Letters, Feb. 1
Gerson column powerful
In Michael Gerson’s powerful and incisive commentary of Jan. 15, “Republicans need to condemn Trump’s brazen bigotry,” Gerson accurately concluded that the opposition of congressional Republicans to the racism of only Congressman Steve King is woefully inadequate.
As Gerson wrote, “If racism is the problem, then President Trump is a worse offender.” Racism is not only ugly and hateful, but it is also immoral. Republicans in Congress, who are our national leaders, by never opposing Trump’s racism, have been immorally aiding and abetting the promotion and support of racism.
Trump’s promotion of President Obama’s birthplace was racist, but was also a lie. Trump’s endless lies are as immoral as his racism. The total number of lies since the onset of the current administration, documented by The Washington Post, is well over 7,000. Even though lying is immoral, and it’s not possible to overstate the gross enormity of Trump’s dishonesty, congressional Republicans have been immorally aiding and abetting presidential deceit with their silence.
Will the immorality of the Republican Party continue to be as endless as the president’s lies?
Conversation with a local legislator
Recently I engaged a local libertarian state representative in discussions about environmental issues. I learned that the libertarian approach is that the free market will solve all problems.
During discussions, I learned that the free market will solve the problem of toxins in food and drugs because those buying the drugs will become sick and/or die and stop buying, thus, presumably, teaching the producers to mend their ways or putting them out of business. From a humanitarian perspective, this seems harsh.
I also learned that the free market will solve our fire and smoke problem because the Britt Festival and OSF will go out of business, and Crater Lake National Park will suffer a decline in visitors. While these seem reasonable consequences of global warming and the wildfires it promotes, they hardly seem like solutions to the problem.
What we desperately need are solutions to problems imposed by global warming, not simply consequences. Oregon has had a voluntary greenhouse gas emissions reduction program in place since 2007 with relatively stringent goals for reducing statewide emissions. Regrettably Oregon businesses have not put us on a trajectory to achieve these goals. Volunteerism has failed. The Oregon Legislature needs to craft a solution.