Stop discrimination

No society gains when anyone different is treated as property or inferior. We need all the geniuses working at their potential to solve our challenges.

Ancient creation had equality. Disease mandated gender. With people in small groups, women were too valuable. Society made rules to limit any danger. Restrictive rules limited female potential. Expendable men became leaders via hunting and war. They had brute force to enforce rules. With wilderness living, it was necessary. Sadly, men’s pride slowly eroded equality. Women became secondary or worse property. Even to this age, equality has not been completely restored.

There were revolts. In the Greek age, Amazons did create many long lived city-states. However, they slowly passed away. Once the enemy killed most of the women warriors, Amazon society was doomed and forgotten. Amazon society did not revive equality. It was just the reverse of the male leadership.

Over 2000 years after God’s new covenant as well as 500 years after Lutheran reforms, inequality continues. We need to change these gender-limiting habits; they’re obsolete. God loves everyone equally. We need all the women geniuses working at their potential to solve our challenges.

William Earl McDonald

Ocean Park

Musical ‘one of the best’

I had the wonderful pleasure of seeing “She Loves Me” not once but twice. The first time was opening night. My son and his wife joined me. I laughed so hard that my son was surprised. The reason why was I lost my husband of 45 years just two years prior. It has been two hard years but I am enjoying myself again. I had such a great time that I went again so I am enjoying life. My dear friend, Jane Schussman was an actress in the play. She did a great job as all of the others did. To find this level of acting on this small town is amazing. I have been to three plays by PAPA’s but this one was the best.

Elaine Hamley

Ocean Park

Let’s hear it for dog lovers

Our Peninsula has to be the most dog-friendly place I’ve ever lived. We shower attention on our furry friends, harboring pleasant and sad memories of our departed quadrupeds.

For example: May 8, 2011. A devastating day. My 16-year-old wire fox terrier had to be euthanized. A simple needle shot and, seven seconds later, Skippy was out of my life.

But not really. Memories of her linger. After all, she gave me her full attention and loyalty and plenty of pleasant moments.

Sometimes when I walked down the street or on the beach, by myself, perhaps one or two passersby might acknowledge my presence. But if I walked with my highly-intelligent, prize-winning pooch, many people commented on her appearance, asking what breed of dog she was, and more.

And that made her a very special ice-breaker. After all, Skippy’s mother came in second to Bill Cosby’s wire fox terrier at the Westminster.

If I were experiencing a horrible day, I could come home and find Skippy waiting eagerly, wagging, jumping and squealing. That made her a great therapy pooch for me.

Ah yes. To all those who relish our furry quadruped pals, I say, keep treasuring them.

One of my favorite cartoons from the New Yorker is James Thurber’s depiction of a dog, lying at a tombstone mourning the death of peace (1939). Another powerful pencil drawing depicts a dog lying flat out by his master’s grave. No detailed explanation necessary here.

And I fondly remember dog-lover Thurber’s moving account of the death of Rex, his brother’s bull terrier.

“Even death couldn’t beat him down. He died, it is true, but only, as one of his admirers said, after ‘straight-arming the death angel’ for more than an hour.

“Late one afternoon he wandered home, too slowly and uncertainly to be the Rex that had trotted home briskly up our avenue for ten years.

“I think we all knew when he came through the gate that he was dying. He apparently had taken a terrible beating, probably from the owner of some dog that he had gotten into a fight with.

“He licked at our hands and, staggering, fell, but got up again. We could see that he was looking for someone. For the next hour the bull terrier fought against the cold, strong current of Alum Creek, as he had fought to climb 12-foot walls.

“When the person he was waiting for [Thurber’s brother] did come through the gate, whistling, then ceasing to whistle, Rex walked a few wobbly paces toward him, touched his hand with his muzzle, and fell down again. This time he didn’t get up.”

I cry whenever I read that story.

Another story concerns a hospice patient visited by relatives who brought his dog to the room. The dog sat on the wife’s lap, watching the master the whole time as death loomed.

When the funeral home man came to remove the deceased dog owner, the dog remained by the door, unwilling to move from it, finally jumping up on the gurney. Dogs too are sometimes unwilling to let things (or people) go.

Sadly, that pooch didn’t seem to realize that he was no longer going to see his master again. Didn’t make any sense to him whatsoever. Sometimes facing death with a more than human courage, dogs help us understand and process grief.

