Our readers' opinions - 09/26/10

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No vote urged on I-1082

Vote "no" on I-1082. This is the Building Industry Association of Washington legislation to privatize Labor and Industries. It adds a middle-man to take a cut of the money.

Insurance companies and investment banks would replace the system that has efficiently served our citizens for nearly a century. Employers, employees, injured, disabled and killed workers will be required to use an insurance system modeled after our health-care insurance industry.

Section 2, paragraph 7, of Initiative 1082, provides that the BIAW could collect a "fee" when their members seek care. Elected officials of both parties point out this "kick-back" scheme written into I-1082 is illegal. The BIAW wants a mandatory insurance program with a legal kick-back scheme.

No on I-1082 is a defeat to soul-less, money-sucking corporations feeding at the public trough.

Chas. Vigneron

Walla Walla

It makes sense to re-elect Culwell

You do not have to be a lawyer to be on the Supreme Court, but every Supreme Court justice in history has been. It just makes sense.

You do not have to pass the Washington state bar exam to be a prosecuting attorney in our state, but every prosecuting attorney in our state has. This also makes good sense.

Randy Lewis has never taken or passed the Washington state bar exam. Mr. Lewis credentialed into the state from North Dakota with whom Washington state has a reciprocity agreement. Mr. Lewis has never lived or practiced in North Dakota. He has only practiced in Lousiana.

The Louisiana legal system is based on the French legal system. The rest of the United States is based on British Common Law. No state has a reciprocity agreement with Louisiana. Instead of studying and taking the bar exam when he moved here, Mr. Lewis went without working for almost a year while he moved his license around until he could credential in from another state.

Mr. Lewis has only worked on a handful of cases in our state since he has been here the past four and a half years. Approximately 20 percent of the prosecuting attorney's job involves civil law. Mr. Lewis has done little, if any, civil cases in the county and would have to learn the law on a case by case basis.

In the same time period, Rea Culwell has been responsible for almost a thousand criminal cases and has successfully defended the county in its civil matters. Let's re-elect Rea Culwell. It makes good sense.

Nancy Nott

Dayton

Do you enjoy senator bringing pork?

Just one more shot at the funnies - the Sunday's are the best, they are the old ones!

Now back to the numbers, I just moved to Washington a while ago and didn't realize I had moved to a segregated state. Reading the U-B this last week shows that King County had received $26.7 million that, of course, the fine citizens of Walla Walla County get to help pay for. Now figure the percentage that Walla Walla County received $2.3 million for U.S. Highway 12, which the fine citizens of Walla Walla County get to pay a part of!

Now figure that one out if you really enjoy your senator bringing pork into your state and you're on the short end of the stick.

Is this a payoff for votes for this primary election or is it a necessity that keeps our children and grandchildren paying off the national debt the rest of their lives?

Think about it! I know I have.

Myron Wallmow

Walla Walla

Some still have reason to fear Muslims

Some appeal to us not to fear Muslims. To be sure to talk with them.

The Seattle police advised a cartoonist to go into hiding. Muslims have threatened to kill her. Her life is at stake for using good old American humor.

When our people can go about our business without fear from a religious group I would agree we can talk with that group.

Terry Schoen

Walla Walla

Balance coverage of rodeo needed

The U-B has done a wonderful job of keeping up the popular image of rodeos this year. Pages and pages have been smothered with photos of rodeo performers donned in their uniform-like apparel of cowboy hats and boots, Wranglers and button up shirts.

Capturing these images must have been a fairly easy job since all one needs to do is pay the price of a ticket and stare into a small enclosed arena where animals just happen to run out or come bucking out of a stall with sharply dressed men chasing or riding them.

A little over 100 years ago, one would have had to follow a cattle drive to get images of cowboys and maybe a cowgirl or two out on an open range - dusty, tired and plainly dressed.

I looked up the definition of a cowboy in Webster's Dictionary. It describes him as a man, usually on horseback, who herds and tends cattle. It didn't mention anything about a person who performs in front of a crowd with the intention of winning a cash prize.

