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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Same-sex marriage in 1877 of a woman to a female-to-male

Alan L. Hart, shown in 1943, grew up in Albany, Oregon as Alberta Lucille Hart PHOTO: Alan L. Hart, shown in 1943, grew up in Albany, Oregon (across the river from Corvallis, Oregon State University) as Alberta Lucille Hart and is considered to be an early example of an FTM or female-to-male. Early gay historians controversially categorized Hart as a lesbian instead of transgendered or other category. Even earlier, many people thought that women would dress as men to obtain male privileges common before the 1960's women's liberation movement started. (See previous posts Oregon FTM doctor's 1925 marriage and Baker case recalled by Portland gay newspaper (7/23/15), Albany, Oregon FTM Alan Hart 1890-1962 (9/3/11), Jonathan Ned Katz gay history pioneer (3/6/10) and Alan L. Hart (Wikipedia))

The 1970 marriage of Jack Baker and Michael McConnell, which was the basis of the first U.S. Supreme Court case on same-sex marriage (Baker v. Nelson 1972), is the first known historical example of an intentional same-sex marriage between two people who both considered themselves to be congruent with their assigned gender identity and biological sex. (See previous post Baker on gay marriage in 1972 vs. 2015 reaction to Supreme Court ruling (7/17/15))

However, if you include transgender individuals, there are much earlier historical examples of same-sex marriages, such as the one documented in a blog post by Jim Burroway, "TODAY IN HISTORY: A Same-Sex Marriage in Nevada: 1877," posted Sep. 28, 2015, which references an earlier guest post on the same blog site by Homer Thiel, "A Same-Sex Marriage In 1877," posted Aug. 15, 2015.

In my opinion, the same-sex marriages of transgendered people are probably more common than thought, because such marriages can be done silently "on-the-down-low" -- the couples will have birth certificates that comply with various State laws that assume marriage is between people of the opposite biological sex.

In my experience, no FTM I know has ever said they adopted a male role to obtain male privileges -- all of them said that they were born that way and their acting male seemed to be more natural to them than dressing up as a girl. It is unfortunate that most people assume FTM's are motivated by male privileges, which was the assumption in the case documented above, because assuming this limits the understanding of FTMs and gender. Every FTM I know has said that virtually no man will fully accept their maleness and in their experience, many men will react to it with anger and feel threatened by it. I guess the heterosexual male ego is fragile as Freud thought a century ago!

For an example of females working in male roles see previous posts Gender bending OSU student recruits women into science and engineering (7/12/14) and Kim Kraemer auto mechanic 1980 (11/7/09) about how a female mechanic was worthy of a newspaper story decades ago. (Of course, today I still don't see too many female auto mechanics or engineers even though they have increased in number!)

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Nazi persecution of homosexuals traveling exhibit from United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Berlin university students carrying away the library from the home of Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld on May 6, 1933 for a May 10-11 Nazi book burning. New York Herald Tribune, May 17, 1933

PHOTO: Berlin university students carrying away the library from the home of Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld (1868-1935) on May 6, 1933 for a May 10-11 Nazi book burning, (New York Herald Tribune, May 17, 1933). See previous posts Magnus Hirschfeld Book notes 37 to 39 - final post (11/2/2010) and OSU Foundation Magnus Hirschfeld Fund Agreement (1/4/12)

My German ancestors often talked about escaping Germany in the 1930's as the Nazi's gained power, hut it wasn't until a few decades ago when I heard anything about the history of eugenics and gays in Germany during Nazi times and even later, the Schwules Museum in Berlin.

The mainstream American gay press is taking note. For example, see the articles by James McDonald, "The Lost Pink Triangles: An exhibition of Nazi persecution of homosexuals goes on display in NYC," Advocate Magazine, Aug./Sep. 2015, p. 21 posted Jul. 6, 2015, which mentions that this exhibit is now showing at "the Museum of Jewish Heritage in New York City," and a sister magazine article also by James McDonald, "Traveling Exhibition Explores Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals," posted May 28, 2015 that says, "The story of these victims, commonly known as the Pink Triangles, has begun attracting attention relatively recently . . . their stories have largely failed to penetrate mainstream Holocaust narratives. . ."

The history of this exhibit is included a book by Susan Ferentinos, "Interpreting LGBT History at Museums and Historic Sites," Rowman & Littlefield, Dec 16, 2014, p. 12. Susan Ferentinos notes that the Holocaust Museum opening coincided with the 1993 March On Washington for gay rights and in 1996 the Museum started to develop this traveling exhibit and opened it in 2002 before becoming a traveling exhibit led by the exhibition curator Edward Phillips.

