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The campaign theme this year from one side of Eureka politics is that the city is sliding into a dystopian apocalypse as we are besieged by needle exchange and bike lanes. We live in such a beautiful place! Yes, we have problems in post-industrial Eureka as we try to find footing in a changing economy, but they didn’t begin four years ago when progressives became the council majority for the first time since the socialists of a century ago. We need to work on them as a community. But if you’re blaming the current majority then your memory is either short, selective, or both.

Needle exchanges save lives says every major study since the 1980s. The science is in. And the “as need” model is the most effective, which is why the state health system supports it. We do have to come together and address the needle waste. No, I don’t want kids getting injured. Let’s figure it out. More drop boxes. Volunteer cleanup crews (I’ll volunteer). We can’t solve all of the associated problems of poverty and addiction locally, but we can work at it and advocate for more comprehensive national and regional programs and policies.

As for H and I streets, we don’t need boulevards running those lengths. The changes will be good.

But first we need to elect four women with the requisite depth, compassion, and reason to lead the city — Susan Seaman for mayor, and Leslie Castellano, Natalie Arroyo and Kim Bergel for City Council.

Eric V. Kirk, Eureka

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