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Give me a break

What a stab your editorial made at Ric Holt! Are you telling Southern Oregon readers that in your expert opinion if you had 100 acres of burned merchantable timber worth &

36;250,000 that you would let it rot? Give me a break! ' Gene Pollman, Medford

Bush should be applauded

President Bush should be applauded for taking a courageous stand against Saddam Hussein's outlaw regime and its reckless pursuit of weapons of mass destruction.

As the president noted in his recent address to the nation, the riskiest option for dealing with Iraq is to do nothing. Inaction would only give Saddam Hussein time to complete his malicious pursuit of nuclear weapons and would embolden tyrants and terrorists everywhere.

Acting now to disarm Saddam Hussein, using military force if necessary, is the only way we will keep America safe from weapons of mass destruction that fall into the hands of freedom's enemies. President Bush is right ' our nation cannot let world events be dictated by brutal and lawless dictators. ' Bette Evans, Grants Pass

Incensed at Legislature

I am incensed at our Legislature's attempt to solve the shortfall by coming to us for more money. Do we have that option with our personal finances? When the hard times come, don't we just have to cinch up the belt, do with less for a while?

And what really irritates me is that they parade our school children and the vulnerable in our society before us as victims, and imply that our miserliness has caused the problem.

What did the Legislature do with all that money that must have poured in during the financial bonanza of the 90s? And what about their bureaucracies, which just get fatter and fatter because they never have to compete, unlike private industry? No doubt many of you have had some experience with the typical work ethic of civil servants.

Let's require our Legislature to be just as responsible as they claim to be. ' Hartley Anderson, Medford

Thanks for honesty

There are not enough thank yous to express my appreciation to the lady who turned in my purse to the staff at Miracle Shield on Tuesday. I am sure there are many people who would have done the same, but thankfully one of them was you. Also, a big thank you to the staff. ' Nancy Shaw, Eagle Point

Stop scaring seniors

Frightening the seniors. Isn't it time to stop trying to scare seniors?

Never have social security benefits been decreased under a Republican administration or under a Republican-controlled Congress. However, if I am not mistaken, it is the Democrats that are responsible for some seniors having to pay taxes on their Social Security benefits, thus decreasing their value.

My Social security benefits have increased yearly. How about yours? The lies are wearing thin.

In the future Social Security might be changed for the better for future generations. Current recipients, however, will see no change except for their yearly routine increases.

Don't let them try to frighten you year after year. Don't accept their tired, old, obvious lies. ' Carl Miller, Jacksonville

Are we a democracy?

Has anyone ever calculated the real cost of a gallon of gasoline? We have oil spills, air pollution, global warming. The Pentagon analysts say we spent &

36;106 billion last year alone protecting oil supplies in the Persian Gulf. We give Egypt &

36;2 billion each year to be our ally.

And now, we are threatening war with Iraq, a country that has the second largest reserves of crude oil. The U.S., China, and Russia are already jockeying for position with respect to Iraq's oil industry.

It is inevitable that there will someday be a clean, nontoxic alternative to oil. This search for a better alternative should be our nation's highest priority. In this country of the Wright brothers, Thomas Edison, and the invention of the computer chip, we could lead the way.

However, administration after administration ' whether Democrat or Republican ' does almost nothing to support energy alternatives. The current administration's energy plans look like something from Soviet Central Planning ' completely backward.

Are we really a democracy, or are we a country run by entrenched special interests? ' Tim Church, Ashland

Special significance

The 2002 election holds special significance this year as I watch my 18-year-old excitedly prepare to vote for the first time. My advice to him is to vote for people who will make a difference.

Nationally, Bradbury and Buckley brighten our environmental protection prospects and offer a chance to keep the current Bush administration in check. Bates and Lemon have the courage to move Oregon toward sustainability in education and social services. Gilmour and Hallett will surely provide more accessible county leadership.

In our home town of Ashland, Kate Jackson shines as an effective critical thinker for City Council seat number 4. Kate brings a rich background of community involvement and technical knowledge so important to this decision-making position.

Finally, Diane Amarotico for Parks Commission; dedicated to the natural world like a force of nature, powerful in her gentleness. Please vote! ' Carole Wheeldon, Ashland

Mejia has earned respect

I have been a criminal defense attorney in Jackson County for 14 years, having observed Judge Lorenzo Mejia's performance as an attorney and judge.

Recent negative public comments by a few individuals and a particular politician questioning Judge Mejia's integrity and moral fiber puzzle and sadden me. These attacks border on the absurd and represent the type of political mud-slinging that has no legitimate place in a judicial race.

Judge Mejia has always exhibited the highest work ethic, integrity and moral character. He has the support of all current Circuit Court judges. Local attorneys favor him over his opponent by a 4-to-1 margin. He has exhibited dedication to our citizens through extensive community service work.

Judge Mejia has earned our respect and support by his actions, not through political sound bytes or attacks. Our community will be well-served by Judge Mejia's continued service as Circuit Court judge. ' Vance M.

Waliser, Medford

Supporting Mannix

There is only one candidate for governor who really shines in the area of public safety. That is Kevin Mannix.

Mannix wrote the citizen-approved Measure 11, which provides mandatory minimum sentences for violent crimes. This has dramatically reduced Oregon's violent crime rate. Kulongoski opposed the measure.

Mannix authored Oregon's Victim Rights amendments, originally in Measure 40. These have helped change the attitude of the justice system to crime victims. Kulongoski opposed Measure 40.

Mannix authored Oregon's outstanding anti-stalking law, which has been of such great benefit to stalking victims. Ted Kulongoski was nowhere to be found.

I want a governor who understands that public safety requires action, not just talk. I support Kevin Mannix. ' Hallie B. Christian, Eagle Point

Deceived long enough

Recently, the Mail Tribune sported an article about a study that was being done about the affects of Oregon's mandatory sentencing law on Oregon's crime rate. It stated that the preliminary findings at that time were that the law had not reduced the crime rate in Oregon as previously thought.

I was pleased to see that this study by an independent entity was being done. We have been deceived long enough.

Now we get to listen to one of the original authors of this law make his bid for the governorship of Oregon. I sure hope people learn all about this guy before they decide to vote.

I, for one, know I would never vote for him, as many of us have listened to him lie to the people of this state more then once. His hidden agenda is quite a mask of deception. Please, really be sure before you vote.

And, please, vote. ' Dee Gilson, Eagle Point

Voting for Mannix

I am voting for Kevin Mannix for many reasons.

Kevin Mannix authored and helped pass the anti-stalking legislation '- the first of its kind in Oregon.

He also authored Measure 11, to ensure that violent criminals have mandatory sentencing. Oregon's crime rate is the lowest it's been since 1958.

Kevin Mannix supports businesses both large and small. Businesses are being forced out of this state at an alarming rate due to the administration's philosophy of unrealistically high taxes, permit fees and government regulations.

Kevin will require that government regulations be cut by 50 percent within six months of his taking office. He will restore common sense back into Oregon's business plan.

Please join me in voting for Kevin Mannix for governor. ' Dottie Schoonover, Central Point