"Nazi Persecution of Homosexuals 1933-1945," United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Traveling Exhibitions page includes a Link to Launch the Online Exhibition that goes to a frame-based interface with the following pages of text and photos:

(Note: The above list of links is to make it easier for me to access their site with my low-vision blindness. The frame Web page design's fixed column makes it hard to use with enlarged text and the menu text sizes do not scale with standard accessibility browser software.)

Is OSU building acronym for Learning Innovation Center lice or lick?

OSU Learning Innovation Center, or LInC

PHOTO: Learning Innovation Center (official acronym LInC) by Victoria Pence, "Innovative learning technology," OSU Barometer, Oct. 7, 2015, p. 1 printed on the front page of Oregon State University's student newspaper article by Sean Bassinger, Senior Beat Reporter, "The Learning Innovation Center," OSU Barometer, Oct. 7, 2015, p. 1. This new, high-tech classroom building has much promise, but its current state is summed up when the article quotes, "Skip Rochefort, an associate professor in chemical engineering, is among those who Dorbolo recommended to try one of the circular classrooms. Though he encountered some technical difficulties with one of the projectors in a classroom on the second floor, Rochefort's overall impression of the new building seemed to be a positive one. 'It's all pretty good once it works," he said. "Usually they have two projectors on both sides so everybody can see it, but the space is great. I love the space. . . . Leslie McDonald, an instructor in mathematics, . . said the dual-projection offered in rooms such as LInC-303 has given her more room to write longer equations and give better demonstrations.'" (UPDATED Oct. 7, 2015 - see previous post Is OSU building acronym for Learning Innovation Center lice or lick? (9/26/15) below that also lists the OSU Cultural Centers)

Andy Warhol Rolling Stones Sticky Finger zipper art showing white briefs inside

PHOTO: (click on photo to enlarge) the original Rolling Stones Sticky Fingers (1971) vinyl LP record music album cover has the famous licking lips logo and also a real zipper (top) that can be zipped open to reveal white underwear briefs inside. The photo is signed by artist Andy Warhol and is widely believed to be a photo of the gay porn icon Joe D'Allesandro. (See previous posts Wojnarowicz, Warhol, Smithsonian censorship and the Rolling Stones Sticky Fingers zipper art (12/18/10), "Album Cover Joe," Web site accessed Apr. 12, 2003 and David Coleman, "POSSESSED; 1970's New York, On an Album Cover," New York Times, posted Feb. 9, 2003)

A new classroom building at OSU incorporates all of the latest technology. (See James Day, "New classroom building at OSU set to open," posted and James Day, "OSU opens high-tech classroom building," posted Sep. 22, 2015)

I was curious why the new Oregon State University Learning Innovation Center had been given the official acronym of LInC, and my curiosity peaked when I read the "Editorial: Roses and Raspberries for Sept. 25," Gazette-Times, Sep. 25, 2015, p. A9 posted September 11, 2015 5:15 am, which insinuated that OSU was worried that the acronym LIC would be pronounced "LICE" and so officials made the official acronym LInC.

This story may be true, but it seems to me that a worse mispronunciation would be "LICK," because the word lick has all sorts of sexually suggestive double entendre as seen in the Rolling Stones Album artwork.

On a very loosely related note, there is a new cultural center on campus, OSU Ettihad Cultural Center, which is described in the OSU student newspaper in the full-page letter from OSU President Ed Ray, "Welcome to a new year at OSU! A letter from President Ed Ray," Barometer (Back to school edition), Mon. Sep. 21, 2015, p. 6 posted Sep. 23, 2015.

OSU President Ray says, the word for the new cultural center Ettihad is "Arabic for 'union," however, my Google search for define:Ettihad yields the definition of it as the national airlines of the United Arabs Emirates, and Google suggests a slightly different spelling, Etihad, that yields no clear definition.

I hope to look into the meaning of this word further and blog my notes, starting with the official list below from the OSU Diversity & Cultural Engagement page accessed Sep. 25, 2015 of all the OSU cultural centers, including the OSU Ettihad Cultural Center that says it is "a cross-cultural resource for OSU students who have a cultural or ethnic background in central and southwestern Asia and northern Africa. It's also open for those who are interested in learning more about those cultures and regions." This center was created shortly after several local incidents occurred concerning Islam and students from the Middle East. I assume the incidents refer to the Islamic student being accused of being terrorists.

