Day: July 15, 2016

Those who disagree are not enemies

The murder of five police officers in downtown Dallas, Texas by a frustrated and radical former Army Reserve private is tragic. The officers were patrolling a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest after police shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota. Though every police officer takes their lives into their hands each time they don the uniform and badge there should not be a target on their back. The shooter allegedly said he wanted to kill as many white people—and white cops—as possible in retaliation for black deaths by law enforcement. More cops were killed than at any time since September 11. The killer’s rage was sparked by the shooting deaths of two men, one in Louisiana, the other in Minnesota. His rage was most likely stoked further by the deaths of other African-Americans at the hands of police officers. At the memorial service for the five officers in Dallas this week President Barack Obama and former President George W. Bush offered words of comfort and condolence. Bush eloquently said: “Too often we judge other groups by their worst examples while judging ourselves by our best intentions.” Those words ring true, especially in our climate of political and ideological divisiness. There are calls for people to come together, to communicate, to understand one another. Police are not the enemy, nor or African-Americans. Liberals are not the enemy, nor are conservatives. Supporters of...

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Men of Keizer and Rotary volunteers

To the Editor: I’d like to thank several members of Keizer service groups for their volunteer help over the 4th of July weekend at Antique Powerland. Two groups assisted: Keizer Rotary and Men of Action (a Keizer Chamber of Commerce group). Members who volunteered were: Betty Hart and Alex Miller (and son) from Rotary Club of Keizer, Joe Cecere (and Jasmine), Hughie Baker, Rob Miller, Mario Monteil  from Men of Action in Keizer (MAK) and members of both organizations Jeff Cowan (and friend)  and  Bob Shackelford (and Tanya).  Bob was instrumental in organizing volunteers from MAK. Many thanks to all. Pam Vorachek, Executive Director, Antique Powerland Museum...

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America needs smart law enforcement

By JOHN TEAGUE The July 7 events in Dallas, Texas can’t help but evoke something. I’m not especially given to sadness or grief; I have another, rather undefined emotion, and I hear other cops who share mine: it’s akin to consternation mixed with a bit of dread, and not so much for us cops as for our collective, American future. Regardless, what happened punctuated something that’s been haunting my conscience for at least the last two years. It isn’t the killing of police officers—occupational violence is part of the job description; it’s the random killing of them. If we’ve turned a corner where the occasional, indiscriminate killing of cops is a new normal, the consequences will be dismal, and I don’t mean for the cops—we’ll adjust our tactics—but for the communities we serve, and firstly in the poorer neighborhoods, where the mostly good people are most in need of good policing. The vast majority of peace officers patrol alone, and they’re used to keeping the threats to their safety in front of them. The consequence of having to safeguard their flanks and rear is that cops will be less willing to expose and invest themselves in recalcitrant neighborhoods. Some folks may think they’ll be unaffected, but deteriorating neighborhoods have a pernicious way of metastasizing whole communities. So, what’s to be done about it? There’s no doubt some change in...

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Trump has credibility on NATO remarks

The world’s largest military alliance met in Warsaw last week.  The largest agenda item was money. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has been pushing long and hard for more spending by its members. Just last year, the alliance increased defense spending for the first time in 20 years. However, the fly in the organization’s machinery is that most NATO countries do not pay their recommended share. If this matter rings a bell for the reader, then it is timely to remind that one of Donald Trump’s pet peeves and one about which he has harped and harped, and may be serious, is that the U.S. should rethink its involvement in the military alliance because it is “obsolete” while other member nations don’t pay a fair share. Yet, those involved in NATO’s leadership, as anyone who knows how much having a job with longevity is valued by those in it, the NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, a Norwegian politician, said, “The world is a more dangerous place than just a few years ago.”  That statement was likely inspired by the fact that the former Soviet Union is Russia again, and allows Vladimir Putin too much access to the steroid storage. We’re all aware that Putin, at the very least, has taken back the Crimea and wants back all of the Ukraine as well as those that have been free of the Soviet  yoke for years, like Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. Of course, other nations are worried, too. But...

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