Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, has been a failure. She was elected on a promise to "repeal and replace" Obamacare (Affordable Care Law). She and the Republicans in Congress have voted 50 times to "repeal" this law that has helped millions of Americans, including saving money and providing health care and peace of mind to my family. Herrera Beutler has the farce "repeal" side of her reason for being in office down pat. What about the "replace" side?
I went to the Vancouver City Council meeting on Jan. 27, where I learned about an upcoming fundraiser for a nonprofit organization called the Canine Companions for Independence. CCI trains and provides four kinds of assistance dogs: service, hearing, skilled companion and facility dogs, with each dog normally serving for eight years before retiring. Before being trained, volunteers raise them as puppies until they reach the age of 15 to 18 months. However, its fundraiser, DogFest Walk n' Roll, currently doesn't appear to have any local sponsors in Vancouver.
In a generation full of low standards in education, America has become a nation in decline. It is horrific to observe such negative statistics about our educational system, realizing that children are having a hard time focusing on the basics of learning.
Public libraries are a resource seldom used to their fullest potential by the average citizen. Sure, they borrow books now and then, but many of them are still oblivious to the other virtues the free public library has to offer. In fact, 55 percent of people within the Fort Vancouver Regional Library's boundaries do not even have library cards, according to their last survey, and it is their plan to switch that number around so that the majority are cardholders. But how will they do this?
Recently, Clark County passed an extension to the ever-long moratorium on marijuana-related businesses that will extend its presence until June 11. Arguments that pushed this decision included that of the supremacy clause, which notes that the federal government has the power to override a state law under certain conditions. Passing a legalization of distribution to what the government considers a class 1 drug would fall under this scenario. President Obama, however, has stated, "It does not make sense from a prioritization point of view for us to focus on recreational drug users in a state that has already said that under state law that's legal."
After reading Jim Souder's March 6 letter "Can Democrats be Christians?" and how he doesn't understand how they can be both, I can explain that. He has a troubled heart and I will forgive and pray for him.
The crash that killed a 6-year-old boy reported in the March 1 story, "Wrong-way crash kills one" raises some issues I've long thought about. The proximate cause of the accident was an 84-year-old man driving south on northbound I-5. Some will question whether there should be an age limit on driver's license renewal. Being an old man myself I can tell you that driving is part of being independent and that independence is hard to come by. Teens fight to get it; older folks fight to keep it.
Public officials rarely receive the credit deserved when their actions have a positive impact on the community. Clark County Commissioner Steve Stuart should be congratulated — for deciding not to run again.
When the Port of Vancouver commissioners were thinking about offering a lease for a huge oil terminal, they didn't know there would be five oil train fires and four explosions in the next six months. They may not have known that there are 1,250 or more derailments in America each year, according to the Federal Railroad Administration. I urge the Port of Vancouver to back out of its lease agreement with Tesoro-Savage. Save the land for commodities that produce more jobs and cause less harm than oil.
In response to Chuck Miller's March 3 letter "Spend & borrow is Dems' mantra," Miller has a selective memory about how our national debt became so outrageously high. Miller forgets that the Bush-Cheney administration started two wars and paid for them by putting the debt on the nation's credit card. Past wars were paid with war bonds and/or increased taxes. But Bush-Cheney decided to help their rich friends instead by giving tax breaks to the 1 percent while at the same time fighting two wars. This is exactly how our nation's debt grew so large.
I have tried to become involved in so many mainstream churches that I long ago gave up, defeated. It has nothing to do with God. It has everything to do with the inability of respective congregations to step out of their comfort zones and welcome newcomers. A few will do it once and then one is left alone amid a sea of people. Might just as well be alone in the desert. Now, this is interesting because it has been an observation of mine that these same congregations are getting older while their need for more operating money goes unfulfilled.
Debt among recent graduates and young adults has been skyrocketing. California's Senate Bill 1080 is designed to decrease that debt by educating high school juniors and seniors about budgeting, savings, credit, and identity theft. Since 2012, nationwide graduates had an average of $29,400 in student loan debt, while graduates from California had $20,269. Why is this important to Washington state? SB 1080 has been in effect since March 30, 2012, and since then, the debt among graduates has decreased drastically.