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Letters 11/30-12/7 

Storm clouds ease in and caress the summit of Middle Sister. Follow Ryan Choate on Instagram @ryan_choate. Tag @sourceweekly in your photo to be eligible for selection in Lightmeter.

Storm clouds ease in and caress the summit of Middle Sister. Follow Ryan Choate on Instagram @ryan_choate. Tag @sourceweekly in your photo to be eligible for selection in Lightmeter.

The Eyes of the Homeless Kids

Hey kids in the alleyway, playing your music and jiving jokes for chump change on white lickity rich fancy pants Bendites. Yeah, you kids playing the homeless card, game. Squatting in perfumed sweat and piss, begging for a dime or spliff. I see you through your looking glass, smashed booze bottled rum de dum, jammin' on your hand bought drums. I dig it. Your cool cat bustin' rhyme for pennies on the hour, til midnight strikes and your greasy soiled knickers, your pumpkin la de das is squandered; bustin' into seams of Patagonia fleece and Lucky jeans. Yeah, waltzin' on homeward to goose-down dreams.

Oh I feel ya, my hipster-edged raggedy Anne's and Andy's. Hellz I love ya's, for your jokester cawing outside Crows, hecklin' and a jecklin' and spittin'; drunk splattered rhymes on the cities chimes.

Hey kids in the alleyway, playing your music and jiving jokes. I see you. I was you; cut from the same gypsy cloak, stitched with soul and misfit button hearts. We are all ya's. Jigin' saw puzzled searchin' for that missin' part.

—Megan Marie

Electoral College, Trump, Women's Rights, Protesters

I grew up in a small mill town in Oregon. My entire family was loggers and mill workers, my mother worked graveyard pulling green chain, where she cut off part of her finger.

I remember the fear the community had regarding the spotted owl becoming endangered and my family worrying about our livelihood, I remember my family having to make tough choices regarding their jobs and the environmental factors that were associated with them when debating the issues. I remember bitter rivalries.

Also, during this time I remember going to our local grocery store and seeing magazines with Donald Trump on the cover, the words BANKRUPTCY, MISTRESS, DIVORCE in large headlines.

The logging industry did wane, my parents went their separate ways. My mom moved to Salem and went to college with me and my sister in tow, while my dad and brother moved to Central Oregon, where they got good jobs in construction. The company they worked for built the Forum shopping center east of town and developed the Old Mill. My brother cleaned the smoke stacks in harness, going up and down, scrubbing the old mill stacks to a gleaming, shining beacon of Bend.

During this time of growth and development, I heard Donald Trump on Howard Stern demeaning women and boasting of his playboy lifestyle. Bragging about how he could get any woman he wanted, at anytime.

Skip to now, I have a job I love, a husband who is an Iraq Veteran, 4 children, we have health care, two cars, we own a home, my husband owns his own business, we are living the American Dream right now. America is already great and I cringe every time I see or hear that statement.

My fears of a Donald Trump presidency, reside not only in the fact that he has insulted a majority of Americans, immigrants, his own party, POWs, Gold Star Families, the world! My mistrust and disgust of this man goes back to my childhood. My children now get to hear and see this man as a leader for our country, and that disturbs me greatly.

When I talk about Trump and his impending Presidency, it is not to defend Hillary Clinton or her incompetency, or to be put into a category of a Democrat, liberal, hipster, millennial. I am not un-American for speaking out against my dislike, mistrust and skepticism of a Trump Presidency. I am not a rioter for marching against what I believe he stands for. I am not a cry-baby, female having a meltdown. I am 100 percent environmentally conscious, pro-care*, redneck Oregon American, born and raised.

We all deserve better than the two choices given and we deserve better than to be categorized, and divided. Next time I hope to be able to vote for who I would like to see President and not be forced into choosing worse, over worser, for fear of the worser choice winning.

That is why we MUST revisit the Electoral College, it isn't working for most of us, no matter what position you take, America deserves to not be divided into two parties that are really just divided themselves.

*Pro-care is what I'm referring to as, not pro-choice, not pro-life. I'm not for abortion, I don't think anyone truly is. I want to take abortion out of politics, and instead of us wasting time and money fighting each other over pro-choice or pro-life, let's come together and focus on the real women and families. Abolish abortion, not through laws, but through education, resources and birth control options that are affordable, safe and effective.

—Kristi Simmons

Climate Change

Being menopausal, I experience personal climate change on a daily basis. Putting all humor aside, I am compelled to discuss the fact that our new administration is planning to negate the funding for what we agreed to under the Paris agreement. This international effort to put forth changes to alter carbon emissions that negatively affect our planet is a cooperative effort and only a start to making change and keeping us from a tipping point. Science is not a liberal concept, and nature causes effect over all political boundaries. This harsh reality has been marketed as a "Chinese hoax," and many have taken the propaganda seriously and ignore the reality of science, and keep the attitude of "I can't see it from my house."

Being an environmentalist should not be a bad word as it is our responsibility to steward what we have been given. All other politics don't make a helluva difference if we have wrecked the earth due to our ignorance or selfishness. The clock really is ticking...and no matter what your political persuasion, we all live here and need to own what we are passing on to our grandchildren.

If you care, now is the time to get involved. Write your legislators. Find an environmental group to speak your voice.

If you don't care, I implore you to open your mind and consider looking at fact and science, and do some reading on the subject. Global warming is real.

We are all in this together. Love.

—Chris Teicheira

Chris: Your comments remind me of a statement by Larry Santoyo, educational director at The Permaculture Academy, who said: It "doesn't matter if this is caused by Natural Phenomenon, man-made Anthropocene or the Geoengineering of evil-doers. It's still not a good idea to continue to increase atmospheric particle pollution." Come on in and grab your gift card to Palate, courtesy of the Source, where "environmentalist" is definitely not a bad word.

—Nicole Vulcan, Editor

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