So if you sometimes utter the old saw, “Going to the dogs,” in a pejorative way, think again. And if you believe our country is going to the dogs, think again. As I see that old idiom, we need to, more frequently, go to the dogs.

And you might consider “going to the dogs” via a visit to our magnificent South Pacific County Humane Society in Long Beach. Take home a new friend.

As an avid dog-lover friend once told me: “When an 85-pound mammal licks your tears away, then tries to sit on your lap, it’s hard to feel sad.”

ROBERT BRAKE

Ocean Park

PUD fact checking

A recent letter to the editor (“PUD board right to challenge staff decisions,” July 19, 2017) included statements that are misleading to the public. In an attempt to set the record straight, Public Utility District No. 2 of Pacific County respectfully submits the following:

The district did not issue $9.5 million in bonds in 1999, it did not issue $18 million in 2014 and is not currently $27.5 million in debt.

Here is a summary of the PUD’s long-term debt activity since 2001:

In 2001, the district issued $10 million in revenue bonds, $4 million of the proceeds were used to pay off existing 1994 bonds. The balance went into the construction fund to pay for capital projects including the then board-approved Tokeland project. While plans for the Tokeland project at the time included placing submarine cable in Willapa Bay to get from a terminus point on State Route 105 to Tokeland, no money was ever borrowed to fund the crossing from Tokeland to Oysterville.

In 2007, the district used existing funds to pay off $500,000 of its existing 1997 bonds. The balance ($1.6 million) was refinanced by a bank loan at a lower interest rate. The 2007 bank loan was paid off in 2014.

In 2011, the district paid off the remaining balance of the 2001 bonds, utilizing existing capital project funds. This was done for the following reasons: (1) The district did not want to hold onto funds when interest was being paid on the offsetting debt; (2) The district knew that future capital needs would exceed existing funds; (3) Interest rates had dropped significantly so interest cost on future borrowing would be less.

In 2014 the district issued $14.7 million in bonds to fund capital improvements, including the then-board approved Tokeland project.

As of Dec. 31, 2016 the district’s total outstanding debt was $13.4 million while its construction fund balance was $14.5 million which would more than cover the amount of debt. Most utilities fund high-cost, long-life construction projects with debt. This spreads the cost of the project over its life, as opposed to putting this burden on current customers through higher rates. The district’s debt level and rates are not out of line with neighboring utilities:

PUD Long-tern debt at 12/31/2016 Customers Cost per 1,000 KWH (Residential)

Grays Harbor $134,695,188 42,017 $131.46

Mason 3 $72,357,927 33,345 $112.06

Lewis $25,877,385 31,770 $91.31

Pacific $13,448,049 17,257 $82.40

Wahkiakum $216,000 2,469 $93.00

For additional information contact Doug Miller at 360-942-2411

PACIFIC COUNTY PUD STAFF

Long Beach and Raymond

Guiding school-supply project is a blessing

Guiding the families through the process of getting school supplies is such a blessing for me. I so enjoy watching the children’s eyes light up when they come into the sanctuary ready to get their supplies and backpack. I have to laugh because some of the children need to guide me to the right school for their supplies. But the best part is when they pick out their backpacks. Some children go right to the one they want, others are very thoughtful, looking at several before they find just the right one. The children are so grateful as are their parents. Yes… this is truly a blessing for me to be a part of this program. Thank you for the blessing of giving.

{If you wish to contribute by donating school supplies, Drop off locations in Long Beach: Chinook Observer office, 205 Bolstad Avenue East, Suite 2; Great Northwest Federal Credit Union, 705 S Pacific Avenue; in Ocean Park: Timberland Library, 1308 256th Pl; Bank of the Pacific, 1802 Bay Avenue; Great Northwest Federal Credit Union, 1409 S 251st Pl; Peninsula Baptist Church 23802 Pacific Hwy 103; in Ilwaco: Timberland library, 158 First Ave. and in Chinook: All Seasons Kidstuff, 786 St. Rte 101. The Pack2School Event is Tuesday, Aug. 29, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Peninsula Baptist Church, 23802 Pacific Hwy 103 in Ocean Park. “The Best Lunch Ever” is provided and as well as Carnival outside. Volunteers are needed. To volunteer and/or receive more information contact Mike (360) 665-4614. You can also contact PACK2SCHOOL at dee008@outlook.com. Only three weeks until Pack2School!}

Sharon Hagstrom

Long Beach

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