Letters - Sept. 24

Christians value life

I find that I am somewhat at a loss to know how to respond to Karen Donahue’s letter of Sept. 7 concerning the tragedy in New Orleans.

I should perhaps start by saying that I am one of the Christians against abortion she refers to in her letter. She wonders “where are they now” in the midst of this terrible struggle for the people of that area. I want to tell her that some of us are in New Orleans or Mississippi on medical teams, with Salvation Army, World Relief or the Red Cross. Some of us are here — wishing we could be there — helping with more than money we have sent. Some of us have offered our homes as perhaps she has as well. Many of us would welcome one or two of those children (and their mothers) in our homes until they have homes of their own again.

Yes, our doors should be open because we are glad that those little ones were born even if it seems inconvenient to some in an orderly society. She seems to assume that the main cause of the suffering after the hurricane was the presence of too many children — especially poor children.

But Ms. Donahue has made an assumption she has no right to make — that those little ones we saw on our televisions were not wanted by their parents — or single moms; that they would have preferred to have ended their lives before they breathed our air. That is an assumption that smacks of elitism and is a terrible misjudgment about the hearts of poor mothers.

What I saw on television were people who suffered from inexcusable poverty — and we all need to work to correct that, BUT I saw moms and dads and single moms who loved their children and were glad they were born in spite of the poverty that increased with an extra mouth to feed.

Ms. Donahue misrepresents two groups. One is Christian people who are willing to stand up for their belief that God is the author of life and that He values every single one.

But sadder than that she misunderstands and underestimates the people who live in poverty but who do love their little ones. To me, her letter indicated that she does not truly value them at all.

Gerri Beal

Hood River

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Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge

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