Oregon State University Cultural Resource Centers:

See previous posts:

Friday, September 25, 2015

LED Pixi flat panel light replaces under cabinet fluorescent light over kitchen counter desk area

LED Pixi flat panel light replaces kitchen under cabinet fluorescent light

PHOTO: My kitchen counter desk's under cabinet fluorescent light was recently replaced with a LED Pixi flat panel light to help me see a little bit better. Except for having an "A" at the end of the model number and being a little bit brighter, externally this Pixie light looks nearly identical to the one installed in the adjacent laundry room ceiling light fixture that originally used a 60-Watt incandescent light bulb. (See previous post LED Pixi flat panel light replaces my laundry room light (4/10/15) for links to the manufacturer's data sheet and a photo of it installed in my laundry room.) Also seen in this photo is the replacement phone I recently had to buy because my twenty-years-old Northern Telecom phone started to have some electrical problems. I found it hard to find a new phone that was low vision accessible -- with large print key labels and with a caller ID display I could see. If I go any blinder, this new phone will also announce the calls via a built-in computer speech synthesis program, which amazingly works, most of the time, but not every time, because sometimes it speaks names with a strange pronunciation. (See previous post LED and CFL bulbs hard to see with blue-orange-yellow color blindness due to their higher color temperature (8/1/15))

I am enjoying my new kitchen counter desk light, but it wasn't easy to install because meeting both safety and electric code requirements required installing a UL-rated electrical box to be added inside of the kitchen cabinet. Surprisingly, the Pixie light fixture doesn't include a standard electrical box conduit clamp like the old fluorescent light had to safely run the 120VAC power wire into it, probably because the Pixie light designers wanted to make the fixture thin as possible. The manufacturer could have solved this problem with some optional spacer plates, which would also solve the other installation problem I ran into with the ground screw and power plug connectors being too thick to flush mount it to the ceiling with having to ding the drywall a tad.

As a side benefit, the new Pixie light is more energy efficient than either the previously used incandescent bulbs or the fluorescent lights. Everybody loves the bright light the Pixie puts out in the laundry room and how it looks aesthetically. However, normal vision people say my kitchen under cabinet light is much too bright for a kitchen desk area. In an attempt to solve this issue, I experimented using a dimmer switch in place of the existing simple wall switch loop. The manufacturer says a standard Leviton dimmer should work, but online reviews suggest some dimmer switch models work better than others at reducing any humming noise when it is dimmed. I also found the humming noise to be an issue and the manufacturer's list of approved dimmers overlaps, but not completely, despite the model number of them being identical, except for a "A" on the end of it.

The only other unknown issue I worry about is if the LED lights will last the 50,000 or more hours promised by the manufacturers, because there is no easy to replace bulb if the light burned out, and the whole fixture would need to be replace, which inovles the hassle of unwiring the 120VAC connection, which would require the services of a licensed electrician.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Front page OSU library flasher story bumps sexual assault story to page 3

Oregon State University library flasher on front page 9/18/15 and sexual assault on p. A3

PHOTO: Printed on the front page, of the professional newspaper serving my Corvallis, Oregon State University college town, was a story by Nathan Bruttell, "Porn video earns fine for ex-OSU student," Gazette-Times, Sep. 18, 2015, p. A1, A5, which unfortunately bumped off the front page the story of a physical sexual assault: Nathan Bruttell, "Corvallis woman reports waking up to intruder rubbing himself on her," Gazette-Times, Sep. 18, 2015, p. A3. According to the first story, an OSU student, who as a freshman student used the library to expose her breasts to the world on the internet and "used the video to help propel her fame -- she started using the Twitter handle @KSLibraryGirl in the months following -- and her webcam site states 'yes, I am that girl.'" The other and completely unrelated sexual assault story that got bumped off the front page quoted a police report that said, "she woke up and a male she did not know was on top of her rubbing his erect penis through his clothes and the covers against her body. . ."

I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall watching the Gazette-Times editors discussing their decision to bump an actual sexual assault story off the front page in favor of a victimless crime story about a library flasher, which ironically gives her cyberspace sex work priceless free publicity -- I'm sure she thinks the $1,000 fine is more than worth the publicity. Yes, in all fairness, it is true that what the editors chose for the front page was the story that has become a national news story. However, it is unfortunate this editorial decision also minimized the importance of the sexual assault story, which I also agree is too common in a college town.

