Letters to the Editor Nov. 2, 2013

By The Curry Coastal Pilot November 01, 2013 07:49 pm

cohort 3 thank you

About a year ago, a group of emerging and current community leaders began an ongoing leadership class through the Ford Institute Leadership Program here on the Wild Rivers Coast. 

We were aptly named the Wild Rivers Coast Cohort 3. As part of the program, we designed and completed a class community project. The chosen project for our cohort was a small refurbish of the alternative high schools in both Brookings and Crescent City. We all learned a great deal and enjoyed contributing to our communities. 

But, we did not do this alone and we would like to publicly recognize the businesses and individuals who were essential to our project. All of these businesses worked closely with us and donated materials and discounts so that we could stay within our budget. We want to thank Barron’s Furniture Warehouse, Flora Pacifica, Forbes Drapery, Gold Beach Lumber, Christina Olsen, Earnest Turner, and especially Redwood Memorial Chapel, which donated a memorial plaque for the project in Crescent City . 

Small, locally owned businesses make such a huge difference in the ability of groups like ours to get big things accomplished! Please support them as they continually support our community. 

A big thank you also goes out to The Ford Family Foundation, the Robert W. Chandler Fund of the Oregon Community Foundation, and all of those who donated to make this project a reality. 

Vanessa Nidiffer, for The Wild Rivers Coast, Cohort 3 

Brookings

no go to gmo crops

Regarding “New state GMO rules affect Oregon seed crops” (Pilot, Oct. 26), I must comment. 

Madras farmer Gary Harris believes that genetic crop modification is the same as selective breeding. This could not be further from the truth. Selective breeding is a process of developing traits in a plant through breeding of RELATED species (like two humans reproducing). Whereas genetic modification (GMO) involves splicing genes from UNrelated organisms (bacteria, viruses, or animals with plants) — something beyond a Frankenstein combination. 

When he uses the development of tomatoes from their ancient berry-like ancestor he is actually illustrating natural selective breeding — not GMO. It is possible that his quote is taken out of context in the article, but nonetheless it begs clarification. 

A common GMO crop, BT Corn, is spliced with a bacterium to protect the plant from corn worms, but that BT persists in the crop and is now found in humans where it affects the gut bacteria we need to assimilate nutrients. So-called Roundup-ready GMO crops contain resistance to the weed killer glyphosate, which has increased by magnitudes the use of glyphosate made by the company who developed the GMO seeds. 

And now natural selection is creating weeds that are resistant to glyphosate. This science is not going to win over Mother Nature. 

GMO crops are not superior as far as nutrition and yield goes, as promised. They do, however, put a lot of money into the pockets of the chemical companies. 

Joyce Hannum 

Brookings

This is a sad day

Chetco Rexall is closing! 

Now to me this is a shame. This store has been here for many years, serves many people. I for one will miss them so much.

Having an adult foster care home, their delivery has been a lifesaver: I cannot always leave to pick up meds, and the girls, well, what can you say, just love them. Both drug stores have been sold out to Rite Aid and they say they will deliver to people, but with a cost. Now I know my people can not afford things like this, and is Medicare gonna pay? No! Is O.H.P. gonna pay? No! So it will be left up to them. This is not fair to many people — all the people who are going to lose their jobs and for us who depend on meds being delivered.

The store has been a place where you will always see a helpful and smiling face, and it’s a beautiful store. This is a sad day! I for one will transfer all meds to Fred Meyer; I will not pay Rite Aid for something that should be free. 

Thank you, Chetco Rexall, for your many years of service to us. Home Sweet Home Adult Foster Care will miss you!

Bobbi Johnson 

Brookings

covering the cover

As you may have seen on the TV and Internet, there is a story going around regarding the Marine Corps changing their uniform covers.

Here are excerpts from a memo sent out by Mihael A. Blum, executive director of the Marine Corps League: 

In the past 24 hours a totally bogus story has gone viral saying that the President has ordered the Marine Corps to adopt the Female Marine cover for both male and female Marines.

