, conducted by big-tech narcissists and woke hate.

Nurses treated as heroes early in their dedication to the pandemic yet later fired for failing to comply with the left’s insatiable lust for power regardless of the harm to our nation and children.

There are multiple sources that have grown out of the massive push to censor everything that does not agree with the “narrative.” One of those that can be explored is Rumble.com, where a daily segment from X-22 can be found with opinion and information challenging the “narrative.” The Epoch Times is a refreshing change to major news outlets with both printed and online news, opinion, and information free of declaring everyone a racist or traitor for not taking an experimental vaccine.

It’s time to reclaim our freedom of speech.

Jeff Mackey

Protecting wolves

To the Editor:

As of late January 2022, 30 percent of Yellowstone National Park wolves have been killed since the start of the 2021-2022 hunting season, when they crossed the invisible boundary into Montana and Idaho.

Both states allow baiting and night hunting on private land. In Montana, an individual can kill up to 20 wolves a year. In Idaho, there is currently no limit on wolf tags, and hunters can legally lure wolves using bait, run them down using ATVs, snares, and aerial hunting. In Wyoming, there is no limit on the number that can be killed across 85 percent of the state. The New York Times recently ran an essay entitled “A Slaughter of Wolves Like This Hasn’t Been Seen in a Century.”

In October 2020, all remaining Endangered Species Act protections for gray wolves were removed.

Predators such as gray wolves are critically important to control populations of deer and elk, among others.

Wolves in Oregon (population estimated at 172) still have some protection under the Oregon Wolf Conservation and Management Plan.

Hunting and trapping remain banned statewide.

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) says the state will not kill wolves unless “non-lethal measures” such as fencing prove unsuccessful.

However, in October 2021, ODFW announced they had killed three more members of a wolf pack in Baker County, including two pups too young to hunt.

Annual confirmed and probable wolf-caused losses on average amount to only 0.001 percent of Oregon livestock.

Oregon has a wolf depredation compensation and financial assistance program to compensate ranchers for proven or probable wolf predation.

In October of 2021, Senator Cory Booker wrote a letter to Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland requesting emergency protection for wolves; the letter was signed by 20 senators. In December 2021, Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon and a group of 85 representatives sent another letter to Sec. Haaland. All pleas have been ignored by the Biden administration.

I urge concerned citizens to write to Sec. Deb Haaland, your senator, and representatives to advocate for Oregon’s wolf population, which urgently needs help and intervention in order to not only thrive, but survive.

Ann Thompson

Pearl Harbor

To the Editor:

Val Anderson’s new book, “Pearl Harbor’s Final Warning,” is a fascinating account of family vignettes that crisscross the months and days before the surprise attack at Pearl Harbor. Her story focuses on missed opportunities in communications between top brass in Washington, D.C. and military leadership in Hawaii, as a decrypted message had alerted officials in Washington that an attack was imminent, but clumsy, outdated methods prevented the warning from reaching Pearl Harbor in time.

Val’s grandfather, the Honolulu RCA manager, discovered too late these bungled efforts. Tracing his research from the time, Val puts together a fascinating story explaining the mystery and the consequences for servicemen and local residents after the attack.

Val is a local resident and friend. Edie Jones wrote a compelling introduction with Val in last week’s paper. I hope it encourages local residents with a penchant for history to purchase this book at their favorite local bookstore.

Jim Barnett

Water problems

To the Editor:

I cannot help but wish that some of the realtors quoted in “Water problems?” beginning on page 1 of the February 2 issue of The Nugget had a larger perspective than selling more properties and what their wealthier customers can ignore.

People need to be very much aware that we live in the high desert. Water is not unlimited. We take it for granted, until we can’t. A neighbor’s well runs dry or ours does.

Thornburgh gets permits to build yet another resort with more golf courses, multimillion dollar houses get built. Yes, these all bring money and jobs into the community, but at what cost, and how often does the money go to outside investors? Then there is another topic of where ordinary people are to live…

These issues and more, but especially that concerning water, are difficult and require that we see with a larger perspective. Money should not be the bottom line. What do we want for our community, for this beautiful place we live, and what is possible?

Winnie Givot

Secret Sisters socialists?

To the Editor:

In last week’s Nugget, a contributor attempted to contrast virtuous “patriots” with devious leftists and socialists, wrapping up with ... “be aware folks, they walk among us.” Well, to those who subscribe to this train of thought, I have news for you. We are hidden in plain sight. And why do I consider myself a “clever” leftist and socialist? Because, if the ideology that writer and accompanying guest columnist espouse is on the right side of the room, I choose to be on the far opposite or left, if not entirely outside.

The secretive Sisters Socialist Society meets every Thursday evening at my shop to plot how we might storm City Hall, take hostages, then shower them with homemade cookies and praise for the thankless, difficult, but valuable socialist work they do maintaining and improving our community. And yet, despite the agenda, we end up playing table tennis. Rabid Republican spies are among us, but they are most likely RINOs. That is, they are educated, well-informed, ethical, Party-of-Lincoln conservatives who are able to distinguish fact from Fox fantasy—and execute a wicked rightist side spin. They are also privy to our society’s secret handshake, which is, by charter, left-handed.

Now that the local leftist leader has come to light, I have to wonder if I can expect Trumpian-style raids on my home and businesses by J6 Sorry-Boy “patriots” exercising “legitimate political discourse.”

Kris Calvin


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