Letters to the Editor 11/29/2023


Last updated 11/28/2023 at 10:51am

Whose land?

Re: The letter “Whose Land?” (The Nugget, November 23):

The writer of this letter is under certain misconceptions about the history of Palestine and the Palestinian people. She alleges that “the only people who have ancestral ties to Israel as their historic homeland and nation are the Jewish people.” Does she believe that ancient Israel and modern Israel are the same thing?

If so, this is nonsense. Not even Jews, especially Orthodox Jews, believe this. Or does she believe that because there was some kind of Jewish “state” in Palestine thousands of years ago that this justifies the creation of a modern Jewish polity in Palestine at the expense of the indigenous people? This is also nonsense. The number of Jews who can actually trace their ancestry to even premodern Palestine is probably insignificant, especially given the number of Jews in Europe and North Africa who were converts. None have “ancestral” ties to the modern state of Israel, which would be an oxymoron. As for cultural ties with Palestine, those of Jews are no more important than those of Christians or Muslims.

Her muddled thinking about the term “Palestinian” is risible. If Golda Meir called herself a Palestinian because she lived in geographical Palestine before 1948, so what? She never renounced her cultural or religious identity as a Jew. Moreover, she never recognized the Christian and Muslim natives of Palestine to be a people with their own identity. They were just “Arabs” and, in her words, “could go to Arabia.”

We must not forget that modern Israel is a colonial settler state. It was driven by an ideology, Zionism, which demanded the creation of an exclusive Jewish state in Palestine. There was no place in it for the indigenous Christians and Muslims. They had to go. Golda Meir was from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Lakeview Millworks 541-549-0968

For those looking for insight into the current disaster, it is important to listen to Israeli scholars like Ilan Pappe and Benny Morris and American Jewish scholars like Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein, or even Miko Peled, the son of an Israeli general. They are on YouTube. If one has the stomach, there is a video by Israeli public broadcasting of Israeli children singing how they will eliminate all Palestinians within one year.

Meanwhile, the Israeli killing of innocents goes on. Now more than 5,000 children.

Sisters Oregon Guide

Gary Leiser

It’s simple

To the Editor:

For once, Mr. Mackey’s reference to a biblical quote was right on the money. Proverbs 14:15-18 states: “The simple believe anything, but the prudent give thought to their steps.”

Wow. I couldn’t have said it better. It goes on to state: “The simple inherit folly but the prudent are crowned with knowledge.”

Right now, there seems to be a decided lack of crowns in this country. There is, however, too many people who want to keep it “simple.” I love how Mr. Mackey puts scientists in air quotes as if they’re not real. I’m sure he chipped out his letter on a piece of stone before trekking over to The Nugget. If you don’t believe in someone, you certainly wouldn’t want to use anything that they had anything to do with, such as ink, paper, laptops, email, etc.

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I think Sharon Booth left out a word when she was talking about “not opinions, but facts, (here is where I would have inserted ‘knowledge’)” like ice ages developing over thousands of years. Then Mr. Mackey wouldn’t have misunderstood thinking that you’d have to be there thousands of years ago to get the data. Apparently, he’s not familiar with ice core samples or analogies.

How we went from climate change to COVID kinda stumped me, but I guess if you want to prove that scientists are not telling the truth, and you don’t know the truth, conspiracy theories are always a good way to go.

I wonder if Mr. Mackey has overcome the trauma of the vaccines he got as a child. You know, polio, smallpox, diphtheria, etc. Those pesky scientists.

Sisters Area Chamber of Commerce

I couldn’t help but notice Mr. Mackey left out Russia when he was questioning climate change being a bigger threat than China, Iran, North Korea. Russia may well be the biggest threat we have on the foreign relations front. If they attack NATO, it’s war on a huge scale with a country with a lot of nukes. China would think twice about a war with us ‘cause then they’d never get back the money we owe them and who would they sell all their crap to. If North Korea sent a nuke to the U.S. or Japan, they’d be turned into radioactive slag.

So, in answer to your question, yes, climate change is the bigger threat and even our enemies will suffer from it. It’s simple.

Bruce Campbell

Dangers of drinking

To the Editor:

Hello everybody, grace and peace to you. I would like to share a second letter with the people of Sisters to talk about my experience with the powerful liquid drug known as alcohol.

Sweeney Plumbing 541-549-4349

This information is for any and all AA and NA participants. I believe separatism and divisionism is the foundation of war, conflict, and bloodshed. Alcohol is a drug. The Food and Drug Administration classified it as an adult beverage, however, I believe it should be classified as a drug.

