Letters to the Editor -- April 20, 2006

Published on Thu, Apr 20, 2006
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Letters to the Editor

The Editor:
We owe many thanks to friends, neighbors and members of this community who reached out to us after our daughter’s tragic car accident. Your kindness, concern and generosity was overwhelming. It is testimony to your integrity and concern for community.
The loss of two young exceptional young women who have resided all of their short lives here is tragic. Our hearts go out to those of you struggling in the midst of your grief. We are so fortunate to still have our daughter and will never take that for granted.
We moved here from Park City, Utah, only 11 months ago and have always felt accepted. The staff at Blaine high school has been wonderful and we appreciate all of their help. Please, if we don’t communicate with you each individually know that we are grateful for everything you have done for Denise and the other members of our family.
Pat, Craig, Kent, Jeff &
Denise Hackett
Blaine

The Editor:
I was saddened to read that Blaine’s City Council has rejected without discussion a sister city relationship with Pugwash, Nova Scotia.
When I was a sixth grader, once a month we all participated in the cold war air raid drills. We were trooped out of the classroom and into a hallway where we sat against a wall, our heads between our knees and our hands folded over our heads until the all clear sounded. To this day, I remember the boy next to me whispering, “If they drop the A-bomb here, we can kiss our a_ _ goodbye,” while the girl next to me had her fingers in her ears and she was saying, “la-la-la-la-la,” as if that would somehow make the A-bomb go away.
Anyone in a leadership role can choose to avoid an issue by manipulating the parliamentary process. It’s easy to claim the topic is too political and yet, in politics, to avoid an issue is politics. From what I read in The Northern Light, that’s what happened.
It takes courage to talk about scary subjects. It takes character to lead through the confusion. It takes integrity to admit the “true reasons” why we choose to not demonstrate courage, character, or integrity. (John, thank you for introducing the motion.)
It is my further observation, as a former teacher and school administrator that the Blaine City Council has modeled the worst form of democracy for our young people. A government where a few elected officials can avoid discussing any topic they do not “personally” agree with.
Perhaps the people of Blaine need to “encourage” the council through the petition process. After all, the last time I checked it was a government “by the people, and for the people.” Otherwise, Blaine may have to change its name from the “Peace Arch City,” to “a town that just happens to have a large, white, meaningless arch on its border with Canada,” or perhaps the town that wouldn’t give a “second” for peace.
Blaine and Pugwash are logical partners for sister city status. It would draw together the people of two great nations, from the Atlantic to the Pacific in a focused mission for peace. As to the Pugwash Conference, I’d rather discuss peace and the reduction of nuclear weapons than to prepare to “kiss my a _ _ goodbye,” or stick my fingers in my ears and go, “la-la-la-la-la-la.”
Ron Snyder
Blaine

The Editor:
I like the boys and girls club because it’s a place you can hang out with friends. Also the staff are really nice. And it’s a place were the littler kids can go after school and the parents can know that they are safe. Also there’s a lot of games. Everyone can enjoy them. Also you meet a lot of new friends. Plus you can get free snack. That is why I like the boys and girls club.
Kim Jackson
Blaine
(Ed Note: Last week was National Boys & Girls Club Week. The Northern Light received a number of letters in support of the club.)

The Editor:
My name is Dylan Haines and I’m a sophomore at BHS. As a piano/language student and friend of Dick Clark I have attended the recent meetings regarding the sister city of Pugwash proposal. I became interested in the idea and have done my own research.
Pugwash shares with Blaine many things in common. Pugwash lies on the coast and is a major fishing town, as is Blaine. Pugwash views the sunrise over the ocean as we, in Blaine, view the sunset. Most importantly Pugwash’s theme is that of peace; I once thought Blaine’s theme was peace as well.
I attended the town meeting on April 10 where the sister city proposal was brought up. After a wonderful display of similarities between Pugwash and Blaine, presented by R.B. Porter and Jerry Gay, Jason Overstreet and Bonnie Onyon still had some concerns. Pugwash held a convention in 1957 to work to promote peace, which brought together 22 scientists to discuss nuclear threat. City council member John Liebert’s motion to invite Pugwash into a sister city relationship died when no one made a second. The main concern at the town meeting was if the sister idea would be separated from the annual peace conference. Jason Overstreet expressed that he believed the two could not be separated. I fully agree with Jason Overstreet, the two cannot be separated. Blaine and Pugwash’s biggest similarity is the theme of peace. You cannot take away their 1957 peace meeting just like you cannot take away Sam Hill’s Peace Arch. That very same peace conference is now held worldwide and in major cities like London. No media is attached and just scientists attend, no peace radicals like some fear.
What would be wrong with trying to host a peace conference in Blaine, the Peace Arch city? Both communities have adopted peace as their theme so why can’t we have a sister city relationship? What is wrong with striving for world peace? Pugwash and Blaine could unite and share our ideas of peace; to restore Blaine’s theme of peace. We need community support.
Dylan Haines
Blaine

