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Letters 9/3-9/9 

KEEP IT REAL

So, I moved to Bend a little over a year ago, and my family and I are starting to feel more a part of the community. We have fallen in love with the great weather, the beauty, the people. There are some things, however, that I have noticed are a turn-off:

10) People who move here and purchase real estate for $400/square foot on the west side and think, "It's a good deal!"

9) Being asked, "What side of town do you live on"? Like Bend has a "bad" part of town.

8) Paying dinner prices for breakfast or restaurant prices for "street food."

7) Yoga is putting yourself in a pretzel and roaring like a lion, risking serious injury.

6) Farm-to-table = more expensive???

5) Closing off free green areas when Les Schwab concerts are going on.

4) Many wonderful parks but ONE pool??? C'mon Bend Park and Rec.

3) Growler fills, which are fewer ounces than a six-pack but cost significantly more... $4 kombucha? Where's the value???

2) Twenty-six breweries and still paying $4.50 a pint? I paid the same price for the same beers 1,200 miles away.

1) MIRROR POND DAM... it's been here a hundred years but the river has been here millions. It's nothing but a broken antique.

Does anyone here see a pattern here—$$$. How about providing "value" so EVERYONE in the community wins, not just business owners trying to capitalize on tourism trends. We don't want this to become the next Boulder, do we? Where the billionaires are pushing out the millionaires? KEEP IT REAL BEND!

—B

IN REPLY TO "MODERN DAY DISCIPLES" (8/20)

Are you serious? What shoddy journalism. Are you trying to emulate The Enquirer?

So are we supposed to take Anna Flowers' depiction as undeniable fact that this group of harmless, peaceful people, who have never hurt anybody, but only try to live for God, are somehow to be condemned and feared...I don't think so.

Three years ago I first met about a dozen of the brothers and sisters and I truly admire their courage and devotion. They are articulate, talented, modest, gentle, helpful and do everything in a non-materialistic way we would all do well to follow. Their motto could be "do no harm"—to the earth or to others. I keep in touch with them regularly through correspondence and they are very open and honest and are not secretive or hiding out.

Anna Flowers has a few holes in her story. She says she felt prevented from leaving—why couldn't her father wire or send her money? He was in communication with her all along. And, obviously, she was "free" to get to Seattle from Hawaii so she could make up her own mind. And now the one-time "party girl" turned fashion designer is out to point fingers because she made a commitment she couldn't keep.

The truth is that people are free to come and go, and do communicate through the mail (PO Boxes) and cell phone. They work and make money to support themselves, recycle and fix things people toss away, and have blessed many, including me.

And taking a "surveillance shot" of a brother, unaware, downtown goes to show how paranoid people have become if you don't meet the status quo requirements.

A defender of the faith.

—Jeanne Brooks

"WHATEVER, MOM" CORRECTLY TITLED

"Whatever Mom" is not newsworthy. In an attempt to make it so, Taylor Thompson writes about killing a harmless scorpion in her house ["Whatever, Mom: I've never been much of a girly girl"]. This was gut-wrenchingly upsetting.

Out of ignorance and fear, Thompson chooses killing over simply dropping a glass or bucket over the scorpion and taking him into the environment from which she has displaced him. Missed is an opportunity to teach her son empathy, respect, how to correctly identify an animal and share in the joy of saving a life (ironically, from herself).

Things become a) frightening b) gross and c) threatening when you try to kill them. Let's look at the real dangers of what you choose to put in print: Violence perpetuated and seeded in the child; likewise fear of a perceived "other." Then, to comfort the child—rightly upset in his inherent wisdom—she buys him a fish! The lesson? That animals are ours to buy and sell for a life of captivity and neglect (assuming she won't be cuddling the fish on the couch).

This paradigm is old and has no use on such a beleaguered planet. More awakened is to cherish, or at least respect biodiversity and recognize our interdependence with other species, even if they can be deadly in defense of their own lives.

Coexist: Not just a bumper sticker.

—Vanessa Schulz

IN REPLY TO "WHAT'S IN A NAME?" (8/3)

I hope as more parents and professionals come to understand just how early we form our gender identity, that transition for younger people will become an easier process, and eliminate much of the pressures that contribute to high suicide rates among transgender people overall, but especially among youth.

—Ashliegh

IN REPLY TO "CABIN IN THE WOODS" (8/3)

Christie, what a wonderful article about an extraordinary woman who left her journals as a legacy and inspiration to all who read them. Dave Talbot's presentation at the Bend Library is a great opportunity to learn about his wilderness experiences, which became the foundation for his legacy, Oregon's incredible State Parks system. "The Cabin" is a must-read and a fine addition to our own book shelves. —Anita Lanning

IN REPLY TO "BABY STEPS, AND SHOOTING!" (9/3)

Participated last year along with my 11-year old-son and it was a lot of fun. Received notice of this year's event a couple of days ahead of the signup deadline, signed up on the deadline and was immediately notified it was cancelled. This event suffers from poor promoting and may die on the vine if the organizers don't get their act together and give potential participants sufficient notice.

—Disappointed Again

LETTER OF THE WEEK

You know what doesn't disappoint? A cup of coffee at Palate. We're sorry to hear that the bike-and-shoot event was canceled and, yes, we hope that doesn't mean the sport will fizzle. But please stop by our offices to pick up your Letter of the Week award reward.

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