August 01, 2002 11:00 pm

Making impact on graduates

To the Editor:

With the sounds of "Pomp and Circumstance" and the visions of caps and gowns, it is certain that graduation time is upon us.

Always recognized are the students for their years of perseverance, parents for their unyielding support and classroom educators for their wisdom and guidance. Sometimes forgotten are the individuals in our communities who are also making a profound impact on graduates.

Two dedicated employees of Grande Ronde Hospital, June Cordill, an occupational therapist, and Gina Valainis, an occupational therapy assistant, have recently been honored by Pacific University's School of Occupational Therapy for their excellence in fieldwork education.

June and Gina graciously accept students from several schools around the West Coast. In the midst of their day-to-day patient care and the increasing demands of managed care, they make it a priority to give back to their profession by fostering the education of their future colleagues. They have a unique way of challenging their students to promote crucial problem-solving skills in a supportive and professional environment. Experiences like these are ones that cannot be simulated in any classroom. Committed volunteers, such as June and Gina, make this type of learning possible.

Julie Droomgole

Lake Oswego

Course challenging, not unfair

To the Editor:

I am writing this letter in regards to the May 30 article about the Buffalo Peak Golf Course. Your staff writer said a lot of things about the golf course that were right and to the point.

But it seems to me that Alice Perry Linker was just a bit biased in her observations and reporting.

Yes, Buffalo Peak Golf Course has had a hard time getting off the ground, but that is not the fault of the people who work there now. And I find it a bit disturbing that it was not mentioned that the new staff has put in long hours and has put forth every effort to make the course playable to everyone.

It was said that holes 14 and 10 were unfair. Sir, unfair is an unfair word to use.

I would suggest that you should have used the word challenging because I can take you to many golf courses in the Northwest that may be called unfair, but as a golfer the word is challenging.

And if you want to play an easy course, play a putt-putt course, don't play a course that is a links-style course. It is not to be said that we don't want beginner golfers on the course, because we have a lot of them and we welcome them. But they also agree that this game is not for the faint of heart and I don't care where you play it in the United States.

We here at Buffalo Peak Golf Course want everyone who comes here to have a good time. We will try our very best to make sure that that happens. But for The Observer to put a negative outlook on Buffalo Peak and not tell the whole story is wrong.

Beau Roberts, club president

Buffalo Peak Golf Course


Save constitutional court system

To the Editor:

Warning: Will enough people awake in time to compel our elected officials to take the necessary action to save our constitutional court system?

The threat is the International Criminal Court, which is scheduled to go into operation July 1. This is the new U.N. global tribunal set to blow away the entire system that protects our rights as individuals.

Contrary to media reports, the White House or the Congress has done nothing to provide real or lasting protection against threats to our liberties. They just lull us into a false sense of security. We need timely action to stop this.

There is no guarantee that this will only be used against foreign despots. We have every reason to expect that sooner or later the ICC will be brought to bear against American citizens. In the words of Professor Charles Rice of the Notre Dame Law School, we will be confronted by "a monster" that effectively "repudiates the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and the Declaration of Independence."

One of the problems is that it allows for no jury trials and threatens us with transport beyond the seas. Instead of a jury trial, you would be brought before international judges. Will these be impartial competent judges or made up of our enemies? There is no guarantee of the time to come to trial. Will you be held for years in a foreign jail? We can do something.

We can support Congressman Ron Paul's American Sovereignty Restoration Act (HR 1146) to withdraw U.S. membership from the U.N. and cut all funding to the entire subversive apparatus. Act now. You might be called a terrorist for owning guns.

Betty Bronson


Go after peanuts, pretzels, gum

To the Editor:

I have a suggestion for Oregon Rep. Mark Simmons, R-Elgin, regarding his endorsement of a 75-cent tax increase per pack on cigarettes. Instead of picking on the smokers by imposing more tax on cigarettes, why not try taxing peanuts, pretzels and chewing gum?

Gary McFetridge


Cat pack overtakes garden

To the Editor:

I'm one of those people who take pride in my yard. The reason I'm writing to you is about cats.

Now, I'm not a cat-hater, but I'm pretty upset at the number of cats entering my yard by hopping over my fence, digging holes and leaving something behind that kills my plants, or they just lie in the flowers crushing them.

I got up one morning and there were not one but eight cats in my yard. These cats are bigger than my two dogs. I confine my animals in my yard and they are trained to go to the bathroom in one spot. I have respect and I have courtesy for my neighbors, and I expect the same.

What upsets me is why aren't there laws for cats as there are for dogs? We dog owners accept responsibility for our dogs' actions and I think cat owners should be held responsible, too. And when you hear cats getting poisoned or shot by a BB gun, the owners wonder why? Duh!

Maybe people like me are getting fed up with the damage to their yard and garden by the cats and their irresponsible owners.

Kim Guzman

La Grande

Wedding cards come up missing

To the Editor:

Last Saturday we had a wonderful day as our daughter, Wendi Baker, married Joe Fisher.

The wedding was at First Christian Church and the reception was held at the Eastern Oregon Livestock Show clubhouse in Union.

We were saddened to discover that many of the couple's wedding cards had been taken. These included sentimental value, gifts of money, gift certificates and well wishes.

We were amazed that someone could do this to people on one of their most special days.

I would like the people who gave these cards to Wendi and Joe to contact me at 963-0917.

Betty Baker

La Grande

Visit Union museum

To the Editor:

Have you visited the Union County Historical Museum in Union lately? It is a great place to take company and the kids. The volunteers have been working extra hard to make it an even better place for outings.

Perhaps you remember the black, leather horsehair-filled furniture from the Frisewald estate. You will see a blue, wool riding habit and English Wedgewood demitasse cups from Stang Manor along with other interesting items in the living room.

You will find a new display of beautiful antique wedding gowns made of fine, sheer organza, soft silk and even a short blue velvet flapper's wedding dress trimmed in real, white fur. This was worn by Mrs. Walter Vogel about 1928.

The children always like the bear, the mine and the Cowboys Then and Now exhibits. We have put out more interesting books for browsing. The gift shop has expanded and is selling books on Union County history, T-shirts, Kurt Adler ornaments and many other items.

You may even be able to help us identify some of our early photographs. Remember to identify your family photos now. You might even find your great-grandad in our collection.

There is a new Eastern Oregon Livestock Show display and many interesting exhibits to see.

Come visit the museum on Main Street. We are open Tuesday through Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. through the summer.

Carolyn Young

La Grande

Tax dollars wasted

To the Editor:

In response to The Observer's front-page article June 15, "House passes budget." If they can get the voters to approve a 75 cent tax hike on cigarettes I'll be surprised.

The whole problem is the way they waste all of our tax dollars.

In Ukiah the road department received all new equipment. What was wrong with the old equipment?

Why can't the state operate like private business and small industry and hold the line? The state should have to operate like the people they are regulating and taxing.

Doug Vincent


Limit length of tax

To the Editor:

A tax increase is the only answer to balance the budget. However, it should be in a sure tax, say for one year; and why can't the legislators give back part of their pay increase they voted for?

A sure tax is nothing new. It has been done several times before and worked. Generations before paid high taxes to keep the state going and just whose fault is it that the cost of living has gone sky high in the last 10 years? I know.

So Rep. Greg Smith, do your job and stop worrying about keeping it. You have the right ideas.

Letha Johns

La Grande