Letters to the Editor

letters to the editor

Gun laws

My opinion of the Bundy outfit is irrelevant. It’s evident that individuals of more sordid character and flakier ideals carry weapons in public places. If I see them, I’m gone. I hope.

The Republican Party, in their shameful cowardice, don’t discern the difference between hunting gear and firepower designed to inflict maximum casualties on large numbers of people. When they order a drink, they probably know the difference between a margarita and milk, but their self-serving interpretation of the Second Amendment, purchased by the NRA’s ruthless exploitation, has rendered them pitiably ignorant of sidearms and massacre gear. Bird shot and magazines. Game sights and silencers. This isn’t representative government. It’s abetting criminals.

I’ve been buying garden supplies and birdseed at D & B for 40 years. There are other places that stock these items, just as there are other sources for AR 15s. Ammon himself pointed this out. I will return to D & B when they make a public statement, similar to those of Dick’s, Walmart and Fred Meyer, that they have enacted policy consistent with reason and sanity, ethics and public safety. Assault rifles aren’t effective against slugs. Or elk.

Linden Bates, Boise

Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease doesn’t strike just the elderly. The 200,000 Americans diagnosed with dementia before age 65 need services like in-home care, transportation and caregiver support.

Advocates working with the Alzheimer’s Association have asked members of Congress to cosponsor the Younger Onset Alzheimer’s Disease Act. This bipartisan proposal would amend the Older Americans Act (OAA) to serve these families too through our Area Agencies on Aging.

I am grateful that Senator Risch has cosponsored this needed legislation and am hopeful that Congressmen Fulcher and Simpson and Senator Crapo will join him in cosponsoring.

I am a caregiver for my partner Lisa DeDapper. Lisa was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer's when she was just 56 years old. We relied heavily on a support network of friends and family to help care for her. Having access to the services the OAA only offers to those that are 60+ would have helped us tremendously. The Younger-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease Act would address this disparity and help families like ours who are dealing with an extremely difficult diagnosis.

All our members of Congress should continue to actively support policies that address Alzheimer’s disease as the national public health crisis it is.

John Bleymaier, Boise

Pesticides

I’ve read numerous reports about lawsuits against Roundup because it is believed to cause cancer. In the 1970s, I lived in the state of Washington, on a farm where I raised cattle for my family’s use. In SW Washington, there grows a weed called Tansy Ragwort, which can make cows sick and even die if eaten. The state makes anyone with property that has this weed growing to be sprayed with herbicide killer. At that time we used an herbicide called 245T; we used a large sprayer pulled behind our truck, and after that, we spot sprayed with a tank on our backs. Sometimes this tank would leak and soak our shirts, but we never thought much about it. In 2008, I came down with bladder cancer and in 2016 I had kidney cancer, both in remission after surgery and chemo. My oncologist questioned me about what I thought could have caused the cancer. About what type of work I did before retirement. I told him about the herbicide that I had used years ago, and he told me it was Agent Orange, which they used in Vietnam. Could it be the cause?

Robert Huntley, Mountain Home

Sherri Ybarra

I see by the Statesman, Sept. 5, that Sherri Ybarra, superintendent of public instruction, will be seeking more money for the teachers. Typically that means property owners are going to be on the hook for more taxes.

I recall in 1965 sales tax was introduced in the Gem State and in 1989 the lottery made its debut, all for the purpose of funding education. Then after all of that, then-Gov. Andrus boldly stated “it is time for the property owners of this state to shoulder their responsibility to fund education.” Why? Even though the fairest tax is sales tax because then everybody pays their fair share, but property tax is the easiest to collect, that’s why. If you don’t pay your taxes, they’ll take your property and sell it.

I have no bone to pick with teachers. I certainly wouldn’t want their job, even though they work on average 180 days per year while having 185 days off. That amounts to 13 weeks more vacation per year than the typical U.S. worker. As a property owner I simply object to the apparent wisdom that we have deep pockets.

Don L. Layne, Cascade

Drunken driving

Justice served. It’s been just over a year since Leman L.Bledsoe, who decided to drive drunk, went through a construction zone in Oregon and killed my niece Tyresa, who was working that evening as a flagger. Yesterday, Sept. 5, after being found guilty of manslaughter, along with numerous other charges, Leman Bledsoe was sentenced to a total of 12 years. That means he will serve every day of his sentence, no parole or time off for good behavior.

At sentencing the judge, after hearing counsel for Bledsoe ask for leniency for an 80-year-old man, made it perfectly clear that there would be none when he said, “If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.” To all you folks who drink and drive out there, we’re sick and tired of cleaning up after you, sorting through the carnage you leave behind and trying to rebuild our lives and families that can never be the same because of you.

Given Bledsoe’s age, a 12-year sentence is pretty much a death sentence; in all likelihood, he will die in jail before completing his sentence. If you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.

Art Bush, Star

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