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Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor Feb. 21, 2013

Real story of steer that survived flood of 1964

Regarding my Feb. 12 Coastal Voices piece, I would like to make a correction to the headline, “The real story about tsunami-swept steer.”

The steer did not survive the tsunami of 1964, but did survive the flood that happened in December of 1964. Both were equally devastating, but he did live in Klamath, which was completely destroyed by the flood.

Larry Bush, Tillamook, Ore. 

Services are available or veterans and their family

If you are a veteran, the spouse, widow/widower, or the child of a veteran and need assistance with VA benefits, or VA-provided health care, the Disabled American Veterans organization is here to assist you free of charge.

You do not have to be a member of the DAV to receive our assistance. We are veterans service officers that are trained and certified yearly by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and bonded by the Disabled American Veterans. We can assist veterans and their families anywhere regardless of the state they live in, where they receive their VA health care, or where their claims are being processed.

Letters to the Editor Feb. 16, 2013

CC’s isolated hospital should not be downsized  

Sutter Health’s decision to regionalize (taking ownership of our hospital) would make it easier to turn our hospital into a critical care hospital, and that would be a very bad decision for our community.

Down-sizing to a critical care hospital would be particularly difficult for the needs of our elderly and low-income, especially if transported out of our area.

Crescent City is isolated and needs more and better health care.

Sutter Health as a not-for-profit organization should be concerned more about us and our health care than more profit for itself. Its decision to regionalize is really about money, not health care!

Jackie Simonsen, Crescent City

Grave concerns about hospital regionalization

The talk of “regionalization” and turning Sutter Coast Hospital into a critical access designation is alarming to people living in Del Norte and Curry counties.

Our grave concerns are for the following reasons:

• Reducing the number of beds to 25 (actually 22) would result in patients being transferred to hospitals in San Francisco and elsewhere that would be miles away.

Letters to the Editor Feb. 14, 2013

Odd that American Indian Warrior mascot off limits

I hope we can chose a new inspiring mascot we can identify with while instilling pride and unity.

Sometimes an obvious identification is rightfully rejected because of the negative connotations that come with it. Germantown, Penn., is a good example. Some years ago, it banned all references to American Indians among its district schools. In response, it is notable that although the Germantown name has a natural affiliation, no mascot was chosen such as: Nazis, Jackboots, Storm Troopers, Brown Shirts, SS, or Gestapo.

We would be outraged to have our team called by any of those names. And rightfully so. It just seems odd to me that our American Indian Warrior mascot must be placed among the do-not-use list along with those names that provoke disgust or shame.

All this politically correct progressiveness first came to my attention in the ’70s when Stanford University decided it was offensive to have an American Indian as a mascot.  A tsunami of the perpetually aggrieved seemed to follow, determined to set straight the minds of all those who caused offense, as long as they could decide the terms, define the words and be the arbiters of what could and could not be allowed to stand.

I am Irish, though not Catholic, but identify with the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame football. The desire to avoid all offense can get ridiculous though. We already have the Santa Cruz Banana Slugs. A new school in Canyon, Utah, was turned down for the selection of a cougar as a mascot. It might offend mature women. Maybe we should target Crescent Elk next.

Many of the athletes in our community, seeking a source of pride, not mockery or derision, have American Indian motifs on their letterman’s, not some insipid flaming W. 

Letters to the Editor Feb. 9, 2013

Reasons why hospital should remain as it is

Sutter Coast Hospital should stay as it is, not be made into just a critical care center. My husband and I retired to Crescent City in 1998 from Sacramento, and the one thing we looked for was a decent hospital in this area and some good doctors.

If our hospital is not making enough money to suit the controllers in the Bay Area, they should sell it to Asante or another group that can make it

People in Crescent City cannot afford to travel to Eureka or Medford for care they cannot get from our local hospital.

Also, this hospital takes care of Pelican Bay prisoners when there is a knifing or something that cannot be handled there.

Just because this is a small county does not mean we don’t need a hospital that can accommodate its citizens.

In San Francisco and in Sacramento, they have so many hospitals a person has no worry about the care they receive.

We need our hospital and our doctors in this area. 

Faye Daly, Crescent City

We were sold a bill of goods on treatment plant

I believe we were sold a bill of goods over our wastewater treatment plant all along. Now the city has to face facts and tell the users the truth. We were told that we had to build our high-tech plant vs. the low-tech plant using the old mill ponds behind Safeway.

Letters to the Editor Feb. 7, 2013

Memories of Bobby Rice at Relay for Life event

Sometimes a brief snapshot can give you a measure of the color and depth of a life and how it shined.  So it was with me and Bobby Rice on a Saturday night last July.

