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Letters, Feb. 13

Support For the People Act

The For the People Act, HR 1, the first bill introduced this year in the U.S. House of Representatives, will improve American elections by making our election system more free, fair and accessible to all eligible Americans.

This legislation will restore the Voting Rights Act and modernize public financing of elections through small-donor matching funds, end gerrymandering, and restore transparency in our government. The League of Women Voters of the Rogue Valley enthusiastically supports the For the People Act.

Oregon and Jackson County voters did not question the legitimacy of our own elections, but some questioned practices in other states. Oregon also voted for the Campaign Finance Limits Amendment (Ballot Measure 107) by 78% for and only 22% against. Let us secure election integrity for all voters nationwide by contacting Oregon Rep. Cliff Bentz (541-776-4646) and asking him to support HR 1.

Marge Peterson, president, LWVRV

Ashland

Defeat the hate

Four weeks ago tonight, Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick was alive and well. This beloved son and brother served for 13 years as a servant of the people, in the U.S. military, the National Guard and at the United States Capitol. We do not know if Brian suspected that life-threatening dangers would confront him within hours on Jan. 6, 2021.

The next day Brian was attacked by a mob of hate-filled, American terrorists. They struck this devoted officer down. The rioters killed him in their mad, unthinkable assault.

Tonight I am watching Brian’s remains, in a box, honored in the Capitol Rotunda, to recognize his brave sacrifice while defending the will of American voters and our precious democracy.

Brian Sicknick is an American hero we will not forget. In his family’s words, “He was truly a humble soul, and he loved his job.”

I am so deeply saddened by the pain and trauma inflicted on Brian’s family, his fellow officers, and Americans who love and support democracy.

My hope is that we all take steps to defeat the hate that enraged this tragic, manipulated group of unpatriotic Americans.

Julie Norman

Ashland

Basic Needs Navigators

It’s no secret that college isn’t exactly affordable in the United States, yet it serves as a crucial gateway to future success and life opportunities. Those currently attending college, more often than not, are faced between paying for mere essentials (rent and groceries) and tuition, textbooks and materials. I myself am a student at SOU and, like many of my friends and peers, have also faced food and housing insecurity in pursuit of a higher education.

A recent study by the Association of American Colleges and Universities found that 61 percent of students at four-year institutions faced either homelessness or housing or food insecurity in 2018.

We all dream of and envy the days when one summer’s work in a minimum-wage job covered both housing and tuition for a year. Everyone should have the option to pursue a degree, but unfortunately that’s not the case, and until our government can make higher education more accessible/affordable, Basic Needs Navigators should be on each and every campus to direct students to available resources on campus and in their communities.

Alexandra Szabo

Ashland

Changed my mind

Ken Thompson (Feb. 7) has a valid point and I agree with him.

I sided with the governor that we needed to get educators and staff vaccinated so schools could open as the children need to have in-person instruction and socializing. When I became aware that while 80-plus folks become eligible for vaccinations on Feb. 8, and there are no vaccines for them and won’t be for weeks, I changed my mind.

Is it possible she redirected Jackson County vaccines to other counties? I hope not, as we have seniors who work at the food banks, deliver meals on wheels and shop for those who can’t shop themselves.

Char Hersh

Ashland

‘My rights’ response

In response to Dave Miller’s letter on Feb. 1 entitled “My rights:”

In this country rights have limitations. You do not have a right to harm others. Yes, you have a right to not wear a mask or get a COVID-19 vaccine. However, you do not have a right to imperil the health of others by possibly spreading COVID to them.

Yes, you should not be forced to pay for health insurance, but you do not have a right to expect others to pay for your “very best health care,” if you have not made provisions to pay for it yourself.

If you choose to not pay your medical bill after receiving the “very best health care,” you should not have the right to declare bankruptcy and have others pay for your failure to protect yourself.

Bobbie Kinsinger

Ashland

Hats off to VA vaccination

I received the Moderna vaccine last week at the White City VA. The entire process was so well organized and efficient that I want to express my deep gratitude to all the nurses and support staff who are tirelessly working to vaccinate our veterans.

Everyone involved, from the drivers of the shuttle service that transported us to the vaccine center, the support staff that initiated the process of administratively checking us in, and the wonderful nurses that carefully administered the vaccine were outstanding.

The highest standards of cleanliness were maintained throughout and we were observed by nursing staff for 15 minutes after the inoculation to determine if there were any adverse reactions. Appointments were made to receive the second dose of the vaccine in approximately 28 days.

Again, my thanks and appreciation to our dedicated VA nurses and support staff for their outstanding performance of duty!

Myron Switzer

Eagle Point

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