Here is (part of) a press release sent out by Headquarters Marine Corps, Public Affairs: 

Last week, the uniform board sent out a survey, through the chain of command, that sought the opinion of Marines on universal covers, multiple braids for females and Supplemental Allowance Changes. Someone leaked/provided the survey to the NY Post, which subsequently queried our press section on the universal cover. Upon consulting with the uniform board, we provided the following answer: 

There is currently an ongoing survey underway asking Marines about their preferences on which type of cover they prefer. The results of the survey will assist the uniform board in making the final decision. 

A sensational story tying the decision directly to the POTUS ran in the NY Post. Other outlets like Fox News and Vanity Fair reported that the Marine Corps is changing the cover and that it may cost $8 million. I notified Fox of the facts to correct the record.  

Three major points:

•The president in no way, shape or form directed the Marine Corps to change our uniform cover. 

•We are looking for a new cover for our female Marines for one overriding reason: the former manufacturer went out of business. 

•The Marine Corps has zero intention of changing the male cover.

Bob Gilmore

Calvin E. Murphy Detachment 578 

Marine Corps League

Brookings

city, county serve us

I am writing about comments reportedly made by Ron Hedenskog in your story, Group discusses pros, cons of Nov. 5 tax levy (Pilot Oct. 12). 

According to the Curry Coastal Pilot, “Hedenskog explained that cities already pay for public services, and Brookings’ leaders in particular do not want to pay for both city and county law enforcement services.” 

I do not believe that Hedenskog’s statement  makes sense as the Curry County Sheriff’s Department provides services that are not provided by city police departments and because the sheriff’s department provides backup to the cities’ police. 

I am concerned that Hedenskog’s statement may influence voters to vote against the tax levy because of his position as mayor and also because of his reference to other “Brookings leaders” who feel the same way. 

Just who are these other “Brookings leaders” anyway? 

Please folks, think for yourselves. 

Mary Rowe 

Gold Beach

The Art of mini-ships

A few months ago I became a member of local chapter 757 of the Vietnam Veterans of America. 

I had not joined the group before as I thought I had nothing to offer the group. I am a veteran of Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 261 and flew 104 combat missions as a gunner. As it turns out, I do have something to offer the group and will soon be donating a 4-foot handcrafted miniature yacht to the group and they will sell raffle tickets for my creation. 

I may not be the Stradivarius of mini-yachts yet, but that is my ultimate goal. I have been told that what I do is “a lost art.” Well, this Art is not lost and I could not be happier here in my Viking man-cave designing and handcrafting miniature yachts and Viking warships — one of which will be donated to the Vietnam Veterans of America next year. See my work at Vikingswarships.com. 

There is, however, a dark cloud over my life now as my beautiful dog Kong died quietly in his sleep on the night of Aug. 30, just shy of 15 years old. But life goes on and I will soon have a new buddy and be dog happy again. 

You can be happy also by purchasing one or more of those raffle tickets and helping local veterans help others and maybe even winning my rare and unique work of art. 

Art Larason

Harbor

sullivan’s lessons

Our family would like to take this opportunity to thank Coach Sullivan and the staff of the BHHS Football team. 

Although we didn’t have the record we may have hoped for, we can never replace the lessons our children learned out on the field. 

As parents, we were impressed by the attitude and engagement of the coaching staff. The team’s success should not be measured only by the win/loss record, but by the lessons learned from being on the team. 

Coaching through a loss is quite possibly the most challenging aspect of coaching. Coach Sullivan was able to teach lessons about adversity, perseverance, and integrity. In 10 years, the win/loss record will be overshadowed by the character traits and relationships developed this year on the field. 

We are already counting the days (there are 302) until the next BHHS Football game. 

GO BRUINS! 

John and Paulie Hawthorne 

Brookings

ask the sheriff

This letter is regarding the Oct. 23, 2013, (Pilot) piece from Commissioner Itzen titled “Accuracy Addressed.” The letter Itzen refers to was published Oct, 9, 2013 and titled “Despicable Duping.” 

Commissioner Itzen began his letter attempting to convince readers that filling a vacant position was not a “new hire” and that the clerk’s office was hiring staff to cope with “potential” future workloads. Commissioners instructed staff to research and prepare a memo on “Hires and Promotions” in the Sheriff’s Office which was discussed at length during their October 16 meeting. 

