From the front lines of Idaho

  Dear HCN:

Mindy Wiebush claims to have heard negative things about activists protecting Cove/Mallard forests and Idaho and denigrates those people (HCN, 2/19/96). Yet she labels actions from corporate vigilantes as merely "hotheaded." While I don't know anything about what she is rumored to have heard, this is what I know for sure:

All activists are requested to observe non-violence guidelines. This includes training to teach respect for others;

I experienced two separate occasions this past year where gunshots were used as intimidation and/or threats against protesters. One person was held by vigilantes with a gun pointing at his head. Both county and federal governments brushed-off these incidents;

A close friend, a native of Idaho, was brutally beaten by a so-called local logger from Alaska;

I witnessed Forest Service officials lie in court.

The letter-writer conveys a sad but true statement about our society - the belief that non-violent resistance and dissent are wrong and only violence is legitimate. No wonder the nation, freedom and Earth are all in severe jeopardy.

Gary Macfarlane

Moscow, Idaho

The writer works with the Cove/Mallard Coalition, which can be reached at the new e-mail address,