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Plaza vandalism was part of a menacing pattern


s say, for a minute, that you are an elderly couple visiting Ashland to see a few plays and spend your hard-earned vacation dollars in our lovely town. You are on your way to dinner via the Plaza, the centerpiece of our town. You are astonished to see a large group of vandals causing thousands of dollars of damage to the Lithia water fountains, urinating in the phone booth, stomping the vegetation, and menacing passersby with obscenities. You promise to take your vacation dollars elsewhere next time. Sure, last Sunday they actually caught three of them, but that is the exception and not the norm. This time there was more damage than usual but the lawless, menacing behavior is far from unusual. How should this community respond? Should we roll over and wave the white flag of surrender? Any thoughts?

Greg Bailey

A plea to former friends and alienated family

I am sorry that you have invested your ideals and your passions in a truly hopeless case. The standard bearer for your most cherished beliefs has at last been exposed as a fraud, a criminal and a laughably incompetent one at that. George W. Bush has driven a bitter wedge between the honest, well-intentioned people of our once great nation and now it is clear that he himself has become that wedge.

You probably had never heard of the Project for the New American Century when you cast your vote for him and your lot with him. You probably accepted the prayerful public countenance of the pious president at face value even as he flipped off a nation in private. I am sorry if you took our outrage against his arranged presidency personally. We saw something sinister and cynical in 2000 that most of those who share your values were unwilling to admit until the summer of 2005 or even later. Sadly, but not surprisingly, your redeemer president was too good to be true. I too almost bought into the fantasy that the &

grown ups&

who surround him would be our salvation after that dark September.

The political demise of this hapless pretender is now accelerating at an alarming rate. He is toast, soon to be regrettable history, but let&

s not blow a good thing over a fake president who almost got away with it. We are all in this together, for the sake of our kids and the kids they will courageously bring into a world of diminishing promise. This guy is an incurious lightweight who is not worth the divisive discord he has sown. He is a tragic mistake that we can now find common ground in rejecting.

This &

uniter not a divider&

has pitted family against family, faith against faith and race against race to ensure that the power he secured for his sponsors was almost absolute. The blow to our global reputation as a champion of peace and justice, the plundering of our treasury and even the waste of our valiant children in a senseless war of his choice pale in comparison to the tragic loss of our sense of ourselves. We are in danger of losing the American sense of who we are that dared us to defeat Hitler, soar into space and inspire the world with our indomitable spirit and our audacious ingenuity.

I am confident that some day we will all see our flag the same way again and that we will all travel the world with a sense of what we have accomplished and not what we have destroyed. Before that day, you must first meet the growing rest of us halfway and turn away from an impostor who would gladly leave us bankrupt both literally and morally. Turn your righteous anger against those in Congress who abetted this travesty and shirked their solemn duty of oversight, advice and consent. Let us embrace our brightest history and not let it be sacrificed to a shameful present. Our system allows us both to thrive although we might disagree. Please join us in ending a dark chapter where that idea has been put in grave jeopardy. I look forward to joining you in building an even better America at a time when the world sorely needs one.

Doug Snider



s &


was lacking in factual accuracy

Re: 2/27 Honoré &

case in point&

Three hundred 7/8-oz. pellets for one bird! No wonder quail don&

t taste good &

seasoned with more than a pound of shot.

Ditto for a 535-gram bullet in a prairie dog. 170-Grains has worked well on moose for many years.

And yes venison, elk, moose, and wild sheep are all on my choice list.

Portions of this column would have done better on the comics page &

possibly with a cartoon or two.

Too bad that factual errors detracted from the rest of the article.

Hugh Bacon

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