From March 28, 2013 issue
Aloha and thanks Forks and the West End for your friendship and support
As many of you know I am departing my job as the editor and publisher of the Forks Forum. My last day on the job is this Friday. I am heading off into the world of book writing, something I’ve been looking forward to for years.
Time has gone by quickly out here on the West End. This week marks the completion of six years at the Forum for me. Over those years I’ve made many friends, and friendship I know will last the rest of my life.
I’d like to thank our readers and advertisers for their support over those six years.
I learned and experienced much living both in Forks and in the Hoh Valley region. My ancestors were pioneers in the West, arriving before the Civil War. However I’ve spent most of my adult life in Hawai‘i after being raised in the suburbs of Manhattan. Life on the West End gave me many insights into the world of my forefathers – the “can do” spirit, how neighbors reach out to help one another in times of need, why you shouldn’t be caught dead using an umbrella, and the sense of freedom that flourishes it seems the further away you are from big cities.
This change also marks a turning point in my career as a journalist. I first got news print ink on my hands in junior high school delivering newspapers before school. I first worked on a paper then, later having my first real news stories published during college days. I’ve been a stringer for the Associated Press and United Press International, and a reporter/photographer prior to the Internet age. I’ve also been editor of a daily newspaper on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. Now I am ready to write and publish books on my own.
It is said that the world of community journalism is similar to minor league baseball, though in baseball you usually quit playing at about age 40, while in journalism you can keep going until you drop. That said, in an interesting twist former Forks Forum editor Bill Buley is now sitting at my old editor’s desk on Kauai, at The Garden Island newspaper in Lihue. Bill and I worked together at the Coeur d’ Alene Press in Idaho and he briefed me on Forks prior to my move here. Good luck Bill!
Aloha for now. I hope to pay some visits back to Forks in the future and hope to see you again then.
Letters to the Editor
Spending money like water
In the kitchen of an average American home, a faucet drips; the remaining drops of water left after dinner dishes have been washed and put away. Two blocks down the road, a neighbor stops at the gas station to fuel up for the morning commute to work, which on a good day, takes about 30 minutes. Nothing unusual here. We are utilizing natural resources that available to us, day in and day out. The price of gas may go up a few cents every day; the cost of water is pennies. So what’s the problem, you ask?
The problem is that the water we take for granted is not so available in other countries. The problem is that while our nation, like many others, dedicates billions of dollars towards new and improved defense plans; and supports the cost to explore the immensity of the universe; how stars, planets and galaxies were created; the governments of the world have failed to recognize the tremendous struggle of people in underdeveloped countries, be it South America, Africa, India, etc. That struggle being the lack of water to drink, cook, bathe, and for daily necessities. But above all, the precious water that is needed to cultivate the soil, and in doing so, produce food for their own survival.
Do the answers to questions of defense and astronomy outweigh the plight of millions upon millions of unfortunate men, women and children, dying in the most cruel manner and, what is most repulsive, a death totally unnecessary? The cry of these people demand a response from the government. A response that will alleviate the unjust and undeserving condition in which these human beings find themselves.
We have designed and built pipelines to transport oil and gas from remote regions in order to eliminate being inconvenienced, so we can fill our automobiles with the precious fuel that will take us to the corner store, and in the process, pollute our environment.
And so we ask, why can’t the United States, the most powerful and resourceful country in all the world, build a pipeline from the ocean to those areas where water is desperately needed?
We possess the knowledge and the tools to desalinate the sea water into potable water, and in doing so, aid in the ability of those countries in becoming self-sufficient and independent; and in the process, benefit our own country.
Do we justify spending money to seek methods and solutions to that which will only make us more scholarly, more powerful, or more innovative, and as a result become callous to the needs of the very people our illustrious leaders serve?
Instead of spending money like water, why aren’t we spending money on water?
Jose Aldana - Forks
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