Letters to the Editor -- September 20, 2001

Published on Thu, Sep 20, 2001
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Letters to the Editor

Many thanks...
The Editor:
Along with the New York helpers, I want to acknowledge a few of our Blaine helpers. I want to give a heart felt thank you to Blaine Marina and two of their workers Roy and Dennis. Last year after having knee surgery, I called Blaine Marina because I needed a comfortable bed. Within 20 minutes they came and set up my bed. Then throughout the year when Roy would come to deliver something he would check my smoke alarms to update my batteries in them. This year as I am getting ready to have major back surgery Roy and Dennis came to my home out of the kindness of their hearts. I fixed them dinner that in no way covered the cost of their time to put up a fence in my yard so I could keep my dogs after my surgery.
I am disabled and single. I love dogs and could have in no way afforded to put up a fence. I don’t know if these two guys even have any idea how much their kindness meant to me. So – thank you Roy and Dennis.
Judith Powers

Bang, bang-bang!
The Editor:

As we see airlines hijacked doesn’t it occur to anyone that only a few hijackers can overcome an entire airline of hundreds of passengers only because the passengers have no recourse or protection?
There exist a few airlines in the world that have a history of few or no hijackings, and that is because they have plain-clothed armed security on board every flight, and the airline company lets it be well-known that those disguised security folks are on board.
Here in America we have potential anti-hijacker systems already available if only the citizens and state and federal leaders would wake up and smell the freedom. It’s called the right to bear arms. Yeah, you say, another gun nut coming out because of a tragic disaster. But these so called gun nuts are solid American citizens that have permits to carry firearms and have been screened and background checked ad nauseam.
They are the good guys. They are the ones that have served as government employees, military personnel, and ones that have been background checked and fingerprinted by the FBI. The scenario of a hijacker standing up and shouting that he is hijacking the plane is almost laughable when you consider the response of maybe 50 or more of these armed solid citizens jumping up and pointing their collective armed resistance.
You say, “But all that shooting will depressurize the plane and it will crash anyway, killing everyone.” I say that shots at the hijacker would be the preferable risk and would beat the hell out of sitting passively while allowing them to kill you anyway along with others on the ground or thousands in a high-rise building.
It’s time we began to take responsibility for our own safety instead of thinking that the government or some other “system” will protect us from every evil imaginable. I would feel more secure and comfortable on an airplane knowing that I was surrounded by like-minded, background-checked, armed fellow Americans than by an entire plane load of helpless, vulnerable passengers totally at the mercy of someone with a weapon as simple as a box cutter. “But he said there is a bomb on board that he will set off if we don’t cooperate!” Well, the kind of terrorist in today’s world will set it off anyway, regardless of your cooperation, or just fake it until he can fly the plane into the White House or Pentagon killing you, and others.
I believe the paranoia about firearms being bad is perpetrated by the newspapers and Hollywood, as all the citizens I know with permits are good, solid citizens intent only on self protection and the exercise of their God-given (not government or legislated) rights to it.
“But we can’t have everyone running around with guns!” Yes we can, and we already do. They are the folks running around with concealed carry permits that you don’t even know about. Check with the police as to how many citizens have their permits; they’re everywhere. Remember it’s the bad guys that are already “running around with guns” regardless of laws or permits; this idea puts a balance to them by allowing the “good guys” to protect themselves, and you.
Martin Conyac

Tolerance, please...
The Editor:

Let me say first that all terrorists should be hunted down and sent to hell for what they have done. That would include any country or area that chooses to harbor such criminals. But I, as an American, can not sit by and watch prejudice take action here at home because of what we do not understand.
I live and work here in Birch Bay and as I drove down Lynden/Birch Bay Drive on Saturday, I was noticing some construction at a new site near Kickerville Road. What I have been told is a mosque is planned to be built on this site. I saw balloons and a festive atmosphere at the site as I passed, and thought that this is a very good thing for these individuals. To break ground for a new start with whatever religion is always a joyful time for the members of that belief, and it showed on the faces of the people there.
Today (Thursday) I found out that the signs of this new construction have been torn down twice since the horror of the terrorist acts struck against our nation. These people are not to blame. What kind of terrorists messages are you sending to these Americans based on your own prejudiced ways?
We are all angered and ready for whatever comes from the terrorist acts against us, but do not misplace your anger. These are American citizens given the same rights as you and me. What you are doing is wrong and instills terror in these innocent people. That makes you a terrorist!
I might be as close as you can get to a redneck, but I am not an ignorant one. I will say that, if I see anybody terrorizing these or any other people – I will stand by their side as a fellow American to defend their rights. If there are any problems please feel free to let me know.
Bill Burch

