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The nonprofit industry is the third largest in America. In Canyon County, nonprofit organizations employ hundreds of people and serve thousands. They provide food for the hungry, safety for the abused, care for our seniors, and shelter for stray pets. They also provide the community with entertainment, art, medical centers, emergency services, places of worship, and more. Without nonprofits, Canyon County would be a pretty dull place to live.

We support our favorite nonprofits because we care about the issues they’re addressing and believe the work they’re doing is making a difference.

Like all businesses, nonprofits in Canyon County are struggling right now. They’ve had to reduce or cease services and ask staff to remain at home. And some, like those serving seniors, providing hunger relief, or domestic abuse programs, have seen a substantial spike in demand for their services.

Most nonprofits don’t make products or sell services to derive income. They rely wholly, or in part, on donations. Many have little to no reserve funds because supporters often pressure them to use the money they raise to support programming rather than save portions of it (this will surely change).

If there was ever a time to express gratitude to those serving us and our community, this is it. I urge to you to make calls or visit the websites of your favorite nonprofits and make a financial gift.

The nonprofits in Canyon County are the cornerstones for much of our culture, fun, and service. In these unsettling times, let’s reassure them with a financial gift and a commitment to help, showing them our passion for their success and the well-being of their staff is authentic. In doing so, we’ll keep our nonprofits strong and stable and Canyon County vibrant.

Kimberly Deugan, Caldwell

Vote LaVerne

I am writing in support of LaVerne Infanger Sessions’ candidacy for the Idaho State Legislature for District 8, House Seat B. Having known LaVerne for fifty-two years, I can vouch for her honesty, integrity, and commitment to community—both at the local and state levels.

In an era punctuated by divisiveness and anger, we need someone who understands that politics is not governance, that demeaning the beliefs of others will not bring accord, that we may see a different path forward but that by working together, we can at least move in the right direction.

Although we face a number of challenging issues, among them the economy and education, it is reassuring that someone of LaVerne’s caliber is willing to commit her abilities to the welfare of our region and state. Her business acumen combined with the fact that she was born and raised in rural Lemhi County give her the first-hand experience necessary to tackle these pressing concerns. LaVerne will work tirelessly with the upcoming legislature for the betterment of District 8 and the state of Idaho. She will represent her constituents rather than promoting the agendas of special interest groups.

I encourage you to cast your vote in the Republican primary for LaVerne Sessions.

Hope Benedict, Salmon


The purpose of this letter is to inject some degree of sanity into the mass hysteria, largely created by the print and electronic media, surrounding the coronavirus outbreak, especially as regards Idaho. As I submit this, the population of Idaho is 1,720,000 persons. There have been 99 reported cases of the illness, which means one case for every 17,373 residents. Diving 99 cases by 17,373 shows that the chance of contracting the virus is .0000575 percent. I encourage people to look at these figures, take a deep breath, and get on with life.

Walter Varnes, Nampa


Beautiful, he wasn’t. My dad said he had a “jug head” which in his opinion meant the sorrel was dumb and no amount of training was going to make him worth anything.The problem was I had grown 8 inches since we bought the pony. Now at 14 years old, I was made fun of because my feet nearly dragged the ground.”Maybe he should ride you,” was a comment I heard regularly.The dream was always to have a “big horse” anyway! So, I traded him plus hard earned savings for the jug head called Red. The following winter Red had to be kept at a distant location. I was one of three to rotate feeding a week at a time. I was always faithful to visit on the weekend. I loved Red even though he was skinny and homely with that big head. I hadn’t seen Red this week but Saturday was finally here! It haunts me still! He was standing but only by the grace of God. Have you ever seen skin stretched over bones? He was only 2 years old. More than 50 years later, the memory still radiates pain through my soul! The man whose turn it was to feed had forgotten. Red was starving. This was no fault of Red’s just like the children who are now here and find themselves without due to school shutdown. Sure it is the parent’s responsibility to feed their own children even in crisis but what if they can’t? What if, like Red, there is no way for some school age children to obtain food? There is nothing you could have done for Red but you can make the difference for children now. If you can’t or won’t, please be glad somebody else is. After all, they are children.

Sharon Maiden, Nampa


At the writing of this letter, 25 March 2020, the Senate reached a deal on the stimulus package with the White House. It will next need to go to the House for final vote. In the past days as the nations positive numbers for CoVid-19 rose, and death numbers went higher, neither party could agree on the stimulus package! News spread that the government CANDY STORE would be giving assistance to american business’ & workers affected. Lobbyist representing the biggest corporations knew it was the moment to advance their interest. Not to be outdone, both parties decided to throw in some political PORK, bloating the package to 2.5T This is what happens when you have a dysfunctional congress and senate that spends more than it brings in! What they wanted: 11B in eliminating USPS debt, bailout to cover student loans, provisions including tax credits for wind & solar projects, and more on the WISH list. The money is to be overseen by an inspector general & congressional panel..........right, from a party that won’t do anything, and another that has no shame! It would not surprise me if a Pay Raise was included in that package. Instead of praising themselves for all their “hard work”, they should be in the trenches with us common folk wondering how bills will get paid, along with food and mortgages/rents. Maybe they need to get a reality check by losing this month and next months salaries. Amazing how those senators knew when to dump their stocks............humm. Hey, as they say in Washington, “ Never let a good crisis go to waste”. In closing, I salute our brave and overworked doctors & nurses, police & fire personnel, and all workers whom I have more respect for than those beings in D.C. God Bless our great nation.

