Worthwhile effort

A recent letter on my column on gun violence contrasted the number of deaths from medical errors and malpractice to those of gun violence, and suggested I address those errors before addressing the “relatively minor” problem of 30,000 deaths a year from gun violence.

My column seeks to educate. Of the 2,000 or so columns I have written, many hundreds of them have been on addressing medical errors, and one has been on gun violence. I cannot agree that 80 or so deaths a day is minor by any criteria.

If my column, which provided advice on gun storage and safety endorsed by the NRA, saves any injuries or deaths, I would think it worthwhile.

Dr. Keith Roach

To Your Good Health

Privatize port

With all this recent bantering about the port and its commissioners it’s time to look seriously at port operations being privatized.

I have lived in coastal communities nearly all my life and have seen these kind of issues time after time. Several ports I have seen going through these same types of issues are now run by private companies and are very profitable now.

Even national parks such as Yosemite are run by private companies that have turned around failing government-run operations and are now profitable. Just the simple fact that many of the types of businesses they have allowed to set up shop at the port do nothing to bring tourists to our area shows gross misjudgement.

Although these local businesses are great and and high quality, no one comes here from other areas to get their hair done, computer fixed, collect their mail, visit the sheriff’s department or, in the past, rent uniforms and have their dogs groomed. It’s time to privatize the port.

Harold Bailey

Brookings

Work together

Just read “The Answer to how is Yes: Acting on What Matters.” Why are we not led by our hearts? We keep heads down and fall in step behind power mongers. Are we losing our souls?

My New Year’s resolution: address Curry’s culture that ignores ethical standards and the need to develop local forestry policies. Albeit, life makes hypocrites of us all, however, some things stick out like a sore thumb.

Why do we continue treating people with different opinions as if they are pariahs? What’s throwing us off our collective game? Is working across the aisle no longer vogue? Do we only want our own opinions expressed?

Examples:

•Folks spoke at Brookings City Council meetings demanding city-sanctioned inclusion haven’t made the effort to develop inclusion policies for their businesses or nonprofits.

•Elected officials gone ethically amok.

•We can’t see the forest for the Azalea Park trees. Admirably, we want to protect trees — part of our community’s collective soul.

Are we burying our heads in the sand given the post-fire decisions that need to be made? Are we concerned about reforestation of the 191,000 acre burn scar?

Regardless of reason(s), it’s time to develop local forestry policies by first addressing our ethical deficits and scientific blind side.

Perhaps a jumping-off point for our community conversation — “In Science We Trust? The Role of Science in a Democracy,” 6 p.m. today, (Jan. 24) at Chetco library.

Connie Hunter

Brookings

Move forward

What a sad situation we have taking place at the Port of Brookings Harbor. There have been many mistakes, misjudgments and possible illegal acts made by past port employees and commissioners, but again, they were all in the past.

You can not change history, but you can sure change the future. The previous citizen voters in the port district had a chance to change prior missteps but chose to sit on their hands and not become involved.

The new port commissioners are so involved in blaming past mistakes made at the port, that they themselves are making poor judgement decisions. The commissioners need to move beyond the past and guide the port toward the future. Stop being so vindictive against past and present employees, commissioners and people in general.

Remember you are governed by the Oregon Special Districts Association and by the Oregon Governmental Ethics Commission.

We as citizens of the port district cannot let the board’s lack of knowledge or possible arrogance destroy what is a major economic draw to our community. Please become involved in local politics and become the informed citizen by attending the port commissioners meetings.

Gary Hartung

Brookings

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