A cowboy was simply an employee working for an employer. That's it. No bells and whistles - no bellowing announcers or blaring music, no clowns, no costumes, no crowd.

Much like a circus, animals are the main attraction in the rodeo show and the performers will use them and many times abuse them until they are all used up. Lame horses have been dumped off at slaughter houses, young calves are forced to perform over and over again - being roped and tied until exhaustion, injury or death occurs, tame horses and bulls have their groins tightly cinched and are routinely electrocuted with a prod because otherwise they wouldn't buck. And the whole time the audience cheers the abusers on.

Would the U-B publish positive coverage of a man against raging bull in the paper if the readers were basically apathetic about a man goring an animal to death for profit? Tradition and popular opinion are not good reasons to exploit and glorify abuse in any form. I hope the U-B staff realizes that they have a responsibility to publish balanced stories about rodeos that include facts - not just fluff.

Holly Newman

Milton-Freewater

President or dictator?

On Sept. 7, Obama was on the 5 p.m. news explaining his new economic plan to the nation and his Democrat followers. In all of my years of being interested in politics, one way or another, especially since the Bill Clinton administration, I have watched a number of presidents come on TV to speak to our nation. Never have I witnessed such an outburst of emotion such as that of Obama on that day.

I can say that during WWII when I was concerned for the fate of our beloved America, I did tune in to a few of the speeches being given at that time by our president, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and other national leaders such as Adolph Hitler and Winston Churchill. But never have I witnessed such an outrageous showing of emotion as that shown by Obama on that day.

Watching Obama, I can only compare him to Hitler by screaming to the listening public instead of talking to them in a civil tongue.

Yes, I feel that we have a dictator instead of a president, demanding that we give him everything that he wants. He wants done in his way only.

Yes, I believe that we now have a dictator ruining our wonderful America with his demands. He has ruined it to the point that we are no longer the paradise that foreigners wish to migrate to lawfully or to come here for a visit. It is time that we elect a president who will work toward making this once again the land of the free as it once was instead of making it a land of the taxed and oppressed as we are today.

Our laws should state that any foreigners who come to the United States will abide with all the laws that our own citizens have had to abide by. It is time that we work toward this goal and get out and vote like real Americans, reading about each candidate and what they truly stand for.

We all should know that freedom is not free. All candidates should know what our U.S. Constitution states also our Bill of Rights and made to abide by both.

Francis C. Christiano.

Milton-Freewater

Attend candidates forum in Dayton

This November we have the opportunity to vote on several local positions that are paramount to the safety and quality of life that is essential to a thriving small community.

I am really proud to be a Daytonite and I have witnessed the hard work and dedication that it has taken to make our town a wonderful place to live. It will take continued efforts remain successful. I feel that it is critical to evaluate each candidate on his or her merits and not by the letter behind his or her name that represents a political party.

I pose some questions for your consideration. What elements of a political party's platform do you value?

Does a candidate truly exemplify those qualities? It is not like they have to pass a test to claim that letter at the end of their name. If every candidate in a party truly represented a platform or value system, why are there "RINO's" and "DINO's"?

I believe therein lies a shortcoming of voting a strict party line. I ask myself certain questions in choosing the candidate that receives my vote. What are the candidates' qualifications and proven record of service?

In a small town, rumors are known to fly, can the information be verified by fact and not just "word on the street?" What are the motivations behind certain rumors? Even if a candidate is a long time acquaintance or friend, can they really do the job? I take the right to vote very seriously, especially when the results will impact us daily on a local level.

Please consider attending the candidates forum at the Liberty Theatre on Oct 6. It is a great opportunity to get to know the candidates before the ballots are mailed and you make your final selection.

Marchand Hovrud

Dayton

Most questions not answered

Only one of Mr. Woolley's seven questions was answered by Mr. Emerson, and that one not entirely.

