Letters, Dec. 6
The media have a principle: If it doesn’t trash Trump, it isn’t news.
The 300-scientist government report is news, but incomplete until President Trump’s reaction is included.
The news could have been better completed if it had said anything about qualified climate non-government scientists who question predictions in the report. It would not be necessary to add “like Trump.”
Redirect your energy
To letter writers: Everybody knows President Donald Trump shoots off his mouth on Twitter, has a checkered past, is aggressive with other nations, hasn’t found quite the right approach to get congressional cooperation, protects our borders with force, etc., etc., etc.
We all see the news, read the news, talk to people about the news, or don’t care about the news. Quit writing about Trump — use your time and energy and emotional well-being to get your preferred candidates elected. Write about your plans on how you will make the economy better than it is. Tell us your plans for gaining more respect and cooperation from other countries. Tell us how you will make the military stronger and more feared. Tell us your social programs that give people skills to help themselves when they are capable, instead of making them weak and dependent.
By unloading your vitriol over and over, you look foolish and unfocused on your own agendas.
Drift is a hazard
We are puzzled by Scott Dahlman’s guest opinion (Nov. 4) characterizing our recent guest opinion as misinformation. In fact, Dahlman repeats and mirrors many of our points: specifically that Oregon’s new Worker Protection Standard is more stringent than the federal standard in that it requires a 150-foot exclusion zone for the worst pesticides.
Farmworker advocate groups like Northwest Forest Worker Center and Beyond Toxics worked hard to help OSHA do better to protect farmworkers. Where OSHA did not adopt adequate safeguards was allowing farmworkers to “shelter” inside labor “cabins” during a nearby spray operation. Dahlman’s characterization of “sheltering in place” as safe is contrary to the facts. Scientific studies of exposure to pesticides in the home have consistently found that exposure is greater in housing that is closer to the fields, and that it is also greater in housing near fields sprayed more frequently.
It is also worth reiterating that the scientific literature identifies pesticide drift as a significant factor in many major exposure events. Despite the fact that off-target pesticide drift is illegal, and despite protestations by farmers and their lobbyists that employers would never intentionally endanger worker health, pesticide drift is a major hazard affecting farmworker families.
Carl Wilmsen, executive director, Northwest Forest Worker Center, and Lisa Arkin, executive director, Beyond Toxics