Great American Conversations
                    With The Alumni of RHS
                 Issue 99 ~ October 29, 2000

        "Kindness is the golden chain by which 
          society is bound together."  -Goethe


       Phony Environmentalists
       Brad Wear, '71

       Parenting and Censors
       Chuck Monasmith (65)

       Because We Have The Freedom
       Linda McKnight (65)  

       Harry Potter For President
       Linda McKnight (65)

       Intelligent, Eloquent, Loving.
       Dave Doran (72)

       Wow, Some SANDBOX!
       Anna Durbin,'69

       God Doesn't Make Junk
       Linda Reining Pitchford  (64)

       Can We Ask That Question In 
       The SANDBOX?
       Tedd Cadd (66)


Subj:   Phony Environmentalists
From:   Brad Wear, '71, 
Richardson, TX.

I recently returned from a week long hunting trip to
 Washington State.  I hunted both birds and deer on
 the Eastern side of the mountains.  What
 absolutely amazed me was the fire damage in the
 South central part of the state, particularly around
 the Bickleton area.  They sustained 11 fires this
 summer 5 lightening strikes, and 6 man made fires. 
 The devastation is beyond comprehension.  The
 sad fact is that the state bureaucrats who are pulled
 and pushed by the environmentalists are refusing to
 reseed the burned areas and want a "natural return
 of the land."  I had the opportunity to meet several
 of the local "PETA, and soil conservationist's"
 advocates in the area while I was in Bickleton. 
 None of these so called environmentalists had even
 been into the burn area, other than to drive down
 the roads that crisscross the area.  The fires in
 several areas were so hot they burned the root
 structure of the trees that at one time populated
 the area.  There is nothing, and I mean nothing to
 anchor the soil in the area.  Dirt in some areas was
 over ankle deep.  Where is this going during the
 first heavy rain?  This is the watershed of the
 Columbia River.  The canyons I was in are less
 than six miles from the Columbia.  Tons of silt and
 top soil will flood into the river and cause massive
 natural pollution.  The fact that the local state
 employees of the soil conservation district have not
 even ventured into these burn areas to formulate a
 plan is criminal.  Aerial reseeding or better yet pre
 germinated grass matting is essential at this time.

I think it would be interesting to see what "clean
 water" candidates are even aware of the potential
 time bomb that is ticking away in the that specific

The lone PETA activist was so uninformed it was
 amazing.  There is no food in the burned off area,
 yet the deer are still "yarding up" in their old
 territories.  We saw in excess of 50 deer milling
 around in these burned areas and judging by the
 established game trails they are not leaving the
 region.  When they do it will force them onto
 tracts of land that will support maybe in a good
 year half the deer population that will inhabit it. 
 When I posed the question of: If the land will
 support 10 deer, and 11 deer live on it, how many
 will die of starvation?  The usual answer is arrived
 at by simple math of only 1.  Error, all will die. 
 Unlike humans where one noble person might step
 forward and sacrifice their life for the good of the
 group.  Deer will eat until nothing is left and then
 starve to death.  The PETA person could not or
 would not grasp this concept.  By and large I think
 these people are well meaning, but they need to
 walk the land, observe the conditions, and look at
 the impact of their "perfect world" edicts.

To: Paul Ratsch,'58
Paul, I don't know what percentage of the oil
 refined for America is processed in Texas,
 specifically the Houston area, but I bet it would be
 significant.  I bet that you would be the loudest
 whiner if they cut back any production and drove
 your fuel costs through the roof.  You can't have it
 both ways.  You want the fuel, you get the
 pollution.  It's also interesting to note that neither
 candidate is slamming California for their
 pollution.  I was in San Jose, CA three weeks ago
 and they deemed it a good day.  You couldn't see
 the mountains.  But that's OK, it's a key state for
 both, and they don't want to offend anyone. 
 Starting teacher pay in Texas $30K, better than
 Police or firemen, but that's OK, they're not a
 political issue.

