News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Letters to the Editor 1/3/2024

Tree poaching

To the Editor:

I live in Crossroads. I wanted to correct the information in The Nugget, “Tree poachers strike in Sisters.” In this article it stated that Jeremy Fields and Therese Kollerer found the old-growth tree outside Crossroads on a survey of a volunteer clean-up. My husband, myself, and our neighbor were the ones involved in the clean-up of an abandoned homeless camp.

However, it was my husband who discovered the tree on one of his daily runs. He reported the location (using Google coordinates) to the Deschutes National Forest Service (Jeremy Fields), who acted quickly despite it being his day off. When the Forest Service arrived to survey the camp, my husband led them to the tree. Unfortunately, the outcome was tragic and heartbreaking and as the opinion piece by Therese states, “an extreme loss to the community,” on that we can all agree.

Dena Isbell

Thanks to Sisters community

To the Editor:

Sisters Kiwanis want to give a great big thank-you to the Sisters community for stepping up to help us reach our goals for the Food Bank. Also a big thank-you to the high school and middle school for their food drives. They donated over 1,000 pounds of food. Several of our local merchants have stepped up as well. Wander + NW collected 300 pounds in one day.

Doug Wills

Sisters Kiwanis

Congratulations to Jeremy Fields

To the Editor:

Congratulations to Jeremy Fields, our local “Forest Priest” as many of us call him, for just another award; he’s had many and all well deserved!

Bonnie LaMont Rose

Smith not first

To the Editor:

Just finished reading your wonderful article on the upcoming book “Throne of Grace” (“The great pathfinder,” The Nugget, December 27). Can’t wait for its release.

But as an avid reader of Western history I was dismayed at your historical error. You referenced Jedediah Smith as the discoverer of South Pass. Actually, that’s not true. South Pass was discovered by Robert Smith and six companions trying to find a route back East. To avoid Crow warriors, they followed the advice of a Shoshone, who recommended a southern route over the Rockies.

So, on October 22, 1812, they made the first crossing west to east of South Pass. Hence, discovering South Pass. Jedediah Smith, on the other hand, made the first crossing of South Pass east to west in February, 1824.

Jenny Zimmerman

Israeli savagery

To the Editor:

I would like to respond to Bill Bartlett’s “Call it for what it is” commentary re: the Hamas attack, in the December 13 edition. It is very clear to me that Mr. Bartlett has “jumped the gun” in his condemnation of Hamas atrocities.

He calls their action “savagery” for their indiscriminate killing of over 1,200 Jewish citizens in a brutal attack from the Gaza Strip into Israel. Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the leader of a coalition government patched together with far right-wing parties in the Knesset, was unfortunately caught off guard by this Hamas attack, and has decided to use the full might of the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) to destroy the Hamas stronghold in the Gaza Strip, and make him appear the hardline leader that Israel needs.

The IDF has been developed to protect Israel from the Arab States that surround it and is a 21st century military with a modern air force, army, and coastal forces. It is not a force to execute surgical strikes in a densely populated urban area. Currently, there are over 2 million people living in Gaza with an area the size of Boston, Massachusetts or Las Vegas, Nevada. So far, close to 20,000 Palestinians have been killed in these “surgical” attacks. The majority of those killed have been women and children. Included in the death count are 64 journalists (57 Palestinians, three Israelis and one Lebanese) and 137 U.N. aid workers.

The indiscriminate use of air power, artillery, and ground mechanization has decimated a large majority of the infrastructure of the Gaza Strip. Palestinians were told to flee the north of the Strip and congregate in the south of Gaza. In the past week, (as of December 19) these refugee sites have been attacked by IDF, with the death of more innocent women and children.

I hope that most of your readers remember the attack in Las Vegas in 2017. No, it wasn’t terrorist, but an American citizen. Sixty innocent persons were killed. That’s a little under half of the number killed by Hamas on October 7. What was the American response? Carpet bomb the Las Vegas Strip? Call out the National Guard and mow down any suspected “shooters”?

The “savagery” is now in the hands of the Israelis. They have resorted to tactics we have not seen since World War II. Except they don’t have to deport the Palestinians to “death camps” in some other country. They simply have to “shoot fish in a barrel” to rid themselves of the pesky Palestinian problem.

For those who want to dig deeper into the Palestinian/Israeli issue, research the Balfour Declaration, where Britain authorized their support for a “Jewish” homeland in Palestine.

Rob Phelps

Final chapter

To the Editor:

My husband and I moved to Sisters in the fall of 1992. Shortly thereafter, I noticed an ad in The Nugget for a part-time position at the local bookstore, at that time, Paulina Springs Book Company. Diane Campbell and Dick Sandvik had opened the store on Memorial Day of that year.

I thought to myself that, being new to the area, working at the bookstore would be a great way to meet people in the community. And it has been, in spades. Over the past 31 years I have worked part-time, able early on to have some summers off to work in profession as a wildlife biologist, to as little as one day a week for a short while when Brad Smith first took over the reins of the store. That didn’t last long!

I’ve been a nearly full-time manager/co-manager now for the last 15-20 years. I’ve been lucky enough during my time at Paulina Springs Books to have worked for/with some very forward-thinking, community-minded owners, most recently Lane Jacobson, who is taking the store to new heights in Sisters.

I have also had the good fortune to have had some great coworkers over the years. It has indeed been a wonderful way to meet people in my community, with customers who have become friends as well, seeing welcome familiar faces in the store on an almost daily basis. And now, after 31 years, as of January 1, I am stepping away from my book-selling endeavors. While I will still be doing a few store-related tasks, and will come in as need be to do them, my presence will be limited. I will miss the day-to-day, seeing both new and familiar faces, sharing lighthearted as well as deep conversations about books and life in general. Helping customers find just the right book is the joy of the work, and I will miss that. But I will still be reading and sharing those recommendations.

Thank you all for trusting me to help you with your book selections and for becoming the friends I hoped I would find when I answered that ad 31 years ago. I hope to see you around town, and we can still talk books!

Sue Tank


Reader Comments(1)

Cotton writes:

In Mr. Phelps' letter entitled, Israeli Savagery, he makes a glaring factual mistake. In comparing the mass shooting in Las Vegas (2017) he states: Sixty innocent persons were killed. That's a little under half of the number killed by Hamas on October 7. Wrong. It was reported that 1,200 Israelis were murdered on October 7. Thus the death toll in Vegas was only 5% of the Hamas atrocity not 50%. Sadly, this mistake takes away from his otherwise correct criticism of Israel's response. Having lived in Jerusalem, I mourn the loss of both Jews and Palestinians.

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