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Thanks for support

To the selfless supporters who assisted so generously with my election to the RVTD Board of Directors: my heart-felt thank-you. It would not have been possible without each and every one of you.

I welcome the opportunity to serve the district and sincerely desire to represent and be accountable to the voters. Please feel free to contact me with your ideas, suggestions and concerns. ' Connie Skillman, Ashland

Which would God choose?

Barbara Rosen might go visit the pediatric wing at RVMC to protest suffering, after crying over a goldfish art exhibit in Ashland.

We should have strong reactions to death. Creation has immense value, but it is doubtful that zillions of feeder goldfish can love or have souls. True, nothing should suffer unnecessarily.

Families are in the hospitals suffering from the effects of cancers, traumas and diseases. Some curable, some not yet.

— Why not protest the slaughter of the unborn who have no choice? How about helping find a cure for Kawasaki Syndrome? Our only daughter had it this year and now has large aneurysms in her coronary arteries; she's only 6 years old.

Would you cry over her little friends who have died with cancers that have no cures or rejoice with friends that are surviving? If so, go to and find a local family to help. Crying over feeder goldfish might be a nudge for people to get involved with others' sufferings.

Heaven and Earth, 2003, was an appropriate name for the art exhibit. A handful of feeder goldfish or a handful of children? Which would God choose? ' Sandy Franklin, Jacksonville

Get involved in government

As a member of the Metropolitan Planning Organization Public Advisory Council, I strongly believe that public involvement in government decisions is valuable.

Before retiring I oversaw at a county level the application of state and county laws and understand how they affect people. Twenty years ago a common approach was for administrators to decide many actions without public input.

To some extent that is still an entrenched procedure, and then there is the difficulty of getting public response on issues unless someone's ox is getting gored. Yes, government actions are ongoing, but the public is not likely to respond unless the issue affects them.

The repaving along Crater Lake Avenue created a negative situation; however, it is an example that local government will respond to citizen concerns.

Thus it takes government initiative and public response to achieve positive collaboration. Increased communication is an important ingredient.

There are many opportunities for individuals to get involved, and I am developing a Web site to make that easier. Anyone wishing to know more can e-mail me at: getinvolved@mail.com ' Ed Danehy, Central Point

Rein in the lawyers

The gentleman who expressed his frustration over the delay in seeing a local physician for urgent health care has encountered just the tip of the iceberg. In fact, Oregon ' especially Southern Oregon ' is facing a crisis of monumental proportions.

Thanks to the greed of avaricious trial lawyers here and elsewhere across the country, coupled with the lottery mindset of some patients who are encouraged (by those same lawyers) to sue their physicians, many doctors are leaving the state or retiring from practice. As one example, there are now only three neurosurgeons taking emergency calls for all of southern Oregon, including not only Medford, Grants Pass and Klamath Falls, but the entire area from Brookings to Lakeview.

Tort reform to rein in unscrupulous lawyers and return some semblance of common sense to our legal system is urgently needed before the health-care system in Southern Oregon (and elsewhere) collapses for lack of physicians. ' Douglas Kirkpatrick, M.D., Medford