Water pollution in Texas, some of the worst water
 I've ever seen.  There are only three rivers I would
 swim in, Comal, Guadeloupe, and Brazos.  The
 others are full of natural pollution, soil run off. 
 There are only Two, yes TWO, natural lakes in
 Texas.  Everything else is man made, dam a creek
 form a lake.  The only problem is they usually are
 only an average depth of 4 ft.  Combine that with
 100 plus days of 100 plus degree heat and you've
 got polluted water.  Look at Toledo Bend Lake,
 90 miles long 20 miles wide, average depth 4 ft.
 with a water temperature of 86 degrees.  Quality? 
 No, but what are you going to do about it?  Breach
 the dams?  Yeah, right.  

                    - Brad Wear,'71,

Subj:    Parenting and Censors
From:   Chuck Monasmith (65)

A reply to Jenny (Smart) Page  

Must I be responsible for the perception others take
 of my words?  Yes, I must.  Unfortunately for me,
 you and others have perceived that my words
 about your willingness to censor books was a
 personal attack on your parenting skills.  That was
 not my intent. It was my intent to be critical of
 your opinion that censorship is a justified action. I
 apologize to you for the heat of my rhetoric and
 my passion for allowing uncensored reading
 causing you offense.  My apology is sincere, I hope
 that you will accept it.

If it is at all possible, I'd like to try and get the
 discussion back on track.  Let's leave out parenting
 skills, drug use, irresponsible social behavior etc. 
 The topic is censorship.  History has many
 examples where censorship of reading materials
 has been negative.  Beginning with the Catholic
 Church censoring the books of Copernicus,
 teaching the earth was not the center of the
 universe and on and on.  Where has censoring
 reading material been of benefit to any society?  

                 Chuck Monasmith (65)


Subj:   Because We Have The Freedom
From:   Linda McKnight (65)

An excerpt from The Sunday Oregonian October
 22, 2000.  Questions and answers to J. K.
 Rowling, author of The Harry Potter series.  ON
 CENSORSHIP:  "I really hate censorship.  I find it
 objectionable.  I personally think that they're very 
 mistaken.  I think these are very moral books and 
 I think it's a very shortsighted thing. 
 Shortsighted in the sense that if you try hard to
 portray goodness without showing that the reverse
 is evil and without showing how great it is to resist
 that..well, that's always been my feeling about

  "You find magic, witchcraft, and wizardry in all
 sorts of classic children's books.  Where do you
 start?  Are you going to start with 'The Wizard of
 Oz?'  These people are trying to protect children
 from their own imagination."  

Also, I was too old for Barbies, I was baby-sitting
 when girls were playing with Barbies.  What is
 wrong with Barbie????? Oh yes, I guess it is
 because she is anorexic.  But, the new Barbie isn't
 that way.  I am sorry, but I truly feel sorry for
 Jenny Smart's children. To grow to old age and
 never play with a Barbie and have such an
 opinionated mother.....Wonder which one of her
 kids will become Hari Krishna, or form their own
 even more revolting band than Marilyn Manson. 
 How many people out there have even heard
 Marilyn Manson's music?  To put that in the same
 context as sweet, little poor abused child, Harry
 Potter.  Oh well, that is the part that is so great
 about the United States of America.  We can say
 and do just about anything we want to because we
 have the freedom to do so.   

                    - Linda McKnight (65)

Subj:   Harry Potter For President
From:  Linda McKnight (65)

Thank you so much, Al Parker, for this place where
 we can sound off.  I had an additional thing to add,
 from the newspaper.

Another excerpt from The Sunday Oregonian of
   October 22, 2000. (Commentary section)

       "If I had to pick, I'd pick Bush, and not
 necessarily by default; I know I don't support what
 the other team is about."  
             -  Marilyn Manson, rock singer
           and minister of the Church of Satan
                       (New York Post)

Could it be that George W. Bush is the antichrist? 
 Isn't it great that we have such freedom in this
 country?  Be sure to cast your ballot for your


   (Linda McKnight - 65 - with tongue in cheek.)


Subj: Wow, Some SANDBOX!
Re: The SANDBOX Issue 97
From:   Anna Durbin, 69

Wow, Some SANDBOX!  If we could all be
 parents like Peggy Johnson, this world would be a
 better place.  I hope I can tell my children the same
 things when they turn out differently from
 whatever dreams I may have entertained for them. 
 If you need any extra daughters and want to adopt,
 I am ready.  Thanks for sharing your mother-love
 with us.  

