Ukraine, Homelessness and Eugene’s Urban Growth Limit
Bad service to officials
Rubbish piled next to the dumpster. Human waste and abandoned vehicles polluting adjacent wetlands. A speedboat on its trailer blocks access. Self-proclaimed “guards” chasing passers-by. Crime and threats against nearby campers and businesses are increasing. The illegal “RV park” on Ed Cone Boulevard needed to be cleaned up.
This was not a self-regulated settlement of desperate people looking for accommodation. Despite the Port-a-Potties and dumpsters provided by the city, the environment had deteriorated into a social and physical slum.
For subscribers:Eugene is ‘bailing out the Titanic with a cup of tea’ by helping people living in vehicles and coping with impacts
Yes, we need to do better as a community. Everyone deserves a safe place to roost and the chance to be a good neighbor. When we tell people they can’t park on private property, we should have public places to send them.
But the RG representation of the removal of RV campers from Ed Cone Boulevard did a disservice to the officials tasked with cleaning up a mess that didn’t have to be done. We need to stop assuming that poverty and homelessness excuse criminal behavior that harms public health and safety. We need to stop blaming the people we pay to enforce the laws to do their job. And we need to start reporting these stories fairly, with details that show the whole picture.
Mary Leighton, Eugene
The test of politics is how the war ends
Oleksander Stashevsky’s story of the Ukrainian War pushes me to shore up moral reality. The editorial speaks of confrontation and massacres of civilians. But do we and NATO know where this leads?
Since returning from active duty in World War II, I have seen eight wars (Korea, Vietnam, Gulf War, Kosovo, Afghanistan, Libya, Iraq and Syria) begin with great enthusiasm and public support, none of which didn’t know how to end, three of them from which we withdrew unilaterally. The test of politics is how it ends, not how it begins.
Far too often the Ukraine question is framed as a test of strength, whether Ukraine wants to survive or prosper, it must not be the outpost of either side. Instead, Ukraine should function as a bridge between them. Russia must agree to try to force Ukraine to become a satellite, and thus moving Russia’s borders again, would lead to Moscow’s condemnation. This would only repeat its history of self-fulfilling cycles of reciprocal pressure with Europe and the United States.
The West must understand this.
Bill Sarnoff, Eugene
But he didn’t mean it
President Biden’s flippant remark about Putin not staying in power was heartfelt and humane, if misguided. The response suggested by Marc Thiessen for President Biden’s staff was much better than what was actually said and, for once, I agree with Mr. Thiessen (RG, April 10).
However, blaming the president for being empathetic to the horror unfolding in Ukraine is a strong overreaction. He said the president’s staff needed to backtrack on what the president said.
Did Thiessen get the same response every time Trump’s spokespeople had to go back on his words? Long ago, I lost track of how many times they said, “Oh, he was kidding” or many other variations of “He didn’t mean it.”
Just a few examples: he was joking when he asked Russia for Hillary Clinton’s missing email; he didn’t really mean that we should ingest or inject disinfectant; he was only joking when he told officials to slow down coronavirus testing; he was joking when he said that Obama was the founder of ISIS; he was just kidding when he suggested that Democrats who didn’t applaud him were guilty of treason.
I could go on. You get the picture. Will Marc Thiessen?
Trudi Diffendaffer, Creswell
Congratulations to the volunteers of the hospice
Let’s use National Volunteer Appreciation Week to remember the dedicated individuals who care for our families and neighbors on their end-of-life journey. Hospice palliative care volunteers are essential for our patients and their families to feel the comfort of support as they live their final days. They show up with their hearts wide open to be with you. They are there to help with errands, companionship, chores or bereavement care.
Palliative care provision provides care and comfort to people in their homes, in care facilities or at the Pete Moore Hospice House. People who receive palliative care live longer than people who do not receive palliative care. The palliative care team consists of the medical director, nurses, aides, social workers, chaplains, bereavement counsellors, office staff and trained volunteers who care for you and your family/friends during your last trip. I am grateful to have been part of the Cascade Health team as a nurse, massage therapist and volunteer for the past three decades.
Congratulations to my soul mates!
Maggy Rose, Eugene
For research only?
I couldn’t agree more with George Hermach (Letters, April 10), who questions the true result of Elliott State Forest as a “research forest” by the passage of SB 1546. This forest is home to some of Oregon’s last old-growth forests. and should be enclosed for the protection and enhancement of wildlife in perpetuity, do not allow for so-called “research” purposes, including timber harvesting. Will the revenues be used to “manage” the forest?
This recalls the mandate of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species to ban all whaling except for “research” harvesting, from which Japan takes full advantage. Mary Peabody, Eugene
It’s time to look at the frontier of urban growth
The new efforts to regulate landlords appear to be just another attempt by the government to deal with a problem for which it is at least partially responsible. How? Instead of a new layer of landlord regulations, if there were more rental properties open to tenants, landlords would be more inclined to behave properly with potential tenants.
Renters would benefit more with more rentals available. When there is a shortage of rental housing, landlords can take advantage of tenants and rents will increase when supply is limited.
Related:Landlords and tenants weigh in on Eugene’s proposed tenant protection policies
Why isn’t there a greater surplus of rental properties? The root cause of this situation is the lack of cheap land for development. Oregon’s longstanding land use regulations, which defined the limits of urban growth decades ago, are the reason we don’t have more homes at more reasonable prices. Some regulations have, over time, developed unintended consequences. It’s a. With the state’s continued population growth, it’s time to review the UGB rule and open the doors to more affordable housing.
John F. Quilter, Eugene
Thoughts on a myriad of issues
Regarding today’s myriad problems, I offer the following thoughts.
To restless movers: Consider your role in escalating real estate prices in popular and growing locations.
For businesses up and down the supply chain: Determine if you need to raise prices before you do, because “everyone does.”
To homeowners and home sellers: Consider setting a reasonable price instead of asking for top dollar, especially when prices are rising rapidly.
Motorists: try alternative modes of transport such as walking, cycling or taking the bus or train; Consolidate travel into as little as possible, practice staying close to home for recreation and vacations.
To those with an ideological bent: Be humble and listen to others. There is wisdom and knowledge in unexpected places.
To those who focus on their personal rights: try looking at our societal obligations instead.
To the youth of today: heed the above lest you exacerbate the myriad problems of today; consider what you can do about climate change, social injustice and financial inequality instead of expecting others to lead the way.
To all: Practice restraint, thoughtfulness, sacrifice and compassion. Maintaining the current human course will only cause unnecessary suffering and disaster.
Tom Happy, Eugene
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