Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for May 8

Cutting deputies will foster crime

It is clear from the recent meeting of the Thurston County commissioners they are not capable of doing their job, or thinking.

Commissioner Cathy Wolfe attempted to say cutting five vacant positions in the sheriff’s office last year could not be counted as a loss of deputies since they were not filled.

Commissioner Wolfe fails to realize those five deputies, who would now be working, could respond to her house for an emergency and assist her or a loved one.

But, therein lies another problem. NONE of the commissioners live in the COUNTY! They ALL live in the cities, thus using city services, not the ones they cut.

Having county commissioners live within the city limits is like having the governor of Oregon run our state. The sheriff’s office is the LOWEST staffed in the ENTIRE state, and the lowest funded!

Deputies do make good money, they should. One deputy covering 220 square miles alone should be paid more then minimum wage. Cutting deputies WILL bring crime to our county. If you know about the cuts, the criminals do too.

It appears the commissioners are now retaliating against the sheriff for speaking out against their strong-armed tactics. They want another study of the sheriff’s office. The last study, I believe in 2007, commissioned by the county commissioners, said the sheriff’s office is staffed far too low and stretched to thin. What happened?


Remember when it is time to vote. Do you want the governor of Oregon running our state?

Mike Brooks


Where were Republicans for eight years?

A recent letter by Jamie Bariekman reported the Republican Party is not dead and cited as proof recent questions asked by its local chairman: Are we bringing forward the spirit of the Constitution; are we upholding the ideals of self-reliance, limited, responsible government and the protection of individual and inalienable rights?

From where come these suddenly alive Republicans? We heard barely a word from them for eight years while our constitutional right to freedom from unwarranted searches and seizures was being stripped away by a Republican administration, or when a woman’s right to control her own reproductive decisions was attacked.

Is this their idea of limited government?

We heard nothing but support from them as torture and rendition and prisoner abuse dominated the airwaves. Is this protection of individual and inalienable (or “unalienable” per the Declaration of Independence) rights?

When the right of habeas corpus, cornerstone of English law for nine centuries and clearly stated in Article 1 Section 9 of our Constitution, was suspended by President Bush, Republicans seemed dead on that subject for all anyone could tell.

As evidence mounted Republican leaders were breaking the law and ignoring our rights as given in the Constitution, Republicans largely stood silent. They might convince me of their Rip Van Winkle return from hibernation if they showed more interest NOW, at least, in applying the law to those leaders who broke it.

Enforcing the law is not retribution nor politics. It is what a citizen of any party should want.

Warren Carlson


Tumwater Falls Park work is inspiring

I am excited to see ecological restoration happening at Tumwater Falls Park.

By bringing together community groups, students, arborists, and local government agencies, the Olympia Tumwater Foundation is making a huge investment in the ecological health of the park, the Deschutes River and Puget Sound.

English Ivy threatens some of our city’s most precious parks — from the Garfield Nature Trail in the west to Priest Point Park in the east and Watershed Park in the south. This non-native, invasive plant grows so thickly that it crowds out other native species and prevents new trees from growing.

In many areas, ivy has covered the forest floor for decades, so our urban forests are missing an entire generation of trees. When the towering Douglas Firs and Western Red Cedars that make up our current forest canopy die, there will be no young trees to replace them. And when they go, they won’t be cleaning our air or filtering our water, any longer.

But across the Pacific Northwest, communities are pulling on gloves and picking up shovels to sustain their urban forests. By removing invasive species and planting native trees, we can restore the ecological health of these beloved landscapes.

The great work at Tumwater Falls is an inspiring start, but this type of community-based restoration needs to happen in all of our forested parks, in all of our neighborhoods. If we become more active stewards of our urban forests, we can ensure that the next generation has tall trees to stand under.

Justin Hellier