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Bentz betrayed Oregon

U.S. Rep. Cliff Bentz is culpable in participating in the seditious insurrection in Washington on Jan. 6 and should pay a price for his actions. He has thrown in with the so-called self-appointed “patriots” who trashed the Capitol, the people’s house. He has betrayed the citizens of Oregon by aligning himself with the despot President Donald Trump and not the U.S. Constitution to which he supposedly swore an oath. In effect, he is guilty of inciting a riot, just like Trump and the other congresspeople and senators like Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz, who tried to overturn a valid, fair and truthful election. Do we have to say it again that claims of election fraud have been repeatedly proven false.

Even members of his own party, including Speaker Mitch McConnell, have broken from Trump and recognized Joe Biden as the president-elect. It’s time for Mr. Bentz to step up and do the right thing: either call for Trump’s immediate removal or resign his position as congressman.

— Don Miller, Bend

Help hunt for lawbreakers

An open letter to Jim Adkins, Jefferson County sheriff; Shane Nelson, Deschutes County sheriff; and Mike Krantz, chief of the Bend Police Department: I am horrified and outraged by the violence and anarchy perpetrated upon the people of this great country during the insurrection of Jan. 6 in Washington, D.C.

Each and every rioter who invaded the Capitol on that infamous day should be identified, arrested and appropriately charged. There are many eyewitness reports claiming that law enforcement officers participated in this seditious activity. I am asking that each of our local law enforcement agencies investigate and hold accountable any officers who were involved. It would be wonderful news to learn that none participated; public confidence in these agencies would be greatly enhanced.

I fully support and defend all lawful expressions of our First Amendment rights related to freedom of speech, but the violent mob and the deadly events that unfolded were unlawful and should be confronted swiftly and decisively. Law and order applies to all Americans; no one is above the law.

— Janet Keen, Camp Sherman

Democracy needs truth

This morning I was about to write a letter criticizing The Bulletin for its editorial piece that basically condoned the unconscionable move by Rep. Cliff Bentz, after the domestic terrorist insurrection on our nation’s Capitol, to reject Pennsylvania’s electoral votes when I read today’s letters. The one by Mr. Thomson excoriating The Bulletin‘s for its front page which recognized, as did the entire world that watched his very words and actions, President Donald Trump’s “fanning the flames.”

That was not editorializing, that was the recognition of a clearly demonstrable fact. By the way, while many, including me and The Bulletin, were shocked regarding the totally unacceptable riots over the summer, and I for one, believe the liberal leadership in the cities were dead wrong in not reacting to the violence more strongly.

There can absolutely be no moral equivalency to the insurrection we saw last week. To me, to fail to acknowledge Trump’s encouraging the attack on Congress is a quintessential example of the extremely dangerous approach of rejection of facts as “fake news” or the now Trumpian practice of creating “alternative facts."

It began with the “birther” lies, followed by the “inaugural numbers” lies on Day 1, and has continued every day since. While there have been personality cults throughout history that blindly “drank the Kool-Aid,” it is the Trump supporters’ rejection of facts that is so very dangerous.

A democracy, after all, cannot survive without truth.

— William Carwile, Bend

Bentz should resign

The Jan. 9, Bulletin editorial asks the question, “Did Cliff Bentz fail Oregonians ?” The answer is yes.

In his Jan. 7 statement seeking to justify his decision to object to the electoral vote total in Pennsylvania, Bentz states that because many of his Oregon congressional district constituents spoke of “distrust in the elections” he felt compelled to object to the electoral votes from Pennsylvania. “Distrust of the elections” is a fundamental problem that goes to the core of our democratic process. This distrust is a result of circular lying.

The president claimed, in the months leading to Nov. 3, that the election was going to be “unfair” and “corrupt.”

After the election, despite all evidence to the contrary, the president continued to lie about the election process and the outcome. Some of the president’s supporters came to believe his lies.

Belief in these lies was then communicated to Bentz — a lawyer. Instead of exhibiting leadership, Bentz chose to support the lies by signaling his intent to object to the electoral votes.

Trump lies, supporters believe lies and communicate to Bentz, Bentz accepts lies as legitimate concerns thereby reinforces the belief in the lies. Bentz’s announcement of his decision to object to electoral votes supported and contributed to the momentum behind the traitorous mob. He is complicit in the tragic outcome on Jan. 7.

Congressman Bentz signaled he does not have the values and courage to represent the 2nd District in Congress. Congressman Bentz should immediately resign.

— Kermit Yensen, Bend

Honor your country

I am so upset with what happened on Thursday, Jan. 6 that our U.S. Capitol in D.C. Also those going to Salem and other cities being destructive, disrespectful and not honoring our American history — let alone putting others at risk.

My message to those who are unhappy with the results of the election, result of not getting your way, result of what you identify as your “constitutional rights.”

My rights are presently being violated by your behavior and threats. If you don’t like what our democracy is in America, then I would suggest you leave — find some country that fits your needs, your values, your morals and quit attacking the rest of us who love and respect what our country, the great USA has given us.

Please take some time and read history, follow your family tree of how you are actually here and what your forefathers and mothers went through to be here. It is a sad day when some attack the very essence of how our democracy that was created to give us the freedoms that we have. I don’t take that for granted.

I am so thankful that I have the opportunities that have been presented to me my entire life. I can vote. I have a job. I can care about others, and I have a family history of those who came here to the USA for a better life. If you do not like what is here, then leave, take your fight somewhere else.

— Mary Fleischmann, Bend

White privilege

As many have already noted, white privilege was on full display Jan. 6 when a mob incited by President Trump stormed into the Capitol building in Washington, D.C.

