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Don't worry about re-election

After following the trial in this newspaper I would like to say to Mr. Mark Huddleston that he need not worry about his re-election results because quite frankly many of us would not be voting for him ' and his handling of the Repp trial or lack thereof has confirmed that for all of us. ' Phyllis Cardinal, Central Point

The most ridiculous part

I am not against gun ownership, but with all of the shootings in schools in recent years, why does Lars think it so necessary to carry a gun on a campus? The most ridiculous part of this is Lars' comparing himself to Rosa Parks. He doesn't have an ounce of character to compare himself to a woman like her.

Glad he stayed home to pout. Wouldn't want an uprising on a bus with a gun-toting fool! ' Jeff Kyker, Medford

Constitution isn't vague

The Second Amendment gives us the right to bear arms. Which part of shall not be infringed seems vague to you?

Oregon Revised Statutes both allow the issuance of concealed weapon permits, and deny cities or counties to adopt ordinances to regulate, restrict or prohibit the possession of loaded firearms in public places to concealed weapon permit holders (ORS166.173, ORS 166.370). I have to wonder why you are against the U.S. Constitution, state Constitution and Oregon law. ' Dan Christianer, Gold Hill

Should be a crime

According to the article in the Feb. 26 paper about Gold's Gym shutting down after some people paid six months in advance, they're told the police can do nothing and to take it up as a civil matter. I know of one other large Medford employer doing that to its customers as well.

— Sure seems like theft to me. What did I miss? If I or a business take your money willingly and then disappear, I would think that's criminal. It should be! ' Steve Ryan, Medford

Confused by attitude

Recently I found a checkbook in a parking lot in Medford. Inside were credit cards and a driver's license. There were different names on all the items.

I live in Central Point and was on my way home at the time. I stopped at the Central Point Police Department, told my story to a young officer and that I didn't want to keep the items another minute. Someone is probably looking for these items, is what I was trying to tell him. He told me I found a checkbook in Medford, return it to Medford. He refused to look at it, or touch it.

I was and am still confused by his attitude toward me. I am new to this area. And I say a prayer every night now that I don't ever have to call on the local police for anything. And they can cross me off their list for charity giving events. ' Blanche Smith, Central Point

Help relieve suffering

Do you know anyone who has abandoned a cat or dog? Have you had your pet spayed or neutered? Or have you driven around a stray dog in the road?

Please consider this: The number of unwanted dogs and cats euthanized in Jackson County in 2003 was 3,069. That is more than eight unwanted pets put down each day in Jackson County alone. These deaths are a direct result of irresponsible pet ownership. It does not have to be this way.

Want to help minimize the suffering and deaths of unwanted pets? There are several things you can do: Volunteer at the shelter, Committed Alliance to Strays or the Southern Oregon Humane Society; donate money or supplies to a shelter (call to see what is needed); vaccinate; license and spay or neuter your pet; adopt a shelter animal; provide a temporary foster home for a needy shelter animal; and educate others on responsible pet ownership.

If you would like information on how you can volunteer at the shelter, please call Friends of the Animal Shelter (FOTAS) at (541) 774-6646. ' Kathy Balogh, volunteer, Friends of the Animal Shelter, Ashland

Where will it stop?

The Norwegian woman facing possible deportation is a familiar one to many other families in our community. Legal immigrants who have made a mistake in the past, paid their debt to society and did not re-offend are being arrested, jailed for weeks (or months) and basically retried for the same offense.

Most cannot even get a bond to be released from jail so they can continue to support their families while awaiting their court date. Their court date arrives and virtually all of them are deported anyway.

Justice is completely different for resident aliens than it is for U.S. citizens. The tax dollars wasted and the treatment of these detainees is something the public needs to know.

Contacting government officials was to no avail. Their response ' It's out of our hands. So whose hands are in charge?

Thanks to Homeland Security, families are being ripped apart or forced to leave the country. Some members of these families are U.S. citizens. Meanwhile, illegal aliens are thriving in our country.

This hysteria over terrorists has gotten out of control. Where will it stop? ' Tamie Austin, Medford

Goldberg column excellent

To Jonah Goldberg's excellent comments Feb. 27 regarding the security fence Israel is building to protect its citizens (civilians being the targets of choice) from terrorists, add this introduction to a National Review (Aug. 1, 2003) article, When bad neighbors require good fences, by James S. Robbins, national security analyst:

The border security fence is comprised of many sections totaling scores of miles. Some sections are concrete, others sheet metal. The barrier is three layers deep in parts, 15 feet high and surrounded by razor wire. The area around it is lit by spotlights, monitored by cameras, motion detectors and magnetic sensors, and patrolled by armed guards with attack dogs.

But enough about our border with Mexico, let's talk about Israel. ' Michelle Montgomery, Gold Hill

Editorial a slap

Dr. Gilmour's vote agreed with Bryan Platt, chairman of the Jackson County Republican Central Committee and Jack Walker, the only Republican county commissioner.

