Letters to the Editor -- January 30, 2003

Published on Thu, Jan 30, 2003
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Letters to the Editor


Time to think, folks
The Editor: I would like to express my support of Senator Patty Murray for her willingness to encourage Americans to think critically about how we, and our enemies, are viewed in other parts of the world. Senator Murray did not tell the students to whom she was speaking that Bin Laden is a good person, she simply asked the students to think about how Bin Laden�s actions affect people�s opinion of him, and compare that with how the United States is viewed as a result of our actions.
Most voices in the media simply tell us that Bin Laden is a bad person, and ask us to think about nothing. Open minded citizens who are willing to think critically about the actions of their government are vital to the functioning of democracy.
I applaud Senator Murray for encouraging the students she was addressing to become that kind of citizen. It is a lesson we could all take to heart.
Rachel Williams
Blaine

We did a they said
The Editor: I am disappointed in your article regarding Semiahmoo�s fire insurance rating.
In your quote of Rutherford and Zechlin, you did a �they said.� I find the facts as stated in the article in grave error.
Judging folks because they are retired business folks and stating they do not desire to lug hose is showing the lack of knowledge of the speaker. I feel you owe them an apology in writing as you did not research the article. You just wrote what was said. Putting it in the paper does not make it fact.
Most folks who have assets protect them and truthfully all our contacts with the Semiahmoo owners have shown they care about their homes. I asked local owner/residents why the fire house was not used and we were told the local fire folks (powers that be) felt it was not necessary to staff the facility as they could cover it from Blaine and Birch Bay. I was also told they lacked funds to staff the station. I was also told the Semiahmoo development was required to build the station.
So, they did not do it to attract residents. What attracts folks here is their attitude on the development of the area, their care about the environment plus the opportunity to live in an area of deer, eagles and other wild life.
Newspapers are supposed to report the news, but I feel they also have the obligation to verify facts as stated by local officials before making it sound like a done deal.
Mary E. Bryce, M/Y Lee Ann
Blaine

Thanks but no thanks
Dear Editor
: I just finished reading Patti Rutter�s letter in The Northern Light issue for January 23-29. She feels that Birch Bay should merge with Blaine.
Please. In rebuttal: Blaine is the one that needs Birch Bay, Birch Bay doesn�t need Blaine. The sewage treatment plant in Birch Bay is perfectly fine, the treatment plant in Blaine is the one with the problem.
Birch Bay residents, along with Haynie and Custer residents, are already contributing to the new fire station within the Blaine city limits, which is of little use to those who live in Birch Bay, Haynie and Custer, but that�s what happens when you make fire districts. Blaine has a big financial problem and Birch Bay shouldn�t be saddled with it.
The people who live in Birch Bay probably moved here to lead simpler lives and we would like to keep it that way. Leave Birch Bay alone.
Monica Kerr
Birch Bay

Good Meeting!
The Editor
: I was an attendee at the recent meeting regarding the disturbing news about the fire insurance rates in the Semiahmoo area. The meeting was hosted by city manager Gary Tomsic, fire chief Jim Rutherford and police chief Mike Haslip.
I would like to compliment these men on the quality of their presentation. It was well prepared and informative.
Those who attended left with an excellent understanding of how the situation had developed and with confidence in the administration�s plan for correcting the problem.
Duane Sammons
Blaine

Thank you all...
The Editor:
On January 7, our trailer home on Squalicum Mountain caught fire and burned to the ground. The fire took everything we owned; clothing, books, tools, everything. But our most grievous loss by far was that of our seven beloved dogs, who died in the fire.
While the event was a tragedy, the experience also showed us what a wonderfully fine and unselfish community we live in. The generous outpouring of gifts of clothing, food, household items, and so much more, from charitable organizations like the Red Cross, Salvation Army, and Family Resources of Blaine (all of whom were wonderful), but also from so many others; friends and strangers alike, far exceeded our expectations and hopes. Their unsolicited assistance has gone a long way toward helping us get back on our feet again. More importantly, it has given us the courage we shall need for the long and difficult road back.
We cannot possibly thank all the very deserving individuals and organizations, who stood by us during this time of need, but we want to point out one very special group of young people who deserve particular recognition. The fourth grade students and staff of Blaine elementary school surprised us with a gift of $325. Perhaps more than anything else, their gift typifies the understanding and generosity of the community we live in.
To everyone in Whatcom County, and especially to the fourth graders in Blaine, our most heartfelt thanks. We love you.
John and Ivy Cadman
Squalicum Mountain