I was so proud when my daughter told me that one
 of her now ex-friends at school commented to her,
 "Why are you hanging out with X?  Her parents
 are lesbians, you know," and my daughter's
 response was: "So what?"  I hope the day comes
 when people can be comfortable enough with their
 own sexuality that they will not have to fear and
 hate gay people.  Although I have been married to
 the same man for over 24 years now, I can truly
 say that my life has been enriched by every gay and
 lesbian friend I have.  Our three daughters
 blessedly feel the same way.  This world will be a
 better place when all of us can stop hating and
 fearing "the other."  When you get down to it, that
 hate and fear come from our own feelings of fear
 about ourselves.  

And thanks to the other Sandboxers for the
 amazing poem and for the Urban Legend Cites. 
 It's great to learn things this way.  

                - Anna Durbin, 69


Subj:   Intelligent, Eloquent, Loving.
From:   Dave Doran (72)

Re: Peggy Lewis Johnson's thoughts on gayness, 
That was the most intelligent, eloquent, loving and
 thoughtful piece I've ever read on the 'difficulty'
 some find with homosexuality. [SB Issue 97] Your
 simple piece debunks a thousand years of 'God's
 Law' nonsense and 'Lifestyle Choice' idiocy. Where
 the science of homosexuality still finds
 stubbornness, your heartfelt response cannot ever
 be refuted. Very good indeed!

                       - Dave Doran (72)


Subj:   God Doesn't Make Junk
From:   Linda Reining Pitchford  (64)   
Bakersfield, CA

re:  alternative lifestyles

"God doesn't make junk."  I believe that, and I also
 believe He will not condemn a homosexual to
 eternal damnation.  Now before "feathers get
 ruffled," I am not saying homosexual's are junk.  I 
 just mean that He created all of us!  And I do not
 believe that they "choose" their lifestyle.  Why
 would they choose a lifestyle that brings them
 pain, shame, ridicule, and sometimes, the loss of
 their family's love????? As for teaching tolerance
 of their lifestyle in schools-----if it helps, WHY 
 NOT?  If you are worried that by teaching it, it will
 make others become "that way," it won't.  I have
 no medical evidence to prove this, but I believe
 something happens during puberty and things just
 go "haywire."  

               Linda Reining Pitchford  (64)


Subj: Can We Ask That Question In 

From:   Tedd Cadd (66)

Since so many things are out of bounds for The Alumni
Sandstorm, I wonder what is out of bounds for THE

One of the problems I have in contributing to the AS is
that some of my memories of Richland are not exactly
happy ones and certainly go against the "growing up in
a time and place where we were safe" things I read
there.  No doubt some, even most, were safe.  But not
all of us.  I've often wondered if there were others
who know how dangerous Richland was in the 50s and
beyond.  Is the Sandbox a place to ask that question?

                      - Tedd Cadd (66)

   The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life.     
                     Proverbs 15:4

Reply to Ted:

I think it would be OK to ask that question here. 
 Let's keep a few things in mind in the meantime:

As far as topics, and opinions about them are
concerned, I have no desire to "censor" any of the
voices heard in The SANDBOX, not wanting to inhibit
honest feelings here.  I don't recommend coarse
language because more than likely it will diminish,
rather than enhance, the value of what one wishes to
say. I do encourage contributors to be courteous and
respectful of their fellow alumni in this forum as they
deal with the issues at hand. I look to this forum to
be self-correcting when necessary, by responses from
other members encouraging folks to be courteous when
such reminders are needed.

Another thing to keep in mind is this: 

The SANDBOX is designed primarily for original input
from Richland Bomber Alumni, so there isn't room for
long quotes from outside sources, but you can cite web
sites if you wish, to illustrate your points.  Letters
from Richland Bomber Families and "Bomber Boosters" are
also welcome here.  One other thought: As moderator of
this forum, I will avoid publishing any material that
could in any way be considered by any party to be
libelous or slanderous.  Any negative opinions of past
teachers, etc., specifically named, would be an example
of that.

Did you remember to set your clocks back and change
the batteries in your smoke, radon and carbon monoxide

Build yourself a beautiful day!

                       - Al Parker (53)
                       Your Sandbox Host
                            - 99 -