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Editorial: Mother's Day Cease Fire

I have pondered some of the recent vitriol that’s being hurled about and is accumulating out there on FaceBook, other social media, and the radio and television airwaves in the final days of the May Primary Election, and in addition to recoiling from the same, I wondered; what would our moms think?

Now, to be clear, as a forty-plus year veteran of political campaigns in Oregon, from local commissioner races,to congressional and presidential campaigns, I have seen almost everything there is to see in the way of campaign tactics. I have in fact, in many cases, been responsible for directing some of what goes on in the way of messaging and in creating a campaign strategy and media program. And one thing that is absolutely undeniable is negative campaign tactics work.

I can hear the sucking in of breath now, and can envision the shaking of heads in disdain, as you mumble, if just to yourself, I hate that!

Yeah, I get it, me too! But it doesn’t change the reality. That said, one thing I have always maintained as an unwavering, non- negotiable campaign principle, both in governing myself, and in the directing of the candidates who have hired me, is that an opposing candidate’s record, and their public statements are fair game, negative or not. It’s the record, and usually the most honest way to assess or measure a candidate beyond the sound bites, and stump speeches. How did they vote? Who did they support? What are their public policy positions, especially those positions, delivered in public? Those are the facts, and they are not disputable.

Oh, there is one other criteria for selecting the candidate you can support, which was ingrained in me from very early on by my mom, and later, mother-in-law too, the principle that you should look into who is supporting the candidate. Hmmm? It tells quite a lot really. I could give plenty of examples, but you know exactly what I’m saying.

So on the other side of “negative campaigning” is the flat out false, vicious, personal, ad hominem attacks, based not at all upon someone’s actual record, or public statements, but crafted (or made up out of thin air) with the express purpose of defaming the person and derailing their campaign. Oh, this is an art, or better a craft, that some very high paid consultants employ all too frequently. And in today’s instant media, social networking, etc. it has become even more deceptive, and effective than ever!

One factor that is absolutely essential in the deploying of said negative campaign tactics and ads, is the timing; holding them to the last minute, to such a time when the veracity of the charges cannot be determined, and even when they are, and are proven to be false, the damage caused by the smear is done and cannot be undone.

But back to our moms for just a minute. Do you know that research has shown that every single human being alive today has one, a mom that is. Sadly some have departed, in my case, just the day after Mother’s Day two years ago. I still miss her! But we all have moms, and some of you, statistics say about 50.6% of the world’s population, are at least potential moms; you not only have a mom, but are, or may become moms too!

Motherhood is amazing! It is truly a magnificent design by our creator. And this past week something spectacular occurred in Iowa that honors moms, and would-be moms. It is the Bill signed into law by Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds, entitled the “Heartbeat Bill” which says once a pre-born baby has a discernable heartbeat, they cannot be killed.

We are living in a time where the tide is beginning to turn, and it is turning if favor of motherhood, and of life!

President Trump just issued a statement that declares Abortion is Not a Human Right. This was delivered in a State Department report on human rights, April 24, 2018. He is the first president to participate in the March for Life parade, and has put Planned Parenthood on notice that their days of federal taxpayer monies are numbered.

So as we come into the final stretch of this primary campaign season here in Oregon, and throughout the nation, I thought it would be a fitting way to honor our moms, by calling a Mother’s Day ceasefire on the hostile campaign rhetoric.

Ask yourselves this question; if the mother of the candidate whom you are attacking was sitting in the room when you are offering your perspective on their son or daughter, would you use the same language and tone? Really, would you? How would your remarks about their child make them feel? Would it cause them to smile, and glow with pride and satisfaction? If not, perhaps we can do better. And this ‘mom factor’ applies to you candidates speaking ill of your opponent’s character, and getting nasty about it, and even dishonest. What would your mom say if she was watching, or if she knew?

I am reminded of the truce on Christmas Day during World War I, when the British and German soldiers put down their arms, and shared some smokes, some coffee, and some Christmas cheer. Let’s do this at least on Mother’s Day, and have a political ceasefire.