Front page headline 'Sex video raises furor at OSU' Gazette-Times Jan. 30, 2015, p. A1

PHOTO: Front page newspaper article by Nathan Bruttell, "Sex video raises furor at OSU. Former student filmed graphic scene inside library." Gazette-Times, Jan. 30, 2015, p. A1, A6 posted Jan. 29, 2015 as "Former OSU student's pornographic video getting national attention" See previous post OSU library tearooms mentioned in letter about sex video (2/4/15)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Essay on purpose of being gay in 'The Advocate' print edition

Tess Jarmain escorts four male-oriented (homosexual) rams in Oregon State University's flock back to pasture, photo by Tiffany Brown, 'The science of rams and sexuality: Not all seek ewes,' By Mary Ann Albright, Corvallis (Oregon) Gazette-Times, August 12, 2005 PHOTO: OSU student Tess Jarmain escorts four male-oriented (homosexual) rams in Oregon State University's flock back to pasture. Photo by Tiffany Brown from 'The science of rams and sexuality: Not all seek ewes,' By Mary Ann Albright, Corvallis (Oregon) Gazette-Times, August 12, 2005 (See previous posts OSU student recruits volunteers by pitching gay sheep research (2/12/15) and OSU Gay Sheep NY Times (2/7/07))

Cover of the journal Cell June 3, 2005 showing gay fruit flies having sex PHOTO: Cover of the journal Cell June 3, 2005 showing gay fruit flies having sex. (See previous posts Marc Breedlove seeks donations for gay science documentary (8/4/12) and OSU gay fruit fly sex research (9/16/06))

In the latest print edition of "The Advocate" that is apparently not yet available online printed an interesting essay by brenden shucart, "What's the use of being gay?" Advocate, Oct./Nov. 2015, p. 23 (apparently available only in print edition as of Sep. 15, 2015). (For more on the author, see Brenden Shucart (born 1981) accessed Sep. 15, 2015)

Shucart doesn't mention directly the scientific debate between biological essentialists and social constructionists, but he does reference some of the latest scientific discoveries concerning the genetics of homosexuality and then asks how it ties in the evolutionary theories of the past:

" . . . Others questioned whether homosexuality had a genetic component and even (gasp!) evolutionary benefits. . . In 2004 an Italian research team led by Andrea Camperio-Ciani postulated that homosexuality could be explained through Richard Dawkins' theory of "sexually antagonistic selection" wherein a set of genes might increase the procreational competitiveness of one gender while dimiising the other's changes. . . .

This year a study was published with the Royal Society that applied sexually antagonistic selection theories to the lives of fruit flies . . . found an undeniable link between same-sex behavior in male fruit flies and an increase in the fecundity of females from the same line. . . study doesn't examine the potential benefits of homosexuality. . .

(Quoted from brenden shucart, "What's the use of being gay?" Advocate, Oct./Nov. 2015, p. 23 (apparently available only in print edition as of Sep. 15, 2015))

Shucart also discusses other theories of why homosexuality exists in nature, such as the idea that it is a population limiting mechanism in evolution, which he cites one source that questions this theory, and his favorite theory that "envisions the gay man as bridge builder and peacemaker."

In my opinion, a more interesting question to me is how the concept of social constructions be modeled mathematically in a way that could be simulated on a computer so that different variables could be adjusted and multiple simulations be run to see what would happen over time. For example, a very simplistic model has always said that if 100 percent of people are gay, then the chance humans will reproduce is diminished and humans could go extinct. I suspect that such modeling would find that a few percent of the population being gay is the optimal level to achieve some of the positive benefits hypothesized by shucart, while simultaneously minimizing the negatives, such as the reduction in breeding efficiency, etc.

P.S. A note to the designer of the new Advocate. com Website after I was unable to find this essay on the site, even using Google search and your own search box -- yes, it appears that has had a much needed graphic design update from the original HTML Website that has existed for almost two decades, and it appears that the new has better integrated the modern features of mobile interfaces and social networking, but I was unable to find any articles or text like I could easily do on the old site. Perhaps some of the problem is the obnoxious pop-up ads that Microsoft's default software warns is trying to install adware -- yes, I appreciate you have to monetize with advertising, but you need to do advertising in a way that doesn't drive readers away from the site in fear! Yes, I am legally blind, which makes it harder for me to appreciate your new design, but compared to other sites with similar functionality, seems to be causing me more trouble than these other sites and so I believe the problem is in more in your design than my own poor eyesight.

