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"To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men.”
President Abraham Lincoln
I spent a little time in the tractor this weekend. It is always a great place to think. There has been so much going on in the world around us; my thoughts were plenty. Like all of you, I have my own set of beliefs and opinions. It is human to have your belief system, convictions and opinions.
As I was thinking, I couldn’t help but recognize that the idea of differing opinions can cause real problems. Each of us has our own set of values. Our opinions, although they may be what they are right now, often change.
These thoughts were sparked from the soapboxes, rants, opinions, kind words and every other form of expression I read on Facebook over the last few days. I purposely stay out of debates such as these.
The one thing I will say is I believe our greatest calling in life is to love. Arguing, disagreeing, ending friendships or getting angry over differences goes completely against that belief.
The one thing I know that will conquer anything is deep compassion and love for one another. There is not one of us that are perfect; so where do we find it okay to judge someone else. Maybe our focus should shift to ourselves…to being the best person we can be…to doing what we know is right…to loving one another no matter the differences.
There was one quote on Facebook I did really like; “We don’t have to agree on anything to be kind to one another.” I will leave you that for the week.
With Profound Thanks
We would like to give our profound thanks to everyone that showed us kindness during our time of sorrow. During this stressful time there was no way we could keep track of all of the delicious meals that were given to us but we would like to say thank you for those, your hugs, your support and all the ways you have shown love towards us. It is by God’s grace and love that we will get through this time of heartache. We know how much Patrick meant to us and can only begin to comprehend what he meant to all of you. Thank you all for the outpouring of love you have showered upon us, something that will not be forgotten. We can’t thank you enough and can only hope to repay you in some form or fashion in the years to come. The Wyrick’s
Donna and I just paid our $115 + State Responsibility Area (SRA) Fee (tax).
We did it in spite of the fact that we live and pay taxes for fire protection in and by the Burney Fire Department.
We did it in spite of the fact that this is at least the second year that the California Department of Forestry has pushed the Burney Fire District until it agreed to go around and threaten to cite people who didn’t clean up their weeds, get their leaves off wood shake roofs, etc.
We did it in spite of the fact that Cal Fire is supposed to use the money raised from the SRA tax to provide and promote fire prevention.
Was I happy about paying it? No.
I was even less happy about it when I drove away from the front of our house and past the neighbor’s house which had been vacant for a couple of months and had front, back and side yards full of foot-high, dry weeds and no one has apparently done anything about forcing whoever is responsible to clean the mess up.
Living in Johnson Park, I passed a number of other yards that weren’t exactly clear, but were a whole lot better than that one. I turned onto Highway 299 toward Burney and passed the Cal Fire Station. In front of the station was a neat, well uniformed young firefighter with a leaf blower, blowing the front of the Cal Fire yard cleaner than it already was.
That afternoon I talked with a friend from the Hat Creek area.
He had received a questionnaire in the mail regarding whether his yard was clean or not. The instructions with the letter were to fill it out and mail it back to Cal Fire.
Now Burney did do a share of the fire prevention last year when they had more personnel. This year they are short staffed so guess what? Is Cal Fire stepping up to the plate and doing what the law demands if they are to receive the SRA tax or are they too busy using leaf blowers to make sure their property is spotless?
Did they hire more clerical staff to handle the questionnaires they may or may not get back or did they laugh all the way to the bank?
It seems to me that they were accused of having a hidden slush fund around the same time the park’s department got caught. If I remember right there was no real explanation and the whole thing was quietly hushed up. I’d be glad to print a retraction of that last statement providing Cal Fire provides me with a complete, verifiable accounting of what happened and if there was anything to it, how it was resolved.
From what I’ve seen over the years I’ve dealt with them, Cal Fire has way too much power, too much money and too little accountability.
Ever since I did a series on “The eyesore of the week” 30 some years ago, I’ve stayed away from it for a number of reasons.
I knew that I’d be asking for another flood of eyesores if I did what I did last week.
However there is one difference, That one involved a number of factors from sewage to child molesters and a county that doesn’t give a damn.
Since then I’ve had requests to run various people’s pet eyesores.
The problem is that I’m not going to be the town’s garbage recorder.
What is such a crying shame is that people have to resort to coming to me in the first place because they live in the eastern end of the county instead of the Redding area where someone “important” will be taken care of.
E nv i r o n m e n t a l Health which fights any response to a problem at all and finally sets a hearing date four months out, Child Protective Services that ignore the fact that a child molester is living in the same residence as a 5-year old, A health department that could care less about garbage or sewage.
It is downright pitiful!
Everyone gets their pay and benefits without providing the services the people supposedly pay taxes for and the only way people can solve a problem is to take it to the paper.