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Letters to the editor

Head trauma in Salem

Thirty-one members of the Oregon House voted to repeal the motorcycle helmet law. The sponsor agreed that using a helmet reduces injuries.

These 31 mental giants should also agree to be personally responsible for the millions of dollars in lifetime medical care for the resultant head trauma victims. That's what I call finding efficiencies in government.

And these folks will lead us out of the budget crisis? ' Bob Bate, Eagle Point

Do we need another Wal-Mart?

Just say no to Wal-Mart! Support local businesses!

How many tax breaks will Wal-Mart get? More than &

36;7.7 million the county expects to gain from the sale? Wasn't Miles Fields just improved?

— Three existing community jobs are destroyed for every two new jobs at Wal-Mart. If Wal-Mart continues to grow as it has the past eight years, it will control 100 percent of general merchandise sales in the United States. Do we need another Wal-Mart? ' M. Morehead, Talent

Giving violence a voice

Why does the Tribune give voice to those who threaten violence against members of our community?

In a letter by Mike Hinkes published in the April 20 Mail Tribune, he writes that these two kids (who burned two small American flags) were very lucky I didn't get to them before their friends whisked them away. He ends by saying; I wouldn't want to be in your shoes burning a flag in front of a Vietnam veteran with a pair of boots on.

This is not the first time I have seen threats of violence against flag burners published in the Mail Tribune. Your editors should use some discretion and consider the fact that widely publicized threats of violence create an environment where violence is likely to occur.

No one deserves to be assaulted for making a political statement. Please do not print letters that promote hatred and threaten violence. ' Jason Clark, Ashland

Call off the charade

It's really petty to win an election and still complain about your predecessor. We taxpayers have paid the salary of Commissioner Dave Gilmour for 100 days for doing nothing.

During a meeting aired on PBS he indicated he was still in the process of learning. How much more time? All the while putting the burden on two experienced commissioners.

In the April 2 Mail Tribune he says he would have cut back to the salary he promised voters, but cannot for a year due to campaign payback. What other official do you know who took office and asked for extra pay for campaign costs? Not taking the salary he promised voters is, I think, enough for an ethics violation.

He cannot possibly do justice to either his commissioner job or his practice. If, as he guesses, he gives the county about 35 hours a week, then how many hours as a physician? Each requires full-time attention. If he took office only for a personal vendetta, it is past time to call off the charade. No matter how much salary he accepts, he should earn it. ' Dorene Conrad, Central Point

New pool system great

We love the new saline purification (no chlorine) system at the Ashland YMCA!

It is great for our skin and swim suits, plus no smell. ' Margaret Routsong, Ashland

Endorsing Thivierge

Be it college placement, dropout rates, SAT scores or extracurricular success, the students of the Ashland School District set a standard by which the rest of the state is measured. This level of excellence is the product of a special bond between a community that values education and teachers dedicated to extracting the best from their students.

Nurturing that bond is the role of the school board. It requires leadership that is both strong and collaborative. Having served with Ellie Thivierge for the six-month existence of the School Closure Committee, I can attest to her possession of those leadership traits. It's with confidence that I endorse Ellie for my school board seat. ' John G. Maurer, Ashland

Library programs pay off

Imagine my delight when I received notice that a copy of the best-selling novel The Lovely Bones was waiting for me to pick up at the Ashland branch of the Jackson County Library System. I had placed my reserve on the popular book months before and was expecting to wait a long time for my chance to read it.

Then the library put its new Read and Release program into effect and it really paid off for me, and many others as well.

Read and Release is a great idea: you buy a book, read it, and then donate your copy to the public library so that others can enjoy it without having to buy a copy. You get a tax write-off for your generous act and the library is able to put many more copies of popular books into their collection. What a deal!

All donated books benefit the library system, even if they are not best-sellers in good condition. If the library is not able to use them, the items you donate can be sold by Friends of the Library and the profits will go to enhance library collections. ' Carolyn Peake, Ashland