And then, even perhaps as we rejoin the battle, we can forget what the commanding generals of the warring factions want, and remember that while some things are definitely worth fighting for, we are all human still and we all have moms who we should at least try to make proud in our actions.


Ballot Initiative Threatens 2nd Amendment Rights Sheriff Hanlin says “Not on My Watch”

Roseburg, OR-Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin has built a reputation as a ‘Constitutional Sheriff, and has been very public about his stance in being true to his oath of office, particularly when it comes to the Second Amendment.

The three-term Sheriff first joined the DCSO 28 years ago. Prior to his election as Sheriff he had served in a number of capacities including head of DINT, Douglas Interagency Narcotics Team and Commander of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Detectives division. 

As Douglas County Sheriff, Hanlin was first thrust into the national spotlight five years ago, when he sent a letter to then Vice President Joe Biden informing the Obama Administration that he would not enforce any proposed federal laws that violate the U.S. or Oregon Constitutions. From that letter sent to V.P. Biden January 15, 2013, Hanlin stated; “It is my position as Sheriff of Douglas County, Oregon, that I will refuse to participate in, nor tolerate enforcement actions against citizens that are deemed unconstitutional.

In the ‘Biden letter’ Hanlin also cited the basis for his refusal to enforce the then proposed Obama administration’s additional restrictions on gun owners. “The United States Supreme Court has ruled that when a Sheriff chooses to enforce an unconstitutional directive, he is violating his Constitutional Oath. 

I will NOT violate my Constitutional Oath.” Hanlin was joined by Sheriffs nationwide, many of whom were members or supporters of the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association, who address law enforcement issues such as Second Amendment, enforcement jurisdiction, and federal control of lands, from a constitutional basis.

The Douglas County Sheriff’s second major foray into Second Amendment protection for county residents came in 2015 with the Oregon legislature’s passage of SB941. Hanlin testified against the bill at the State Capitol in Salem. Senate Bill 941 passed in the Senate by a vote of 17 to 13 along strict party lines, and passed in the House by a vote of 32 to 28 with three House democrats voting against the bill and no republicans in support. The bill, which took effect May 11, 2015, requires that any private gun sales between parties be a registered transaction and a background check completed prior to transfer. In Hanlin’s testimony he said, “I am certain that SB 941 would NOT prevent criminals from acquiring firearms.” 

Upon the Bill’s passage Sheriff Hanlin once again took the lead in defense of Second Amendment rights for Douglas County residents due to the “infringement” on the rights of citizens to own and transfer ownership of their firearms. “This law makes criminals out of otherwise law-abiding citizens” said Hanlin. He added that the law is completely unenforceable, and is an unfunded mandate for the local jurisdictions charged with enforcement. “We simply do not have the resources in terms of staff to administer the program, but even if the state provided the funding, I still couldn’t support it.” 

The following is from an August 19, 2015 memorandum from Sheriff Hanlin to all Douglas County Sheriff’s staff:

Effective immediately,the following policy shall be adhered to in regards to complaints involving SB 941. Any calls for service, complaints or issues involving the private transfer of firearms, specifically, those transfers of privately owned firearms that are described under SB 941, shall not be investigated or responded to by this agency. Any suspected violations of SB 941 shall be referred to the Sheriff.

This agency shall take no part in sting operations nor shall we provide or give information upon request to other agencies regarding the sale or transfer of firearms as defined by SB 941. SB 941 violations also come with a pretty hefty penalty, the first offence is a Class A misdemeanor, the second is a Class C felony, which means if convicted the “guilty” could not own a firearm of any kind and would lose their right to vote.

Asked how many arrests have been made since SB 941 passed Hanlin replied “not one investigation, not one arrest. Now, with the potential of a ballot measure in Oregon coming before the voters in November of 2018, which proposes to ban the ownership of so-called assault weapons, it looks as though Sheriff Hanlin is once again stepping into the fray.

