I am a third-generation Oregonian. I cannot even begin to express the joy I felt with the passing of Measure 49. I felt as if humanity, in a sense, had redeemed themselves. Oregon has been able to hold on to her beauty for so long. It has been so distressing to watch this great land disappear to massive developments. The wildlife has suffered the most. Just observe all of the dead animals on the road.
The loss of natural habitat means the loss of hundreds of different plants, insects and animals. They have nowhere to go. The lure of money has tremendous power and many of us have been guilty of falling into this pull of greed. Because we purchase something does not give us free rein to destroy it. Elk Meadows, as it ridiculously remains named, as it is no longer either of these, is one of the greatest examples of this death of land and her animals.
Please take to heart some of Chief Seattle's thoughts and prophecies:
"How can you buy or sell the sky, the warmth of the land?
"...he is a stranger who comes in the night and takes from the land whatever he needs. The Earth is not his brother but his enemy, and when he has conquered it, he moves on. He kidnaps the Earth from his children and he does not care. His father's grave and his children's birthright are forgotten. He treats his mother, the Earth, and his brother, the sky, as things to be bought, plundered, sold like sheep or bright beads. His appetite will devour the Earth and leave behind only a desert.
"Teach your children that we have taught our children that the Earth is our mother. Whatever befalls the Earth befalls the sons of Earth. If men spit upon the ground, they spit upon themselves.
"The Earth is precious to Him, and to harm the Earth is to heap contempt on its creator.
"Where is the thicket? Gone. Where is the eagle? Gone. The end of living and the beginning of survival."
Those of you who voted yes on Measure 49, embrace yourselves and smile. You did well.
Dana Buckendahl, Bend