Aug. 27, 2020, Letters to the Editor
Supports the Librarian
I want to express my unswerving support of Amy Dodson and her humane stance on supporting “Black Lives Matter.” The latest article in The Record-Courier mentioned an “independent investigation.” Investigate what, exactly? This should not be about politics. The term “Black Lives Matter” does not mean they matter more than other lives. It means if Black lives don’t matter, then no lives matter, including “blue lives.” We ALL matter equally.
Every time I read another article of the disrespect of Sheriff Coverly for races other than whites in Douglas County, I am outraged all over again. Douglas County should be ashamed that they continue to support the sheriff and “investigate” the librarian. Although all the counter-demonstrators on Aug. 8 are probably not Douglas County residents, the fact that Douglas County condones and welcomes that behavior does not reflect well on them. Nevada and, in fact, much of the country have eyes on Douglas County and are appalled that such racism exists here in our state.
I am not Black. I am an older white woman who is carefully adhering to social distancing and avoiding large crowds. I would have liked nothing better than to show up on Aug. 8 to show my support for “Black Lives Matter.” We all know that demonstration would not have been scheduled in that particular county if not for the disgraceful comments posted by Coverly. Do the right thing. Make us proud to be Nevadans.
Keep the siren
There is no doubt that the Native Americans have been greatly mistreated in the past, throughout our country, and including the Carson Valley. However, I would like to know how long it has been since a Native American was “required” to leave Gardnerville or Minden at 6:30 p.m.? I would also like to know who but the oldest residents in the Carson Valley would even remember such an ordinance? And I would also like to know how, in 2020, in this magnificent valley, something as traditional and unobtrusive as a siren going off twice a day is all of a sudden an offensive reminder of a time long ago gone.
My grandparents moved to this valley in 1920, and my father graduated from Douglas High School in 1938. As I was growing up, I spent many summers in this beautiful valley, and was always reminded that the noon siren was a signal that is was lunch time. Especially for the ranchers who may be working in their fields. The 6 p.m. siren let everyone know it was time to quit work. There was never any mention by anyone in my family, when these “alerts” sounded, “that it was time to (quote) “run local Indians out of town.” And if it was installed solely for that purpose, then why the need for the noon siren? Did they have to leave during lunch as well?
This move to eliminate one more piece of our history in the valley is just another classic example of how ridiculously sensitive people have become, and which by the way, has not directly or adversely affected any ethnic group in generations!
What’s next? Are we going to march on Virginia City, because the Chinese laborers were treated poorly during the “heyday” of silver mining? Sadly, we are losing our American heritage, because of small segments in our society who lack the understanding and knowledge of the importance and significance of valuing and preserving our history good or bad, and who seem to want to erase those events that they neither participated in, or personally witnessed, but feel compelled to erase it because it suddenly offends their sensibilities.
Instead of dwelling on events that happened in our past, of which we have no control, we need to remember and cherish the accomplishments of people who have gone before us from all races. In short, we need to lighten up, and be thankful that we live in one of the great places in America.
D. A. Darrough
Time to turn off the siren
As a child in the 1950s and 1960s I remember with joy and excitement living across the street from the Old Gardnerville Fire station next to the Overland Hotel. In the middle of a night the siren would blow, I would run to my second floor bedroom window, see my Dad run out the front door, cross Main Street to the station, open the two apparatus bay doors, pick up the wall mounted telephone get the address of the fire from the operator, write it on the blackboard, wait for a few more fellow volunteers to arrive, sometimes coming out of the Overland Hotel Bar, and off they went to do their duty showing their dedication to their town and sharing the pride brought by volunteering to help others.
For those of us who grew up in the valley it was normal to hear the sirens and just think it was time for us to get home for lunch or dinner or on the rare occasion there was a fire somewhere. It was much later, as an adult, that I learned of the more dark and racist function of the sirens and how it disrespected our Native American brothers and sisters with the 6 p.m. siren signaling that they needed to leave town and return to the reservation. Knowing this now, it is hard to imagine that anyone would be in favor of perpetuating this unfortunate memory of this past injustice.
I know my Dad would not consider an unnecessary siren, blowing twice a day, as a relic of the past, worth preserving especially now knowing the racism it represented and continued pain it causes today.
I think what would make my Dad proud and show the gratitude to him and all the other volunteers would be to know that the foundation they laid as volunteers, answering that siren and the call to duty, has laid the groundwork for the professional firefighters and paramedics that we thankfully have today in the East Fork Fire Protection District. These men and women, by their actions and professionalism, honor all the past volunteers in a way that will be perpetuated forever.
I believe it is time for us to make up for the past, and show respect to the Native American community by telling Tribal Chairman Smokey that we get it, we are sorry, we cannot undo the past but there is no reason to continue this disrespect in the future.
Just like Gardnerville, let’s turn off the Minden siren take those few seconds of quiet time to remember all the past volunteers and say thank you for answering the call of the siren and being there when we needed you the most.
Siren not a club
There are almost 30,000 fire departments in the United States; amazingly, about 80 percent of them consist of volunteer firefighters. Those towns, villages, and cities use outdoor sound devices (sirens, horns, whistles) to alert their volunteer personnel of an emergency and to report to their stations. Those warning systems are also used to alert residents of tornados, hurricanes, fires, flooding, and other disasters. Minden’s siren was an example of this nationwide alerting system.
Today, our siren is used as a town clock (sounding at noon and 6 p.m.) and also as a tribute to the hundreds of past Minden firefighters who, since the founding of our community, helped protect our residents.
