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About The Siuslaw news. (Florence, Lane County, Or.) 1960-current | View Entire Issue (July 14, 2018)
| JULY 14, 2018
NED HICKSON , EDITOR
P.O. Box 10
Florence, OR 97439
| 541-902-3520 | NHICKSON @ THESIUSLAWNEWS . COM
The First Amendment
ongress shall make no law respecting an es-
tablishment of religion or prohibiting the
free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom
of speech, or of the press, or the right of the
people peaceably to assemble, and to petition
the Government for a redress of grievances.
“I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend.” —Thomas Jefferson (1800)
Copyright 2018 © Siuslaw News
Published every Wednesday and Saturday at 148 Maple St. in Florence, Lane County, Oregon.
A member of the National Newspaper Association and Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association.
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Box 10, Florence, OR 97439; phone 541-997-3441; fax 541-997-7979. All press releases may be sent
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Leiiers io ihe Ediior policy
Righis Under Fire
The letter to the Editor from Boom-
er Wright last Wednesday (July 11, 2018)
listed a number of our rights that may be
in jeopardy. Although I disagree with Mr.
Wright that Second Amendment rights are
in danger from corporations or the govern-
ment, he makes the argument that if the
Second Amendment is threatened, then
various other rights may be next.
Mr. Wright listed the following rights that
could be next on the proverbial chopping
block. I couldn’t agree more. In fact, this ad-
ministration is already going after many of
our rights. For example:
1. Free speech. Our free speech rights are
already being attacked by this president.
For example, his attacks on the media (with
the exception of FOX), as well as his verbal
assaults on lawful, peaceful protest of NFL
2. Women’s rights. Women’s rights are
under direct attack by this administration.
Trump has indicated that he wants to take
away a woman’s right to choose. He wants
to see Roe v. Wade overturned and his judi-
cial appointments reflect this. HUD raising
rates on public housing residents will af-
fect a large number of single mothers. This
president talks about and treats women in
degrading ways. This administration is De-
funding Planned Parenthood, which pro-
vides women with cancer screenings and
a multitude of women’s medical issues, not
just abortions. The WIC program funding
has been significantly cut by Trump’s bud-
3. Sexual orientation. Trump ordered
that all transgender service members be
discharged from the armed services. The
Trump administration also rescinded fed-
eral guidelines that gave equal access to
bathroom and other school facilities and
4. Religious affiliation. The Muslim Ban
is a prime example of this.
But the right to bear arms? No. He got a
$30 million donation from the NRA.
— Marybeth Marenco
Camp RYLA: Where future Leaders are made
(Editor’s Note: Viewpoint submissions on
this and other topics are always welcome as
part of our goal to encourage community
discussion and exchange of perspectives.)
Camp RYLA is a sophomore-only camp
that focuses on building the leaders
of tomorrow. RYLA stands for Rotary
Youth Leadership Academy. It is a six-
day long camp in which campers learn
skills in order to be good leaders, and
then apply those skills in challenge activities
that are designed for us to think outside the
This was the first of big three events I will
take part in this summer. It was also the first
time I have ever taken part in a Rotary event.
Here are three stories I have brought back
to share with you.
On the first day of camp, we were as-
signed into small groups of 12, known as
Species Groups. Each group had their sig-
nature handshake, as well as a counselor and
I was placed in the Starfish Species Group,
as indicated by the sticker behind my badge.
Our handshake was a side fist bump, fol-
lowed by a slurp at the end with our fingers
spread out to signify a starfish.
My counselor’s name was Michael and the
assistant counselor’s name was Jenny.
At first, it was a little weird, considering
that none of my classmates were in my spe-
cies group. One of the first things to start
our strong bond was by creating a skit for
the first RYLA show, a one-hour show fea-
turing RYLA campers showcasing their tal-
We decided to do Dancing With The
Starfish, a parody of Dancing With The
Stars. Four of us played judges, two played
the hosts, while the rest of us played the
dancers. We decided to dance to the mu-
sic “La Macarena,” then stop suddenly, and
then break out into a flossing dance move
For added humor, since starfish can re-
generate limbs, we decided to have one of
us fall out of the starfish formation for the
crowd to get an exaggerated reaction.
Before we went on stage, we were given
bad news that we could not get music from
one of our phones to play the song. Guess
who stepped up to sing out the song — me.
