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Johns of the world, unite

I wish Hormel luck with their trademark lawsuit, as their success would serve to bolster a legal cause I'm involved with.

I and 2,600 other Johns are filing a class-action suit against the English language and all its users: Our fine Christian name is now more associated with toilets and prostitute clientele than the good character and achievement of the men who bear it. We will soon launch a mass e-mailing further explaining our cause. ' John Jayme, Talent

Stop sweeping the streets

Quit sweeping and watering my street every month and the city would have enough money to take care of their &

36;255 trees. ' H. Grisso, Medford

Political pandering

Joe Marks (July 1) endorses Joe Frodsham's courageous suggestion that annual salary increases be eliminated at the Medford School District so teachers can be retained. Marks' endorsement is at best misguided and at worst political pandering.

It is clear from an academic perspective that the district can ill afford to cut over 33 teaching positions. The positions were not cut; they were left unfilled. Teachers previously filling those positions resigned voluntarily, retired or were transferred. There isn't enough money to hire teachers to fill them.

— In any case, since district employees have already taken a substantial pay cut this past year (the school year was shortened by 10 days), and their work load for next year has increased, and many will see future retirement benefits slashed by &

188; to 1/3 , why not go ahead and deliver the coup de grace? Unilaterally abrogate the district's contracts with its employees and freeze their salaries! Makes sense to me!

This endorsement may be a great political sound bite, but a truly courageous act would be to suggest new sources of state or local revenue to support what is one of the most important of our social enterprises: quality public education for all children. ' Eric Dziura, Medford

A friend, not an obstacle

The plan by Ashland resident Sid DeBoer to build a 12,000-square foot home in one of Ashland's historic districts is the source of a controversy that has led to hearings, newspaper commentaries and letters to the editor.

It is the adopted policy of the Southern Oregon Historical Society to be an advocate for historic preservation, to educate and create an awareness of the cultural value of local historical structures and districts. Two well-known Ashland-based preservation professionals, George Kramer and Kay Atwood, have urged the city's Planning Commission and Historic Commission to move forward with a much-delayed plan to limit the size of homes in historic districts. We commend them for their courage in doing so.

The SOHS urges the two Ashland city commissions to move forward quickly with this very conservative size-limitation plan. We also urge Mr. DeBoer to reconsider his plans for development on the hillside. To do so would be to remove the controversy and reduce the anger and frustration that exists because of those plans. It also would allow Mr. DeBoer to be seen as a friend of the preservation movement in Ashland rather than one of its principal obstacles. ' John Enders, executive director, Southern Oregon Historical Society

Leaving us behind

Bush promises to Leave No Child Behind. That's his bill from which he just cut &

36;90 million. Last year he cut &

36;34 million from children's hospitals, this year, another &

36;86 million.

While touting success of the Even Start program for pre-school literacy he slashed their budget 20 percent His budget eliminates Pell grants and steals &

36;307 million from vocational and technical education. He proposed eliminating all funding for Boys & Girls Clubs.

Do you really believe he cares about your security? He promised extra support to first responders before slashing &

36;1 billion in targeted grants to police and fire departments.

He eliminated port security from his Homeland Security Bill by deleting its &

36;250 million budget. He vetoed all new Border Patrol spending including promised increases for existing officers and reduced their budget by &

36;287 million. The same day he sent them to Iraq, Bush reduced health insurance and educational assistance to families of our enlisted men and women.

Lies and more lies on top of murder of innocent troops and civilians resulting from his biggest lie. Bush leaves everyone except his big-business partners behind.He scares the hell out of me. ' Michael A. Hawk, Williams

Truth behind the news

A Friday, June 6 Ashland Daily Tidings article titled N.Y. Times searching for new leadership had this thought-provoking paragraph. It read: With the loss of the New York Time's top two news executives in a plagiarism scandal, the paper must now restore its credibility with readers and revamp it fractious newsroom culture, editors and journalism experts say.

Manipulating stories, manufacturing illusions, exploiting fears. reporting the truth has little to do with the mainstream news! And it's not just liberal bias or sloppy reporting either. The latest John Birch Society video, Behind The Big News, exposes a revolutionary agenda, originating outside the media, that defines today's headlines. Major news stories in recent decades are examined, which reveals subversion and treason! Behind The Big News (59 minutes) offers an effective strategy to defeat this continuous socialist assault on American freedom, our constitutional republic, firearms and the Second Amendment, Christianity, marriage, family and moral decency.

To order this video contact American Opinion Book Services at P.O. Box 8040, Appleton, WI 54912. By Web site: . Telephone: 920-749-3783. ' James A. Farmer, Ashland

A free country?

Do you know what's in the Patriot Act that was passed immediately following the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center? Do you realize that John Ashcroft is already planning to get a second Patriot Act passed? If we don't stay on our guard, there will be a second one that curtails our liberties more than the first one.

The first one provides that: the government can conduct sneak and peek searches in which agents enter your home or business and search your belongings without informing you until long after.

It also permits agents to investigate what books you have borrowed from your local library or what books you have bought at a bookstore, and could extend to doctors' offices and banks.

And you thought you were living in a free country? ' Marjorie B. Hunsicker, Medford

Walden wants big trees

Bob Smith apparently has never read the forest legislation he advocates (June 29). Smith asserts that Greg Walden's Healthy Forest bill restricts the harvesting of old-growth timber and expedites the removal of hazardous fuels like brush and small trees. In fact, it holds fuel reduction hostage to logging of big trees, and it will result in less work done on the ground instead of more.

The bill authorizes no funding for fuel reduction. Without funding, logging of large, commercially valuable trees is the only way to finance removal of brush and small trees with little or no value.

Walden conceded on camera that logging of fire resistant trees coveted by his campaign contributors in the timber industry would be common under his bill. The Republicans opportunistically use fire as a smokescreen to resurrect an old-growth logging program that Oregonians want to bury. ' Jay Lininger, Applegate Valley

Opposed to WalMart

As a resident of Central Point, and a lifelong resident of the Rogue Valley, I don't understand why anyone in their right mind would consider the siting of a commercial complex like a Super Wal-Mart at the intersections of Hamrick Road and East Pine Street. This would create a traffic problem of biblical proportions.

As anyone who drives on East Pine with any regularity can attest, the traffic is out of control on the best of days. The second stupidest thing ever done on East Pine would be the siting of a Super Wal-Mart. The stupidest thing ever done is, of course, the construction of the Pilot Travel Center just one hundred yards from the I -5 interchange. For those who need more convincing on this subject, just drive along East Pine during the Jackson County Fair. That should make the implications of a project like this crystal clear. Central Point is not the place for this kind of urban sprawl. We need to plan our communities with more and consideration. ' Kevin C. Foltz, Central Point