Get involved
The Editor:
I am the proud parent of two children at the Blaine elementary school and an active member of the Blaine community. I am writing to inform the public of the major cutback our schools are facing. Invaluable programs that parents and students rely on are in jeopardy, as well as the jobs of staff that just cannot be spared.
I urge the public to get involved by either writing, e-mailing, or phoning our local legislators. You may contact them directly by following the links on www.access.gov. Let them know that our schools are a priority and that funding must be given.
Senator Dale Brandland, (360/786-7682), Representative Doug Ericksen,(360/786-7980), and Kelli Linville, (360/786-7854), linville_ke@leg.wa.gov
Michelle Morales
Blaine

Just say No!
The Editor:
Whatcom County Council is planning a costly special election this April to ask for a tax increase so you can pay more taxes for Medic One. Here is something to think about as the county asks you to pay an extra $.39 per thousand for Medic One. The county is already paying for Medic One now with your taxes they already collect from you.
Clark County goes out to bid for ambulance service.
Taxpayers in Whatcom County use the fire department. Taxpayers in Whatcom County subsidizes the ambulance service by $2.7 million a year over and above the ambulance fees which are charged by Medic One for individual service when they pick you up. Taxpayers in Clark County pay nothing for ambulance service. It operates on the fees alone, and the fees are almost the same as Whatcom County fees. That shows how totally out of control the costs of our Medic One are. Most of the paramedics make between $70,000 and $90,000 and they put two on every ambulance. In private ambulance services, there is a paramedic and an emergency medical technician.
I urge the county to withdraw from Bellingham�s Medic One. If you have a serious injury or illness, fire district 13 gets to you very fast. They can not take you to St. Joseph�s Hospital even though they have excellent equipment to transport you there. You must wait for the Medic One to drive out from Bellingham and take you to the hospital. Fire district 13 could have you at the hospital before Medic One can get out to our area.
The county government needs to fix our emergency medical service. Not with more taxes, but a new approach to the problem with private enterprise or local fire departments doing the job.
Arne Cleveland
Birch Bay

Thanks to all...
The Editor: The year 2002 has come and gone. The beginning of 2003 opens for the Blaine food bank with hopes and desires for another good year and the future.
The wonderful volunteers and I, at the food bank, wish to thank the many organizations, businesses and families who contributed so much, that we were able to provide for so many families in need.
To mention just a few when there were so many... Northwest Harvest, Food Lifeline, the Emergency Food Assistance Program, (E.F.A.P.), federal state distributed commodities, our local Cost Cutter, Blaine school from preschool through elementary, middle and high school children, the staff and children�s parents have provided hundreds of pounds of food through their numerous food drives. Also, thanks to the post offices of Blaine and Custer, the Keller Foundation and the wonderful Ladies Club of Semiahmoo.
I must also mention Bob Bailey and family (special people), this is a few who make the food bank a reality. There are so many others that to mention them all would require a catalog.
We thank you all for your overwhelming answer to our 2002 holiday needs. It showed again the wonderful open hearts in our community.
A heartfelt thanks to you all! Now that the New Year has arrived, we again ask for your support. We are always in need of canned, packaged goods and monies to purchase specialty items.
I must also mention that any and all citizens, contributors, etc. are more than welcome to visit with us during our working hours in the food bank: Monday and Thursday, 8 - 10 a.m. � Tuesday and Friday, 9 a.m. - noon.
We, "the volunteers of the food bank thank you all so much for your support."
John McParlin,
director Blaine Food Bank
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