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Letters, Aug. 15

Kudos for good journalism

I appreciate that the MT ran a front-page story documenting “What it is like to be Black in Southern Oregon.” Good journalism documents the shortcomings of society for all to see.

It makes me very sad and angry that bigotry and hatred still exist in our valley. It is so easy to deny racism if you have never experienced it and to reinforce that opinion through confirmation bias.

Travis Toll documents actual experiences, and by asking people about their experiences he holds a mirror up for all to see. Is this the world we want? If not, what can we do to change it?

People who think the Black Lives Matter movement is a threat miss the point, or simply refuse to acknowledge it. It is not exclusive, it is inclusive. All lives cannot matter until Black lives matter.

It is the role of journalism to shine a light on injustice and I appreciate that the Mail Tribune shines that light locally.

Mary Krystine

Ashland

Abuse by the Sheriff’s Office

I am writing to express my outrage at the abuse of Tony Sancho on April 18, 2019, by the deputies at the Jackson County Jail. Apparently being drunk has now become a crime, punishable by humiliation and abuse.

When Tony resisted being handcuffed despite not having broken a law, he was charged with “resisting arrest.” The circular logic of being charged for resisting arrest when you never should have been taken into custody in the first place is the way of policing in Jackson County.

Do you really think a white man non-Hispanic would have been so treated? Probably he would have been helped to get safely to his home which was just two blocks away. Why was the video of his mistreatment in county jail not made public sooner? Perhaps it was because Tony’s lawsuit charging abuse was filed at the end of July.

Aren’t police supposed to keep us safe? Do they have to handcuff us first? A change in attitude, policy and practice is needed in law enforcement in the USA. The time is now. Do more than just “investigate” and dismiss; look into the racism that precipitated this event and the policies that shield law enforcement by giving them excuses. Watch the video and vow that no one should be treated like a dog by our “peace officers”.

Claudette Paige

Ashland

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