The phrase “new hire” was used in “Despicable Duping” because commissioner meeting agendas referenced “New Hire Order” for six hires in September alone. 

The second half of Itzen’s letter focused on vague or contradictory statements such as:

•The use of more road funds for patrol (deputies) “could be” in violation of Chapter 75. There is no Chapter 75.

•In a meeting October 2, Commissioner Smith stated “Unfortunately we’re probably going to have to ‘borrow’ another million dollars from the road fund. …”   

Itzen closed saying if the Tax Measure passes, commissioners will reduce the tax in any year Federal Safety Net payments are received. He failed to mention the amount (dollar for dollar?) or what formula would be used.

For more information, go to http://www.currycountytaxes.com/. Click on HB 4175 at the top of the page. Download correspondence with the sheriff regarding HB 4175.

Call or email the sheriff and ask him how many road/patrol deputies he could have hired utilizing road funds totaling around $35,000,000 without a requirement to repay the funds. Ask what percent of his (and staff) time is wasted preparing for and attending commissioner meetings.

We need a change in county governance and to end this unproductive nonsense.   

Thomas Huxley

Harbor

lots of fatal crashes

My opinion. 

I have lived on the North Bank Chetco for the better part of 50 years. People want to blame the lack of law enforcement for recent fatalities up both sides of the river. That in itself is pointless; there have been lots — and I mean lots — of crashes with or without law enforcement up-river and even when they have been up-river watching and writing tickets. So there is stupidity with or without them. 

I blame the parents, and I blame the system because the system has made it possible for parents to be lazy, and young adults are stupid to a point to where they believe they are invincible. 

More taxes for more waste is not the answer. Having new sheriff’s vehicles hidden from the public in hopes the new tax levy will pass is unacceptable. 

The old adage: Do more with less. That’s my opinion. 

Marty McCourt 

Brookings

ruling by diktat

In a recent letter one of your readers asked why Mr. Obama should be considered the worst president in history. I felt the question deserved an answer. 

I would say that my biggest beef with him is his inability to act the least bit presidential. He was elected by a bare plurality not by a mandate. As such he should remember he is the president of the entire nation. Not just his political backers, ethnic minority, or those who agree with him but the entire nation. 

His petty actions, such as closing open-air monuments, show that he is a mean and spiteful, small-souled man who cannot see beyond his personal agenda and aggrandizement. The fact he has been ruling by diktat is a sure indication that he has no wish to be a president but has every desire be a tyrant. He can be condemned as either the most evil heartless political manipulator or the most incompetent president ever. 

Either he knew about Benghazi, fast and furious, and the IRS scandal or he didn’t. If he did then he should be impeached for his actions. If he didn’t then he should be branded as an incompetent fool.

Kenneth Swanson 

Harbor

1st BHSD conference

Fall leaves, a nip in the air, daylight savings, and trick or treaters all mean one thing; it’s time for parent-teacher conferences. 

Brookings-Harbor School District parent-teacher conferences will occur Wednesday, Nov. 6 and Thursday, Nov. 7.

Normally the first parent-teacher conference of the school year provides a great opportunity for you and your child’s teacher(s) to share insights and information. The conferences this year are additionally important to attend due to the many changes occurring in the district, which include implementing the common core and grading by proficiency. 

Rapid changes and the complexity of today’s world put new demands on our education system. Change is both appropriate and necessary in order to prepare our students for a highly demanding future. The need for open, clear communication between parents/guardians has never been greater. 

At the conference, you have the opportunity to develop a relationship with the teacher and present yourself as a team player in your child’s education. Remember that you’re the expert about your child, while the teacher is the expert on teaching kids at their grade level. It is extremely important to have good working relationships between parents and teachers. 

A parent is really the child’s first teacher and is critical to student success. It is imperative that both parent and teacher know that the goals for the child are indeed shared goals; both teacher and parent want what is best for the child/student. 

I hope to see you on the 6th or 7th of November. 

Brian Hodge,

superintendent 

Brookings-Harbor School District 17C