Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor for Sept. 26

Buxbaum's leadership needed now

I worked with Stephen Buxbaum for years at the Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development and wholeheartedly support him for Olympia City Council knowing three things: He really understands community development; he works hard and makes thoughtful, systems-level decisions; and he is fair.

Buxbaum has wide and deep experience with many aspects of community development — housing, services, infrastructure, business and governance — and he has helped cities put these pieces together many times, creating or maintaining healthy and vibrant places for people to live, work and play. He gets it. He actually has done it. Bringing people together and improving how systems work are the difficult roads less traveled. As a result of his professional career so far, Washington communities will benefit for generations to come.

Buxbaum is fair. As a union steward for employees working under his management, I can attest that he helped unwind gnarly problems, again not taking the easiest road but respectfully participating in solutions that worked all around.

I’m writing because I live just outside city limits and love Olympia and the South Sound region. I can see that Stephen Buxbaum’s leadership is needed now. The quality of our future depends on it.

JULIE BAKER, Olympia

Civil rights shouldn’t be put to a vote

The editorial staff of The Olympian, hiding behind an appeal to democracy in “Let the voters decide,” are actually advocating institutionalized bigotry and discrimination.

Referendum 71 should not be on the ballot because civil rights are a matter of what is just, not whether a minority can sway the opinion of a disinterested majority.

If the referendum looses, then opponents of civil rights for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered population will be able to crow that they were just reflecting the will of the people.

But most people mistakenly believe that civil rights are finite, and so granting civil rights to a group will therefore take away from the civil rights of another group. In reality, civil rights expand exponentially but the image of a pie with only a limited number of pieces is difficult to overcome.

The Olympian is doing a great disservice by perpetuating the tyranny of the masses.

LEE HAUGEN, Olympia

Let's eliminate all taxes

To those holding tea parties, let’s do away with all taxes. Heck, the government has lots of money.

This way, we only pay for the services we want and not other people’s programs. You only pay if you want the fire department, police, the street, etc.

EVERETT SPATZ, Shelton

Show respect for U.S. symbols

In the sports section of a recent edition, I read an article regarding three teenagers that were suing a minor league team and its owner for being kicked out of the game due not standing for “God Bless America.”

I do not know all the specifics of the incident. I believe in the First Amendment. However, being a citizen of the United States, I’m always offended when attending events where men do not remove their hats when the national anthem or “God Bless America” is performed.

Regardless of one’s view of the United States, at least show some respect to the symbol that represents the rights we have in this country.

TIM RISE, Olympia

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