Letters to the Editor, Nov. 22, 2017

Ode to Buttermilk Lane

When driving up Buttermilk Lane
Please remember a lane is a lane.
It isn’t a highway. It isn’t a street.
It isn’t a wide boulevard.

It’s narrow. It’s smooth now, and houses are here.
There’s sometimes no sidewalk, just yard.
So when driving down Buttermilk Lane
Please remember a lane is a lane:
Where grownups are walking their kids in their strollers,
And dogs on their leashes.
Skateboard and bike rollers
Are rolling downhill, so are you, so slow down!
Remember, it’s Buttermilk Lane.

When driving on Buttermilk Lane
There’s lots more than seconds to gain.
Take your time. Look around.
It’s a lovely lane, sweet.
With horses, cute houses, a visual treat.
Smile at the neighbors, they’re easy to greet.

25 m.p.h. is the name of the game
When driving on Buttermilk Lane.

Cindy Kuttner
Sunny Brae

Decent treatment for all

This morning I’m sitting in a pool of water, huddled under my tarp in a field – homeless in Arcata. It occurred to me it would be a good time to write to the Mad River Union.

I have learned that the “(cold) extreme weather shelter” wouldn’t be available until Dec. 1, at the earliest. Wow! How nice and How humane!

There are a number of statutes, laws and codes in place to protect our animal companions and beasts of the field. Horses, cattle, goats, etc. living outside must be provided with a three-sided roofed shelter; small animals, too, who live outside.

All animals must be given food and water and adequate space to move freely. They must be kept free from disease or treated properly or humanely. If any violations of these laws occur, the owner may be imprisoned, fined or both.

Wouldn’t it be nice if human beings were afforded the same protections? Imagine – no homeless, unsheltered people anymore. No women with their babies and children, no young adults or ill and disabled and elders. Wouldn’t that be something!

While our nation stands great with bombs and foreign interventions, we  also stand poor in providing proper disaster relief – similarly requirements of clean water, showers and toilets and at least tents and the need for a place for the homeless.

If anyone suffers from basic human need in this country, that is one too many and for no good reason.

Demand proper low-cost housing Demand affordable access to health care. Demand for all decent human treatment.

Michael Langdon
Homeless in Arcata

Harm reduction needed

The League of Women Voters of Humboldt County has a “Public Health Services” position which states that:

• Health care should be obtainable by all.

• The rights and dignity of the individual should be safeguarded at all times.

• Social services are an important part of patient care.

An important part of healthcare is treatment for addiction.  Recently, President Trump hasdeclared the opioid addiction crisis a public health emergency.  One important tool for fighting this epidemic is harm reduction.

Harm reduction is a set of practical, evidence-based strategies and interventions that seeks to reduce the harms associated with drug use to both the person using drugs and their community.  Harm reduction helps prevent the spread of disease through the exchange of syringes, and incorporates public health, public safety and social justice.  Most importantly, harm reduction treats each person with dignity and respect while helping them on the uncertain path to recovery.

The League of Women Voters of Humboldt County strongly supports harm reduction programs in Humboldt County.

Rollin Richmond
President, League of Women Voters of Humboldt County

Mary Lou Lowry
Social Policy Director, League of Women Voters of Humboldt County

Humboldt Can Help

On October 20, we launched Humboldt Can Help – a fundraiser for Puerto Rico. Since then, thanks to the support of the local community we were able to raise a little over five and a half thousand dollars. We had an excellent music and theatre festival at the Rooney Amphitheatre at Dell’Arte which was well attended considering the cold weather and the impromptu nature of this event.

A large section of the Dell’Arte famiglia is comprised of students from around the world who roll the dice and make the decision to move to Humboldt County. Interestingly enough they always find a sense of home here.

In moments of crisis, it is important to find ways to remind our students that this home still exists. In this particular instance, this reminder manifested itself in the form of a fundraiser.

We now move on to the final leg of the fundraiser, getting the funds and the supplies to our partners in Puerto Rico.  We are very grateful to you for reaching out to the community on behalf of us; it was impassioned, genuine and spoke to the reality of this catastrophe that is largely being ignored.

Thank you once again,
Tushar Mathew, marketing Coordinator
Dell’Arte International, Blue Lake

Humboldt Bay needs rail line

The feasibility of establishing rail service to the south of Eureka is again being discussed. With the large investment needed to rebuild the rail lines’ infrastructure, especially through the Eel River corridor, so high, the idea is financially unattainable.

My wife and I recently returned from Colorado, where we spent nine days traveling on true historic railroads. While enjoying the historic fabric of the rail lines, I thought of the Timber Heritage Association’s quest to establish such a rail line, along with a museum in our community.

Because of their popularity  reservations are required a year in advance. We were informed that the railroads account for 50 percent of the area’s economy.

Not only would establishing a rail line around the bay, the Timber Heritage Association could partner with the Maritime Society and create a package excursion trip around the bay, along with a bay cruise. This could not only bring tourists to Old Town, but to the whole of Eureka.

In time, transportation could be provided as far south as Fortuna.

The Timber Heritage Association has been working hard and  putting a lot of energy into making this happen. But they needed continued community support. So if this sounds like a good idea to you, please support their efforts.

Scott Baker


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