Parenting is a key to preventing violence

We are so busy, it seems, trying to figure out why our kids are killing each other on campuses across the country and no one, it seems or very few, point to the truth: mental illness and lack of a strong family foundation with two parents.

Yes, I’ve seen single parents function well but ask the child if they would prefer two loving parents instead of one. But I think it goes deeper than that. Our very nature is one that desires, craves and longs for acceptance and love. When that need is deprived, then the need to have others feel that same deprivation, emptiness, pain and longing, becomes controlling.

Part of the blame lies in social media and our “easy parenting” versus discipline with love. I left Facebook years ago because I saw it as merely a public billboard for hatred and, much like a drive-by shooting, leaving innocent people in its wake. Funny, I had over 400 “friends” on FB yet when I left, none called me, or came by to ask why. When I was sick, none of them brought food over or helped out in some way.

Friends spend time together, speak into each others lives and desire to be a part of their lives in good or bad times. There is very little depth in today’s relationships and it plays out in the family unit as well. Parents leave at the first sign of trouble or inconvenience and leave children hurting without thinking of the damage they are doing.

We worry about gun violence when the basis for that is violence, of any kind. Video games have become so violent that killing means nothing, life is cheapened in an instant.

Our kids need real parents, loving, forgiving, disciplining parents, not friends. Be the role model for them. When our kids have a foundation they can rely on, they will thrive. Banning guns or certain types of guns, is not the issue. People kill people.

Believing guns are the culprit is akin to believing forks make us fat.

Thomas Wilcoxson

Baker City

Baker County needs to keep Bill Harvey in office

The County Commissioner Chair election is extremely important this year for Baker County. Bill Harvey, our current Commission Chair, has done an exemplary job for Baker County. Bill has worked for Baker County as hard as he did as a successful homebuilder and entrepreneur. Bill’s business expertise has went a long way to help promote Baker County by his even going back to Washington, D.C., to meet with Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management officials. Bill’s concern over the management of our national forest and the fires that keep ravaging our county has made him the spokesperson uniting Oregon counties on public lands. Bill’s dedication to cleaning up our public lands and watershed and keeping roads open for the public, promoting mining, grazing and timber harvest over the lock it up and watch it burn policy of the last 20 years.

Bill is a strong leader and we need him desperately in these next four years. Under Bill’s leadership he has formed the Baker County Natural Resource Committee (NRAC) which drafted Baker County’s resource plan to coordinate the plan to the upcoming onerous federal forest revision plan that would close roads to the public and restrict just about every use on the forest. Stand for a open forest and vote Bill Harvey a strong and proven leader for County Commission Chair.

Chuck Chase

Baker City

It’s about human decency, not gun control

My decision to not shop at businesses connected to the hateful messages being delivered by the media has nothing to do with gun control, and everything to do with human decency. If a business chooses to support people and organizations who increase their ratings by picking on kids who have been through a tragedy, I question its values.

Selling guns makes you a retailer. Selling hate makes you inhuman.

Mae Corwin

Baker City

Nichols the best choice for commission chairman

The Oregon primary election is May 15. You must register by April 24 to vote in this election. You can register or to update your voter registration online by going to SOS.Oregon.Gov and click the “voting and elections” tab, then click “register to vote” and follow the instructions. Or you can register in person at the county’s elections office in the Baker County Courthouse.

This election is very important for Baker County. Two County Commission positions will be chosen. Mark Bennett is running unopposed for Position 2. Bill Harvey, Bruce Nichols and Mike Downing are running for Position 3, County Commission chair.

You need to vote in the May 15 primary in order to have a say in who will be the County Commission chair. This is a significant election. If no candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two vote-getters will meet in the general election in November. If one candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, that person will become the next County chair. There will be no runoff in November. If you had planned to vote in the general election, you might miss the opportunity to help select the next County Commission chair.

Being a conservative is important to Baker County. Bruce Nichols, a CPA, understands budgeting and the importance of following a plan in executing the County’s work. He also listens well to all constituents, not just those who agree with him, and is a thoughtful leader. He understands the importance of cooperating with other commissioners and our neighboring counties. For me the best person to lead the Baker County Commission is Bruce Nichols.

Karen Haines

Baker City

Bill Harvey consistently stands up for Baker County

Bill Harvey was our choice for Baker County Chair four years ago, and he is our choice again for the next four years.

Bill has steadfastly maintained the USFS and BLM, need to “coordinate” with Baker County when creating their management plans. This is not a confrontational stance as many would like you to believe. It’s the law, and at this point we need commissioners demanding the federal government abide by rules and regulations from their own playbook.

Our county nearly burned to the ground in 2015. Burdened with regulations, salvage of the lost timber, (other than private property) was a dismal failure. Take a drive and see for yourself. The monster fire that rampaged from Cornet Creek to I-84 was just one of many to leave behind a trail of lost resource revenue. Bill Harvey used every tool available pushing the USFS to salvage the timber, hindered by one regulation after another.

Choices are not always easy, in this commission race it is. One willing to stand firm and speak up for Baker County is Bill Harvey. O ur county contains the elements to thrive: minerals, timber, grazing, plus money generated from recreation should be fueling our local economy. 51 percent of Baker County is managed by federal agencies. We can have a resource-based economy or the economic engine called “government.” Baker County being the good little cooperating partner, here we are waiting for our PILT funds, and here we are waiting for our SRS funds, lining up at the government trough of indebtedness. Baker County has the potential to be one of the richest counties in Oregon, are we willing to accept an existence of a welfare county?

Not just a seat at the table but a strong practical voice. A voice willing to say, “you can’t close that road,” or for our friends in Halfway, “the wolves need to go away,” “waiting 10 years and more for plans of operations for miners is not acceptable,” “if the need presents itself we will see you in court.”

Elect Bill Harvey, it’s your best choice.

Tork and Wanda Ballard

Baker City