I didn’t know the words to the song, but I
did know the notes, beat and rhythm. The
only words I knew were “La Macarena,” so
I replaced the other words with random
words. Despite this, the audience still loved
the song and even laughed at the words. The
funniest line I can remember from that skit
was during our flossing, One of the hosts
By Ramiro Ramirez
Siuslaw High School Student
said, “I thought flossing was for teeth only!”
Overall, it was probably one of the best
skits from camp RYLA, if I do say so myself.
RYLA also introduced me to a new game
called Gaga Ball, a game with complicated
rules and as many as 45 players. The game
is crazy fun to play. In fact, I learned it so
quick, I became one of the prominent play-
ers of the game, even including a five-win
Gaga Ball can be thought of as a game
of strategy. You can either take risks to get
the ball, or avoid it and be one of the few to
make it to the end. Despite being crazy fun,
it can be dangerous as the arena surface is
gravel and I fell several times.
My favorite moment of this game was
making it into the finals by being aggressive
with the ball and avoiding it at times. When
it finally came down to the final 2, it was me
vs a cabin mate of mine. He was a tall guy,
and he was as good at the game as I was.
When it came to just the two of us, I waited
for the right moment for him to mess up.
Another cool thing from this was the
amount of support I was getting from the
spectators. Many didn’t know me at this
time, but now I was being known as a great
Gaga Ball player. In the end, I got him out
and everybody burst into cheers. Never in
my life had I ever had that much support
from so many people.
The last story I will share is the group
project we presented on the last day of
camp. This was known as “The Pitch.”
Since the first day of camp, every Species
Group had to come up with an idea that can
help benefit their communities. These proj-
ects can be taken back to our communities
and be applied.
We narrowed our ideas into something
we called The Smile Box, a medium-sized
box that can be transferred to homeless and
low-income families to give them gener-
al needs they may not have. This includes
a toothbrush, toothpaste, candy, sunscreen
and a pillow. We planned these boxes to be
found in food pantries as an addition to the
services those places provide. These boxes
can also be tailored to the family’s needs by
taking a survey when they enter the pantry.
The goal of The Smile Box is to offer
homeless people easier ways to access
general items they may not have, as well
as the fact that we want to improve the
sanitation in our communities as well.
When other Species Groups went up,
they shared other good ideas. One project
focused on fundraising in schools by having
students recycle their cans. Since aluminum
cans are redeemable for money, just think
about how much money the fundraiser can
build. It also teaches students to recycle
their items instead of littering or throwing
it into the garbage. Another idea focused on
an after-school program called “The Rise,”
which focuses on bringing a positive envi-
ronment to students living a hard life.
All the projects seemed to bring potential
to their communities if taken back home.
To summarize my experience, Camp
RYLA was a good camp to go to. The sched-
ule was a pretty fair balance of free time and
camp time. I would like to point out that
there was no cellular service at the camp,
which motivated the campers to find some
activities to do. All lessons in the camp were
well planned, and nicely done.
There were great times, such as the RYLA
show, and very low times as with The Line,
an event where we were asked questions
about negative factors in our life.
My Species Group mates were also a great
addition to my life, as I promised to keep
in touch with them as much as I can. We
worked together great in some activities as
climbing over a tall physical wall that rep-
resents our struggles in our life, trust falls
that encourage us to trust our groupmates
and several games.
I would like to dedicate this article to my
Species Group. Thank you for making our
group one of the strongest bonds at camp.
Camp RYLA has shown me many possi-
bilities that can be achieved when you are
a good leader. Now that the camp has fin-
ished, I get the honor to do a presentation
along with my classmates in front of the
Rotary members of Florence to show what
I learned at camp.
I have some good things in store for them.
The Siuslaw News welcomes letters to the editor as
part of a community discussion of issues on the local,
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Emal letters to:
WHERE TO WRITE
Pres. Donald Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown
160 State Capitol
900 Court St.
Salem, Ore. 97301-4047
Governor’s Citizens’ Rep.
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
U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio
2134 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
State Sen. Arnie Roblan
900 Court St. NE - S-417
Salem, OR 97301
State Rep. Caddy McKeown
900 Court St. NE
Salem, OR 97301
West Lane County
125 E. Eighth St.
Eugene, OR 97401