Letters for July 7, 2005

There’s always hope
Your paper’s feature on methamphetamine was excellent ["'Butteants’ and ‘methamphibians': a horror story,” CN&R cover story, June 23]. After reading the article, hopefully your readers will realize what an insidious substance meth is and how lives can be ruined by the drug before they begin using it. However, I do take issue with counselor Don Primer’s apparent attitude that little can be done to help those who are addicted. Addicts can be helped toward recovery.

Mr. Primer should talk with the dedicated and extremely effective Behavioral Health counselors who work with Drug Court clients. Those counselors can point to hundreds of people who have graduated from Butte County Drug Court firm in recovery.

Certainly, getting a methamphetamine addict into recovery is not easy. But counselors, working with a team of dedicated professionals such as the Drug Court team, can make a real difference. I hope that those addicts or their loved ones who may have read or heard of Mr. Primer’s comments will not assume that nothing can be done. It can. But it’s tough and takes a lot of hard work and determination.

Darrell W. Stevens
Superior Court Judge, Retired

Meth motivations
I’m wondering if methamphetamine actually causes poor behavior choices and destroys lives, or if the capacity for poor behavior choices and the destruction of lives needs meth as a vehicle. Like a loaded gun on a table, a pound of crank, a six-pack of beer, a pile of Baby Ruths—it hurts no one until there is a decision to abuse it.

Is this article about what meth makes you do or what one does when meth is introduced into the system? My experience is that I did what I wanted, meth or no meth. Aside from breaking the law by using meth and other drugs, my behavior was hardly atrocious.

When a child, I was never taught to close the pacifier gap from reliance to self-reliant, so for 17 years drugs “helped me do that.” I don’t believe I woke one day thinking, “I’m going to be a crank addict.” I was responsible enough to keep my behavioral choices to a stealthy norm.

I am a success story Mr. Primer does not know about. There are others, too. Just ask Tommy Higgins of Skyway House. As an active addict, I needed to make a choice to change. Stopping the ingestion was easy compared to understanding my problems and changing associated behaviors. My life certainly is not perfect, just better. Too bad there wasn’t a more positive side to this article.

David Lynch

More hope
My mother was addicted to methamphetamines for most of my life. My own life growing up was not as extreme as the lives described in the article, but it was still difficult. My mother was in and out of jail and prison, while my siblings and I stayed with our dad.

Today, my mom has recovered from her addiction with the help of a program called Delancey Street Foundation. It is a two-year program located in San Francisco and other areas of the world. My mother learned the qualities she needed to recover and has been clean for over five years. She has recently graduated college with two associate degrees and is thinking about continuing her education.

To anyone who knows someone with an addiction of any kind and would like to attempt to help them, I encourage you to look into the Delancey Street Foundation. Also remember to never completely turn your back on someone you love with an addiction; it may be your love and support that helps them when they need it most. I truly understand how difficult this is and spent years struggling with my own hurt and anger, but you truly never know when there is a ray of hope.

Anita Nelson

Honor the gift
People who are concerned about the problems associated with the current disc golf location in Upper Park are not disc golf haters who would break the law to advance their agenda.

Citizens are discussing legitimate concerns such as the taxpayer costs to build, maintain and manage two 18-hole disc golf courses in Upper Park, miles away from the city’s infrastructure and law enforcement.

People are also concerned about the blue oak trees that are being damaged because they are used as obstacles. They are also concerned because acres of ground that were once covered with wildflowers are now bare and that the soil compaction and erosion are so extensive it is actually visible from aerial photographs. Segments of John Bidwell’s Humboldt Wagon Road are being obliterated, and American Indian cultural resources are being impacted.

People who oppose the current location do not hate disc golf or the people who like to play. They just want to preserve the amazing natural resources of Upper Park and believe recreational facilities should be built closer to town and in areas that need to be beautified.

Josephine Guardino
Los Molinos

Balance over truth
Your mission statement is interesting. No where does it mention writing and publishing the truth.

Your articles, innuendos and half-truths are unwarranted and obviously biased. Rep. Herger is responsive to the needs of his constituents, as I can attest. Perhaps the CN&R should have some Republicans on its editorial staff; then we might see some balance.

Steven Marcus

Then again
When liars reign, truth is treason.

Stephen T. Davis

Solemn thanks
On behalf of the men and women of CDF/Butte County Fire, I would like to express our overwhelming gratitude for the community’s support during a very difficult time. The death of our co-worker, firefighter Marlon Jones, is a tremendous and painful loss.

From calls and letters of support to monetary and service donations, the public’s contributions toward our efforts have enabled us to provide Marlon and his family a memorial befitting his service to the citizens of Butte County and the state of California.

As we went about the solemn business of laying one of our own to rest, many people stopped us to relay their thoughts and words of encouragement. This has touched us profoundly and reaffirms our belief that we are fortunate to live and work in this community.

We would like to acknowledge the assistance provided by the following individuals and businesses:

Mooretown Rancheria Fire Department and Tribal Council, Oroville Police Department, Oroville Fire Department, California Highway Patrol, Chico Police Department Honor Guard, Butte County Sheriff’s Department Honor Guard, Butte County Sheriff’s Department STARS, Butte County Public Works, Lake Oroville Monument Company, Chico Enterprise Record, Oroville Mercury Register, KNVN Channel 24, KHSL Channel 12, KPAY Radio, Oroville Cemetery District, County Administrative Officer Paul McIntosh, Supervisor Jane Dolan, Supervisor Curt Josiassen, Assemblyman Doug LaMalfa, and all those who honored Marlon by attending his memorial service.

Henri Brachais
Fire Chief