As I read the news lately, I see many things happening to my country that both shock and disappoint me. How can we as citizens sit by and calmly accept the disintegration of our country? Our constitution is being ignored by those sworn to uphold it, the judicial branch is making law rather than interpreting it, the executive branch is choosing the laws it will enforce while ignoring others, and Congress wrings it hands and complains while accomplishing virtually nothing — they cannot even muster enough votes to override a threatened presidential veto when presented with a nuclear peace agreement that is utterly laughable.
As a Christian, as a citizen, and as a woman I have had enough. I will not sit down and shut up. I am not going to “tolerate” illegal actions. I am going to speak out and be heard. I am not going to call anyone a racist or a sexist because they do not agree with me.
Stand up for fact and defend the truth, but above all, speak out. I do not want to be a member of the “silent majority” because the silent majority is irrelevant if it is never heard.
Chrystal Perrow, Winthrop
Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) has requested public input on a proposal to conduct helicopter training in the Cascades. I would like to go on record as supporting this proposal.
During 35 years as a volunteer with Chelan County Mountain Rescue, I have seen the value and importance of helicopters in rescue activities. I can name dozens of people who are alive today because of their use. I’ve also learned to appreciate the difficultly in flying these missions.
Chelan County no longer has an active helicopter rescue program — they, as well as other mountainous counties rely on the counties that do have helicopters (Snohomish, King) and the military. I have the highest respect for the military pilots and the missions that they have conducted, but unfortunately, many times they are simply not able to get the job done. The mountain environment requires an entirely different skill set for a pilot — just because he has many hours at Fairchild or JBLM doesn’t mean he can do a winch operation at 10,000 feet on Bonanza Peak or Mount Stuart.
The military and other agencies already train in the mountains. Snohomish County conducts regular training, Chelan County used to use the ridge above Ohme Gardens for helicopter training, the state Department of Natural Resources trains firefighters in helicopter rappelling near Twin Peaks, and many of us have heard the Whidbey A-6 Intruders roaring over Steven Pass, upper Lake Wenatchee or the Columbia River.
For those who fear that their solitude will be impacted, consider the consequences of not training. Imagine that you have a medical emergency in the back country. Would you rather hear the sound of an approaching helicopter with a crew trained in mountain rescue and familiar with your location, or would you like to hear the sound of silence as a ground team hikes the many miles to assist you?
Freeman Keller, Wenatchee
Coming out from a five-day backpacking trip on Aug. 20, we found a note on our car stating “your house is safe,” with offers for a place of refuge from the Twisp River Fire. Arriving at our house to collect a few clothes, we discovered a small army of fire fighters along the Twisp River Road and crews below our property who assured us they were there for the duration.
We’ve heard many stories of the effort it took to save our home and can only be in awe of the dedication to service and training required to be able to confront wildfire. We want to offer heartfelt thanks to the firefighters and other personnel that saved our home. We do not know all the names of those who fought so bravely in such a firestorm. We only know we are grateful for what we have and such a supportive community.
Howard and Pearl Cherrington, Twisp
Shop with the locals
I would like to express my empathy for the businesses that have suffered through an unprecedented two years of horrendous economic trials. Every single person who I have talked to is simply devastated with the loss of life and homes. To a person, folks have minimized their own situation while sympathizing with others. I am impressed by the warm, deep and compassionate conversations I have had with my neighbors these last weeks.
I would like to give a special nod of appreciation to Debbie and Terry Evans and the Bear Creek Golf Course crew who have kept the course open and looking amazing throughout the entire season. The course is a treasure trove, like a public Methow garden, with multiple games being offered for the whole family. Thanks, folks!
I urge everyone to stop by your favorite shop, visit and support our local businesses. They need to know we appreciate their contribution to our vibrant community.
Lauralee Northcott, Winthrop