Friday, September 11, 2015

HP breakup making Bill and Dave spin in their graves

headline 'H-P executive predicts 700 new jobs' Gazette-Times Aug. 8, 1974, p. 2

PHOTO: A newspaper headline from 1974 reports Hewlett-Packard's plans to build a calculator plant and research facility in Corvallis as described in the newspaper article by John Atkins, "H-P executive predicts 700 new jobs," Gazette-Times Aug. 8, 1974, p. 2. (See previous posts Don't Cali-fornicate Oregon and HP annexation history (6/14/12) and HP and Corvallis newspaper history (3/11/09) about the move of the Hewlett-Packard calculator division to Corvallis in 1975)

UPDATE 9/16/15): My local newspaper reporter called me and also received the official word from an HP press person: See "HP to jettison up to 30,000 jobs as part of spinoff," posted Sep. 16, 2015

"Hewlett-Packard Co. is preparing to shed up to another 30,000 jobs, but officials said the cuts should not affect the company's Corvallis campus. . . Currently, the Corvallis site is used in the development of new printing and imaging technologies and in value-added processing of silicon wafers. The Corvallis site will primarily be an HP Inc. site after the planned separation next month, said Blair J. Hinderliter, HP media relations representative in Palo Alto, California. . . Hewlett-Packard employs an estimated 1,800 people at its 140-acre Corvallis campus on Northeast Circle Boulevard (the company does not release local employee numbers). The Corvallis site employed around 10,000 people at its peak in 1996. But, since then, the number has dropped. By 2012, the number had fallen to about 2,000 employees in 2012, according to previous reports. . ." (Quoted from "HP to jettison up to 30,000 jobs as part of spinoff," posted Sep. 16, 2015)

The moneymen of Wall Street, mostly for their own profit, persuaded HP to split up, supposedly so company mangers could better "focus." As part of the split-up process, I recently received a legal letter in the mail describing how the health and retirement benefits, which were promised to me decades ago, will he transferred to be the sole responsibility of the new HP Inc. instead of the original, larger and more diversified company. In my view, this change only benefits Wall Street, because HP has always been able to "focus" more than required to mange their diverse business portfolio. The split-up only shifts financial risk to HP employees and retirees, which prompted me to write the following letter to the editor of my local newspaper serving my town whose economy is dominated by HP and OSU employees: (Note: below is the text of my letter as I submitted it -- the printed version was edited to meet the Associated Press style that uses a hyphen in HP, unlike what the company's and what most other editors' style sheets specify.)

For nearly 40 years, Corvallis has benefited from the presence of Hewlett-Packard, which recently split into four separate companies (HP Inc., Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, Agilent Technologies and Keysight Technologies) largely at the urging of Wall Street investors.

The HP Corvallis site was nurtured for more than a decade by John Young, a 1954 Oregon State University electrical engineering alumnus, after he became the first non-founder CEO of HP.

The HP Corvallis division evolved from building the world's first programmable handheld computers, to portable computers and battery-operable inkjet printers, all of which naturally worked with the electronic test and measurement instruments famously made by HP since its founding.

I am sure the company founders Bill Hewlett (1913-2001) and Dave Packard (1912-1996) are spinning in their graves over HP breaking up, based on what I learned while traveling with Bill and Dave to division management reviews in their private jet that they insisted on having all empty seats filled by regular HP employees.

The HP breakup could hurt the Corvallis economy because many promised employee benefits, including healthcare, for both current and retired HP employees are now tied to only HP Inc. instead of the original, larger and more diversified HP as Bill and Dave intended.

Unfortunately, HP beneficiaries can diversify only some, but not all, of their benefits and retirement accounts.

The only thing Corvallis can do now is to pray for the success of both HP and OSU.

(Quoted from Thomas Kraemer, "HP breakup could harm economy," Gazette-Times, Sep. 11, 2015, p. A9)

(Note the above text is as I submitted the letter, which the newspaper edited to meet their Associated Press style that abbreviates Hewlett-Packard as H-P (with a hyphen) instead of without a hyphen as the company and most other editors prefer to do it.)

About a year ago, my local newspaper printed the "Editorial: HP's split raises vital questions for the mid-valley," posted Oct. 8, 2014. It said in part, "We've learned that lesson the hard way, as employment at the HP campus in Corvallis tumbled from more than 7,000 back in the days when the company did high-volume manufacturing of inkjet printer cartridges at the site down to an estimated 1,800 today. . . ."

