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Let freedom ring

Jackson County citizens celebrating the Fourth of July, should recall that freedom did not extend to the indigent people called the Rogue, or Chinese and Afro-Americans segregated in Kanaka Flats, outside Jacksonville, the then county seat.

In the new millennium let the Declaration of Independence include every person in the Valley regardless of color, race, nationality or sexual orientation; and every person whether atheist, agnostic, Muslim, Hindu, Jew, Christian or other. Let freedom ring! ' George McCartin, Jacksonville

Who directed Bush?

The Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz quotes Bush telling Palestinians, God told me to strike at al-Qaida and I struck them, and then he instructed me to strike at Saddam, which I did ... if you help me, I will act, and if not, the elections will come and I will have to focus on them.

We're to believe The Lord of Hosts gave a direct order to George W. Bush. ' Michael A. Hawk, Williams

Workers need help

I can understand how a tax refund will put money in our pockets and create more buying power. I don't understand how this is going to help solve the unemployment problem in the U.S.

— Have you noticed that because of the free trade agreements we now have with other countries, almost everything we buy any more has a foreign label? It seems to me that if we buy more goods it will mostly help other countries where labor is cheap, and not our domestic work force. ' Vic Mabry, Rogue River

Sounds like doublethink

I find it incomprehensible that each time we take a step forward in protecting the environment and conserving a resource, a bureaucratic agency, read the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, tries to take two steps backward in order to sell licenses.

Yes, there is a strong run of wild spring salmon this year, but is that a reason to increase the kill limit on a species that has been on the edge of survival for many years because of hatchery fish and the fall salmons' ability to reach the upper river with the high flows from the dam, and dig up the redds of the spring salmon? These fish should still be protected in order to make a real comeback and, after five years, if there is a continuous improvement in numbers, then one could make a case for increasing the limit; but certainly not now!

When are the people charged with the stewardship of our resources going to protect these resources for future generations, rather then continue their short-sighted agendas? Sounds like doublethink to me! ' Yale Sacks, Central Point

Get rid of fireworks

Last year we in Oregon suffered from the worst fires in the history of the state. The damage caused to our environment was staggering in not just the financial toll but also the human toll.

So my wife and I ask ourselves this summer as we drive around Medford, why are fireworks still being sold? There is no such thing as a safe firework, period.

The recent fires in New Mexico should be enough warning to us. They were started by fireworks!

Whether they are legal or not, a fire started by fireworks is just as devastating. No matter how safe and intelligent you are, one accident can destroy an entire community. Get rid of these fireworks sales now, before it's too late. ' Robert and Janice Key, Applegate Valley