Letters 9/23-9/30 | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon


Wow! I read the headlines of The Bulletin, "Truth in Site's appeal fails," it all seem so incredible to me. It seems to me that if you mention the magic words OSU-Cascades, suddenly everyone's eyes glaze over and they start nodding their heads to everything. The university's argument was that they might not buy the 46-acre property, even though they have spent over $600,000 holding the property and have researched what they would need to do to it and they speak of it as they envisioned it to add enough capacity to reach 5,000 students, but they might not. That reminds me of when my 6 year old son wanted to ride his bike, I told him to wear a helmet, because he might, by chance, fall. His brilliant comeback was, "I might not." As adults we are supposed to think ahead and look at the future possibilities, and do what is best, The Big Picture. The other half of "might not" is "might."

The idea that every college student will ride the bus or walk or bike. What about the winter below freezing, icy roads? Hey, here is a realistic possibility, when the roads are too icy, the city can add more water down the bike lanes and give ice skates to all the students and they can all ice skate to college. Perfect.


Breakfast and Lunch Guide

I look forward to reading the Source every week when it comes out. They have dropped two bundles of newspapers at our restaurant every week for many years for our patrons to read and keep up with current local events. Imagine my surprise today opening the paper and seeing a Bend Breakfast and Lunch Guide with many great options. Imagine my surprise thumbing through the pages once, then again but still not seeing our name in print in the guide. Sargent's Café is a Bend tradition, going back some fifty years, many of our patrons remember their parents bringing them in and now they are bringing in their grandkids. No, we are not a new restaurant in Bend, yes, we still open at 6 am every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas. We are a local independent small business providing regulars, locals, and tourists affordable meals. We are the little place that posts birthday wishes on our billboard for our friends and celebrities. Nothing fancy, just good old fashioned food and old fashioned prices, seriously the best value in Bend. If you are looking for bacon and eggs, biscuits and gravy, pancakes or chicken fried steak we've got it. (We also serve Rueben sandwiches; I saw that mentioned in the intro to your guide.) Oh, I noticed our neighbors down the street made the guide, I did not realize Stars Cabaret served breakfast? Well, I guess we both are Bend institutions. Please remember us next year for the publication, better yet, why not come in and visit us and see what you are missing?

—John Aylward

In reply to "Seven Things to Reflect On As The Forest Fire Flames Subside" (9/23)

As a professional forester with 33-years of experience in Oregon, I offer seven comments in response to Mr. Pedery's opinion piece:

1. It is interesting that he criticizes the forest industry for using fires to advance its agenda even as he is using fires to advance his own. I encourage Oregon Wild to redirect its energy from criticizing others to direct participation in the many collaborative projects underway to promote landscape-scale forest restoration if it believes the priorities are wrong and money is being wasted.

2. He over-generalizes the fire tolerance of "old growth" (however that term is defined). Yes, for ponderosa pine and western larch, but not so much for lodgepole pine, mountain hemlock, and white fir.

3. He seems to forget that about a third of Oregon's forests are privately-owned financial assets that the owners would like protected. Unless he is advocating converting all forests to public ownership, just thinning around homes and letting fire run its course everywhere else is not sustainable when environmental, economic, and social values are holistically considered.

4. I would argue that 100 years of fire suppression and the last 30 years of a lack of vegetation management on federal lands have done more to promote recent unnatural fire behavior than continued fire suppression coupled with more active forest management on non-federal lands.

5. He seems to believe old growth continues to be under attack from logging. I am not sure where that is still happening at any scale close to the acres of old growth are being lost each year to fires than to chainsaws (think Santiam Pass). It is also important to remember that Oregon forests have always been affected by disturbances such as fire, windstorms, insects, and disease and were never an unbroken sea of large trees, but rather a mosaic of different age classes.

6. His tired rhetoric about environmental damage caused by logging does not reflect modern forest practices regulated by state and federal governments. There are good clearcuts and bad clearcuts just as there are good thinnings and bad thinnings. In the right forest type, in the right location, and depending on management objectives clearcut regeneration harvesting and perhaps even (gasp) salvage harvests can be the best choice and conducted in a manner that protects and maintains forest ecological processes.

7. It seems that society has three choices: 1. Let fires run their course and live with the consequences; 2. Do tax-payer subsidized light fuel treatments near communities that may or may not be adequate to save them or to restore forests to healthier conditions and will soon need to be repeated; or 3. Conduct more intensive, science-based, site-specific restoration treatments across the broader landscape, which in some cases might actually generate some revenue.

—David Morman

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