Letters to the Editor

Thoreau vs. Proposition 1

“Yet men have come to such a pass that they frequently starve, not for want of necessaries, but for want of luxuries ...”

Henry David Thoreau published those words in 1854. He was eventually jailed for failure to pay what he considered unjust taxes, and was visited in his cell by his friend Ralph Waldo Emerson. Emerson supposedly asked Thoreau, “What are you doing in here?” To which Thoreau famously answered, “What are you doing out there?”

Over 150 years have passed, and look at the fix we’re in. The county wants us to voluntarily increase our property taxes for what? Necessaries? Luxuries? How long and how much are we expected to pay for our ever expanding but “starving” government? How big does the public trough in all of its various forms need to get?

Too many have been living beyond their means, over-housing in the assurance that more is better. Now they want help, and they tell us it is absolutely necessary. What are we doing out here?

Look around, see the type of spending that got us into this mess, don’t be fooled by the plea for “basics.” Then vote no on Proposition 1.

Dean Conway

Oak Harbor

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