If some can be accused of inserting class into the argument for not letting tax cuts expire for the wealthiest Americans, we can draw much of the same conclusion from remarks about nonproductive members of our society.

Class distinction is class distinction. And yet, even "the least of these" and the richest Americans are God's children.

I also have questions.

If WWTPP stands for fiscal responsibility, how much would they be willing to cut well-documented wasteful spending in defense, war and homeland security government contracts? Or even talk about it?

How, specifically, can we limit government? (Other than health care - about which I agree - and including NIMBY.)

How will a free-market economy solve our economic problems? And how long will it take?

What specific steps can we take to make America a better nation? (Besides the given: voting for a particular candidate.)

How can politically opposing people have reasonable dialogue or conversation without resorting to rancor and/or ill-advised misrepresentations?

The Founding Fathers were not in agreement in drawing up the Constitution. It took them five months of debate, sometimes bitter discussions, and compromise. Is this possible today? Why or why not?

Mr. Emerson may believe those who question him are not without guile, are surly or condescending, if he chooses. But, like Mr. Woolley, I really would appreciate answers.

Susan J. Day

Walla Walla

Hessler has been great sheriff

I have to say I don't like election time very well. People start flinging mud about everyone and everything and soon no one knows what the real platforms are. I don't intend on digging into any of the mud holes and I think that some should be careful how far you dig as you might come out with some smelly stuff you don't like.

I would like to say I am a strong supporter of Sheriff Walt Hessler. He has done a great job as sheriff and is always willing to discuss issues with any concerned citizen. He has very strong morals and has been involved in our community for many years not just while he has been sheriff or running for office.

I have had the pleasure of working with Walt as an EMT and on many community projects, some of which involved working with the youth of our community

I would like to know how Mr. Franklin plans to make some of his ideas happen, when in the past they haven't worked and didn't fit into the budget.

If we get another K-9, where is the money for it coming from, and the continued upkeep and training expenses who will handle this dog and the extra training? Will the hours the dog is on duty cut into regular officer hours, as it will be considered a type of officer?

We have a great police staff and I would hate to lose what has been built up.

I hope you will support Walt Hessler and continue to grow as a strong force and community. He has been there in the past and is there now and will continue to make our community a great place to live.

Patty Bly

Dayton

We need a voice in Congress

I was shocked to read a recent column by our current incumbent 5th District Congressional representative in the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin.

She maintains that we are losing "the American Dream." Good grief, she is part of the problem!

Now is the time to elect Daryl Romeyn as our congressional representative from the 5th District.

Farm friends, Romeyn understands your problems and the need for increased sales internationally and will help you all by introducing positive legislation, not sitting on the sidelines. Further, Romeyn will actively support research to improve your crops and yields.

Romeyn is fiscally prudent, yet he understands the need for fiscal policies that help the worker, not just the fat cats of Wall Street.

Romeyn will make sure that any new federal spending if offset by a corresponding decrease in other programs. Romeyn supports building our area's infrastructure.

Romeyn will work with both sides of the aisle in Congress, not simply be lead by the nose by party big wigs to obstruct, as is the case with the incumbent.

Join me! Vote Daryl Romeyn for Congress. We need a voice in Congress, not an echo.

Donald C. Orlich

Pullman

What's your level of tolerance?

I wish I could agree with the recent letters from your readers' opinions. I especially enjoyed Sandi Blackaby's.

I think we are all fully aware that wars have been fought over religions and human rights. Now with up-to-date news and reporting of events happening all over the world, there is information available to everyone, everywhere. We all know that we shouldn't poke our nose into someone else's business. We all read about disgusting events and discuss them with our own group of friends.

What I personally have trouble tolerating is the Muslim's treatment of their families, Middle East women being poisoned for attending school.

Instances of being stoned, raped and whipped. Muslim women don't have freedom that compares to men.

Recently we stopped along a major Oregon freeway at a restaurant. A Muslim man, wife and teenage son came in and sat at the adjoining table.

