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About The Siuslaw news. (Florence, Lane County, Or.) 1960-current | View Entire Issue (Sept. 19, 2015)
❘ SEPTEMBER 19, 2015
P.O. Box 10
Florence, OR 97439
B Y D AVE R OBINSON
Special to the Siuslaw News
etting a kit together is a lot like
planning for a camping trip. Let’s
see, we’re going to be gone for six
days so we’ll have to take food for 18
meals, plus snacks, S’mores ingredients and
drinks. Then comes the sleeping bags, extra
clothes, tent, camping stove and on and on
and on. The only difference between pack-
ing for a camping trip and preparing for a
major disaster is with the latter, we really
don’t know how long to plan for.
Those living in Hurricane Sandy territory
were still without some services up to 60
days following the arrival of the storm. By
that time FEMA had arrived and other serv-
ices, including food were brought in from
outside the area.
I have read that grocery stores in the
region were sold out within three to four
hours. There were similar reports from
other stores dealing in camping gear and
supplies. Someone recently approached me
and asked about food resources locally.
Although there are a few food banks in
the area, they really are not set up to serve
our entire region in the event an earthquake
strikes our region. The food banks receive
RYAN CRONK , EDITOR
❘ 541-902-3520 ❘
supplies either from donated sources, pro-
gram funding from various agencies that
can be affected by the ebb and flow of
available money or the generosity of local
food drives and private individuals. These
food banks routinely provide groceries to
families in need in our communities. There
is no cache of groceries in our county set
aside specifically to be distributed in the
event of a disaster.
Back in the Civil Defense days of the
1950s to 1960s, there were some resources
on hand to be “activated” in case of enemy
attack. There was an entire military field
hospital stored in one of the buildings at the
North Bend Airport. This unit contained
everything, with the exception of medica-
tions and staff, needed to set up a Mobile
And Surgical Hospital (MASH). That unit
was dismantled sometime in the late 1970s.
There are currently no government (or pri-
vate) warehouses full of food in our area to
be distributed in case of disaster.
So now we’re back to the “YOYO”
scene: You’re On Your Own! Building a
pantry doesn’t require a huge extra outlay
of funds. Start by watching the sales. Take
advantage of the “buy one, get one” bar-
gains. One lady wrote to me and bragged
she had saved $7,000 in a year’s time by
using coupons, online bargains and shop-
ping the sales. The side benefit was she had
built up a very tidy stockpile of groceries as
she did so.
If money is no object, there are literally
hundreds (or more) websites selling disaster
preparedness food supplies. You can order
freeze-dried, dehydrated, canned or a com-
bination of all the above. Some even offer
free shipping. A word of caution, all the
experts recommend storing food that you
are accustomed to eating. During times of
emergency, your body is already stressed
and introducing an entirely foreign diet
could result in some unpleasant gastric dis-
Dave Robinson is the postmaster in
Bandon, Ore., and author of “Disaster Prep
for the Rest of Us.” He may be contacted at
email@example.com. Visit his
website for more disaster preparedness tips,
The United States of America Vietnam War
Commemoration was instituted by the U.S.
Government under the auspices of the
Department of Defense.
The National POW/MIA Recognition Day
is observed across the nation on third Friday of
September each year, to pause to remember
the sacrifices and service of those who were
prisoners of war (POWs), as well as those
who are missing in action (MIA) and their
Presently, there are 7.2 million living
Vietnam veterans out of the 9 million who
served on active duty in the U.S. Armed
Forces from Nov. 1, 1955 through May 17,
The Vietnam War Commemoration will
continue through Veterans Day 2025.
There are 1,741 American personnel listed
by the Defense Department’s Office as miss-
ing and unaccounted for from the Vietnam
War, as of April 2009.
According to the National League of
Families, about 90 percent of those people still
missing were lost in Vietnam or areas of Laos
and Cambodia under Vietnam’s wartime con-
The POW/MIA flag symbolizes the United
States’ resolve to never forget POWs or those
who served their country in conflicts and are
Newt Heisley designed the flag, which fea-
tures the silhouette of a young man. Heisley
based his design on his son, who was medical-
ly discharged from the military.
As Heisley looked at his returning son’s
gaunt features, he imagined what life was
like for those behind barbed wire on foreign
shores. He sketched his son’s profile as
the new flag’s design was created in his
The flag features a white disc bearing a
black silhouette of a man, a watchtower with a
guard on patrol and a strand of barbed wire.
White letters are typed above the disc, spelling
out POW and MIA. A white star separates the
words. Below the disc is a black and white
wreath with the motto: “You are not forgot-
Thank you for your service. You are not for-
Gun control no joke
Boomer Wright makes an argument for
knife control (“Knife Control” Sept. 9, 2015),
satirically proposing that all knives be locked
away to keep them out of the hands of people
who could hurt themselves.
