Letters to the Editor 05/12/2022 | The Source Weekly - Bend, Oregon

Letters to the Editor 05/12/2022

Roe v. Wade

The case against Roe v. Wade has been waging in earnest for at least 45 years. The argument of whether abortion is legal or not can be traced to pre-Revolutionary War in British Common Law.

Being 66 years old, I have been listening to this commentary for the majority of my life. Out of all the statements made to overturn the 1973 ruling, I have yet to see or even hear about a plan to provide infrastructure that would support mothers planning to give birth, giving birth and then caring for the child post-partum.

Letters to the Editor 05/12/2022
Courtesy of @bendfarmersmarket

Many women seek abortion because they are not ready, have no support (physically or emotionally) to undergo a pregnancy and/or caring and raising a child. Since this reality is not a new finding, I would have thought over the past 45 years that standards of care would be in place, in detail, ready to be implemented as soon as Roe was overturned.

I would have thought the factors of sustainability for such a system would be solved and guidelines for the enactment of such a system and a charter drawn up to deal with any necessary revisions to the plan.

Since it is a probability that the decision-making power will become state mandated versus federal; it would be easier to put in place this infrastructure. I would think there would be an over-all "charter" giving structure addressing guidelines, responsibilities, process standards and implementation of a plan. I would also think that 45 years of work on a plan would have been enough time for fine tuning.

If we truly care about these mothers, children and families (who make up and determine what sort of society we live in) then please let us see the plan.

I believe if such a plan were in place many women would choose to give birth. If the stigma of utilizing this support system was alleviated, and replaced by a non-judgmental attitude of true support, all parties involved would benefit.

—Vikki Hickman

Sanitation and Disease

A sanitary disaster looms in Bend.  Human waste from the homeless is accumulating in all parts of the city.  People and pets come in contact with that waste.  Disease is spread for lack of toilet and washing facilities.  Sanitation is lacking.  The underlying causes of the homeless needs to be addressed.  But in the meantime we better provide sanitary facilities.  We are likely to see third world diseases such as typhus, cholera, and parasite infections right here.  Bottom line?  We can't allow people to pee and poop outside.

—James Scott

RE: Oregon Governor, Democratic Endorsement: Tina Kotek. Opinion, 5/5

You forgot to mention something that might be of interest to readers right now, especially those of us living in Bend:

"In 2021, Kotek was chief sponsor of House Bill 3115, which enshrined in state law the right to camp in public spaces—over pushback in Salem from critics who saw the bill as exporting Portland's policies to the rest of the state." - Willamette Week, March 30, 2022

Just thought it might be good to let everyone know about one of Kotek's more significant "accomplishments."

—Judi Walthour

HB 3115 and accompanying HB 3124 were both supported by local Republicans—Rep. Zika and Sen Knopp. They were passed to bring Oregon more in line with Federal rulings Martin v. Boise and Blake/Johnson v. Grants Pass. Both 3115 and 3124 give localities the option to pursue "objectively reasonable" policies in deciding when and if to shut down an encampment on public property. They don't "enshrine a right to camp in public places" as "concerned voter" maintains.

These bills ensure the right of unhoused individuals to take measures to protect themselves from the elements when no shelter space is available, while preserving the ability of cities to manage public spaces effectively for the benefit of an entire community. When a city can establish grounds for clearing an encampment, it must give a 3-day notice and store personal items of the people who are evicted.

While in agreement with most of the points in the Source endorsement. I must object, though, to your suggestion that Kotek "get real about reining in any extended emergency powers." How quickly we forget the path of the pandemic through Central Oregon, killing at the very beginning eight residents of a Bend retirement community and swamping medical capacity for months on end.

Using raw CDC data from an especially lethal period of the pandemic, the state of South Dakota, with virtually no public health measures, saw a mortality rate four times higher than Oregon.

—Foster Fell via bendsource.com

Letter of the Week:

Foster – I agree that public health measures had a welcome effect on our pandemic death rate. What we were getting at in our endorsement, however, is the notion of who gets a say and for how long. Broad emergency powers for one person, that extended over years, did not sit well with a huge portion of Oregon voters, and anyone who takes the governor's office next will need to address that with those voters. Thanks for your insight; come on by for your gift card to Palate!

—Nicole Vulcan

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