We heard the wife say, "I‘m very hungry, can I eat?" The man replied, "No! You are not eating." This was the only time any of the three Muslims spoke other than to order food for the two men.

The waitress was crying and soon the entire restaurant was full of enraged people. The men were threatened, reasoned with, begged and people were surrounding them with advice. The woman was offered everything under the sun, still no response. Two borderline obese males, stuffing down their meals as fast as they could and this thin, frail lady never taking her eyes off an untouched glass of water.

After they left, some of the patrons wanted to call the law. Most agreed that it was her faith to contend with her fate.

Now we are told the Muslims want to build a temple near the World Trade Center. The males of their faith certainly enjoy all of America's freedoms and our president has reaffirmed their rights. I cannot believe the gall they have.

Will New Yorkers tolerate this? I wouldn't. I don't want to get along with them.

Bert Aylward

Waitsburg

Sheriff candidates should be investigated

The media is to protect citizens through unbiased investigative journalism. This is even more important during election years.

How are the citizens to have adequate information to vote competently if the free press does not do its job? The U-B has failed to inform the citizens of the Valley in the matter of the sheriff election.

The sheriff must have a history of personal fiscal responsibility if he is to be trusted with a multi-million dollar budget. No number of fawning endorsements (local or national) can overcome the true history of a person's financial integrity. It is time for the U-B to investigate the sheriff candidates to enable the voters of Walla Walla county to separate fact from fiction.

Teri Miller

College Place

Culwell has common sense, intelligence

I am a lifelong Republican and a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution and I urge all my family and friends to vote for Rea Culwell.

Her detractors cite her youth, but what she lacks in age she makes up for in common sense and intelligence. If you meet her, you will be just as impressed with her as I am.

One local defense attorney told me she bills too much, but when I checked it out, I found out the state Senate sets her pay, and not her. My friends do not trust defense attorneys.

Her office is under budget and she is tough on crime. Just what a good Republican would want.

Peggy LeDoux

Dayton

White has earned respect and trust

I have been affiliated with the Walla Walla County Sheriff's Office for just a little over 30 years. I started my career as a dispatcher and have worked along side Bill White for all of that time.

I'm proud to say that he is my choice as sheriff of Walla Walla County. He is good, he is honest and he has dedicated his life to serving and protecting the citizens of Walla Walla County.

I admire someone who has stayed with an employer for 30 years. Bill has that, his years of experience with the Sheriff's Office proves that. I check Web sites frequently and can't help but notice that over half of the staff at the Sheriff's Office is supporting Bill White, and I ask myself why?

Could it be that, like me, they have worked with Bill and know that he has the best interests of Walla Walla at heart? Could it be that, like me, they too believe that he is the best person for the job? Could it be that having someone who is familiar with county government would be the person to help us get through these tough economic times without having a major impact on Walla Walla County citizens or employees?

Why would you not want a leader who has spent all of his career becoming prepared to serve the citizens of Walla Walla County?

I urge you to take a very close look at both candidates. You'll find that just because you have people from outside Walla Walla County supporting you does not make you the right choice. You'll find that being a good and honest person makes you the right choice. You'll find that having fellow employees backing you makes you the right choice. You find that having the support of the rest of the local law enforcement agencies makes you the right choice. I encourage you to choose the candidate who is here for Walla Walla County, Bill White. I encourage you to choose the candidate who has the support of his fellow law enforcement personnel, Bill White. Take a good hard look at what it takes to be an effective sheriff, honesty/dedication/good leadership/good knowledge of how to work with and maintain a good budget and finally the respect of people you will be serving. Respect/trust is something that you earn. Bill White is someone to respect and trust.

Patti Loney

Touchet

Turner is best man for job

I would like to ask for support for John Turner for Walla Walla County sheriff.

I know some people are worried about a big city cop coming in and changing things, and while I understand this, it would be beneficial to have somebody who knows how to deal with big city problems (homicides, shootings, gangs, stabbings, armed robberies, drugs, etc. - all that are going on in Walla Walla).

