The Curry Coastal Pilot

A grand greeting from community


I would like to comment on a subject that I read some articles about in the recent past. One thing that always baffles me is when a community is trying to improve something or bring some beauty to it, then someone always has to complain about it.

For example, our new Welcome to Brookings sign. I would like to thank all those who donated their time, funds and effort to erect this well-done greeting from our community.

I see no ocean view being blocked, I see no disfigurement to the land. If anything has been blocked, it is unsightly sagebrush.

Once again, thank you for our new sign that welcomes me home after a long days in Gold Beach.

Tony and Sherri Barron


A musical force on the South Coast


I was gratified to see the informative and positive article about Brandon Caldwell and Sue Caldwell-Cruickshank, the new owners of Chetco Music in Brookings.

Brandon, a recent graduated from Brookings High School, is a classic example of someone who wanted to stay in the Brookings area to pursue his career rather than leaving for a job or school in a larger city.

Brookings desperately needs younger business leaders to bolster the aging and struggling economy in Curry County.

It is also a great credit to his mother and co-owner's determination and tenacity for insisting that a reluctant school district administration meet its obligation to provide some vocational training for a student who chooses a vocational career path.

There are still too many former students aimlessly wandering the streets, working at menial jobs or ending up in the judicial system because they were simply "processed" through school and set on their own with almost no job skills. As a former teacher at Brookings High, I witnessed this with the elimination of vocational classes such as industrial arts and the lack of administrative support for occupational transition programs.

If you are a current or aspiring musician, Chetco Music provides a perfect opportunity to get products and service locally and help Brookings continue to be a major musical force on the south coast.

Ted Erdahl

Woodburn (Former Brookings resident)

What our founding fathers bequeathed


Kudos to Pilot editor Scott Graves on his column "Separation of Church and State" in Saturday's Pilot.

It is about time those in the Fourth Estate gave us a true picture of what our Founding Fathers bequeathed us in the realm of faith.

America was founded by Christians on godly principles, whether some citizens believe that or not. Several of our founders believed that if we depart from these principles America is doomed to fail.

Warren Roepke


Separation of church and state


Some folks may not be aware that our First Amendment guarantees separation of church and state.

The recent prayer walks around several public schools approaches an infringement of this right. Right of peaceful assembly (also First Amendment), you say? Then it would be equally acceptable for a group of 55 people to peacefully circle the same schools with signs advocating separation of church and state.

Are we doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past? Throughout history, when religion has been combined with the raw power of government, it has spawned tyranny and oppression. Inevitably, unless we maintain the checks and balances built into our Constitution and its amendments, we will repeat the mistakes (ongoing over thousands of years) of placing too much power in the hands of the few and ignoring the rights of the whole.

The folks who went on that prayer walk could have served the same purpose of prayer for schools within their church. What they did was an intrusion. Citizens of this country have a right to their beliefs, whether they ascribe to a particular religion (Christian or other), or are agnostics or atheists.

Regardless of one's chosen beliefs, you do not, under the current laws of this great nation, have the right to try to make our public facilities reflect only one of the many belief systems.

Lorama Malone


Parenting class starts Sept. 27


Through a special grant and SWOCC, an Everyday Parenting Series for parents of children ages 0-8 starts Tuesday, Sept. 27 at Azalea Middle School. This 10-week/class series, called "Make Parenting a Pleasure" is free to all participants and includes dinner for the whole family and childcare.

Classes are held from 6 to 8 p.m. with dinner at 5:30 every Tuesday, for 10 weeks, from Sept. 27 through Nov. 29 at Azalea Middle School.

Call 541-247-3330 or 541-251-3058 to reserve space. Or email us at

Teri McGregor

MPAP class facilitator

I hope it's not too late for America


It's almost too late. Our society in America is quickly racing to the bottom toward a third world country status.

Global corporations are gleefully rubbing their hands hoping to sell out the last of our greatest resources for profit. Profits paid to a few from many. America has a lot for sale due to our past determinations. We used to value clean water and air for crops that can feed the world, a higher education system that attracted the gifted and brightest regardless of status and a business environment that encouraged risk and opportunity leading to inventions from electricity to the iPad.

As a society, we seem to have regressed. It appears we have lost faith in our scientists and educated that guided our society towards healthier and longer lifespans. Today we seem to accept that one out of three kids don't graduate high school because an education is a sign of elitism which results in a lack of critical thinking and resentfulness. Soon we might have a society that swallows whole cloth the speaksmith of "leaders" who will repeat something they read or heard without any regard for facts or science. Risk will only be reserved for the wealthy banking on the last remnants of middle class investments in corporations via shrinking 401k's and dwindling pension plans.

