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Letters to the editor for July 16

Gresham man helps people in need

I live in The Dalles and was taking my 93-year-old mom to a doctor's appointment in Portland last Tuesday. On the way home, I decided to stop in Gresham at the place where I bought my tires and have them rotated. After leaving the tire shop my mom said she needed to use the restroom, so we stopped at a large chain store.

When we came out to the car, it wouldn't start. I figured it might be the battery because I just replaced the alternator four weeks ago. So I asked this older gentleman if he would let me jump off of his car, which was close to us. Even though I had jumper cables, he said no and drove off, leaving me with my 93-year-old mom on a hot day in a car with electric windows that don't roll down without power.

About five minutes later, this young man drove in with kind of funny hair, blond and kind of bright reddish hair on top. He tried to jump us on his car, but the jump wouldn't take on his small vehicle. He then said he would help us take the battery out and drive us to an auto parts store.

We removed the battery with the tools I had in the trunk. It's not an easy job on this newer car - it's a tight fit and you have to remove a wire harness and cross-member rail. He drove us about 10 blocks to get a new battery and exchange our old one, and when we got back, he offered to leave his car running with the air conditioner on to keep my mom cool while we installed the new battery. I didn't have much cash on me because we just ate lunch and needed to go to an ATM, so I offered to write this young man a check for $50 for helping us.

He wouldn't take it, saying he enjoyed helping people in need. We are very thankful to this young man who helped us out that day. I was in kind of a panic when that happened - having the car heat up with my 93-year-old mom in it - so I can't even recall his name. Gresham has one fine citizen, and we are very thankful. I hope this young man sees this letter and knows that people do care for his help. Thank you.

Steve Crump

The Dalles

Political season will be dirtier than ever

Brace yourself! 2012 could be the dirtiest election on record. Just when you thought that Watergate was as bad as it could get for dirty tricks, another dirty trick is popping up. How could this be and who are the characters involved?

Have you heard about political stalkers? A political stalker is a person hired to travel with a fancy video camera, patiently waiting for a political moment worthy of YouTube.

A liberal Democratic organization called American Bridge 21st Century has set a goal of recording every handshake, every utterance by Republican candidates in 2011 and 2012, seeking out gotcha moments that could derail political ambitions and provide killer moments for television advertisements by liberal groups next year.

Having hired a dozen professional trackers, American Bridge, using the latest high-tech cameras and computers, have placed them in key states where Republican candidates are holding press events and doing the traditional handshaking involved in any campaign.

In addition to the trackers, there is a team of 20 researchers in a Washington, D.C., so-called 'war room,' with computer servers and the ability to put their video in memory banks to pull up any gaffe to suit their case and turn it into a campaign ad against the opposition.

Priorities USA Action, which is classified as an outside group working to re-elect President Obama, is working with American Bridge, who would provide info to fuel ads.

Instead of getting better, it appears that dirty politics are running rampant with no sense of moral ethics.

Louis H. Bowerman

Portland