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 By Scott Swanson    Opinion    April 1, 2020 

This anniversary will be one to remember

Fifteen years ago, on what we later realized was April Fools Day of 2005, my wife Miriam and I walked into the office we now occupy as publishers of your newspaper. Hard to believe, how fast that time has gone by. Our daughters, who were all in...

 

Testing, protection are paramount

Editor: We will not be successful at stopping COVID-19 without doing two things. Testing everyone and providing personal protective equipment for all people. There are many people with no symptoms at all that have this virus and can spread it for two...

 

Thank you to our doctors

Editor: Since 1933, March 30 has been celebrated as Doctors Day – a time to say a special thank you to physicians everywhere for the vital role they play in fostering health and healing.  The commemoration was established on the first anniversary...

 

Coronavirus brings challenges

This coronavirus story has moved at a dizzying pace, even for journalists who may be more experienced than many in adjusting to fast-changing circumstances. Changes have certainly been rapid in recent days. The most recent (as of press time) is Gov....

 

Remembering Sunshine Week: Fighting a virus with truth, transparency

By Ken Paulson As the scope and threat of the coronavirus pandemic becomes clear, people all over the world hunger for two things: an effective vaccine and truthful information about the disease. The former may be more than a year away, but the...

 

Court will decide railroad battle but right answer may lie elsewhere

Sometimes life throws us a curve ball and that seems to be what has happened to Albany and Eastern Railroad and to the residents of Country Lane, located across Highway 20 from Harmony Road just west of The Narrows. As reported on page 1 and...

 

Oregonians need open records to get information we should know

Editor’s note: This week, March 15-21, is Sunshine Week, coinciding with Founding Father James Madison’s birthday and National Freedom of Information Day on March 16. If you’re not a journalist or someone active in public affairs, you may not...

 

Fighting through the fear to facts

Sometimes it’s a little shattering to realize how … human … the news media can be. The hysteria surrounding this coronavirus has certainly been a reminder of that. I, and probably you, have an “ideal” for what we want our media, including t...

 

GOP flight not long-term solution for rural interests

Even habitually disengaged citizens of Oregon should be aware by now that things are far beyond normal in the state capitol. The level of rancor and distrust across the aisle is such that the Republicans walked out, nearly en masse, last week, to...

 

Pointing out some pluses in SH

Kudos for Standing Up to ODE The Sweet Home School District and Supt. Tom Yahraes deserve the highest of praise for standing up for the girls in Sweet Home High School’s forestry program. They are fighting for the right of girls to compete in...

 

Stupidity has no place in the woods

We’ve voiced complaints recently about the apparent lack of consideration in Salem for rural residents and our realities of life. Most of our protests have been aimed at the legislature and its leaders. But this week we respond to a report from ano...

 

Wave of bills in Salem a real threat

Oregonians – especially those in rural regions – should be acutely aware, after last year’s legislative session, that we have to pay attention to what’s going on in Salem. It isn’t easy. Even dedicated newspaper reporters who cover Salem...

 

Cap-and-Trade bill a Californiazation

Editor: Wake up, people! This Cap-and-Trade house bill is nothing but another Spotted Owl lie to stop any of the rural areas from living the way they are accustomed. Salem and its political animals managed to kill the logging industry as we knew it,...

 

Withholding name of arrested youth sets bad precedent for all

Last week, police arrested a 15-year-old boy for bringing a gun to Sweet Home High School. From our perspective, everyone did an outstanding job responding to this threat, details of which are in our report on page 1. Officials quickly identified...

 

Gun owners need to zero in on Salem

 Editor: Oregon’s Legislative Session began Monday, Feb. 3, and ends in 30 days. Citizens: Pay attention, get involved. Oregon anti-gunners have three bills to restrict Second Amendment rights. First up: Senate Bill 1538 (co-sponsor Sara Gelser,...

 

Recycling-based plastic promising

 Editor: After only five years of development an Israeli company, UBQ Materials (stands for “ubiquitous”), has patented a process that breaks down regular household waste such as dirty diapers, food scraps, garden trimmings, all plastics,...

 

Woodcarver's work demands attention

 Editor: In reference to the Jan. 25 article on Ray Maynard, I stopped at Herring’s Auto on 43rd and Main last fall, looking for something else, and was fascinated by Ray’s work displayed in their gift shop. His stuff should be the next exhibit...

 

Congratulations due to district

Sweet Home High School’s 13.5-percent bump in its graduation rate, from 70.83 percent in 2017-18 to 84.52 this past year, reported on page 1 of this issue, is a big deal that our community should take note of. Checking back over the past two...

 

Solutions needed in legislature

Editor: On Jan. 10 the legislature introduced LC19 – the newest version of HB 2020 Cap and Trade.  While many of us are still diving into the details, even with whatever supposed concessions they’ve made for rural Oregon, the bottom line is...

 

Hard lessons from a real-life tragedy

Sometimes it’s not fun to be a journalist, to witness and report on things that are uncomfortable, if not ugly. In the case with our story on page 1 about the sentencing of Gene Mayfield, it was “the saddest thing I’ve ever covered,” as...

 

New year, new laws, more to come

The Oregon Legislature may have convened back in the first half of 2019, but the results of the hundreds of bills passed back then are being felt now, as many new laws went into effect at midnight on Jan. 1, 2020. For some quick background, when...

 

Mandates not good policy for Oregonians

By Sen. Dennis Linthicum A recent Wall Street Journal book review, “When the Earth Had Two Moons,” by Erik Asphaug, starts with: “If you visited the surface of the Earth 4.5 billion years ago, you wouldn’t recognize it. The newly formed...

 

New year, new decade, new challenges

The new year means the holidays are over and it’s time to get back to business. For The New Era, that means starting what the folio on the front page says is our 91st year. We celebrated our 90th anniversary last fall, which is when the paper...

 

Peace, happiness start with virtue

It’s a crazy world out there. Anyone who has paid the slightest attention to the impeachment process in Washington can probably relate. Of course, we still have military conflict – in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, other assorted spots scattered acros...

 

Kids Christmas Store big success

Editor: The fifth annual Kids Free Christmas Store was a huge success again this year. On Saturday, Dec. 14, 147 kids 12 and under shopped for the relatives they live with. Over 825 gifts were selected by the kids. This year we knew Dutch Bros was...

 

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