Been there, seen that...
The Editor:

Although I don’t have any vested interest in Blaine anymore, I’d like to address the proposition to revert to an elected mayor system.
A few citizens may remember my time in Blaine as a reporter with The Northern Light. In that capacity, I dealt with your city officials on an almost daily basis. I live and work in Snohomish now, and one of my beats is Monroe, a town of about 13,000 with an elected mayor system. I don’t think one system is better than the other, but let me share a few points: Monroe’s mayor and some city council members like to have closed meetings and frequently meet outside the chamber and have been sued over it. The suit lost, but the mayor was fined $2,500 for public disclosure violations.
Monroe is basically a giant strip mall, because the mayor won’t enforce laws regarding plat approval. Additionally, many businesses that past councils and the mayor allowed to develop willy-nilly will soon be hurting when the city-backed bypass around the main business corridor is built.
In my dealings with the people that run the city of Blaine, I have found them to have been very responsive to their constituents; the city manager is quite accountable as he answers to city council, which in turn is accountable to voters in Blaine.
People wanting a more responsive city government need only go to meetings of the council and its various committees. It is sometimes difficult to do that with a full-time job, but then most of your city officials also work full-time.
I don’t support one system over the other, but neither is immune to corruption or apathy. You are blessed with a city government that does almost everything as openly as possible. In Gary Tomsic and his staff, you have a dedicated bunch of people who only want to make Blaine better; they have a big job because of mistakes made before a lot of them were there, and it would be sad to see a break in the momentum they have worked very hard to build.
The effects may not be obvious yet, but a lot of hours have gone into revising codes and zoning to attract business and tourist in order to give Blaine’s economy a boost.
Soren Velice

The Editor:

I have always respected the professionalism of The Northern Light. It may be a small paper in a small town but it has always been informative, responsible and entertaining. When I read your front page on September 13, I felt a feeling of disgust and disbelief at the length of insensitivity this paper displayed. The headline read – “Pints and prayers for victims, vigilance at border.” Immediately below this was another headline of equal type size. It read – “Council approves porn zone to clean up downtown.”
Should this headline about a disgusting subject (and very old news at that) have been on the front page under an article about the worst disaster in the new millennium? Does this paper really believe at a time when we are mourning the deaths of what could possibly be 5,000 people, we really care so much about this subject that it should be given equal importance as this horrible, sad event? I, for one, think not and I am appalled that you would think we the readers do. At the very least, this article should have been on the second page. Are our minds so small that we can go from reading about the greatest tragedy in American history to then mindlessly skip on down to reading how the porn issue in Blaine is going? Please give the caring, sensitive citizens of Blaine some credit and allow them to grieve in a manner befitting this event. Porn news could have waited or been buried at the back of the paper where it belonged for now at least.
Gail Ginther

A coming together...
The Editor:

Samuel Hill came back to Blaine on September 8 to rededicate the Peace Arch on its 80th anniversary. Who could have imagined the events of the following Tuesday, September 11? The tragedies of that date, now seared on our hearts and minds, are examples of the failure of our efforts to end the disaster of warring nations.
This letter was intended to be a “thank you” from the United States/Canada Peace Anniversary Association to all those who participated in the re-dedication of the Peace Arch. However, in response to the events of last Tuesday, the USCPAA heard the call that so many others heard and scheduled an additional event, the peace vigil and candle lighting ceremony for Canadians and Americans at our treasured Peace Arch.
Both events saw communities coming together to renew efforts to celebrate our history, friendship and unity as an example of countries living in peace in our global society. The peace vigil and candle lighting ceremony provided the opportunity for people of many nations to unite in grief. Our neighbors to the north offered sympathy and condolence. Those to the south gratefully accepted their support and friendship.
Our thanks to the Barredo family (Mail Boxes Plus) for donating the candles placed on the Peace Arch and to the Singh family (Dollar Store) for donating the butane lighters. Thanks to our friends at Blaine Bouquet for the lovely flowers. Thanks to those who brought extra candles for their neighbors, so no one would be without one. Thanks to the volunteers who spoke the “peace quotations” and to those who helped with the program set-up. Thanks to our accompanist Larry Kozian.
The volunteers were joined by others who placed additional candles and flowers on the arch. Thanks to the officials of White Rock and Blaine for their inspiring words. Thanks to The Northern Light newspaper for their coverage. Thanks to the park manager, Wayne Eden for permission to use the park. The hundreds of candles encircling the Peace Arch provided a beacon of freedom and solidarity to be seen by all those attending as well as those passing by in their cars.
The outpouring of sentiment, support and sympathy humbles those of us who are a part of the United States/Canada Peace Anniversary Association. The unity we witnessed at both events is strong testimony to the friendship that exists between the citizens of our two nations. Truly it was the coming together as “Children of a Common Mother Dwelling together in Unity,” Thank you all.
Christina Alexander

