Letters to the Editor from March 16

March 15, 2007 11:00 pm

History articles minimize crimes against local Indians

While I'm glad to see The Daily Triplicate write articles about the region's history, I'm concerned about the spin the Triplicate is putting on these seemingly historical articles, minimizing the theft, murder and genocide that characterize the settlement of the region.

A prime example is the headline "Miners, tribe clash in Klamath in 1855" (Feb. 24). "Clash"? The article itself describes whites moving in to what had been Indian land for thousands of years, the unprovoked attack on Indians (including "those who did not even plan to resist"?) by whites, the rape of Indian women and so on. And of course when Indians did resist (even when "no lives were lost") the whites used the power of the state to kill even more Indians and to burn more villages. The article even uses the word "atrocities" in describing the white actions. "Clash"?

Let's bring this up to the present. Suppose some gang from far away burst into the homes of Crescent City residents, killed men, raped women, burned down houses – burned down entire communities – and stole land. Then when some community members began to fight back, these gangs call in reinforcements to kill even more Crescent City residents and to burn more of our communities. Would the headline read: "Gang members, residents clash in Crescent City?" I don't think so. The newspaper would call it what it is: an invasion accompanied by mass murder.

Please give these horrors the respect they deserve. Even more to the point, please give those Indian nations on whose land we all now live the respect they deserve.

Derrick Jensen

Crescent City

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Nonprofits also need to obey zoning regulations on services

Regarding Jim Ramsey's letter, "Crescent City needs to lead on problem" (March 13): Yes, the people of Crescent City need to do something about our homeless problem. However, we need to address the problem within the laws and ordinances that govern the whole community so that we may best serve the entire community.

Neither Our Daily Bread nor Community Action Network applied for permits to begin business. As non-profits, they are not required to apply for a business license. In the case of CAN, it wasn't until the remodeling, which does require a permit, began that anyone realized that their proposed use did not meet the zoning. They were able to change the format of their business and allowed to stay.

When Our Daily Bread went to have its water turned on, it was told that the facility would not be approved for the requested use. The site is contaminated and could pose a health hazard for food service. Since the building did not meet code for this use, the organization had to move.

The glitch in the system seems to be that both of these groups rented their facilities and began their moves without checking on the codes or zoning.

Zoning laws protect us all. They allow similar businesses to be grouped together to the benefit of the public they serve. They prevent business from moving into areas where they might not be appropriate. Bars can not be near schools, dumps near restaurants, prisons in residential neighborhoods, etc.

I do not believe that the "City Fathers" are trying to make the problem go away, but they are responsible for the well-being of the entire population that they serve. They must give protection, through zoning, to those businesses whose taxes and donations provide for services for all. Are there problems in the system? Of course there are. Can we overcome them and provide for the needs of all of the residents in our community? Absolutely.

We need to start working with each other and start making sure that we have done our homework when taking on projects. Attend City Council, Board of Supervisor and Planning Commission meetings. Participate in public discussion about the issues that face our community. Let those in charge know that you care and are paying attention to the decisions that they make. Be part of the solution.

Cheryl Corpstein

Crescent City