Gateway: Opinion

Letters to the Editor, May 4

Accusations point to ulterior motive

“No excuse for browbeating by Rep. Young,” (TNT editorial, 4/28).

A recent claim of alleged “boorish” behavior per The News Tribune’s Editorial Board hardly meets an objective reporting of a story with few if any facts.

The leaked charge, the victims who refused to be named and few credible witnesses all suggest an ulterior motive in my book. If your editorial took a more disinterested and objective position, charges of bias would not be lodged. The headline itself screams the verdict is in.

No mention that the 26th District would be low-hanging fruit if Young could be knocked out by even unsubstantiated charges. The left is right at home with smearing an otherwise exemplary lawmaker — standard operating procedure. Shame!

Kristin Grose, Gig Harbor

Intemperate behavior not acceptable

“’It’s humiliating,’” (TNT, 4/23).

This article describes behavior by Rep. Jesse Young that would not be tolerated in a preschool. Such intemperate behavior should not be tolerated by the citizens he represents.

Young’s response to the allegations has been unacceptable. Excuse me, representative, but swearing and raising your voice to subordinates and volunteers is classic mistreatment.

It has been reported that the Legislature restricted him from working with a legislative assistant but did not explain the underlying reasons. Reporter Walker Orenstein’s lengthy and thoughtful article revealed that a House disciplinary letter to Young was leaked to The Associated Press last winter. Documents have been requested from the Legislature regarding its action to restrict Young’s access to staff.

The documents were not provided as the Legislature claimed executive privilege. This would seem to bring another issue to light. The Public Records Act needs to be amended so that this type of important information can be shared with citizens.

Pamela K. Carter, Gig Harbor

Freezing bridge tolls is political bait-and-switch

Re: “Narrows Bridge tolls likely frozen till 2019,” (TNT, 4/26).

It’s a pity that truth-in-lending laws don’t apply to the old political bait and switch. The Legislature approved a $5 million loan of gas-tax money for the sole purpose of pushing back toll increases on the Tacoma Narrows bridge by one year.

From 2018 to 2019. From an election year until after the next election.

But as anyone who uses a credit card knows, paying the minimum amount costs more in the long run. The next toll increase will need to be larger than otherwise required to cover paying back this loan. Other transportation projects will have to be delayed until the loan is repaid, and they will likely cost more due to inflation.

Pay me now or pay me later? Depends what plays best for the next election.

Jerry M. Hughs, Gig Harbor

Legislator needs anger management help

“’It was humiliating,’” (TNT, 4/23).

I applaud News Tribune reporter Walker Orenstein’s investigative report on state Rep. Jesse Young, which reveals Young’s anger and lack of professionalism, especially toward women who work for him.

I attended his recent town hall in Gig Harbor with my 10-year-old daughter, and we were startled by his temper, which flared several times.

While Young is to be praised for hosting a public event (his colleagues Sen. Jan Angel and Rep. Michelle Caldier have not yet done so), he used the opportunity to riff angrily about the adult woman he referred to as a “girl,” whose complaint led to his legislative censure and the removal of his district office.

Young was asked by House counsel to address the “pattern of hostile and intimidating behavior” by taking anger management training. I call upon Young, as one of his constituents, to follow through on such treatment.

The last thing this community needs is a hothead prone to outbursts and unprofessional behavior directed at those who have less power than him, especially the women who work for him mostly as volunteers.

Thank you for shining a light on this ugly pattern of behavior.

Lisa Marcus, Gig Harbor

Survivors like me need to be heard

April is sexual assault awareness month, a time to listen to survivors and consider prevention. As an assault survivor, I’m shocked by our statewide rule granting open access to women’s most intimate spaces without consulting those of us most deeply affected.

My assailant assumed false identity, convinced me he was only interested in friendship before drugging and violating me. I’m vigilant about my boundaries by using lockable single-occupant showers at the local pool. My husband stands guard outside when we camp and use public park showers or restrooms.

Despite my caution, a man recently entered my restroom at a restaurant. Not knowing his intent was unnerving for me.

I understand a person suffering with gender dysphoria feels uncomfortable in sex-specific facilities, but the new rule in Washington allows any man to access women’s spaces as long as he claims a female identity. What about my comfort and safety?

If you research police statistics, you’ll find numerous assaults against women in locker rooms and showers. The poorly worded state rule provides a significant loophole for predators, making this problem worse.

Everyone deserves safety and privacy. Support women like me by visiting and say yes to Initiative 1552.

Catherine A. Phillips, Gig Harbor

Trump’s cut would benefit the fat cats

Re: “Trump tax plan calls for major reductions,” (TNT, 4/27).

So President Trump will push for the “biggest tax cut” in U.S. history. Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush both cut taxes for the rich, and both ended their presidencies with huge budget deficits.

Job creators? Corporations are using much of their already huge profits to buy back shares of stock and to buy other companies, in order to raise their stock prices, thus artificially increasing their value.

Millions of Americans are just one paycheck or emergency room visit from financial crisis. Of the $400 billion in tax incentives that help taxpayers build assets, less than 3 percent benefit the bottom 40 percent of earners.

The U.S. already gives unearned income (capital gains) a huge advantage over earned income (from labor). The richest 1 percent of Americans take in 75 percent of all capital gains.

U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, and Rep. Derek Kilmer need to hear from us.

Donna Schindler Munro, Bremerton