The Editor:
As we sit upon our aching bones, should we as homo sapiens be in pain? Let’s take stock of what really is happening. Practically everything that we consume has been manipulated by our mad scientists.
Do you really pay attention to what you purchase? Do you notice how blemish free our produce looks? One can hardly find produce that has not been manipulated. Remember when you could pick an apple from a tree that had not been sprayed. If you found a perfect one, you were ecstatic, hoping that there wasn’t a worm inside. All of these sprays for things that the layman cannot comprehend are putting the pain into our body!
Change the subject and let’s visit Asia. As well as our neighboring states from where we get a tremendous amount of help gathering our food. How many are exposed to severe poisoning and handle food with unwashed hands? To be more exact, just how many of our medical personnel pay any attention to good ol’ hygiene?
Switch tracks to Vietnam. Pray tell, just how many of our vets are suffering from the agents sprayed in defoliation? Just 10 parts per million can cause a breakdown in our body.
J.P. Tom Thompson
Blaine

The Editor:
I was dismayed to read the account of the April 10 council meeting discussion of the potential sister city relationship between Blaine and Pugwash, Nova Scotia. What to me is an eminently fine idea can’t even muster a second. That is astonishing. And the reasons for it are even more so; because it is controversial. There are many things in Blaine which are controversial, if one’s definition of the word is that not everyone agrees with them. I cite as examples the boardwalk and the guns outside city hall. I support one and not the other, council supported both.
I am somewhat heartened that council has not closed the door on the sister city proposal and urge each member to give it his or her serious consideration. We are ‘the city of peace,’ we have many different understandings of how to reach the worldwide peace we all desire. Every little step we can take through building connections with others who share that vision, to providing forums where people of differing viewpoints can discuss their ideas helps in achieving the goal of peace for our world. And for those who argue that this is a private matter, I would suggest that it is not private when men, women and children around the world are injured or killed every day because we seem incapable of finding non-violent ways of resolving our disagreements. Let Blaine assume a leadership role in the struggle for peace. Twinning with Pugwash, Nova Scotia would be a good start.
Helen Worley
Blaine

The Editor:
This is the time of year as I write checks to my federal and local governments that I really would like elected representatives to understand don’t promise to do everything with my money.
In talking and listening to Craig Mayberry, I think he understands that state government spending is way out of line and he would like the opportunity to prove more and more feel good spending is not the best use of our tax dollars.
Mayberry has the education and leadership skills to make a much needed change in financial decisions in Olympia.
Elinor King
Ferndale

The Editor:
All of us here at Stafholt Good Samaritan Center wish to thank the community of Blaine for such a wonderful turnout to our first community Easter egg hunt. We feel fortunate to be able to give something back to our community and especially the children.
I personally also want to thank Reverend Don Walter for reading the Easter story to the children. Our goal was to bring the real reason for Easter to kids in a way that they could understand and Reverend Walter was the perfect man for the job.
I also want to thank our administrator, Wayne Weinschenk, for his full support of the program and all of his help, to Laurie Hart, Daphne Butcher, Marsha Hawkins, Jan Fenske and Melissa Young for their dedication to the idea and their help and leadership, and to Claudia Rouse who could not be with us on the day of the program, but who was a great help with the original planning.
Once again, thank you to every daddy, mommy, grandma, grandpa and aunt or uncle who brought all of these children to be with us on April 15. We had a good time and it is our prayer that you all did too.
See you next year!
Ginger Perez, activity director
Stafholt Good Samaritan Center
Blaine

The Editor:
Pugwash is a village in Nova Scotia that is proud to have hosted the first Peace Conference in the
50s composed of such luminaries as Albert Einstein, Max Born, Bertrand Russell, etc. Out of
this came the Russell-Einstein manifesto which calls for an end to nuclear armament. These scientists knew the full extent of the effects of a nuclear war, which is not just the destruction of the cities the bombs hit but the slow torture of disease and disintegration which could destroy mankind.
The problem seems to be that some members of the Blaine City Council do not think that Blaine should be associated with Pugwash because of the very thing that puts Pugwash on the map. They say it is “political,” and even though sisterhood with Pugwash is only that, the council, with one exception, seems uninterested in getting involved. There seems to be a fear that a peace conference could be held here.
I would be proud to have another link between our community and the idea of peace – in addition to the one that Blaine already has with our wonderful Peace Arch. The uniting of two little towns on opposite sides of the continent who have the same legacy seems to me fitting and proper.
Norma Thomasson
Blaine

Letters Policy
The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank-you letters should be limited to 10 names. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

Please send your letter to:
225 Marine Drive, Blaine, WA 98230 or fax 360/332-2777.
E-mail:editor@thenorthernlight.com

Letters Policy

The Northern Light welcomes letters to the editor; however, the opinions expressed are not those of the editor. Letters must include name, address and daytime telephone number for verification. Letters must not exceed 350 words and may be edited or rejected for reasons of legality, length and good taste. Thank you letters are limited to five individuals or groups. A fresh viewpoint on matters of general interest to local readers will increase the likelihood of publication. Writers should avoid personal invective. Unsigned letters will not be accepted for publication. Requests for withholding names will be considered on an individual basis. Only one letter per month from an individual correspondent will be published.

Please email letters to letters@thenorthernlight.com