Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for April 18

Letters to the editor must be submitted online -- handwritten letters or letters on paper cannot be accepted.
Letters to the editor must be submitted online -- handwritten letters or letters on paper cannot be accepted.

Thanks for supporting the Violence Against Women Act

I would like to thank our representative, Denny Heck, for his vote in support of HR 1585, which reauthorizes the Violence Against Women Act and expands the law to block those convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence offenses from accessing firearms.

Usually a domestic violence offender is charged with a misdemeanor: violating a restraining order. This doesn’t mean they aren’t dangerous, it just reflects the reality of what charges can be proven in the court system.

Recidivism rates are higher for DV offenders than for any other kind of criminal activity. When DV offenders have access to guns, they are five times more likely to kill their victims.

Because DV offenders are so lethal, for so long, a short-term restraining order of the kind typically used to address other kinds of criminal behavior doesn’t do the trick when it comes to preventing family violence. We must save lives by stopping people with a history of hurting their families from accessing firearms.

Rep. Heck has shown with his vote that he understands the practical measures that will keep people safe in our community. I am confident that our senators will also vote in support of the Senate version of this bill.

Sara E. Palmer, Olympia

Love the Earth? Use better tissue

I was distressed to learn that frequently-used tissue products like toilet paper, paper towels, and facial tissue are made primarily from virgin wood pulp, and in the U.S. this wood is primarily sourced from Canada’s boreal forest.

According to Natural Resources Defense Council, the major producer, Proctor & Gamble (maker of Charmin and Bounty) currently sources its tissue from this forest, which is home to iconic boreal caribou, Canada lynx, and numerous other species. It is one of the largest stores of carbon in the world, thus contributing to climate stability.

Don’t we agree that it’s time to end the practice of clearing more than a million acres of this forest annually to be turned into tissue products?

Companies can use recycled fibers and other sustainable alternatives. Significant progress towards sustainability has been made in book and magazine publishing and paper-packaging industries.

The tissue industry would be wise to increase their use of recycled and alternative fibers. Many leading brands like Seventh Generation and Trader Joe’s already incorporate recycled fibers into at least some of their products.

Friends, we can choose to support these companies making positive change, and ask those who need to change to source their tissue sustainably. Voting with our dollars makes a real difference. Thank you.

Rebecca Canright, Olympia