It's time to draw the line
I write this column with profound sadness. I have lived in and loved this neighborhood for more than 30 years. Our neighborhood is full of people with differences: different skills, different interests, different ages, different backgrounds and different political views.
What we have in common is our lovely neighborhood and a desire to be good neighbors. We had summer barbecues together, pre-pandemic. We organized a neighborhood disaster plan. We share tools. We help out when someone needs help. We came together around the things we all believed in and didn't let our differing political views get in the way of our good neighborly feelings. And most of all, we respected each other for being the good, kind people we all thought each other were, underneath and behind our political personas.
Today, in front of two houses on my street, I saw "Vote No" signs for the Berschauer recall. I am nearly in tears as I write this. I think this is where I draw the line. How can I continue to respect my neighbors if they support blatant corruption?
How can I continue to sit and laugh and talk at a potluck dinner with someone who thinks it is okay for an elected county commissioner to deliberately ignore the advice of our county attorney and pass legislation that violates state law (and has no higher redeeming social purpose) and then hires a private attorney at taxpayer expense to defend the law in the inevitable lawsuit, costing county residents severely?
How can I think someone is a good, kind person if they condone a county Commissioner publicly berating and accusing loyal, hardworking county employees of fraudulent actions? How can I respect someone who supports a commissioner who puts the personal interests of pesticide-using corporate farmers over the health of county residents by killing the popular trail project and again costing taxpayers large amounts of money through her selfishness, incompetence and ignorance of law and procedure?
How can I continue to nod and smile at a neighbor who thinks it is okay for Lindsay Berschauer to sue a grassroots organization of constituents who are exercising their political right and responsibility to recall a corrupt, incompetent politician?
There are so many reasons to vote yes on this recall. There is no way that a responsible, well-meaning citizen with good will and good motives could even conceivably vote to retain Berschauer. There is no argument that can be made that can make up for all the money and disruption her ignorance, wastefulness and corruption is costing our county.
I'm sorry, but as nice as you seem to be, I just don't think you are a good neighbor any more if you advocate voting no. Lindsay Berschauer is making all our lives more difficult and more unpleasant. She is aggravating the political discord we are experiencing in these times. She is an extremist, in this for political and personal gain with zero altruistic motives.
Please pay attention. Please go to https://saveyamhillcounty.com/frequently-asked-questions/ and read all the reasons to vote yes. Please continue to be a good neighbor to your neighbors, by voting to save our county from bankruptcy and corruption and discord.
Joni Zimmerman is a Newberg resident
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