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We hear from a newly re-elected city official, readers feeling hopeful after Joe Biden's victory and more.

Forest Grove councilor thanks voters

After 16 years of public service to our community, I am deeply honored and humbled the community trusted and supported me again. Thank you all.

We are in very exciting and challenging times.

Exciting: Because, our community members are expressing their voice in the governance and the destiny of Forest Grove and their futures. Because, we are at the forefront of social justice changes in equity. Because, we can make critical decisions in instituting systematic changes for our most vulnerable community members. Because, we constantly require ourselves grow and to be better.

Challenging: Because, we are facing the unknown of the coronavirus. Because, the economy is facing critical and will continue to face critical impacts on everyone in our community. And, caring for our community dollars during these formidable times requires using the best practices. Because, unity is the essential piece of our community and requires a gentle nurturing hand of transparency, trust, accountability and hearing the community voices.

I am privileged to be able to work with and for all community members, hear the strength of your voices and know Grovers are at our finest when involved in this journey.

Elena Uhing

City Councilor, Forest Grove

House, Senate races on coast didn't go as Democrats hoped

We want to thank Debbie Boothe-Schmidt and Melissa Cribbins for running for state Legislature representing Tillamook County. They provided important perspectives on issues like workers' rights, education, conservation, healthcare and COVID recovery that wouldn't have been discussed had they not run. Whether you're a Republican or a Democrat, seeking positive change for our community by running for public office is extremely patriotic.

Regardless of who you voted for, we're all on the same team. We the Democrats of Tillamook County wish Republicans Suzanne Weber and Dick Anderson success representing us in the Oregon State Legislature. In return, we expect them to listen to, represent and show up for those in our community who did not vote for them. We believe that's the way forward in these divisive times that are concerning for us all.

Peter Marks, Nehalem

President-elect Joe Biden can preserve our democracy

President Donald Trump's refusal to accept the election results can hardly be surprising. Here is a man who seems to have taken Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin as his role models for leadership. The two fundamental things which make our democracy viable, free and fair elections and the peaceful transition of power, mean nothing to him.

More disturbing in the long run is the fact that millions of people voted for this delusional autocrat.

Still, we now have a leader who can undo some of Trump's worst excesses, and keep our democracy whole.

David Pauli, Forest Grove

Donald Trump losing isn't the end of the world

To you loyal Trump supporters that are disappointed, frustrated and in denial that your guy lost the election: Trust me when I say that us Democrats have had to endure these same feelings for the past four years. To ease your pain, let me remind you just some of what you have lost:

1. No more will children be torn from their parents and put into detention centers by a heartless president.

2. Unrelenting obnoxious, cruel, demeaning and downright ugly

tweets.

3. Twenty thousand lies, insane conspiracy theories, division and hate.

4. Ignoring the severity of COVID-19, taking no responsibility.

5. Failure to acknowledge global climate change, always criticizing science, everything is a hoax.

6. Alienating our allies while praising dictators like Vladimir Putin.

7. Threatening every day to deprive 20 million Americans of their healthcare.

It's time to put an end to the chaos and embarrassment. Please give the president-elect a chance to bring sanity, dignity, ethics and respect back to this nation.

Lin Vanderzanden, Forest Grove

Let's expect more from our leaders, and model it ourselves

The 2020 elections are over. It is time to acknowledge our appreciation to all candidates, even those with whom we may disagree.

We must continue to maintain and develop meaningful relationships with elected officials, serving as credible advisors when advocating our priorities, positions and issues. We must expect them to govern in a bipartisan, civil, respectful and collegial manner, use only evidence-based approaches to guide their votes, prioritize constituents over party, ideology, or monied lobbyists, and faithfully attend to their legislative duties even when faced with challenging decisions.

As important, we must hold ourselves to the same standards in communicating and meeting with them and their staff.

Carl Sandburg summed up both the right and wrong approaches: "If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the law and the facts are against you, pound the table…"

David Nardone, Hillsboro

A letter to editor-in-chief Mark Miller

I appreciate your dedication to the Hillsboro News-Times. This online newspaper has allowed me to stay informed about events that affect me, a resident of Hillsboro. The well-written and edited articles are clear and concise, delivering information that is easy to understand while being informative.

Especially with the current situation, having access to a reliable news source has proven to be very helpful, because staying informed is more important than ever.

Thank you for your work.

Connor Cihula, Hillsboro

The news on the coronavirus isn't all bad in Oregon

Before people complain about the "two-week pause" that Washington County has just entered, they should think about this: Thanks to the governor's directives, and the cooperation of the overwhelming majority of the population, albeit sometimes reluctantly and grumpily, Oregon stands in far better shape of coming through this pandemic without the casualty numbers of most of the nation.

My husband, a scientist, has been following the numbers, and here is a heartening conclusion: In terms of cases and deaths per million people, Oregon is among the five lowest. For example, the state has roughly 12,000 active and resolved cases per million. With about 4.2 million residents, that means Oregon has about 52,000 cases.

Compare that to Iowa, with a lower population of 3.2 million, with roughly 50,000 cases per million, meaning that that state has about 160,000 cases total.

I could quote and compare other states, including those with smaller populations such as North and South Dakota, and Oregon still comes out as much healthier.

As the weather gets colder, and people stay inside more, it is imperative that we, as Oregonians, continue doing what we're doing, because, to put it simply, it's working. So, keep it up, everyone. We're saving a lot of lives here.

Brian McGahren, Tigard


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