The school district just hired a new superintendent from out of town. What does this mean? Best man for the job equals Walla Walla wins.

Recently John served in Iraq as a civilian counter-terrorism investigator for the Army. I served two tours in Iraq as a soldier for the Army National Guard (2004-2005 and 2008-2009). I saw firsthand the work guys like John did that made Iraq a safer place.

John Turner's resume speaks for itself (check out johnturnerforsheriff.com). If he can make a difference in L.A. and Iraq, he can make a difference here.

Thomas Vicari II

Walla Walla

John Turner is choice for sheriff

Several thousands of people who have voted for John Turner believe he will be the best sheriff for Walla Walla County.

The other day I had the opportunity to meet with John Turner to see for myself who will be the best selection for the job, Bill White or John Turner. The truth is forthcoming, however, in my opinion John is the best man for the job.

As a past reserve deputy for Walla Walla County, under the leadership of Bill Jackson, I worked with both Bill White and Jim Romine, I have great respect for both men. In most all cases, change does not come easy, the fear for most people is the unknown.

For some the glass is half empty, for others the glass is half full. In John Turner's case, the glass is half full.

John has many good ideas. I trust the people of Walla Walla County will give him the opportunity to share those ideas with each and every one of us when he becomes the next sheriff.

So what is the truth? The truth will be the hearts of every voter come election day. The truth for me is John Turner.

Larry D. Lewis

Walla Walla

White ready to serve as sheriff

I have worked for the Sheriff's Office for the past 31-plus years. During this time, I have worked closely with Bill White.

Bill is an honest person and cares for the citizens who he serves. Sheriff's Office employees respect him. Bill has an excellent working relationship with local law enforcement and Fire Department personnel.

For the past 12 years Bill has been captain in charge of Patrol & Investigations. During this time Bill has assisted with budget issues and has the knowledge to maintain it.

Bill is ready from day one to serve Walla Walla County as its next sheriff.

Please join me in voting for Bill White.

Mike Skeeters

Prescott

Clean up Blue Mountain Mall

Who is going to (finally) take action for the cleanup around the Blue Mountain Mall? This is unsightly and extremely unsafe, and who will be held responsible if someone gets hurt in all of the debris or if those propped-up walls fall on someone?

It might cost the city more for a death or serious injury lawsuit than it would to clean things up. The least the city might do is just enough to show that it made an attempt to reduce the risk of injury.

A cheap fix might be to bulldoze and push the debris inside of the existing structure and then board over the opening.

We understand the developer went bankrupt (or flew the coop) during the project but someone needs to step up to the plate and remove all of the sheet metal and debris from the mall floor and surrounding parking lot. The partially destroyed walls need to be smoothed up, and the unfinished block structures needs to be secured from vandals and other "mischief."

If those unsupported walls are now determined to be too unsafe for future construction purposes maybe the blocks could be offered for salvage if that specific spot is cleaned up in the process.

This image will not promote growth in the immediate area, and no new developers or builders will even consider locating a business or housing project within view of that rubble.

You have to give ShopKo and Sears credit for remaining in their current location, as this mess isn't helping their image. I hope that it will not take someone getting seriously hurt before that area is cleaned up.

Dean Rencken

Walla Walla

Culwell has experience as prosecutor

Rea Culwell should be re-elected the Columbia County prosecutor. I have worked with Ms. Culwell on cases in both the Benton County and Columbia County prosecutor's offices. She brings a high degree of excellence, professionalism, commitment and experience to the job.

Rea has managed her office within budget, while maintaining a tough on crime prosecution record and handling the county's civil affairs.

Her opponent has no prosecution experience. Rea has handled everything from murder to traffic cases to public disclosure requests. Her opponent has the support of a public defender; Rea has the support of the Columbia County Sheriff's Office.

I urge Columbia County voters to re-elect Rea Culwell as prosecutor.

Terry J. Bloor

Richland

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