Minden’s siren is a Federal Signal Corporation Model 2, manufactured in the 1960s.
If there was any racial terror committed by town residents at the sounding of that particular siren, then only those criminals who perpetrated such acts are to blame, not an electro-mechanical sound device.
Different viewpoints on siren
I find the article regarding the “sundowner siren” in The Record-Courier interesting.
Two individuals can read, or look, at the same thing and have very different viewpoints. These viewpoints can also change with time.
I have lived in a number of communities where the siren was used to alert members of the local volunteer fire department of a fire or an emergency such as a possible tornado. It was also sounded at noon and at six and used to check, or set, an individual’s clock. The six o’clock siren was also considered as the “supper time” siren.
I’m sorry that some members of the community may be offended by the siren, but the vast majority of the residents probably have never associated the six o’clock siren as a “sundowner” siren.
BLM, Antifa excused for crimes
I absolutely applaud every single word of Laurie Hickey’s letter to the editor regarding the great community get together on Aug. 8. The headline of her letter was “actions have consequences.” We have witnessed since February this year that there are no consequences for those who loot, burn, beat and slaughter innocent young and old people and destroy communities. As long as they identify with the two terror groups in America, BLM and Antifa, they are excused of their crimes.
Sadly, for me, there were letters in the same edition from individuals that I previously respected. Yes we are truly a divided country and now it seems a divided county. I hope and pray that Donald Trump is re-elected and that justice will be restored in America.
Executive order won’t help
Trump signed an executive order/memorandum to defer payroll taxes for the remainder of the year which doesn’t help those who are unemployed. Trump’s order will negatively impact Social Security and Medicare. In addition Trump stated that if re-elected he will eliminate payroll taxes. Payroll taxes fund Social Security and Medicare.
The House passed the Hero’s bill over two months ago, this bill included extending unemployment benefits, it addressed rental assistance, money to help states who are looking at budget cuts (layoffs of police, firefighters, teachers, health workers) do to COVID-19. This bill sat on McConnell’s desk and ignored by both McConnell and Trump until the CARES Act was expiring. Now Trump and Republicans are blaming Democrats for the impasse to justify Trump’s executive orders.
Trump’s new postmaster general has put measures in place that are slowing the delivery of mail. On Friday night the postmaster general re-assigned long serving postal executives. Trump’s new postmaster general is a lobbyist with no experience with the postal service. Military veterans are already experiencing delays in receiving their medications. Postal workers from around the country are also raising the alarm about growing mail backlogs since the measures went into effect. These delays are already slowing up mail deliveries and have the potential to negatively impact mail-in voting (which is Trump’s goal).
Trump’s intelligence community has stated that Russia is again trying to interfere in the election, Russia again preferring Trump. They reported that China prefers Biden. Trump’s intelligence community also stated that what Russia is doing to help Trump dwarfs what China is doing. Trump has stated he is open to accepting foreign help in his re-election and Biden has stated he would not.
Trump has handled COVID-19 badly, other industrial countries are way ahead of us in containing it, with lower numbers of cases and deaths. Other countries are opening up their economies and children are going back to school. 100,000 children have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last two weeks alone. Opening up schools this semester is going to be difficult and school districts are receiving very little guidance from the federal government other than just open up and accept that some children are going to get sick.
Trump has shown through his handling of COVID-19 he cannot lead when we need real leadership, he inherited a strong economy but couldn’t make it stronger (1.6 million more jobs were created in the last three years of Obama than in the first three years of Trump per Forbes). Trump inherited a country that was a world leader and well respected around the world. We are much weaker do to Trump’s policies and respect has been replaced with pity because of Trump’s lack of leadership with COVID-19.
Promoting fear in the population
People who have not lost their livelihoods (politicians and bureaucrats) are using the pandemic to improve their chances in the upcoming elections, using drastic lockdowns on the population that will suddenly end on Nov. 3.
The media tends to favor negative and downplay the positive. Promote fear in the population with the developments on the COVID-19 virus, its genesis from Wuhan, China and spread to rest of the unsuspecting world, while trying to protect itself from it. The average age as of July 1 of the 150,000 deaths from this virus is 78 and many of these cases had other underlying disabilities (high blood pressure, diabetes, breathing problems, etc.) being the real cause, but to report it as COVID-19 casualty was more advantageous for reimbursement.
Also discouraging the use of the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine (safely used for 60 years) which has resulted in a significant reduction in fatalities where applied early treatment costing only about $1/day is being ridiculed by the left and opposed by big pharma. The 2.5 million annual deaths from other causes have not justified shutting down the economy, why then COVID-19? Health experts are increasingly calling for schools to re-open in the fall as the COVID-19 infections are five times less likely to affect children, than the annual flu season. Teachers’ unions are against opening schools in place or online.
Our governor arbitrarily favors certain groups over others, like pot dispensaries, casinos, protestors and rioters over churches and Republican gatherings like the annual Basque Fry-CPAC West which was planned, speaker’s invited, tickets sold, scheduled for Aug. 8, forced to cancel, instead allowing Black Lives Matter to come in on the same date (how ironic?) to invade and have organized protests against the sheriff’s office, causing fear, uneasiness, worry about spread of virus and unnecessary costs on the community, additional protests to follow on Aug. 15. Then to top it all, mail in election bill AB4 was passed in middle of the night during special legislative meeting no public or Secretary of State involvement. Election could have been conducted safely like our large stores have done with proper protections. It will be full of fraud, allowing for ballot harvesting (formerly a felony) with intent to steal the upcoming elections.