Don't salt the roads

Recently it has been reported that the Oregon Department of Transportation has made the decision to start dumping salt on our highways. Many of us here in the Rogue Valley have worked hard and long to further the improvement of our environment in general, and the health of Bear Creek and its tributaries specifically. All those truckloads of salt will make their way into Bear Creek.

I am a local auto mechanic, and I have seen the devastation salt does to cars from areas where they use it. I can only imagine what it will do to the quality of Bear Creek. And for what?

I live on and commute to the Mount Ashland Ski Road, and very rarely have a problem doing so. There is no problem that justifies this kind of threat to the water quality.

ODOT likes to operate high and mighty without consulting others. Please lend your voice and rise up against them. — Greg Bailey, Ashland

Go after bigger fish

Judging by the prosecution's outrage in a recent U.S. District Court case charging conspiracy to defraud the government, you might think the federal government's finally cracking down on the miscreants that demolished our economy.

The defendants "hatched an elaborate fraud designed to 'game' the system ... lining (their) pockets at the taxpayers' expense."

Bank scam? Mortgage con? Not quite. Two Grants Pass sisters and their mom lied on application forms when one daughter obtained assistance to rent a family-owned house. They pleaded guilty, must repay nearly $13,000 and perform 30 days community service. The feds also sought 30 days in jail.

I don't know these people or condone their acts; they should pay. But going after jail time seems heavy-handed when, despite massive evidence of serious criminality, hardly a single major player in the banking, mortgage or brokerage industries who "gamed the system" for billions has even been charged — let alone imprisoned.

If you have an army of lawyers and PR flacks, and own influential allies (think revolving door between Wall Street and government), you are too big to fail and too powerful to prosecute. And the whole greedy scheme, far from fixed, is primed to melt down again. — Rand Hill, Grants Pass

Bear headine was misleading

Friday's headline, "Medford hunter survives bear attack," was an over-the-top misleading and maligning grab for readers. According to the text, the bear was the one attacked. It wasn't out and about in human neighborhoods, seeking to kill and eat young men.

A more apt headline might have been, "Bear dies after injuring attacker."

I do not relate to killing for pleasure. Were one of my children to have anything to do with sport killing, I would be far from proud.

As part of the local culture, it will be reported. But it would be cleaner service to not give headline impressions of vicious wildlife assaulting poor, defenseless, gun-toting hunters.

It is not good that the young man was hurt, but worse that the bear was killed. A T-shirt of a friend of mine shows an upright bear holding a rifle, and is captioned, "I support the right to arm bears." I second that sentiment. — Hyiah Sirah, Ashland

No sympathy for bear hunters

These two guys went out "deer" hunting; they happen to have a bear tag, too. As most people know, black bears are shy; they are not going to attack you.

So these guys shoot the bear that was most likely minding its own business. They follow it a mile before it collapses. Then they go to slit its throat and it fights back. Well, gee, wouldn't you fight back? He gets no sympathy whatsoever from me. I would never shoot a bear unless it attacked me or my pets. They shot it first and wonder why it fought back. Really? — Sharyn "Jinx" Arthur, Gold Hill

Long live irony

I understand that Rush Limbaugh of radio fame recently took it upon himself to call Gov. Chris Christie "fat and a fool." Has Limbaugh looked in the mirror lately? Has he listened to himself talk? Long live irony. — John Anderson, Medford

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