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Letters, Dec. 5

Ashland, open your heart

Thursday I stood on the Plaza with other people to speak out for Ashland’s homeless. The two men who seem to be spearheading this event — Eric Navickas and Daniel — both have homes, heating, and all the creature comforts. But they care about the people in our town who have to sleep out in the cold — and who often aren’t allowed to sleep, period.

The police often bear the brunt of this. They’re the “bad guys” who force the homeless out of their camps. But the police have no choice: It’s their job to enforce the laws.

It’s the city that must open its heart and soften its laws: Let people sleep when they have nowhere else to do that. And don’t force folks to curl up on the frozen ground. The city has a building that could provide shelter, but it only opens it to the homeless when it’s 20 degrees or colder.

Would you want your son or daughter sleeping on the icy streets? We’re all family. The protesters are just asking you, the residents of Ashland, to have a heart.

A. Rosen

Ashland

What’s going on with the Tidings?

We know the old adage that “you shouldn’t pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel,” but why did it take the paper almost a full week to report that Shaun Moran won Ashland City Council Position 3? All the other races received immediate coverage.

Nothing changed during the week after the election. He won in a four-way race by more than 600 votes. It was never too close to call, as The Tidings reported. At the time, his margin of victory was 5 percent, the same percentage with which Julie Akins had won the mayor’s race.

The failure in timely reporting of the results of the Council Position 3 race was unfortunately in keeping with the Tidings’ decision to ignore the dirty campaign waged against Moran. Why was nothing printed about a postcard critical of Moran mailed out by a phony organization using a phony name and phony return address? Yet Moran won, in spite of this illegal political dirty trick along with others, e.g., defacing and stealing Moran yard signs. In fact, Moran and Akins both won in spite of not being endorsed by the Tidings.

If the news side failed to inform Ashlanders about the election, the editorial side showed again that it has not kept up with Ashland voters. The editorial criticism of Ashland Citizens for Economic Sustainability (ACES) fell flat, as three candidates who signed the ACES fiscal responsibility pledge won, and the fourth winner said she agreed with the ACES viewpoint but was reluctant to sign on to any group’s platform.

Earlier this year, voters rejected the Tidings’ editorial support of the City Hall bond and its failure to endorse the change in the city’s form of government. And, two years ago, two candidates opposed by The Tidings were elected, one by a nearly 2-1 margin.

In this era when newspapers are closing up shop in many cities, we appreciate that Ashland still has a daily paper and hope that it continues to publish and to prosper. But, we also hope it improves its coverage of important city elections. As for its endorsements, may it reconsider or may it continue to whistle into the wind.

Susan T. Wilson

Ashland

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