Letters to the editor for June 15, 2022, in The Olympian


Editorials and other Opinion content offer perspectives on issues important to our community and are independent from the work of our newsroom reporters.

Relief for home buyers?

Your June 8, front page article, “County’s housing market shows signs of relief for buyers,” seemed a bit naive, with 30-year mortgage rates recently increasing from about 3% to 5% (figures quoted in your article).

Applying these rates to the $520,000 median-priced Thurston County home (assuming a 20% down payment) yields a monthly payment of $2,307 at 3%, and a $2,745 payment at 5% — a 19% increase at the higher rate.

I’m not sure this is a sign of relief for buyers.

Bruce Erfer, Lacey

Guns don’t kill, but people who shouldn’t have guns do

Another mass shooting makes Democrats talk about gun control; Republicans talk about protecting constitutional rights.

Sorrow, makeshift memorials, thoughts and prayers follow every mass shooting. Followed by a list of why it happened.

President Joe Biden went to Texas because 19 elementary school kids and two teachers were killed by another mass shooter. Somebody from the crowd yelled out, “Do something!” Biden said, “I will!” He should have added: Send Democrats to hold the House and overcome the Senate filibuster rule blocking legislation.

I question the mental wellness of our congressional representatives. Democrats sent gun legislation to the Senate where it sits on Mitch McConnell’s shelf to die. No vote allowed up or down.

Our nation has reached a new milestone: Guns are now the nation’s number 1 reason for dead kids. Is this the new normal?

Mass shooters choose an AR-15 because it kills quickly and effectively. It’s a combat weapon designed for war, not recreation or sport.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has boasted that Texas is number 1 in protecting 2nd Amendment constitutional gun rights. He forgot to add that no number of innocent victims killed by guns will usurp that right.

Guns don’t kill, but people who shouldn’t have guns do. Please explain how to distinguish a good guy from a bad guy with a gun before the shooting starts?

We pay tribute to our military each year for the ultimate sacrifice they paid to protect this country’s freedom. Mass shooter victims didn’t have that choice.

David Cahill. Olympia

Native plants benefit everyone

There are many things that we can do to positively impact wildlife and ecosystems that will save time and money in our own lives.

One is rethinking our approach to lawn care. Millions of gallons of oil are used to mow lawns, and lawns aren’t much use to wildlife. Additionally, spraying synthetic pesticides or herbicides harms our fellow beings. Honeybees, other insects, and animals can become ill or die if they ingest weed killer.

Wildlife lived here long before we did, so let’s treat our shared home with respect. Why not replace your lawn with a native plant garden? It will be unique, colorful and joy-bringing.

Studies have shown that our mental health is enriched by being surrounded by plant-filled natural environments. Like our fellow species, we need nature to thrive.

Native plant gardens also reduce the water needs of our yards. And since most of our food supply depends upon pollinators, we would be wise to experiment with non-lawn alternatives (ie native plants) in our yard.

Our local garden stores likely have a wealth of native plants and how-to-garden information. We will save money by not buying pesticides and not needing oil or gas to mow our lawns.

Rebecca Canright, Olympia

Thanks, 58 years later

To the boy who gave me his dinner in 1964:

I spent the night with a girlfriend when I was 9 years old. I think the mom was single, raising two kids alone. Dinner was frozen TV dinners and the young son happily gave me his. I was surprised and happy, but I had no idea what he would eat.

Almost 60 years later, I still remember his nice gesture.

If this was you, please know your grace is still remembered today, many years later. Thank you.

To the boy who gave me his dinner in 1964.

Sandra K. Knapp, Olympia


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