I was hobbling the high school track at the annual Relay For Life celebration on crutches with a torn MCL. It was several hours after sundown and the evening chill had set in. As I tried to knock out a few miles in my Mom’s memory, somewhere between my knee, missing my Mom and dwelling on some recent bumps in the road of my life, I got into one of those places where the rags of time are weighing kind of heavy.

It was in that frame of mind I found myself when all of a sudden I heard, “You better slow down Hopalong, you’re gonna burn up the track,” and turned to see Bobby Rice. He came up and put his hand on my shoulder, looked me in the eye and asked how I was doing. I told him I was managing and was having a talk with my Mom, who I mentioned had brought me to this place seven years before, when she was passing up in Brookings. Bobby pointed out at all the people walking the track, silhouetted by the light and spirit of the luminaria, and asked me if I knew what kind of gift my Mom had given me in bringing me to this place. I told him I did.

He told me what a great place this was, how the people looked out for each other and what a “sense of community,” his words, there was in this small county. He talked a while longer about how much he loved this place and its people and then said he was going to leave me with Mom and go up around the bend.

It was one of those times when you needed a shot in the arm and a reason to believe, and Bobby Rice gave them to me that night.

Letters to the Editor Feb. 5, 2013

Tribe shouldn't gamble away money with casino

I write this with a heavy heart. No, I am not distinguished to be a member of the Yurok Tribe, and with that said, sadly, many will dismiss my thoughts solely for that matter alone.

How can anyone of Yurok heritage actually believe the consultants who painted a rosy portrait of a hotel and casino in downtown Klamath, are giving them the real deal?

The region is already saturated with casinos in Elk Valley and Smith River. Why would someone drive to a remote area? The get-rich-now approach rather than sow the seeds to the future appears to command the money.

What about building a small sawmill and market “certified, sustainable” lumber? What about building a salmon aquaculture “fish factory” up in Terwer along the banks of the Klamath alongside a Yurok heritage “living museum”?

Many persons of foreign nations would love to see such sites on a tour of the redwood region.

How about building a mussel aquaculture “shellfish factory” near the mouth of the Klamath River? Tourists passing through would love to see such industry.

I was up on Vancouver Island where First Nations people have built time-share vacation rentals.

Letters to the Editor Feb. 2, 2013

‘Call of Crescent City’ in warmth of the people

“The call of Crescent City,” Jan. 19, got me thinking. When my second husband died a year ago, I was living in Wilton, south of Sacramento. After a couple of months of successfully putting one foot in front of the other, I decided I would try to sell our four-bedroom home on five acres with a pond.

With divine intervention it sold for cash in a week for almost my asking price! Even though I thought I’d have a year before my home sold, I knew exactly where I’d go next — back to Crescent City!

I had moved to Del Norte County fresh out of college in Sacramento to begin my teaching career in 1976 at the age of 21. I drove along Pebble Beach Drive and said, “I can’t believe people are so lucky as to actually live here!” I knew not a soul, but my fellow teachers at Redwood School soon became family.

I met and married a wonderful man who was the father of my three sons. As years passed, we Redwood teachers taught each other’s children and loved them as our own.

Dave died in 1998, after we had been married 20 years. I was devastated, but being back in the classroom helped. I spent many recesses crying in the bathroom the rest of that school year.

I moved with my youngest son back to Sacramento, where my father and siblings still lived. I remarried, but for years, whenever we returned to Crescent City to visit, I’d cry as soon as I saw the ocean.

Letters to the Editor Jan. 31, 2013

Thanks, congratulations

Just got home from two weeks in the “warm country.” When we get home one of my favorite things is to pick up my stack of newspapers and find out what’s been going on while we’ve been gone. 

I ran across Rick Bennett’s letter to the editor (“Triplicate doing a great job in hard times for publishing,” Jan. 22) and wholeheartedly agreed with him. I, for one, love to sit back and read the paper, digest the words while relaxing, because being online is not relaxing to me.

So, here we go. Congratulations to my friends Hector and Eileen Brown on your Chamber of Commerce award! The pictures were great (Jan. 22). You’ve been cleaning up Crescent City for many, many years now, and I loved to see that recognized by our city fathers.

Also, congrats to Strand Hill, another good friend’s son who had a lead in a theater production here. Loved to see those pictures, too.

And what a heartwarming story about Virginia Hinkley (“‘You never saw a better sport,” Jan. 19) about the sad accident and the courage she has and most of all her gracious heart of forgiveness.

And last but not least, the House Calls columns, written in layman’s terms by Trish Walker, about heart failure. We have family members with the heart disease she spoke of, so I cut out her article and was discussing it in the office and one of our clients said he would like a copy, that he had read it and inadvertently thrown the issue away without keeping it. Another agent was listening and had not seen it and asked for a copy. So here we are, a discussion that would have never taken place should it had just been an online story rather than in print, available to easily copy and share with others.