What I am about to tell you is scientific and medical fact. Alcohol is a double-barrel shotgun. The first barrel is the constant consumption of alcohol leads to the creation of a drug called THIQ. This drug is more addictive than heroin. So if you are addicted to alcohol than you are in worse condition than a heroin addict.

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The chemical compound THIQ was fist created and used in the middle of World War II. The navy physician went to their chemist requesting a drug less addictive than morphine. The Navy physicist chemist cooked up the drug now known as THIQ. A year later the medics went back to the Navy and requested that they return to morphine because THIQ was so addictive.

In 1962, a female neurologist named Virginia Davis was studying cancer in Houston, TX and the process of the human brain, which means she whittled on brains. The brains she was dissecting were the brains of winos. One day she made a comment to her colleagues, I can’t figure out how these winos can afford their heroin. She was the one who discovered that the brain can only process so much alcohol, and with the excess alcohol the brain creates THIQ, which as we already know is more addictive than heroin. Thus the metaphor for the double barrel is this second barrel, and that’s called relapse. Relapse pulls the second barrel. The human brain enters into withdrawal with the absence of alcohol (THIQ). They are now fighting with a craving more powerful than the relapse a heroin addict experiences, which is why it is so difficult for someone to put down a drink.

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How many bars and lounges and restaurants do you have that are selling alcohol? It is one of the greatest and most dangerous issues facing Sisters, but we don’t address it at all. These facts pertain to weekend warriors, social drinkers, and those late-stage chronic addicts.

Chuck Morse

Congrats on retirement

To the Editor:

A tip of the hat to Bonnie Malone. She and Sisters are connected at the hip in more ways than one!

Congratulations on your retirement, Bonnie!

Judy Bull


To the Editor:

You need a topic category of “compliments!” I just read the November 15th issue and want to say how much I enjoyed the “Keeping the wild in Whychus Creek” story and “The long echo of the guns” commentary.

I always appreciate the current local news, but savor the inclusion of stories that go a little bit bigger in context and focus, especially with an historical perspective. Thank you for such a great local newspaper!

Sara Stamey

Public lands permits

To the Editor:

As a follow-up to my letter regarding stripping branches from cedar trees, I can report that some action was taken by Ian Reid, Sisters’ district ranger. He and a colleague hiked with me to see two of the worst sites along the trail. He brought the permit to check items of compliance or violation, and was open about acknowledging definite abuse of the permit.

I learned that permits measure tonnage, not confined specific areas, and that this particular permit was for two tons of branches! However there is no system for checking amounts cut or compliance, and rare consequence issued, mainly because of staff and logistic limits. His colleague said they just hope that 80 percent of the people do the right thing and obey limits.

We discussed that by definition, public lands have three designated purposes; commercial, conservation and recreation, and the Forest Service must seek some balance. He explained the many duties that require prioritizing, like wildfires, homeless camps, illegal tree felling, safety, camping sites, trails, education, and the current philosophy of thinning by logging and prescribed burns. The mandates are national, but managed locally.

While we cannot undo the damage and illegal actions, it is important for ordinary citizens to note when something seems “not right,” and pursue answers or action that can be fruitful, ultimately.

Mr. Reid promised to review how permits are issued and how better to enforce them, with that department, for future use. I appreciated that they took time to communicate, visit the damage, and follow up, and we all learned from the experience.

Wendie Vermillion

Our major parties

To the Editor:

Does the USA have two major political parties?

Dumb question? You decide. Out of 50 states, 31 states and the District of Columbia (DC) register voters by party affiliation. The other 18 states register voters without party affiliation. Therefore, over 1/3 of U.S. states are excluded from political party affiliation totals. That is a very big hole in determining which are the major parties.

In 2022 there were 168.42 million registered voters. In 2023, it jumped to 210 million. Yay!

The 18 states that do not allow party affiliation at registration have 139.9 million people out of U.S. population of 336 million, or 42 percent. The number of registered voters (210 million) is 63% of US population. If that last percentage (voters to population) holds true for the 18 states, then the estimated number of registered voters for which we do not know their party affiliation is 88.1 million (63% of 139.9 million).

Of the 31 states plus D.C. that do track affiliation at registration, 40% are Democrat, 29% are Republican, and 28% are Independent (as in party, not as in nonaffiliated). Also, in 19 of these states plus D.C., there are 20% more Democrats registered than Republicans, and of the remaining 12 states Republicans have a 12% lead over Democrats. The party affiliations also indicate that 12 states plus D.C. have a Democrat plurality, eight states have a Republican plurality, and 10 states have Independent Party plurality. Yet we continue with a two-party system from primaries to divided congresses.

Looks to me like we have three major parties. Go figure.

Susan Cobb


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