Then, we are in the midst of an oligarchy. Where a few powerful people control the rest of us begging for crumbs. Is that what America stands for?

Hopefully it is not too late. Hopefully most will see the danger and stand up for what this country was founded on and want all of us to succeed, all of us afforded a decent lifestyle, sharing our common good and wealth. Even for those with the least among us. That's what I believe is amazing about our society in America, and I hope it is not too late.

Vikki Nuss


They will come from around the world?


The county commissioners believe that golfers "will come from around the world" to play golf on a golf course on the isolated, chilly, wet and windy Oregon coast.

They can't really believe that can they? From around the world?

This is a state park to protect rare wetland plants, a freshwater lake and a dwarf forest, how dare they turn our park over to a private developer for a money sucking, black hole of a golf course!

This is not a money making project, with oil in decline, tourism will be declining, people will not be coming "from all over the world" to play golf in a isolated golf course on the chilly, windy and wet Oregon coast; instead, they will play golf in sunny, warm and dry upscale areas of California.

Other than golf, what else is there for people to do near Port Orford?

There are no upscale malls, resorts or entertainment there. They can fish, see a lighthouse, eat at a fine restaurant, watch the waves and buy cranberries but is that enough to lure golfers from all over the world? I don't think so.

Please leave Floras Lake natural area state park alone; putting a "world class golf course" there will destroy the habitat, pollute the water and it will be a cash sinkhole for the county as will the "airport" there.

Sheila Chambers


Help the alternate- learning students


I am in whole-hearted agreement with Ms. Moore about Expeditionary Learning.

We learned early on that two of our four children learned best with a method somewhat like expeditionary learning. They failed at schools that changed subjects five times a day, because their brains wanted to stay on one thread and finish what they were doing, and what they liked.

For our kids, it was creativity, utility, beauty, and having one goal oriented project at a time, that turned their brains on. Completing a fondly conceived project was their bliss, and no amount of approval or disapproval from outsiders (ie. teachers) was sufficient motivation to keep them doing well in a classroom setting. Discipline problems were likely and ongoing. When we changed the setting to something more suitable for their brain structure, all of us were happy and successful in our family roles.

When teachers realize that they cannot be the "be-all and end-all" of all the students life in a strict classroom setting, because it is too restrictive for some of the ways that children learn, they will whole-heartedly support the Charter School, and love to participate in the alternate learning process, too. These students may learn six years of math in one year, then go on to read all the high school literature assignments in another year. Occasional enrichment with Math and Science Gymkhanas and summer schools and such are not enough to make the alternate-brained student succeed, to make up for the damage of long hours of boredom and confusion and low-self-esteem.

Help the Charter School get started and succeed, that is my plea!

Kathryn (Kathi) Justman


Serious questions about county plan


I personally question Commissioner Rhodes "back room politics" and his blatant disregard for the opinions of his constituents. His refusal to reveal the identity of those "developers" with whom he repeatedly refers has cast a shadow over the entire matter.

The other two commissioners have a serious case of nodding heads. Like Rhodes, they appear unwilling to answer questions from the public, deferring their answers for a less public venue than a Town Hall Meeting.

That said, allow me to direct your attention to Chapter 1 of David Cay Johnston's "Free Lunch".

On the first page I found the name of the Chicago entrepreneur, Mike Keiser (the man who created Bandon Dunes). More interesting is how taxpayers subsidized Mike Keiser. All very legal. However, using the word legal does not negate the fact that Mike Keiser has profited on the backs of taxpayers.

Mike Keiser will also benefit from the North Bend airport expansion which will now accommodate the private jets that fly in for golf at Bandon Dunes. Paid for when you buy a commercial airline ticket or Oregon Lottery ticket.

Ask Bandon area native Scott Cook about "eminent domain" and his land that Mike Keiser and the city of Bandon want for a dam on Johnson Creek.

The Wall Street Journal, Aug. 25, 2011, article "Public Courses Get Mired in Golfing Slump," gives a detailed idea of just how George Rhodes grossly misrepresents the golf course plan. Bandon Dunes is an example of "extreme golf," which accounts for the huge draw from all over the world. It is not the ordinary golf experience.

However, the entire story shows that the enhanced economics promised to the area has proved to be nominal at best.

Barbara Nysted