If he'd voted for Wright, your headline would be Democrats collude on Republican replacement. If he'd voted for Ray, the headline would read, Democrats obstruct Republican replacement. He votes with the Republican leadership, for his own reasons, and you declare him misguided.

Bryan Platt declared each of the candidates to be an excellent choice. It appears to me that Dr. Gilmour trusted the Republicans to make wise recommendations for the county and decided to not make the issue a political football.

Does the Mail Tribune have damaging information that the public and the commissioners needed to know about Sal Esquivel's fitness for this position? If not, then criticizing Dr. Gilmour for allowing Republicans to have their way when filling one of their own vacant seats is a slap at Jack Walker, the Republican leadership and every Republican in Jackson County. ' Damon Neal, Medford

We decide

What's wrong with America? It seems that all its citizens can talk or write about are negative things. We're so busy finding fault with our elected officials that we forget who elected them. We, the voters, decide who will govern us and if we don't like the way they are doing their job, we can elect someone else. Anyone that doesn't vote is denying themselves the right that the founders of this country gave us, and isn't being a good citizen. I don't know how many times I've heard people say, what does my one vote mean? If a million people say the same thing, the people that don't vote shouldn't complain how bad the elected officials are.

We are fortunate enough to live in the greatest country in the world. Love of country and patriotism are not dirty words. I don't know how or why we the people have forgotten the incredible things the USA stands for and will continue to stand for, if the citizens, lucky enough to live here, make it so. ' William B. Carnegie, Central Point

Why not show class?

Dave Gilmour has shown his true colors. Rather than choose who he thought would be the best person to represent District — in the state Senate, he had to expound on why he was not selecting his best choice. He couldn't even pretend that Sal Esquivel was his first choice, leaving his motives to speculation. Why not show just a bit of class, as Jack Walker and Sue Kupillas obviously have done? ' Bret Moore, Central Point

Oppose amendment

I cannot believe the gall of this president ' he is trying to deny rights to people now, what is his deal? This whole marriage thing is out of control.

Yes, I think I should have the same rights as every American that is straight, but I don't and I know that. But it's time I did and for this president to ask Congress to take them away from me is a total slap in the face.

I pay my taxes just like everyone else, so I should have every protection under that law as it is written, but I don't. So I beg each of you, whether you agree or not, to tell your senator or congressman not to support this amendment. ' Jeffrey Foust, Medford

Drugs for seniors

An interesting way of looking at this issue: A car company can move its factories to Mexico and claim it's a free market.

A toy company can outsource to a Chinese subcontractor and claim it's a free market.

A major bank can incorporate in Bermuda to avoid taxes and claim it's a free market.

We can buy HP printers made in Mexico. We can buy shirts made in Bangladesh.

We can purchase almost anything we want from many different countries, but heaven help the elderly who dare to buy their prescription drugs from a Canadian (or Mexican) pharmacy. That's called un-American.

And you think the pharmaceutical companies don't have a powerful lobby? Think again! ' Len Peterson, Phoenix

Low-carb clarification

Thank you for your article on low-carbohydrate choices here in the valley. I'm sure your readers who follow low-carb regimens will appreciate learning what resources are available.

A minor clarification: The quote regarding the Wild Goose Caf? gives the impression that our low-carb offerings are limited to serving — an omelet with cheese and tomatoes instead of hash browns and toast and the like.

In fact, although low-carb dining is a relatively small part of our business, we offer extensive low-carb breakfast and lunch menus (with carb counts) and daily low-carb lunch specials. A small Oregon bakery provides our low-carb breads, hamburger buns and Cinnamon Swirl French toast.

Thank you for the opportunity to make this clarification. ' Dal Carver, Ashland

Where is the bias?

Bias? Where does the bias really exist in the Wal-Mart Central Point Supercenter controversy? Let's consider some of the overlooked facts.

1. Naumes received approval from Central Point for 200,000-plus square feet of buildings. Kittelson conducted an extensive traffic study for our project and the city approved it.

2. City Planner Tom Humphrey openly embraced a Home Depot (150,000 square feet) in an October 2002 letter. No big box negativity surfaced until after Wal-Mart (207,000 square feet) first met with him in May 2003.

3. At the request of Tom Humphrey, an economic and downtown impact analysis was conducted. Ferrarini, a highly reputable economic consulting firm, found that 97 percent of downtown businesses would be positively impacted by Wal-Mart. Wal-Mart, in the spirit of cooperation, although technically not required, contracted and paid for this third-party study.

It is incredible to me that a biased city planner can drag us (50-year land owners) through an expensive, lengthy and unnecessary process even though our property is properly zoned and approved. Whatever happened to landowner rights? I'm convinced that if this project had any name other than Wal-Mart, it would be nearing completion. ' Mike Naumes, Naumes Properties LLC