Idaho native returning to Treasure Valley finds Boise is the City of Cars, not Trees

City of Cars

I am an Idaho native, born in Twin Falls, lived in Boise since 1986, apart from a few years in Oregon and California. Recently moved back from Oregon I have been living and working in Nampa the past year so I have largely missed out on the traffic. But this morning between 8 and 9 o’clock I had to be in Boise for a new job. OMG! What has happened? This is the absolute worst I have ever seen traffic. I lived in San Diego, and today’s traffic was comparable. What I experienced going and coming home on the freeway today was to say the least disappointing and disgusting. I would have never thought traffic like this was and is possible in our small city Idaho. Have that many people really moved here? Has our transportation department dropped the ball? Could we not have gotten a BART-type system years ago that could have helped? I mean no disrespect, but I guess Boise Idaho has joined the big cities and the cries of overpopulation, outrageous housing and frustrating traffic jams. Welcome to Boise, City of Cars, not Trees.

Randy Norton, Nampa

Vote blue

I am going to vote for the party or any of its representatives that wants to give fourth-graders free school lunches instead of the one that wants to force them to have their rapist’s baby (quote from Andrew Wortman). I won’t vote for a party that says it’s OK to rape a woman and then try to shame her for the crime (heard of the Taliban/Iran, et al?). I won’t vote for a party or any of its representatives who think it’s OK to attack our own government. I won’t vote for a party or its representatives who demand that women are subservient. I will not vote for a party or its representatives who think they are above the law. I will vote blue.

Catherine C. Parsons, Nampa

Public education

Public education was previously guided by local control and community inputs. But the God-awful alliance of politicians and Big Money — capitalizing on the “Knowledge Economy” — transformed the system through “marketplace” theory. Now, with new GOP leadership being openly anti-government, pro-privatization, people need to distinguish truth from targeted political marketing.

When words in the party platform don’t match policy proposals or actions, it’s political marketing.

“We believe that successful education is a joint responsibility of the individual, the family, and the community... [and] the most effective, responsible and responsive educational system is that system closest to the people,” wrote GOP leaders. But they support “a change to Idaho’s public school funding formula that includes ‘school choice’” and they plan to “promote private enterprise... as the solution to our domestic policy challenges.”

“School choice” through private providers? Vouchers? Don’t buy it. Support candidates with truly responsible and responsive improvement plans. We need leaders to improve what we have, not destroy it.

Contrast the Idaho Democratic Party platform and policies. Standing on our “constitutional and moral obligation,” they resolve to fund “safe and efficient public school facilities” and protect public schools from curricula that are “filled with errors and partisan politics.” Vote blue.

Victoria M. Young, Caldwell

Vote by mail

I have mail! Yes, my vote-by-mail ballot arrived. Now I can sit at the kitchen table and mull over my choices. I have time to research the College of Western Idaho candidates. Frankly, I didn’t know we’d be voting on them, and I don’t know anything about the Fourth Judicial District Court judges — yet.

Request an absentee ballot by Oct. 28. That way you have the option of voting by mail or, if you prefer to vote on Election Day, Nov. 8, you still can. The poll worker will simply spoil your absentee ballot and issue a new one. Either way, just make sure you vote.

You can request a mail-in ballot, confirm polling location or update your voter registration at

Kayla Dodson, Boise


This month, I had the honor of representing Idaho on Capitol Hill. Along with roughly 600 of my fellow American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network volunteers from across the country, I traveled to Washington, D.C., to urge lawmakers to make cancer a national priority.

Together, we called on Congress to support lifesaving policies that help people prevent and treat cancer. We asked legislators for their support in increasing federal funding for cancer research and prevention, and to support increasing the diversity of those enrolled in clinical trials.

I had the opportunity to sit down with Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch and Reps. Mike Simpson and Russ Fulcher to tell them that cancer isn’t partisan — it touches every community.

More than 10,000 Idahoans will hear the words “You have cancer” in 2022. Congress needs to pass critical, bipartisan legislation to help save lives and end cancer as we know it.

I encourage you to join us, giving us a stronger and louder voice in the fight against cancer. Visit to be connected to people like me in your community.

Cody Wolf, Boise, volunteer, ACS CAN

Reelect Little

Recently, the issue of education has come into greater focus given the pandemic’s nationwide impact on children and young adults. But while many are just tuning in to the benefits of early literacy programs, Gov. Brad Little has been clear-eyed and committed to improving children’s reading skills since day one of his administration. He knows that when Idaho’s kids succeed in school, our communities thrive.

In the last year alone, Gov. Little and his office have made incredible strides to support Idaho’s youngest students. He was instrumental in tripling the state’s early literacy intervention fund from $26.1 million to $76.7 million, providing schools the resources to address early literacy needs, including expanding access to full-day kindergarten at no cost to parents.

This November, Brad Little has earned my vote for governor. He has delivered for Idaho’s youngest learners. I’m pleased to see that Save the Children Action Network agrees, and endorsed his reelection bid. I encourage others who care about the future of Idaho’s kids to support his campaign.

Mackenzie Bannister, Caldwell