Letters of June 9, 2022

Haskell frees criminals

Prosecutor Larry Haskell recently denounced “liberal judges” who freed dangerous criminals from prison. He spits out this fiction because he faces a tough re-election bid due to the racist statements of his wife and his own failed politicians and leaders; Haskell recommends freeing more criminals than anyone else.

According to records available from the Courts Administrator, Haskell filed 36,756 felony cases from 2015 to 2021. His office tried only 1,130 of those cases, a meager 3.1%. This means that Haskell dismissed or negotiated 97% of the felony cases he filed.

The May 18 spokesperson’s review gives examples of the deals Haskell is offering.

Michelle Anderson, arrested for shooting at the wheel. The judge set bail at $100,000; his standard sentence is 15 to 20 months in prison. Haskell reduced the charge and recommended the lowest possible sentence of three months, essentially freeing her from jail.

Savanna Merrill, arrested for assault with a firearm. The judge set bail at $250,000, but Haskell agreed to release her. Its standard range was 13 to 17 months plus potentially an additional six years to be armed. Haskell’s plea bargained the case for nonviolent charges and recommended 11 days in jail.

Shonto Pete, arrested for felony assault DV. The judge set bail at $10,000 and refused to lower it. The standard range was 53 to 60 months in prison. He already had eight assault convictions. Haskell negotiated a plea and recommended 87 days in jail, which freed Pete.

Put aside his rants and remember these real facts at election time.

Jeanne Pluth


Semi-automatic rifles must disappear

In the 1930s, the federal government basically banned fully automatic weapons due to the chaos caused by the gangsters who used them. Now is the time to ban semi-automatic rifles for the same reasons… except now it’s often children who are killed instead of lawmen or rival gangsters. I’m a Vietnamese infantry veteran with two purple hearts to prove it; I own two guns. I have no problem with hunters who use age-old sniper rifles or citizens who own handguns for protection. But semi-automatic assault rifles have to go. Their goal is to kill many people quickly… which has NO place in ANY civilian culture. They have become ridiculous symbols of power for boys of all ages, of public intimidation, and of danger to all of us. Here is my proposition :

1. Bolt action rifles are the only rifles available for sale, effective immediately.

2. Those who now own ARs – defined as any rifle with a magazine that is not bolt-action or pump action – cannot carry them in public, hunt with them, or use them remotely or elsewhere.

3. Those who use an AR in any felony will face a mandatory federal felony sentence in addition to any other felonies involved.

4. Those who now possess an AR are fully responsible for its misuse and will face a mandatory federal felony penalty unless they have already reported the theft of such a weapon to a legal authority.

Bob Gregson


Let’s be reasonable about weapons

Again we have dead school children, killed (again) by a madman with an automatic weapon. An AR-15. Assault rifle. Capable of firing bullet after bullet after bullet in rapid succession. But it’s not an illegal weapon, no. It seems that this killing machine can be obtained quite easily. For that is what it is – a military weapon, for use in WAR. Allow me to repeat: it is a weapon of WAR.

Once again we hear the words: “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families”. Oh good? Oh good? Is this the best we can do?

I’m mad. And I don’t know what to do with my anger. Surely we can do something. The Founders in the 18th century had no idea of ​​such a weapon of mass destruction. They loaded a single bullet into their musket, tamped it down with gunpowder, then fired. Perhaps if that was still the nature of the “weapons,” these children might have had a chance of survival. Instead, an animal mowed them down one by one.

We don’t have to give up our “God-given right” (for some) to own a gun for hunting or protection – but can we just be reasonable about what kind of weapon we allow?

Leslie A. Smith


I remember the truth

In response to “Remember the Truth” (May 9), I remember hearing about hanger surgery.

With all the polarization in politics, has anyone noticed a trend? Every time a race starts to heat up and promises are made, abortion is mentioned. We already have a law that contains federal restrictions to protect the most vulnerable and that was created from a “compromise”…by both sides. This suggests that when things get too tough, the party will play its wild card (abortion) to shake things up and guarantee them more votes. Is it to distract us from what politicians want to do without getting caught, especially since abortion is such a volatile issue?

A “bully” is an insecure person who cannot control their own, so reach out to control others. Women are probably the safest group to scapegoat since we are seen as not quite equal. We dissuade our children from this behavior but can adults act like this?

So women have the right to vote, but now it won’t be an equal vote.

We encourage our youth and soldiers to get mental health (suicide) help. And our women? If women’s right to have children is controlled (mental health problems), there will be many unwanted children. Unwanted children are abused. These scars reverberate through generations. Counselors and other professionals can testify to the devastation caused by domestic violence. Do we want unwanted children to be abused because principle is more important than reality?

In this country, we all have freely given choices. If we are given this choice, we are also given the adult responsibility to accept the free choices of others as well. If we’re so uncomfortable with the fact that others don’t think, act, or be different, maybe we need to move to a country dictated by a leader who controls how we believe and behave. Choose.

Are individual needs greater than us as a united nation?

Carol Echtenkamp


LBGTQ+ a choice?

Dubbed the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, the Florida State Legislature passed a law banning the teaching of sexual orientation (LBGTQ+) or gender identity in K-grades -3. Never mind that the Florida Department of Education says such a curriculum is not taught. So the Legislative Assembly is passing a law that only exists in fiery political rhetoric.

The bill assumes that having any orientation other than heterosexuality is a choice. My question to those who say it’s a choice is, “When did YOU make that choice?” The answer is almost always that they have NOT made a choice. Thus, they contradict their belief of “choice”.

Vocal homophobic leaders, especially pastors and therapists who have spoken out against gay/trans lifestyles, etc., have been discovered in same-sex relationships.

In CP, I fell in love with a girl. I didn’t think, “Is it going to be her or that little boy?” I have friends who have fallen in love with people of the same sex.

Biologically, sex is a spectrum/continuum, with those in the middle (1.7%) sometimes being impossible for a physician to determine. Sexual orientation is also a continuum. That’s what LBGTQ+ stands for. The plus represents undefined directions in the letters. People are very diverse.

These are orientations born with. Everyone’s job is to find their own and live their life in a fulfilling way. Adults must guide the youngest in this journey.

Robert P. Crosby

Former AASECT Certified Sex Educator


baby killer

A recent front page of The Spokesman-Review (May 12) included a photo of our Senator Patty Murray promoting the issue of maintaining the existing situation regarding the abortion issue Roe v. Wade. This question, from my point of view, is complicated, due to situations such as rape, incest or the continuation of a pregnancy which would result in the death of the mother or a malformation of the fetus.

But in a normal pregnancy, when a woman had the choice to prevent the pregnancy by not having sex or using multiple methods of contraception…then I believe abortion is a “baby killing” time.

Now I served my country in Vietnam and then came back through the Seattle air portal after serving as an army aviator as the chief warrant officer of the 220th Aviation Company in Danang attached to the Marine Corps and also serving Special Forces and the ARVN in February 1967. When I exited the plane with my fellow military associates, we were not greeted by a welcome sign, but by a crowd of young people, mostly young women carrying signs saying “baby killers” and the like. I NEVER killed babies, although I tried my best to eliminate as many North Vietnamese enemies from the battlefield as possible. These politicians who met us were of the same penchant as those who now want the right to kill their babies.

Who are the baby killers now, Senator Murray?

Norman S. MacPhee

nine thousand falls

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