Letters to the Editor: Feb. 20, 2019
Closure of OCAC would be loss for entire community
The loss of the Oregon College of Art and Craft, a bachelor's- and master's-degree institution right here in Washington County, Oregon, is a blow for the celebrated diversity of our county. In fact, the only other four-or-more-year, nonprofit college in Washington County is Pacific University in Forest Grove.
In 2017, the population of Washington County was almost 600,000 — just short of the population of the entire city of Portland, itself rich in non-profit colleges and universities. Yet as it stands now, Washington County will be losing fully one-half of its nonprofit, undergraduate and graduate educational institutions with OCAC's last graduating class this May.
And the key to this fiasco is likely the word "nonprofit." Along with its vibrant and unusual programs, OCAC has long struggled with the finances of maintaining its beautiful, retreat-like campus just up the hill from Providence St. Vincent Medical Center.
What support can Washington County itself offer to retain 50 percent of its nonprofit colleges? What support can the mega-profit "campuses" of high technology offer? What support can county residents offer to stem this tragic loss of diversity, one which rips "art" right out of the push for STEAM in education (science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics)?
Alongside its degree offerings, OCAC also maintained a "studio school," where non-graded art and craft workshops and courses were offered to one and all. And each summer for the last 20 years, OCAC has operated quite a unique opportunity for youth and families, the "Jordan Schnitzer Family Art Adventures" hands-on day camp.
But that's not all. High school teachers often brought their students to utilize the specialized OCAC facilities in the disciplines (and cross-disciplines) of metals, woods, book arts, photography, drawing/painting, and fibers. These community resources disappear when
OCAC shutters its doors.
Hey, Washington County — can we reverse this loss?
Deborah Bouchette, Hillsboro
What about 'global cooling'?
Reference: Your Feb. 6, 2019, article "Our Opinion" about "Winter doesn't mean that the planet isn't warming."
Please stop trying to scare people with your tripe about global warming. I am sending you some literature that refers to the global warming hoax. Please consider the enclosed articles, which give much data on the supposed warming.
[Ed.: The letter-writer included a copy of The New American, a bimonthly magazine affiliated with the far-right John Birch Society, as well as two photocopied pages of an article by Ed Hiserodt with several passages highlighted. Passages highlighted in orange are quoted below.]
"During periods of high solar activity, with many sunspots, average global temperatures will be warmer. ... 'Research shows that current warming does not exceed natural fluctuations of climate' (according to a study published in Chinese Science Bulletin.) ... Many climate realists are predicting a period of global cooling."
The temperature of the earth is controlled by sunspot activity, which is beyond the resources of mankind.
Allan Vanderzanden, Cornelius
Money narrows the field of politics
As a new voter, I see new candidates stifled simply because they cannot gain the funding necessary to competitively run for office.
Politics should not be dictated by the few with the most money.
In the run-up to elections, candidates are eliminated because they lack big-money support. This limits the influence of the voter on Election Day. Creating a system that boosts the voice of small donors would impact which candidates make it to Election Day.
Across the party divide, hard-working Oregon politicians and hopefuls are discouraged from running on the basis of finances.
I urge the legislators of Oregon to take action to diversify elections by dampening the influence of big money in politics. Reducing the impact of big money would create an elected body that is more representative, responsive and transparent.
Let's create a system that truly represents us.
Josh Cavanaugh, Portland
A different outlook on migrant question
I understand the professor's points ("Stalling over the wall is harmful and pointless," Citizen's View by Russ Dondero) from someone that lives in Oregon and maybe lived some in Mexico. I grew up in Arizona and spent 55 of my years there. I have a totally different outlook on it.
Having open borders provides large companies with cheap labor and horrible working conditions and benefits. Visit the cattle ranchers in Patagonia to see how they feel about no fences.
My father worked as an engineer for the railroad that went along the border from El Paso, Texas, to Lordsberg, N.M. It got to the point where they didn't stop when the engine hit them because it was so far to stop and so many. Oh, forgot — there was no fence.
There is a legal way — try that!
If you have a fence around your home, take it down and publish your address to those in Mexico so you can provide them free room, board and health care.
As a veteran, I don't get what I was promised, but you feel I should pay for them, and people like you still dishonor veterans.
Robert Griffin, McMinnville
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