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Letters, Sept. 16

High praise for local responders

In our Ashland home in the hills above Quiet Village, I was up all Tuesday night monitoring the police scanner. The heroism and teamwork that I overheard from our firefighters, police, EMTs and other first responders was just tremendous.

As the night wore on I heard, “I don’t have any more resources, but I will try.” then another would chime in, “I can go.” They saved so many lives! They faced fire that could have taken their own lives. They were courageous and calm and steadfast.

Some of these folks may have lost their own homes that night. We must stand with them now, just as they served and protected us and those we love. This will take time, so let’s dig in for the long haul.

Deltra Ferguson


Tonya Graham for mayor

These are difficult and unprecedented times. Coronavirus and fires have created a devastating and lasting impact. As we consider who will lead us, I can’t think of anyone better qualified than Tonya Graham.

I’ve known Tonya for 12 years through her involvement in Ashland schools and our community. While her children were in my class at John Muir School, she was devoted to them and supportive of our community. She fostered their self-reliance.

Tonya is insightful and practical. She listens, works with others, and comes up with solutions that make sense.

During this time, Tonya continued her work as executive director of the Geos Institute. In this role, she brought together many people with diverse views to discuss, collaborate and develop solutions to local and global problems. I believe that she will be able to work with Ashland’s citizens to rebuild our community in a strong, sustainable manner.

Tim Brandy


Supreme Court is to blame

I blame the Supreme Court in the 2000 election for our current wildfire crisis. By giving that election to the candidate who won the minority of the votes, we lost 20 years of good leadership in conservation and in progress slowing climate change.

Al Gore won the popular vote and was a global leader on dealing with climate change. Remember “An Inconvenient Truth”? He was collaborating with India and major emerging powers in reducing carbon emissions. We have lost all enlightened progress from our former administrations and have raced pell-mell into climate science denial.

I think the deaths of all who are suffering and losing their homes to wildfires should be on the consciences of the Republican Supreme Court justices who denied Al Gore the presidency: Rehnquist, Scalia, O’Connor, (for shame), Kennedy and Thomas.

Thomas is the only one still there, but could the current Supremes vote again to allow the loser to win?

We are not a democracy, but a republic, but still I think all votes should count equally. The Electoral College has long since outlasted its relevance. Every American vote should count equally, not just the “swing” states. Americans should support the National Popular Vote nationwide.

Bonnie Johnson


Sick of words

Remember? “Words, words, words. I’m so sick of words. There isn’t one word I haven’t heard.”

Businesses like Nike, Walmart and our health care corporations say they want to solve the climate crisis. Meanwhile, BreakFreeFromPlastic reports the worst 10 global plastic (petroleum product) polluters include Coca-Cola, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Colgate-Palmolive. Climate Accountability Institute (authority on big oil’s role in climate chaos) reports the top 20 oil companies have contributed 35% of all energy-related climate pollutions worldwide since 1965.

I’m tired of corporations’ words; it’s past time for action. We have 10 years to address this climate crisis.

What to do? Learn about the science’ share facts’ pay with a Green America credit card’ boycott companies that talk big and step small’ sign petitions’ sign onto One Million for 100% Renewable Energy’ donate to mutual aid funds’ contact representatives’ reduce your use of natural resources. For four years, Washington politicians have rejected climate science and rolled back regulations, yet climate change is now. Think droughts, floods and wildfires!

Governments should protect us from the effects of climate change. We are in a crisis. No more words! Show me! Let’s vote for science like our lives depend on it — they do!

Louise D. Shawkat


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