Gordon doesn’t understand threat to Quinault families


The Daily World’s Oct. 18 endorsement of Frank Gordon states, “He understands the issues.” He obviously understands many of the issues affecting urban Grays Harbor County; Aberdeen and Hoquiam. That is to be expected, being an Aberdeen City Councilman for many years.

However, his understanding of the Wild Olympics debacle is poor at best. Mr. Gordon understands that the county is struggling to make ends meet, as we all do. What he quite obviously does not understand is the threat the Wild Olympics/Wild & Scenic Rivers Act brings to rural Grays Harbor. Apparently Mr. Gordon doesn’t know of the nearly 4,000 acres that Olympic National Park has taken off the county tax rolls in the Quinault Valley alone. This loss has resulted in millions, yes millions, of lost tax revenue to Grays Harbor County and the Quinault School District. In addition, this “willing seller” policy so highly touted by both Wild Olympics and the park has halved the student population of our school. Is he even aware that the park’s “willing seller” program is still very much alive and well in the Quinault Valley?

Throughout the Wild Olympics battle here in Grays Harbor County Mr. Gordon has made several statements that warrant serious consideration before giving him your vote for county Commissioner.

In a 2011 City Counsel meeting he stated, “All the Peninsula rivers are running sewers.” The Wild Olympic Campaign website states, “the Olympic Peninsula rivers are clear and pristine.” All Grays Harbor rural residents and nearly all Grays Harbor urban residents realize the foolishness of Mr. Gordon’s statement.

In his next letter to the editor he tried to portray Bill Pickell as a man who “makes a living speaking for the powerful.” How preposterous! Bill Pickell speaks for the working men and women of Grays Harbor County and the Pacific Northwest. To say he makes a living speaking for the powerful is not only laughable but totally indefensible. I wish Mr. Pickell was a county commissioner.

In another letter to the editor Mr. Gordon attempts to portray logger families as uncaring to the plight of fishing families in their struggling times. He states, “Did the logging family care that thousands of (fishing) jobs were lost?” “As long as the logging family had a job, tough luck for the other (fishing) family.” Nothing could be further from the truth, Mr. Gordon. Both the logging and fishing families mourn the loss of any jobs in Grays Harbor County. Shame on you for suggesting we are so cold-hearted!

I certainly do not want to infer that Mr. Gordon is anything but “honest, trustworthy and hard working,” Brenda Blue of Aberdeen wrote in her letter to the editor. While I have never met him I have no reason to doubt his integrity. I do, however, have serious doubts about his ability or his desire to support rural Grays Harbor County.

Would Mr. Gordon stand tall beside Quinault area residents to face the Wild Olympics, Olympic National Park, U.S. Forest Service or even our own county government just as Herb Welch has repeatedly and steadfastly done? No, he would not. There is absolutely no evidence to make me think otherwise.

The Daily World calls Mr. Gordon “refreshingly” frank. Out here in Quinault we’ll just skip the “refreshingly” part and call him Frank Gordon.

In closing, one thing is very perplexing to me. Why did the Daily World’s editorial board of Bill Crawford, Doug Barker, Rick Anderson and Dan Jackson choose not to print Mr. Gordon’s position on the Wild Olympics? Grays Harbor county citizens deserve and need to know each candidate’s stance on the Wild Olympics. The Wild Olympics very well could be an election-winning or an election-losing issue.

Our ballots have arrived and we are waiting.

I am assuming Mr. Gordon still supports the Wild Olympics bill as vigorously as he has since its inception. He has said nothing to the contrary. If you oppose the Wild Olympics/Wild &Scenic Rivers proposal, Allen Shores should get your vote. He has mine.

Keith Olson

Lake Quinault