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Letters, April 11

Turn out the lights

Will the last one to leave the Whitehouse please turn out the lights?

Stan Loer

Grants Pass

When will we take responsibility?

My heart broke when I read your story about Oregon’s killing of sea lions in the interest of protecting multi-million dollar revenue generated from commercial and recreational steelhead fishing. The article states that “pollution and the construction of dams on key rivers reduced (the number of steelhead reaching the upper Willamette River and tributaries) dramatically,” and says killing the sea lions has “reduce(d) predation and provide(d) some relief to the fish.”

I don’t know why we think it’s OK to foul the environment, endanger a species, and then kill off another species to make up for our mistakes. Reminds me of how we industrialized nations pollute the entire planet and cause dramatic climate change, and then when, say, a typhoon hits an impoverished country like Mozambique and decimates 90% of a seacoast town, we just say, “Wow, that’s really terrible,” and return to our smartphones.

When will we take responsibility for our actions, I wonder?

Linda Jacobs


The battle for new development

For many years now I have watched as the battle for new development amongst historic structures unfolds in the town of Jacksonville.

Existing building codes have more than doubled the amount of square footage allowed on every city lot. Arbitrarily, the city has implemented this to be the answer to the state mandate of inner-city density requirement, as the state has left the degree of development up to each municipality.

This degree of development may be the standard that civic leaders envision for every city in the state, but it cannot be the template for Jacksonville if we wish not to see our historic district dwarfed by the kind of two-story structures whose height is now pushing 40 feet.

Jacksonville is not like every town, and it has been given the designation as a National Historic Landmark to prove the point. Either the city forfeits to the reality of those who use wealth and influence and gives back the National Historic Landmark plaques to the state, or they implement and enforce, without exception, building codes that will moderate the intensity of development and comply fully to the letter and intent of the Jacksonville Historic Charter.

Steven Gardner


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