Thank you, Triplicate, for toughing out these times and continuing to print our news.

And on another note, we who are actively fighting to keep our hospital intact, a huge thank you to Dr. Greg Duncan who is sacrificing his time and energy to keep us informed. A well-attended meeting last night at the fairgrounds opened many eyes to the travesty hidden behind closed doors to him and the people of our county who stand to lose the most.

Letters to the Editor Jan. 29, 2013

When has Indian mascot ever been derisive?

Thank you, Dave Boker, for pointing out the obvious but ignored aspect of the Warrior controversy (“DN still in search of a Warrior symbol,” Jan. 26).

The taxpayers and alumni of the community should not be held voiceless to the decision made by whatever current crop of young, impressionable students attending Del Norte at a moment in time decide when a mascot may be chosen.

I have an ongoing, 21-year commitment to Warrior sports so have a vested interest in the outcome of this decision. We have been the Warriors as long as I can remember; 60 or more from reading Coach Trone’s column. When has the Indian mascot ever been a symbol of shame or derision? Why is it wrong to take pride in an aspect of our collective history that had gained respect and admiration in spite of a sometimes harsh and atrocious (on both sides) past?

Why do the minority aggrieved have the power to claim victim status and demand we all put aside our own preferences and yield to the madness that is political correctness? If we must not speak of that which offends, history is held hostage, and history held hostage is soon forgotten.

Ultimately, our collective memory will forget great American Indian leaders and their contributions, the shame of past injustices, and the lessons to be learned from both. We will not remember the brave, formidable warriors who fought so valiantly in battle against superior numbers and advanced technology, and whose indomitable spirit prevailed in gaining the admiration of even their most ferocious enemies.

Breaking out the bingo cards and pulling the slot machine handle is not going to engender the same respect in the history that will supplant the old.

Letters to the Editor Jan. 26, 2013

Time to get angry, prevent downsizing of hospital

Just over eight months ago I wrote a letter to the editor expressing my concern regarding the transfer of ownership of Sutter Coast Hospital to Sutter Health. That concern has not abated, but has increased significantly by the events that have transpired since then.

First, the chief of staff of the hospital, Dr. Greg Duncan, has apparently been placed on double-secret probation by the Dean (see “Animal House,” the movie) of the Sutter Health legal team and is not allowed to attend certain parts of meetings of the Board of Directors. The reason for Sutter’s action is that Dr. Duncan has been deemed a subversive (see Joe McCarthy, the Red Scare) because he has publicly stated that he thinks Sutter Coast Hospital should honor the promises it made to this community when it was given monopoly privilege over hospital care in our region.

The promises as written in the original agreement between Sutter Health and the Del Norte Healthcare District are: Sutter Coast Hospital will be governed by a board, the majority of whose members will be residents of Del Norte County. The quality of care provided to patients by Sutter Coast Hospital shall meet or exceed the quality of care presently provided at the existing hospital. (Lease Agreement page 2, 3/19/1987.)

Second, it has been discovered that there are two studies that have been conducted regarding the downsizing of Sutter Coast Hospital to Critical Access status, reducing the number of beds to 25. The problem is Sutter Health will not allow anyone in the community to see the documents. Where is Daniel Ellsberg when you need him? (See Pentagon Papers).

A call to action might be to follow John Belushi’s lead in “Animal House”: “Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor?” or would it be more appropriate to stand at the window and shout as Howard Beale (see “Network,” the movie) did: “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.”

If nothing happens to change the direction of Sutter, we may not have a community economically viable to survive the next decade.

Jim Coston, Crescent City 

We’re going downhill; no leadership to stop it

As Sutter Health works quietly behind the scenes to take over our hospital and regionalize it, we need to get some serious action going to stop this! Our community has seen the lumber industry vanish and the fishing industry decimated. We brought in a huge prison which was supposed to make us a “boom town” but instead clogs our justice system and pulls in bad elements of our society, along with a terrible rise in drug trafficking.

We now see a new super-Walmart up and running, without regard for the smaller businesses in our community who are trying to make it but probably can’t compete. (Please support your local grocery stores/hardware stores!)

Where is the leadership in this town/this county? Evidently the will to do big things is not present in their thinking. If our hospital is lost to Sutter because of ineptitude, complacency, fear, or just plain ignorance, we will have no one but ourselves to blame as we see our economy and way of life tilt downward for lack of decent medical care. No thinking person would move his family here knowing that they would have to be shipped out for anything other than a minor illness. What competent physician would be willing to set up practice here?

Lilyan Wood, Crescent City

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