Letters to the Editor: July 11, 2012

Protection

Like all of us, I believe in protecting our children and I strongly back our library. When I studied librarianship, a stressed principle was the freedom of all persons to read and freely use our public libraries and their — our — resources.

But of course, as we know, freedom and responsibility are complicated. Thus, to protect children from viewing porn on our library computers/devices, perhaps appropriate screening or space division can be considered — perhaps a “PG-13” area which kiddies might enter only if carrying parental permission slips.

Similarly, a PG-16 area might also be set off, holding sex education materials, comic books, novels like Hunger Games containing violence and/or themes against the state, etc.

A third area, too, may be worth developing, holding books of this or that religion some might prefer to having one’s children constantly surrounded by; and I would suggest, too, a room for cosmology, evolution, philosophy of science (and, relatedly, mathematics), to avoid offending relevant parents.

This way, we can each, in our own biased manner, love our library to death.

Paula Friedman

Parkdale

Viewpoints

I’m disappointed in the letter from Joyce Weseman (Wednesday, July 4) titled “Many failures.” What I wanted was an example of a failure that was clearly the President’s fault; she gave a list of assertions which she had probably gleaned from a conservative website.

As I was sitting in our sunroom with a panoramic view of the east and south, it occurred to me that day after day I look out these windows and never see what is happening on the north and west side of the house, where we have no view. And that is how this country is divided. There are two different views of this country. And most of us blindly look at only one viewpoint.

I have been making a concerted effort to understand the other viewpoint. And I can see very clearly why the top one percent votes Republican. Republicans believe in lower taxes, little or no government regulation of corporations, but continued corporate welfare (by way of tax breaks and subsidies), and heavy spending on national defense. These policies bolster the bottom line of the one percent.

But I cannot understand how anyone who is not wealthy — really wealthy — can vote Republican. Do they still believe in that discounted trickle-down theory? Or is it something else other than economics?

Maybe they think it is really important to control women to protect the unborn. Or maybe they really believe that illegal aliens and gays and lesbians are a threat to them personally. I really would like to know.

Anne Vance

Hood River

Bring back candy

Dear Hood River: Nice Fourth of July parade, but what happened to the candy? Perhaps it was excessive in years past, but was it necessary to ban it entirely? It was a fun and exciting part of the parade.

I saw some disappointed faces in the crowd this year, and even the people on the floats looked more subdued than usual. Bring back the tradition!

Heather Struck

Hood River

Successes

In reading Joyce Weseman’s recent letter (July 4) about President Obama, in which she blames him for everything except high gas prices, it’s clear that she has some strong negative opinions and interpretations about the Obama presidency. Perhaps she has spent many hours listening to and now spreading Fox News propaganda.

Economy: She wrote that the unemployment rate is, “over 8 percent and there are few indicators that this economy is recovering.” Yes, unemployment is still over 8 percent, but the economy is clearly recovering.

When President Obama was sworn into office on Jan. 20, 2009, the Dow Jones stock average stood at 7,949 and today is at 12,691. A 48 percent rise in the stock market is a pretty clear indicator that the economy is doing better.

Jobs: At the end of Bush’s term, we were losing more than 800,000 jobs per month. We now have had 22 months of private sector job growth adding more than 3.16 million jobs.

Corporate profits were at an all-time high in 2011. GM, Chrysler and Ford are all showing record auto sales. Clearly, the economy is recovering under President Obama’s leadership.

I would love to rebut all the other so-called failures listed by Ms. Weseman, but there’s not space available here. And I’ll end with a question for her: If Obama was to blame for the high gas prices in May, should he now get credit for gas prices dropping?

Guy Tauscher

Hood River

Stealing fun

This is addressed to the person who felt it necessary to break the lock into the Collins baseball field concession stand and steal all the candy/nuts/chips etc.:

What you stole helped pay for the umpires during the baseball games. Now the parents of the kids who play ball have to pay for the umpires.

I hope you feel good about yourself, breaking and entering and stealing from young boys who just want to have a good time and play ball.

Lisa Williams

Hood River

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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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