June 25, 2002 11:00 pm

Quilt heads to Tualatin

To the Editor:

I wish to follow up your front-page story April 16 on the "Nurses of Union County quilt."

The quilt was made as a collaborative effort by 18 registered nurses who live and work in Union County. We donated the quilt to the Oregon Nurses Foundation, a non-profit entity of the Oregon Nurses Association. They auctioned it off at their annual auction held in conjunction with the ONA convention in Pendleton on April 18. The quilt sold for $2,500.

This was the largest single item ever sold at an ONF auction. The Portland area nurse who purchased it donated it back to the ONA to be prominently hung on the walls of the new ONA headquarters in Tualatin.

The proceeds of the auction will help to continue funding students in nursing programs throughout Oregon (currently two EOU nursing students are supported by this program), provide educational stipends to ONA members working in Union County, and to support other nursing related programs such as free immunization clinics for low-income kids in the greater Portland area.

All of the nurses involved in the making of the quilt did so out of their greater commitment to the health and well-being of all citizens of Oregon.

I am grateful to all who were involved in this project.

Diane Hedrick


Move forward with new library

To the Editor:

Once again we seem to be in the middle of a library controversy.

It had been my hope that after 30-plus years, the city fathers had come to a decision and we would have a new library in the old Safeway building.

My hopes may be dashed against the wall again.

I would encourage ODS Health Plans to continue its negotiations with the owners of the Safeway building so that the project may reach the conclusion I so dearly desire — a new library.

J. C. Bingner

La Grande

Favor multi-use plan

To the Editor:

As a downtown business owner, I would like to encourage others interested in La Grande's economic development to reconsider the benefits of the multi-use plan promoted by ODS.

To those who question the value of having several private and public entities anchoring Adams Avenue, consider that the library alone draws an average of more than 200 people daily during prime business hours.

Traditionally, use increases 30 to 50 percent after a new facility is opened.

Leah Starr, chair

La Grande Library Commission

and owner, Kneads Bakery

La Grande

Editorial disappointing

To the Editor:

It was with great disappointment we read the editorial in The Observer on May 18 regarding the old Safeway property.

ODS Health Plans is one of the larger employees in the downtown area and with completion of its proposed building on that site, up to 50 more employees will be added. This certainly could be nothing but good for La Grande.

The location of the library there has been such a relief to those of us who worked toward this goal. It seems almost impossible to believe that this city once again cannot seem to get its act together and finalize this project.

Vern Moore,

Boyd Hadden,

Harriet Girrard,

Martin Girrard,

Kay Hadden,

John Turner, Delpha Hamann,

Patsy Hutchinson, Ralph Hutchinson,

Patty Turner, Betty Drummond,

Wayne Drummond,

Ernestene Baker,

Dock Baker

Guns hold enemy in check

To the Editor:

I recently read an article in Popular Science magazine that was clearly and blatantly anti-firearm in nature. "Hot Date with Hand Gun Ends Badly," by Stephan Wilkinson (May edition).

The content of the article generally painted firearms as living, evil entities unto themselves that seek possession of whoever holds them and has an agenda of destruction.

What is an article of this nature doing in a publication such as Popular Science, one devoted to progress reports on science, discovery and development for the good of all? This is not a publication of social and political ideologies and manipulation thereof toward its readers. Some people will say that it was a good article, but the wrong publication format, yet another indication of how deep the anti-firearm movement has run.

Furthermore, let the record show yet again that guns do not kill people. People kill people and were doing so en masse before gunpowder was discovered.

In conclusion, since Sept. 11 I have thanked God almighty that we, the American people, are still armed. Despite all the best and worst efforts of the anti-firearm movement, most of whom have the best of intentions, but seemingly fail to realize that millions of private citizens with access to guns and ammunition provide a very strong deterrent to any enemy force, and that an army of millions can be raised within hours, even minutes — soldiers without uniforms, yet unified in the common cause of guarding home, loved ones, liberty and hope.

There will always be attacks such as Sept. 11, but as long as citizens can arm themselves at a moment's notice, there will always be a means of holding an enemy in check.

Ron R. Fischer


EMTs, Good Samaritans offer help

To the Editor:

On Feb. 4 my husband and I were involved in a very serious accident three miles west of La Grande. He was airlifted to Portland. After two months in intensive and trauma care, then rehabilitation, he has now been home over a month. He will fully recover.

As our life returns somewhat to normal, I realize there are many people we need to acknowledge.

We are grateful to all of the emergency teams on site and at the hospital and to the Good Samaritans who stopped to assist us. We were trapped inside the vehicle and even though we have no memory of the event, we know you talked to us, encouraged us and covered us with your coats as we were being extricated.

We are here today because of you and of course the protection of God.

Thank you for being there and for caring about a couple in distress.

Ruth Scarlett

Zillah, Wash.

Pictures brought home war's horror

To the Editor:

Let me be one, I hope, of many to congratulate you on The Observer's excellent tribute to the veterans of World War II distributed on Memorial Day. I was happy to see so many acquaintances recognized.

I was just starting first grade during those terrible years, and so many war pictures in Life and other magazines brought home the horror to a lad who was very lucky to have many relatives that all returned home afterward. But even today, reading of the bravery and heroism and sacrifices brings the tears.

I still have some of my ration books and unused stamps. My parents struggled to explain why we could not have sugar, butter or even a vehicle without gas or tires. Since we lived on a Colorado ranch, we did have homegrown food and meat. Sometimes it was just rabbit, but we were never hungry.

And how hard it was for our neighbors to explain to me, as we listened to the radio why we were burying President Roosevelt and why if he was dead he had a coffin — coughing.

Again, my hat's off to a great effort.

Guy Hafer


Door remains open

To the Editor:

A respected newspaper executive indicated to me more than once that all the major news media would report all the really important news to the public. The problem is, who decides what's important?

We never discussed slanted reporting or item placement — that little item on the last page that should have been a booming front-page event.

A prime example is that the United Nations' International Criminal Court membership was finally completed at the U.N.'s most recent hullabaloo in Mexico. This dangerous accomplishment was overshadowed by other events.

More recent ultra-important news that should have been nationally headlined big-time was that President Bush stood up for our constitutional rights and rejected American membership in the ICC, which claims world jurisdiction including over those nations that refused to sign on.

This is a huge American victory partially brought about by a grassroots deluge of letters, phone calls and petitions to Bush in a concerted effort to protect our precious Bill of Rights.

I ask my esteemed newsman, why didn't the major liberal press give this extremely important American victory the headline fanfare it deserved? Was it because they just didn't want to?

President Clinton signed the U.N. treaty to place America under ICC control in 2000 but it never reached the Senate for ratification. Although President Bush renounced the treaty, he failed to erase Clinton's treasonous signature which means a future liberal president could send it to a friendlier Senate and also could encourage alien countries that claim that a presidential signature alone binds a nation to the ICC.

So grassroots vigilance can form a safeguard against such a potential danger.

Joining the Union Sovereignty Committee is a good start. Call me. I'm in the phone book.

Jim Bovard


Moved by tribute

To the Editor:

What a range of emotion I experienced as I read your tribute to World War II veterans:

• Anger that despots far from our shores could disrupt our small Eastern Oregon communities with death, separation and interruption of so many lives.

• Sadness for the Gold Star Mothers, widows and fiances who never saw their loved ones again.

• But most of all, pride, after turning page after page of photos of the young people of Union and Wallowa counties who left our valleys to save our way of life.

I salute those who made this special edition possible: the publisher, the advertisers, the editors and staff of The Observer, and the loyal and patriotic people of Eastern Oregon.

Doran Hopkins