The official corporate press release predicted correctly the split would be finished by Nov. 1, 2015: "HP To Separate Into Two New Industry-Leading Public Companies," posted Oct. 6, 2014, which was reported by the more recent news story by Anita Balakrishnan, "HP announces post-split boards," posted Aug. 12, 2015

For a good history of HP electronic test and measurement instruments business, see the official "Keysight Technologies History," accessed Sep. 8, 2015. Interestingly, it appears that the only part of HP Labs that survived the split-ups is the part I managed in the 1980's for advanced test and measurement research. This research included the invention of the software object-oriented programming system adopted by Apple Computer. (See the blog post by Don Tuite, "Agilent T&M becomes Keysight; the Old HP Labs Keep the Agilent Name," posted Aug 2, 2014 and my previous post Apple Apps written in Objective-C can now use 'Swift' language (6/17/15)) The reason this is the only part of HP Labs that survived is probably because the printer group formed its own advanced research lab in Corvallis and in my experience most of the rest of HP wasn't interested in the work HP labs had been doing. For example, the Corvallis division until the early 1980's ignored much of the work HP Labs did with Stanford and Xerox PARC researchers who invented the modern concept of personal computer interfaces that are embodied in Microsoft Windows and modern smartphone interfaces, such as Android and Apple iPhones. (See Apple Apps written in Objective-C can now use 'Swift' language (6/17/15))

Of a loosely related interest is the local Corvallis newspaper story about one of the farms that is nearby the HP Corvallis campus: Bennett Hall, "History is a living thing for fifth-generation Corvallis farmer Kenny Reynolds,"Gazette-Times, Sep. 8, 2015, p. A1

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

The Weather Channel reports smoke as current weather in Corvallis

smoke shown as current Corvallis weather by Weather Channel Aug. 23, 2015 9:28AM

PHOTO: incredibly, instead of reporting the typical current weather condition of "sunny" or "rain," on Aug. 23, 2015 the current weather in Corvallis, Oregon was reported to be "smoke" by the Comcast cable TV "The Weather Channel Local on the Eights" service. The sky was filled with smoke due to nearby forest fires, which caused the air to be irritating to breathe and unhealthy according to the U.S. Government EPA. (See local newspaper coverage by Kyle Odegard, "Smoky haze will stay in valley," posted Aug. 22, 2015 and "Police: Smoke from Willamina fire chokes Corvallis," posted Aug. 22, 2015)

The smoke in Corvallis was blown in from nearby forest fires that have been greater in number and intensity than normal due to the unusually dry conditions resulting from below average precipitation this year. The smoke was irritating to my sinus tissues and it caused many people excessive tears and respiratory problems. Fortunately, in the last week the wind shifted direction, there has been a little rain so that much of the smoke has cleared out.

In my opinion, the reason for the increased prevalence of forest fires, other than the dry weather conditions this year, is due to changes in forest management practices. Decades ago, before objections from environmental activists and others, it was common to clear-cut forest land and leave large open areas, which created natural firebreaks that wildfires couldn't easily cross to start a fire in another part of the forest. Over the last few decades, for a number of reasons, Oregon forests have been allowed to fill in and are being only selectively thinned out by modern logging practices.

Also, it used to be common to hear radio and TV advertising for forest fire prevention campaigns, such as the famous "Smokey the Bear" slogan, "Only you can prevent forest fires." For some unknown reason, these fire prevention campaigns have disappeared, perhaps due to tax budget cuts or because it is no longer fashionable to blame forest fires on careless campers who do not put out their campfire properly, or the hot muffler of a four-wheel drive vehicle driving off-road over dry grass and igniting a fire. Today it is more common for officials to blame forest fires on lightning strikes hitting drought stricken and dead trees, which sets on fire both the trees and adjacent grass land. Evidence of this can be seen in recent weather satellite images that show lightning strikes have occurred in remote areas where forest fires had started, but there was no human activity that could be the cause.

Needless to say, the management of forest land to prevent forest fires is a complicated issue that has conflicting agendas between a for-profit timber industry, which doesn't want to lose valuable timber, and the environmentalists who are derisively called "tree huggers" for their agenda of preserving the forests by not cutting down any trees. Playing on both sides of this debate are scholars who research and develop better forest management policies at Forestry colleges, such as the one at Oregon State University, and whose research is sometimes funded by timber industry dollars.