Letters to the editor
March on Sept. 10 for cure to Alzheimer's
As a fiduciary litigator here in Oregon for the last 20 years, I have witnessed the devastation that occurs when Alzheimer's and other brain diseases rob victims of the ability to use their greatest asset—their minds. Sometimes it occurs slowly and sometimes the progression is more advanced, but the disease always leaves people vulnerable to undue influence and abuse. That is why I Walk to End Alzheimer's.
Alzheimer's is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, the only disease among the top 10 without a cure or means to slow its progression. In Oregon, more than 63,000 people are living with Alzheimer's, with more than 181,000 people — usually close loved ones — caring for them. That equates to more than 206 million hours in unpaid care.
Earlier this year, Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, Rep. Suzanne Bonamici and the entire Oregon congressional delegation voted to increase research funding for Alzheimer's at the National Institutes of Health. They should be commended for their support, but it cannot stop there, as we all have a role to play. It takes even more money to help fuel more research and help more people.
On Sunday, Sept. 10, several thousand people will gather at Portland International Raceway for the Walk to End Alzheimer's, a moving, empowering event and a call to action to be leaders in this fight.
At the Walk, you will not see any survivor tents or a lap walked by those who have beat the disease; but I have hope we soon will. Imagine the day that we honor the first survivor of Alzheimer's. It can happen. Please consider joining me on Sept. 10. Let's all work toward a better world: a world without Alzheimer's disease.
For more information, visit alz.org.
Alzheimer's Association Oregon Chapter Leadership Board of Directors
Cities: Rep. Jeff Barker led on Senate Bill 327
The League of Oregon Cities would like to publically thank State Rep. Jeff Barker for his legislative efforts to protect parks and open spaces for the public's enjoyment and health.
An adverse Oregon Supreme Court ruling in March 2016 exposed cities — as well as other public and private landowners who allow free access to their land for recreational purposes — to added liability that threatened the closure of some of Oregon's beloved parks and park features. Thanks to the leadership of Rep. Barker, the Oregon House of Representatives passed SB 327 and restored the civil liability protection that allows the continued use and development of skate-parks, trails, BMX tracks and innovative playgrounds.
League of Oregon Cities
(Note: Rep. Barker's district includes Aloha and portions of Beaverton.)
Cryptosporidium problem poorly understood here
The Times Aug. 3 editorial ("Portland should opt for full filtration plant to protect Bull Run," Page A7) about the Bull Run drinking water was interesting. However, there was an inaccurate comment about cryptosporidium. This should be clarified before making final recommendations about ultraviolet treatment or a filtration plant at the Bull Run.
Basically, cryptosporidium impact (generally diarrhea) is not just from animal feces. As far as humans are concerned, cryptosporidium comes from human or cattle feces. The other 14 or so known animal sources do not impact humans.
An excellent source about cryptosporidium was a guest opinion in The Oregonian on Aug. 2 this year. This was provided by Ernest Alan Meyer, a professor emeritus from Oregon Health & Science University, living in Newberg. I would strongly recommend his column, perhaps also for reprinting in the many Times-related newspapers.
Here is one quote from Professor Meyer's column: "For a human to acquire disease caused by crypto, it is necessary to consume about l00 live crypto oocysts (from either humans or cattle) in the equivalent of a glass of water, about 8 ounces. The present crypto alert is the result of finding fewer than 100 oocysts — most or all of which were probably not infective for humans — not in a glass of water, but in thousands of liters of water over a period of months."
(An oocyst as a type of zygote, or a cell formed by the union of two germ cells.)
Another excellent source of information may be available in a book from Purdue University Press: "Hard Water: Politics and Water Supply in Milwaukee, 1870-1995" (in Wisconsin) by Kate Foss-Mollan. The book doesn't seem to be available locally. However, it is worth obtaining for the final chapters relating to the huge cryptosporidium outbreak of 1993. Foss-Mollan was employed as a water chemist at the Milwaukee Water Works at the time, and later completed a Ph.D. in urban water studies.
I'll quote only one simple item from her outstanding reference materials: "Cryptosporidium is destroyed by being heated to 115 degrees Fahrenheit for five minutes." (She also mentions that beer is made with pasteurized water and is pasteurized after brewing.) Basically in 1993, Milwaukee, Wis., had an extremely serious failure within its treatment process of its lake water, which itself was not of good quality.
Another consideration of cryptosporidium: This is already an issue in swimming pools nationwide. Ten years ago or so there were crypto problems in Sellwood and in Medford and perhaps other places. Ultraviolet treatment is being used now, at least in the huge North Clackamas public swimming pool, apparently successfully.
A final comment regarding a Multnomah health officer's concern (quoted by your editorial) about mud from landslides; one of his reasons for supporting a filtration plant: The landslides did not exist until logging and roads were allowed in the Bull Run for several years. I believe these areas are being repaired, and that should be the primary solution to the problem.