4H donates...
The Editor:

The Discovery Club would like to send our condolences to the families of the victims of the terrorist attacks in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.
The club has voted to donate $25 to the Red Cross in New York. We are challenging other Whatcom County youth organizations to meet or exceed our donation for the relief of the terrorist attack victims. For additional information on this challenge, contact Stephanie at 318-8352.
The Northwest Washington Fair has ended, and following is a list of placings by the Discovery Club members: Jessica Einfeld, Champion Novice Sewing Judging; Miguel Valdez, Grand Champion Dairy Goat, Grand Champion Goat Fitting and Showing, and Reserve Grand Champion Dairy Goat Fitting and Showing; Ramona Valdez, Champion Dog Judging; and Suzanna Valdez, Champion Dog Obedience.
On October 11, the Whatcom County 4-H Council will hold the annual 4-H Promotional Night. This event will be hosted by the North Bellingham School, from 7:30 – 8:30 p.m. For additional information, contact the extension office at 676-6736. Come out and see what 4-H is all about. Remember 4-H is more than animals!
Stephanie Hiner

Looking for good...
The Editor:

Good shall come of this, awaking the USA from naivete in thinking this country and its good people were safe from all the evil in this world: Realization that only in God we can trust, remembering the commandments, “Love thy neighbor,” “Thou shalt not kill.” Also “Vengeance is mine, saith the Lord.”
We are now in a situation not unlike England – for years under attack in the last war – where spirit and courage unified the country, neighborhoods took care of one another and churches were a focus, not empty buildings. Now, like England, we need leadership under God, needing faith and inspiration, words and music.
Perhaps Washington D.C. officials standing together on the capitol steps to sing God Bless America will draw attention to the fact that this country was born of, and owes its survival to God, who is the author of peace and lover of concord.
Now finally, untold numbers of families are drawing together, realizing we do not know where or when. We need to live each day to the fullest, love one another to the utmost, sharing tears and laughter and trusting in God.Good has already started to come out of this.
A hurting America, awake, alert, loving and focusing on their own households and neighborhoods.
Hopefully the very real horror on the news everyday will dull our apparent need for violence, evil and gore in our movies and music.
Let us remember evil will never triumph over good. We are children of God, loved and cherished by Abba, our father who is fully aware of every second of every millennium. He watches and waits to see how we will make good come out of all this. He gave us bodies, hearts and minds, let us use them well to bring the good out of this evil.
Sandra Gallagher

We believe
The Editor:
The owners of Western Herb and Dietary Products, a Blaine herb store, also operate a web site called curecancer.com. This web site was not shut down by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The owners of this web site voluntarily took the site down temporarily to make some modifications to the site.
It is true the FTC did file a suit against us in court in Seattle, and the court told us that we could not use the word “cure” in our web site. We voluntarily took our web site down to comply. We have voluntarily modified some of the content of our web site in order to focus our energies on helping people rather than expend additional unnecessary energy fighting with the federal government over the words we use on our web site.
Although the FTC made a number of allegations in the complaint that it filed, these allegations have never been proven or admitted. We stand by our initial statements that we have not engaged in false advertising or deceptive practices. However, we choose not to waste our energies fighting with the federal government.
We choose to focus on helping people. We stand by the letters of people who have written us letters telling us how they got well. We put up these letters on our web site to show people that alternative therapy has helped many people and may be able to help them also.
Marvin Beckwith

The Editor:
This is a letter to inform the public about some very unscrupulous individuals who are preying on innocent people who use wood for their heat. If a family has to buy wood and has been ripped off by a crooked wood seller or is about to buy wood and might see a trailer or truck full of wood for sale – watch out – what you see you might not get. They will tell you that load is sold but we have a lot more just like it. Not true!
Anyway, if you would like to find out who these crooks are, feel free to call me at 371-0966 and I will be glad to tell you. I guess you can tell I’ve been had and I’m not afraid to pass the information on.
William Bryant
Birch Bay

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.

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