If they had been Black Lives Matter activists or Muslims, they surely would never have made it up the steps, let alone into the capitol. They would have been repulsed by the police and likely gunned down.

White supremacy was also on full display with many waving Confederate flags along with their Trump flags. The Confederate flag is the banner of the Ku Klux Klan, a symbol of both racist ideology and treason.

And, the racism of many elected members of Congress was also on full display as they voted to disenfranchise voters in Pennsylvania and Arizona, and sought to also disenfranchise voters in Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia. President zeroed in on the electoral votes in these states because people of color in Philadelphia, Detroit, Milwaukee, Atlanta, and Phoenix played a major role in his defeat.

Trump repeated his racist lie about voter fraud over and over again. Cliff Bentz, newly-elected Representative from Oregon’s Second District, sided with Trump in one of his first votes in Congress—after white supremacists incited by Trump stormed the Capitol. Bentz can make all the unsupported and ludicrous legal arguments he wants, but the fact is he stood with a racist President who incited insurrection. In doing so he disgraced his office.

— Michael Funke, Bend

 

Honor your country

I am so upset with what happened on Thursday,January. 6th at our U.S. Capitol in D.C. Also those going to Salem and other cities being destructive , disrespectful and not honoring our American history... — let alone putting others at risk.

My message to those who are unhappy with the results of the election, result of not getting your way, result of what you identify as your “constitutional rights”..” My rights are presently arebeing violated by your behavior and threats. If you don’t like what our democracy is in America, then I would suggest you leave — find some country that fits your needs, your values, your morals and quit attacking the rest of us who love and respect what our country, the great USA has given us. Please take some time and read history, follow your family tree of how you are actually here and what your forefathers and mothers went through to be here.

It is a sad day when some attack the very essence of how our democracy thatwas created to give us the freedoms that we have. I don’t take that for granted. I am so thankful that I have the opportunities that have been presented to me my entire life. I can vote. I have a job. I can care about others, and I have a family history of those who came here to the USA for a better life. If you do not like what is here, then leave, take your fight somewhere else.

— Mary Fleischmann, Bend

(8) comments

kindergentlerbend

To be fair, I'd like to see a comprehensive statement from Bentz on the actions he took last week. So far, all we have heard from him are vague sentiments.

We knew what kind of a politician he would be based on his need to out-Trump his numerous opponents on the GOP primary ballot last spring--including the hapless Knute Buehler.

It should come as no surprise that he would have acccepted the role assigned to him, no doubt, by Rudy Giuliani to extend the Trump Presidency another 4 years. But, you would have thought he would have been given a state closer to home--such as Arizona--to contest.

Bentz got the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, a state whose gerrymandered Republican legislature has been openly playing the voter suppression game for at least a decade.

In the early morning hours following the murderous putsch at the Capitol, he continued to play his assigned role. If the modern Republican Party has devolved into the political arm of a coexisting terrorist counterpart, then he played his part perfectly.

We have no Constitutional power to recall Bentz, but it is only a few short months until the start of the 2022 primary season. Surely we will find someone--Republican or Democrat or third party--in our vast District with the integrity to challenge Mr. Bentz.

To be fair, 3 instances of voter fraud did occur in Pennsylvania: All were illegal votes for Trump, including one Delaware County man who voted in the name of his deceased mother.

BuckeyeDuck

You may want to check out today's OLive with an article about Bentz "Oregon Rep Cliff Bentz Acted on Principle.." At ty end he stated that he was concerned about the angry people who felt they hadn't been heard. 155 million voted and were heard. 74 million on the losing side. One side will lose in a vote.

Skittish

"Angry people who felt they hadn't been heard" - doesn't this sound familiar? See if you can guess what I mean by who should recognize this as they complain about it all the time. And this is why majority rule can be tyrannical and why The Constitution is so remarkable - it tries, albeit imperfectly, to balance the needs of the minority with the will of the majority. Those who feel they haven't been heard need to look really hard at whether that is really true or not before burning the country down.

I made a mistake in my last reply to you - I thought you were responding to my comments about the clergy opinion in today's edition. Take a look and let me know what you think.

BuckeyeDuck

Meanwhile in the trumpiverse that inhabits trump's brain and those who follow him, trump today stated that "after being analyzed, everybody agrees that the last couple of sentences in his speech last week were appropriate". In a way he speaks the truth as they are now being used to appropriately impeach him.

Skittish

Regarding Bentz resigning, it seems we have a coordinated effort by a handful of people to look bigger than they are: is this a manipulation technique to avoid debate? The issue is very contentious and I tend not to side with those who self righteously declare they are correct and condemn anyone ideologically opposed to them. So by default, I will say Bentz shouldn't resign as we are determining an outcome before we have fully discussed the facts and how they relate. It's like declaring you have arrived at your destination by getting through TSA: the trip has only just begun.

BuckeyeDuck

Well, you'll be in the minority there Skittish. Bentz threw his hat in the ring with the rest of the cabal. To the detriment of all of his constituents, even those who voted against him, his time in Congress may be painful.

Skittish

Remember that the subject here is what is the definition of "systemic racism" and why do we think we are right. You being someone who points out deflection in others, should have answered the question. And don't you think the false allegations of racism, perhaps may be racist? Do you denounce all racism, including racism by blacks, hispanics, BLM and antifa? Or do you agree with me that racism no matter the source is evil and is on the rise in the Bipoc community?

BuckeyeDuck

Your post was about Bentz and appears to show you as an apologist for him. The facts about the election, his sham of stating "irregularities" like the other 147 objectors have been out there to see for awhile now. He's made no statement since the attempt to overthrow our democracy other than "thoughts and prayers" on Twitter for the Capitol Policeman slain by the insurrectionists.

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