Gene Martin, Emmett


The Governor has been concise and clear in his order for a statewide shelter in place mandate in Idaho. What he has not been clear on is asking families to please adhere to his order to stay home. This means parents need to keep their children at home. Yes, they get bored and fidgety. If possible, let them play in their own yards rather than congregating in neighborhood parks, city parks, other people’s houses, etc. If you have no yard, be creative in keeping them occupied. Not to mention this is a wonderful opportunity to make sure they are reading and writing and keeping up with school work. Learning to cook, clean and help each other are vital skills all children need to learn and practice. This is a great time to reinforce these skills. Stay in touch with friends and relatives via social media and email. Just about every single family as this ability whether by laptop, tablets or smart phones.

You don’t know if the households of children that your child plays with have been exposed or not. I watch my neighborhood kids playing in the community park, playing on trampolines in groups, wrestling, hugging, piggyback riding, chasing and tackling each other. Yes, these are all wonderful childhood activities, fun to do and fun to watch. BUT, we need to teach our children NOW to respect the cruel harshness of reality. Parents, if you fail to teach your children to meet the guidelines of social distancing, you fail to protect your family and your neighborhood, as well as unduly stressing the healthcare system in Idaho.

This will not last forever. But it may be a while before we can get back to any sense of normalcy.

Brenda Garrett, Nampa


In response to Spineless (25 March 2020) and Steve Grant’s letter about downtown Boise having a St. Patrick’s Day party, why is Gov. Little spineless? Why should the government have to tell us what to do in times like this? We should have enough common sense to stay home. We can all support the local eateries by ordering on a take-out basis.

Lucy Summerlin, Nampa


Americans need to know that the folks currently living in the White House, including the leader, are suffering from a social disease often referred to as Rectocranial Inversion. The primary symptom seems to be a condition called rectal optitis, and occurs among all the leader’s followers. As it has spread across the country it has spawned a second condition, localized rectitis, among the general population.

There is only one proven cure for this malady and its side affects, Truth, the Whole Truth, and nothing but the Truth, to be taken copiously until victims are free of it. The major source of this disease is ignorance, specifically self-inflicted ignorance, most commonly when the person denies that a certain fact exists. and when shown proof, will respond with something like “I don’t care what it says there.”

Sadly, most ignorance is self-inflicted, and therefore is difficult to regulate. In the Middle Ages such behavior often resulted in much group brandishing of pitchforks and torches, accompanied by burnings, hangings and other violence, and in fact still occurs randomly in this country against people who are ‘different’. More commonly it results in laws based on our primary religions and which restrict citizens’ rights excessively. Once they were called “blue laws”, but since our legislators are predominantly republicans, and red is their color, they’ll be grouped under “red laws”.

It is therefore strongly recommended that everyone do regular spot checks on themselves and their communiiies in an effort to eliminate Rectocranial Inversion and its two most serious symptoms, rectal octitis and localized rectitis; to not only to be very careful about whom they elect to public office, but to maintain careful watchfulness over them throughout their terms.

Irys Gibbons, Nampa


I am amazed at the greed and selfishness exhibited by the good people of the treasure valley by the way they have cleaned the shelves of the local grocery stores with little to no concern for their fellow man. We hear a lot about the generosity of people of this area, but that seems to be hard to believe considering the events of the last few weeks.

I would imagine if we were to ask these people if they were a Christian or if they even believed in God, the answer would be a resounding yes. That may be so, but they seemed to have forgotten the part about regarding their neighbor above themselves, then there was the Good Samaritan who went out of his way to help a stranger. These and many other ideas about helping others seem to have disappeared from many people’s thoughts of late.

I wonder if any thought was given to the elderly or someone with an ailment, such as diabetes, that can’t eat just anything without risking complications of one sort or another. For many, trips to the store are an occasional thing and they need to get what they need on that one trip. If the shelves are empty it puts an imposition on them, which is totally unnecessary but is a direct result of someone else’s greed.

This is a health crisis we are facing, and hoarding food and toilet paper won’t make it go away. We need to be thinking about ways to help others at this time instead of how we can keep them from getting what they need to live

Greed and selfishness are not virtues.

Harvey Anderson, Greenleaf

Editor’s note: The COVID-19 outbreak is moving quickly in Idaho. Some letters may contain out of date information by the date they’re published.

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