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Letters, Nov. 11

Caging the homeless won’t help

On any given night in 2018, 732 people were living on the streets in Jackson County; and since the Almeda wildfire, our community’s homelessness problem has only worsened.

The city of Medford, along with its police department and the county jail, are currently being sued for their mistreatment of our homeless neighbors. Hundreds of homeless people live on the Greenway under constant harassment from law enforcement, and if Sheriff Nathan Sickler’s proposed exclusion zone over the entire Greenway is passed, conditions will only worsen.

Law enforcement keeps trying to solve our community’s houselessness problem with fines and jail time, but you can’t help people by locking them in a cage. Take a look at Utah; it’s clear that homelessness is solved more effectively and at a smaller cost by providing affordable housing and social services, and it’s time our county figured that out.

David Teague


A rational president

This election was a triumph of reason over fear, with voters choosing to build bridges rather than walls. Now it’s finally over, except for Republican efforts to sow doubt and discord. They call themselves conservatives, but undermining the democratic process and trying to overturn the will of the people isn’t even American, much less conservative. They’ve abandoned their honor and principles for Trump’s crudity, corruption and lunatic lies.

Trump is out, but historians and scatologists will long be fascinated by his steaming pile of “alternative facts”:

  • Climate change is “a hoax.”
  • Russian election meddling is “fake news.”
  • We have the pandemic “totally under control.”
  • The coronavirus surge is “A Fake News Media Conspiracy.”
  • Our medical experts are “idiots.”
  • “A Rigged Election!!!”

Et cetera, ad nauseum.

Trump, QAnon and the GOP will undoubtedly continue their quest to liberate us from the tyranny of facts, science and common sense, but at least we have a rational president. He also has a conscience. May it move him to unequivocally condemn the Confederate heritage of slavery, treason and racial oppression that Trump and his cult find so “beautiful.” Let’s make America great again by making white supremacy crawl back under its rock.

Michael Steely


Sheriffs Office needs to do better

I was appalled by the treatment of a BIPOC man in custody of the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office. The JCSO is currently responding to a lawsuit regarding their treatment of this man. There is a petitionwith over 8,000 signatures asking for the officers to be fired. If you have not seen the video it is here.

While in the midst of this, the JCSO swore in officers in front of the thin blue line flag. Officers are sworn in to protect and serve all members of the community. While the thin blue line flag holds special meaning to officers, it has become a polarizing and divisive symbol. White supremacy and hate groups have adopted it and been waving it across the country.

If our officers want to be trusted, and people to believe they are there to serve and protect all, why swear them in in front of the thin blue line flag and post it, knowing it is a divisive symbol? Why isn’t the American flag — which is not political, and represents all Americans — the only flag behind them instead? This is incredibly insensitive to the BIPOC community. JCSO needs to do better.

Gwyn Myer


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