A pretty good joke and not without merit —
in an earlier time and different place.
According to tradition, despondent samurai
used a knife to commit Seppuku, ritual sui-
cide, as a way out of despair.
Today, however, the Center for Disease
Control (CDC) says that for 20,000 depressed
Americans a year, Seppuku knives have given
way to readily available firearms.
Unlike traditional Seppuku, the very nature
of contemporary suicide is impulsive. A stag-
gering 71 percent of people attempting suicide
do so within an hour after making the decision.
The Brady Center’s “The Truth About
Suicide and Guns” tells us that suicide by
firearm is two times more successful than
hanging and three times more successful than
poison. Suicide by drug overdose, the most
popular method, succeeds only 2 percent of
But with a gun, injury is instantaneous.
No time for reconsideration or medical
intervention: Death results 91 percent of the
According to the CDC data, Oregon has the
second highest suicide rate in the country.
In 2012, twice as many Oregonians killed
themselves than died in vehicle crashes.
Oregon’s youth suicide rate has been higher
than the national rate for decades. It is the sec-
ond leading cause of death among Oregonians
aged 10 to 24.
Department of Health statistics indicate that
16 percent of eighth-graders and 14 percent of
eleventh-graders reported seriously consider-
Hundreds of youths a year ages 10 through
17 are treated at hospital emergency rooms for
failed suicide attempts.
Nationally, suicide is the third leading cause
of death among youth, resulting in approxi-
mately 4,600 deaths a year.
A Harvard study shows that 82 percent of
teenage suicides by firearms are done with
guns found in their homes.
Suicide is a complicated problem. As is gun
control. But, the one is exacerbated by the
Easy access to guns, a New York Times edi-
torial points out, “presents an irresistible
temptation in a critical moment of despair.”
Mr. Wright’s solution to the “knife prob-
lem” may be whimsical, but if applied to
firearms, might just lessen the suicide prob-
lem. And that’s no joke.
MOMENTS IN TIME
The History Channel
• On Sept. 26, 1580, English seaman
Francis Drake returns to England, becoming
the first British navigator to sail around the
world. Drake had set out from England on
Dec. 13, 1577, with five ships on a mission to
raid Spanish holdings on the Pacific coast of
the New World.
• On Sept. 27, 1869, in Kansas, Ellis
County sheriff Wild Bill Hickok responds to a
bar brawl and kills one man. Weeks later he
killed a second man in the name of law
enforcement. While his brutal ways were
effective, local citizens were less than
impressed. At the next election Hickok was
• On Sept. 22, 1953, the world’s first four-
level interchange opens in Los Angeles at the
intersection of the Harbor, Hollywood,
Pasadena and Santa Ana freeways — 32 lanes
of traffic weaving in eight directions at once.
• On Sept. 23, 1969, the trial for eight anti-
war activists charged with violent demonstra-
tions at the 1968 Democratic National
Convention opens in Chicago. The trial turned
into a circus as the defendants used the court
to attack President Richard Nixon, the war,
racism and oppression.
• On Sept. 25, 1978, a Pacific Southwest
Airlines 727 jet collides in mid-air with a
small plane over San Diego, killing 153 peo-
ple. The Cessna’s student pilot did not comply
with air controllers’ instruction to keep the
plane below 3,500 feet altitude.
• On Sept. 21, 1989, the Senate Armed
Forces Committee unanimously confirms
President George H. Bush’s nomination of
Army Gen. Colin Powell as chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff. Powell became the first
black American to achieve the nation’s highest
• On Sept. 24, 1996, bestselling author
Stephen King releases two new novels at
once. “Desperation” was released under
King’s name, while “The Regulators” was
published under his pseudonym, Richard
L ETTERS TO THE
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Libelous and anonymous letters as well
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All submissions become the property of
Siuslaw News and will not be returned.
Copyright 2015 © Siuslaw News
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EDITOR @ THESIUSLAWNEWS . COM
Pres. Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
TTY/TDD Comments: 202-456-6213
Gov. Kate Brown
160 State Capitol
900 Court St.
Salem, OR 97301-4047
Governor’s Citizens’ Rep.
Message Line 503-378-4582
U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden
221 Dirksen Senate Office Bldg
Washington, DC 20510
U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley
313 Hart Senate Office Bldg
Washington, DC 20510
State Rep. Caddy McKeown
900 Court St. NE
Salem, OR 97301
U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio (4th Dist.)
2134 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
State Sen. Arnie Roblan (Dist. 5)
900 Court St. NE - S-417
Salem, OR 97301
West Lane County Commissioner
125 E. Eighth St.
Eugene, OR 97401