As oil transport disasters bomb one community after another across North America, with new derailments, spills, fires and explosions in West Virginia and Ontario, Canada, in February, the Port of Vancouver commissioners continue to stand by the "due diligence" done for the Tesoro-Savage oil terminal project.
I support Washington state House Bill 1951, sponsored by Rep. Liz Pike, R-Camas, which clarifies our state law on the use of unmarked vehicles in law enforcement. Her proposed bill clarifies that county sheriff's offices and local police departments can use unmarked police cars for official duties.
When I see proposals from outside businesses that would make Vancouver into a major oil terminal and a dispersal point for mountains of coal, I ask myself, "What will this city look like if these proposals are accepted?" Endless oil and coal trains come to mind, running through our neighborhoods and fleets of barges floating down the Columbia River full of contaminants and explosive material. It doesn't sound like a place where many would want to raise a family.
In God we trust. This is true for Christians and many others who have their own beliefs, but what about atheists? Are we going to violate their rights? I have a better solution. If we must put something on the walls of the Clark County council meeting place let's put "Honesty, Integrity, For the Betterment of All." We hear so much double-talk and garbage coming from our elected officials that a little honesty would be a refreshing item. Maybe if they had practiced a little more of this we would not have Don Benton in a position that he is unqualified for.
State Sen. Ann Rivers, R-La Center, being unfairly restricted by the ethics panel in her ability to panhandle to lobbyists for her meals, has decided to take an additional $10 per diem because she needs to "pay for food," reported the Feb. 23 political beat column "Rivers at peace with increase in per diem." I hope this reality will soften her stance on raising the minimum wage. Maybe we could just tie the minimum wage directly to the legislative per diem. I mean, we all have to pay for food.
James B. Schaefer's Feb. 19 letter "Offended by cartoon's implication," refers to a comic titled "Bizarro." I trust that in his "30-plus years" as an educator he had the opportunity to teach his students American history, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, etc. The first Bill of Rights is freedom of the press/freedom of speech/freedom of religion. This amendment gives The Columbian the right to publish whatever cartoon they so choose.
I very much value reading comments by syndicated columnist Thomas Sowell, and encourage The Columbian to keep printing him. His views are not politically correct by liberal standards but that is not a reason to dismiss him. He doesn't go along with the liberal welfare state agenda that is corrupting this country's people and financially bankrupting us.
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