A group of citizens have put together a County Ordinance, which has already passed in four counties, entitled the Second Amendment Preservation Ordinance (SAPO), and is coming before the Douglas County Board of Commissioners as a scheduled item on the agenda on April 25. 

According to Board Chair Gary Leif the commissioners are in receipt of the proposed ordinance and are considering a variety of options following the public hearing on the 25th. One option would be to adopt an ordinance provided a majority of the three commissioners approve the language, while another option would be to approve placement of the proposed county ordinance on the November ballot, allowing the voters to weigh in on the new law.

According to Section 2 C of SAPO, “any regulation of the right to keep and bear arms or ancillary firearms rights that violate the Second, Ninth, or Tenth Amendments to the Constitution of the United States of America, or Article 1, sections 27 and 33 of the Constitution of the State of Oregon, as articulated herein, shall be regarded by the People on and in Douglas County as unconstitutional; a transgression of the Supreme Law of the Land and its spirit of Liberty, and therefore by necessity void ab initio.” And any such laws shall be deemed unenforceable. Further the SAPO ordinance would provide for enforcement provisions for any violations, including stiff fines.

Sheriff Hanlin said he is reviewing the language of current version of SAPO and that he had been asked to look at a similar measure about a year ago, which he said didn’t have enough “teeth”, meaning ability to enforce. “What I did not want was something that was just symbolic.” The new version has teeth, in fact provides for fines per occurrence up to $4,000 for any enforcement that violates the ordinance.

This SAPO ordinance may become crucial, organizers believe, due to Initiative Petition 43 being circulated statewide which would ban certain types of firearms and so-called high capacity magazines or ammo cartridges that are currently legal under Oregon law, and require they be turned in to the government, disabled permanently, or taken out of the state.

There is also a provision in IP 43, under very limited circumstances, which allows someone to “register” the guns/ accessories they already owned prior to the law’s passage, but they would not be able to acquire any new firearms proscribed under the law.

As far as Sheriff Hanlin is concerned IP43 is another clear- cut issue of adhering to his constitutional oath of office, to uphold and defend the constitution; “I could never support this initiative.” Among the many problems Hanlin sees in the language of the measure is the definition of assault weapons. He even took issue with the opening paragraph in Section 2 “The people of the State of Oregon find and declare that a reduction in the availability of assault weapons and large capacity ammunition magazines will promote the public health and safety of the residents of this state.”  “This is not a statement supported by facts” said Hanlin, going on to cite the example of the horrific shooting at UCC October 1, 2015. “We lost nine precious lives that day, but not one ‘assault’ weapon was used.” 

Kevin Starrett, Executive Director of Oregon Firearms Federation told the Beacon they are being flooded with phone calls and e-mails from everyday Oregonians wanting to know how they can stop this attack on their Second Amendment rights. He said that OFF has experienced an “unprecedented response from gun owners”, the likes of which he said he hasn’t seen in over 40 years of working on Second Amendment issues. Not even the backlash over Oregon SB 941.

The Oregon State Sheriffs Association (OSSA) is analyzing IP43 and may vote on it within the next month or so according to Hanlin, and he feels the vast majority of the 36 Sheriffs in Oregon will stand with him and oppose IP43.

Other Oregon Sheriffs have already gone public with their opposition to IP43.

Sheriff Shane Nelson of Deschutes County made the following statement:

“As your Sheriff, I took an oath to support the Constitution of the United States of America and the State of Oregon. In addition to this, I swore to perform the duties of Deschutes County Sheriff to the best of my ability. 

I support and defend the Second Amendment and oppose IP 43.  

I serve the 190,000 citizens of our great county and am charged with public safety.   

 Our office has issued over 14,000 concealed handgun licenses  and I firmly believe that every responsible and accountable law abiding citizen who wants to legally own a firearm should do so. Firearms have their lawful place in society and are an important tool in personal protection and ensuring public safety in our county.” 

