Letters - May 14

Keep water clean

Please read your ballot carefully to vote for keeping our water clean in Hood River.

Voting “yes” means you will keep harmful chemicals out of our pure clean water. And also keep our water costs down. Who is going to pay for all the “extra” industrial fluoride waste that will be added if this measure does not pass?

Our water is too expensive now! We don’t need the extra chemicals or the extra cost.

Margaret Campbell

Hood River

Supports 14-23

I just wanted to give a big thank-you to the hard working staff and volunteers at Columbia Riverkeeper for all their great work protecting the Columbia River and the people who live along it. I support this organization and look forward to reading their newsletters to learn about the work they are doing to reduce toxic pollution in the Columbia and clean up Hanford, etc.

It was disappointing to see a few of the zealots who are pushing to fluoridate our water attack Columbia Riverkeeper for trying to protect the water we drink. If you carefully read 14-23 it says “don’t add toxics to our water that exceeds EPA’s health goals and don’t add industrial waste byproducts to our water.” It seems pretty hard to be against this.

I believe the results of 14-23 will show that most people in Hood River think adding fluoride, or any other industrial waste byproducts, to our drinking water is a bad idea. Especially since recent medical studies have shown that fluoride works topically on teeth, but does not work systemically when people consume it in drinking water.

While I certainly respect my fellow citizens’ and my dentist’s opinions, for me it comes down to the desire to keep my water as clean as possible.

Heidi Doss

Hood River

Pass Measure 14-23

I think Hood River’s city water is amazingly good. I have lived all over this country and will say that it is the cleanest looking and tasting tap water I have had anywhere. I have read Measure 14-23 and believe it is a very simple and straightforward way to protect our drinking water. 14-23 makes sense because it would protect Hood River from attempts to add fluoride or any other chemicals to our water that could also introduce contaminants like lead, arsenic, and mercury. I know some dentists are excited about adding fluoride to our drinking water.

I say that it is inefficient and wasteful to add a topical supplement to our city water. I doubt if more than 5 percent of our water actually makes contact with people’s teeth or is swallowed. Also whether or not fluoride is even beneficial to our health seems to be controversial, but if fluoride is the answer, it makes a lot more sense to focus on getting toothpaste and fluoridated mouthwash to kids, than to risk tainting everyone’s water supply and ruining an already healthy and great thing.

Hood River’s high quality water is a truly VALUEable asset and passing Measure 14-23 will help keep it that way.

Brett Newcomb

Hood River

Fred and Don

The Port of Hood River is an agency that balances economic development with livability in the community. The Port’s primary interest has been creating jobs. Two initiative petitions — 14-16, which passed by only 36 percent of qualified city of Hood River voters, and provided no funds for creating a waterfront park; and 14-22, which passed by only 25 percent of qualified city voters — proposed to remove all State of Oregon riparian wildlife protection from the waterfront. These two petitions have created conflict and confusion and delayed progress in creating new jobs and increased economic opportunity.

Throughout this ordeal, county voters — who had a vital interest in port affairs and were more numerous than city voters — were not allowed to vote. All citizens have the right to be represented by local government.

As a native-born Hood River Valley resident and a third generation fruit grower, I urge you to retain Fred Duckwall and Don Hosford as Port Commissioners.

Robert W. Hukari

Hood River

A 14-23 ‘insult’

My election ballot arrived and its pretty well marked up. I notice that it holds no slot for me to register my desires on the hot-button fluoridation issue. This perplexes me since my domestic water is supplied by City of Hood River. Which makes me wonder if the proposers of the initiative are just interested in exercising their “voice” at the ballot box and not the comprehensive participation of all who would be affected by it, or ... ? The insult is almost enough to make me vote against my self-interest in a couple other places where my opinion WILL count.

Gloria Krantz of Dee


Port’s clear choice

Dr. Lars Bergstrom, Fred Duckwall, Don Hosford and Cory Roeseler are four outstanding citizens who want to serve their community as Port Commissioners. The choice should be easy in that the incumbents, Mr. Duckwall and Mr. Hosford, represent the status quo, and the challengers, Mr. Bergstrom and Mr. Roeseler, advocate a different approach to the creation of family-wage jobs and the development of the waterfront.

It would be to our detriment to cast our vote as if this were a popularity contest. This election should provide a “road-map” for future Port action and to support our best interests and well-being.

If you are happy with and support past and present Port policies, you should vote for Mr. Duckwall and Mr. Hosford. If you think that changes are in order, you should vote for Mr. Bergstrom and Mr. Roeseler. Given these differences your choice is not complicated.

Be sure to cast your votes with dignity and integrity. The ballots have been mailed. Be sure to vote and return by mail right away.

Karl Kment

Hood River

Is fluoride safe?

Some health doctors say bathing in fluoride-treated water is unhealthy. The pores in your skin open up more in warm water, and acts like a big sponge taking in the fluoride that is not passed on through the intestines.

Some doctors do not mention this to the public. Is fluoride safe?

C.A. Lester

Hood River

Get over it

Theresa Webb’s vitriolic caterwauling in Saturday’s paper illustrates what is wrong in the Democratic party these days. Baseless attacks and outright lies are all they can find to combat their woeful performance in the last two elections. Perhaps if they were to formulate a strategy that the majority of Americans could support they would have more success in their political aspirations. Their rabid anti-gun position has sure worked well for them!

Personally, I hope they stay their current course. America is better off without their misguided attempts to protect us from ourselves. The great seal of the Democrat party has a crying baby in the middle of it. You lost the presidential election and a lot of other ones. Get over it!

Cliff Mansfield


A wine thought

I completely agree with Eric Eastman’s sentiments, but my grandpa had a very different outlook on life and wine which I would like to share: “Life is too short NOT to drink cheap wine.”

Gary Regalbuto

Hood River

Keep fluoride out

I don’t want fluoride in my good clean drinking water. I don’t want my water tasting like chlorine and that is what it will taste like if they put the fluoride in our water to drink.

The kids and patients can get fluoride in their toothpaste that they brush their teeth with, so why put it in our good clean drinking water? That’s dumb, don’t you think?

So please, don’t play around with our water and keep that fluoride out of our good clean drinking water, okay?

Pam Smiley


Slap in the face

William Davis Jr.’s agreement with Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist and other GOP politicians to do away with the filibuster, a valuable part of the checks and balances built into our political system by its framers, fails to consider at least two facts.

One, “showing their true colors” by participating in a straight up or down vote when the outcome is guaranteed to differ from what they feel is best for the American people is not only a waste of their time and efforts, but a slap in the face to their constituents.

Two, the very same Bill Frist and his band of cohorts filibustered 65 of President Clinton’s nominees. To date, 10 of President Bush’s nominees have been filibustered and he has chosen to renominate seven of them, which is apparently his way of following through on his postelection promise to reach out to his opponents and continue uniting this great country.

Don Stevens

Hood River

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Latest video:

Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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