 Jefferson County Sheriff Jim Adkins weighed in early in opposition to IP43 a couple weeks ago. On his FaceBook post he wrote; “These laws will not help protect me, my deputies or the public” adding “These laws, and any law restricting any type of arms, will only make us weaker, making ‘good people’ law breakers and ‘bad people’ stronger.” 

 When talking about the threat posed by IP 43 Sheriff Hanlin said “We have nothing to gain by sitting back and waiting, we need to be proactive.”


Roseburg High Student Sent Home for Promoting Abstinence

Roseburg, OR-A Junior at Roseburg High School was ordered to go home to change his shirt or turn the shirt inside out, because it was deemed offensive and a violation of Roseburg School District Policy. What was so offensive on the shirt, you might ask?

The black long- sleeve tee-shirt was printed on the front with the words VIRGINITY ROCKS.

The student in question has requested that their name not be included in this article out of fear that the same school administration that sent him home to change, might retaliate if they discuss the issue further with the press.

Linda Jacobson, a local real estate broker, grandmother, and legal guardian of the “offending student” said after she posted the incident to FaceBook she has had over 100 responses, the vast majority of which she said are not only supportive of her grandchild’s position, and the student’s right to wear the shirt, but are outraged by the school’s actions. “I’m floored by the schools’ decision on this” said Jacobson.

When speaking with her grandson, she was told that he had asked a couple of teachers the week before he wore it to school if it would be okay. One told him they didn’t see any problem, the other said they’d have to see the shirt.

A week later when his shirt arrived, he was excited about the purchase he had made and proudly put it on and headed for school. On the day in question, Monday April 9, at about 7:30 AM, he asked first thing about his shirt and was told by Mr. Bogardus, Assistant Principal, that it was okay for him to wear it, while another teacher told him to go see Mrs. Weber, the Principal.

Principal Weber told him “absolutely not”. He was then given the option of turning it inside out, selecting a shirt from a sort of community bin, or going home to change. He went home and changed his shirt.

We contacted RHS to get a comment on the incident and the Principal, Jill Weber, was not available for comment, although she did send an e-mail later that evening citing that she couldn’t discuss the student’s attire but cited school district policy governing dress code.

We obtained a copy of the dress code on the districts website, which is document JFCA. The language from the “Student Dress and Grooming” code under section 1 e. states; “Dress and grooming shall not be such as to disrupt the teaching-learning process”. So the question being asked by the student’s family is how could the tee- shirt rise to the level of “disrupting the teaching process”?

Especially because the first class of the day had barely gotten underway, so there was no way to assert any disruptive effect, other than sending the student to the principal’s office.

Comments from parents and friends on Facebook include; “I think it is great and it takes a man to wear it”, “How disgraceful! I’ll bet if it said Abortion Rocks it would have been acceptable! This infuriates me!”, and one posted “There’s a kid who wears an “orgasm donor” shirt. Not sent home. That’s messed up.”

As to the “offensive shirt” which was ordered on-line for $30.00 from a company named Danny Duncan, it is a very simple design (see photo) with the slogan “Virginity Rocks” screen printed in gold lettering on the front of a long-sleeve black tee-shirt. It would appear this is a statement on the part of the person wearingthe shirt that sexual abstinence and moral purity is a desirable condition for any individual. But because the wearer in this case happened to be a 16 year old High School Junior, the statement also has special meaning as it upholds Oregon statutory law, which makes sexual activity, even if consensual, illegal under the age of 17.

The Roseburg High School motto on their letterhead reads “RHS is a place of opportunity to attain knowledge and become productive, independent citizens who live PRIDE (Positive, Respectful, Involved, Determined, and Encouraging)!” [Bold italics added for emphasis]

Some might ask whether the student in question, exercising their First Amendment rights, achieved every one of those qualities the school aspires to.


David Jaques speaks at Trump Rally


NW Stewart Pkwy Overpass

According to eyewitnesses around 10:36 am on NW Stewart Pkwy overpass, a blue 4 door late model Honda sedan was seen spinning out of control before making contact with a city bus in the opposite lane.  Both female driver and male passenger look to be in their early 20’s.