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Older children should see it

Responding to Protect your children from Gibson's The Passion of the Christ, March 4:

We took our 13-year-old son to see The Passion of the Christ. When it was over he said what impressed him about the movie is that when Jesus was going through all that suffering, he was thinking of us.

This is an awesome 'picture' of love! Do not forbid your older children to see this movie. Find out the rest of the story. ' Holly Zigenis, Medford

Innocent people caught

I'd like terrorist elements expelled from our country as much as the next person, but innocent people are being caught in the Patriot Act's dragnet. It's one thing to hear about these nightmares elsewhere, but now I know someone personally, Pete Seda. The Feb. 19 Mail Tribune reported that his organization was being investigated as having some link to al-Qaida. Very wispy, that connection, from what was reported, yet here it was making front-page news. Now we learn (Copeland's guest opinion, Feb. 29) that he has had to flee the country, his country, because of the federal allegations.

I met Pete after 9-11 at a seminar co-hosted by local religious leaders, including Pete. All were mature and generous people of God and magnificent representatives of their divergent faiths. They were able to find, and help us all find, common ground, the very opposite of a terrorist's agenda. Pete was a mighty opponent of myopic fundamentalism, exposing it as no more representative of Islam than white supremacists are of Christianity.

May our desire for security be well-guided by wisdom. ' Joel Turgesen, Medford

Not a hunting license

I would like to respond to Mr. Gordon Owsley's letter (March 3) concerning concealed weapon permits.

A concealed weapon permit is not a hunting license. In fact, if anything, it is just the opposite ' an anti-hunting license. People who carry concealed (weapons) are not hunting anyone or anything. They carry to protect themselves and the people around them from being hunted by predators, i.e. murderers, rapists and other sorts of criminals.

People who have CCW permits have to pass a very thorough background check and, if anything, are the most law-abiding citizens around!

So, if I were Mr. Owsley, I would worry about the people who are carrying without a license, not the ones who do have them. ' Lee French, Medford

Don't misrepresent facts

Respectfully, if Mr. Naumes wishes to call attention to the facts, he shouldn't misrepresent them.

His original proposal to develop this property was not for one 200,000-square-foot building; it was for 14 much smaller buildings and included financial, fast-food, hotel, restaurant, office and retail space. This concept, which could accommodate scores of businesses and services, is precisely what the eastside residents of Central Point desire. He now proposes two buildings and a coffee kiosk.

Kittleson's traffic study was accepted by the city, but to say it was approved is an overstatement. City staff are not the only ones who think the projections were more than a little on the low side and failed to consider the impact this development would have on outlying areas.

It is also worth noting that though he speaks of landowners' rights, he no longer wishes to own this land in Central Point and that he has given absolutely no consideration to those that own property and reside in the surrounding neighborhoods. It is the residents that will have to negotiate the traffic daily, and if he has his way, we'll still be without the services that this property was zoned to provide. ' Becca Croft, spokesperson, Central Point First

Could not keep his word

As usual, Mr. Bush goes back on his word. Soon after the episode of Sept. 11, he said he would never use the unfortunate tragedy for political gain but, as expected, he could not keep true to his word. The ad on television did not please many of the victims' families and hopefully they will let their feelings be known now and at the voting booth. ' J. Rodriguez, Ashland

Belief is not prejudice

There are those who claim that people opposed to same-sex marriages or homosexuality are prejudiced.

Speaking as a Christian, I resent the fact that those choosing to ignore common morality and the laws of God would label our beliefs as prejudice. It is as absurd as claiming that those opposed to drug addiction, adultery and other sins are prejudice.

The gay-marriage activists and homosexuals are trying to convince themselves and others that unnatural and sinful behavior should be condoned and accepted by society. These radical groups want to destroy a sacred institution through the acceptance of immoral and deviant behavior.

Our forefathers did not specifically define marriage because it was not necessary to do so. They had no idea that such perverted and twisted thinking would invade our society to the point that a proper definition of marriage would be necessary. I applaud President Bush for considering an amendment.

The liberal and secular world can claim prejudice but the truth is that there are those who want to decide right and wrong outside of God's laws and become a law unto themselves. Homosexual behavior will always be a violation of the laws of nature and the laws of God. ' Dan Sickler, Medford

Ask the suicide bomber

It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees, I have heard attributed to American Indians during their futile resistance to white rule. We must understand and do something about the causes of frustration that drive people to acts of violence (terrorism) to obviate the problem.

Conservative ideologues have adopted a policy of presumptive guilt, pre-emptive war and assassination toward their enemies. In addition, conservatives want to put religion at the center of government, but not allow a fledgling state like Iraq the same privilege.

If Abraham is the father of both the Arabs and the Jews, wouldn't it follow that they share the same God? How can you remove the splinter from your brother's eye without removing the plank from your own?

Yet, these radical conservatives via Fox News et al want Americans to insert raw logs into both eyes to better judge the world. Has Mr. Bush made America safer by making us more like Israel? I don't know. Ask the suicide bomber sitting next you. ' Tom Espinosa, Medford

Roundabouts no better

Our Medford City Council sent their traffic engineers on a mission to convince citizens in east Medford that we need better traffic controls at the intersection of Highland Drive and Siskiyou Boulevard. Cost: &


Their proposal is to replace the current four-way stop with a traffic circle (they call it a roundabout). Medford has no other traffic circles and one would find very few in any state in the nation.

Why is this? I would suggest that only in special situations are they better than modern traffic lights. (True, they are fairly common in other parts of the world.)

Our city engineers have held three presentations trying to sell their roundabout to the citizens of east Medford with little success. Rush-hour traffic backs up no more than other major intersections.

What the engineers didn't tell us is that roundabouts are not people-friendly (pedestrians, bicycles, skateboarders, etc.) because they don't include good safeguards, except for cars.

I have traveled this intersection for 35 years and the current four-way stop works very well. The majority opinion of citizens in this neighborhood is: Spend the &

36;800,000 for sidewalks and bicycle lanes ' safety improvements we would thank the City Council for. ' Dick Simonson, Medford

Constantly disappointed

Since George Bush took office in 2000, I have been constantly disappointed in his actions as opposed to his words. Recently, however, the Bush administration achieved a new low.

Using images of Ground Zero in political advertisements to scare and influence Americans is not only crass and disrespectful, it goes against the promise given by Bush on Jan. 23, 2003: I have no ambition whatsoever to use this (9/11) as a political issue.

In the first set of ads put before us, Bush did exactly that. Shame on you, Mr. President, and shame on those who are so desperate to re-elect you that they are willing to trash the memory of a national tragedy for political gain.

Every American suffered from the horror of September 11, and your decision to play on that nightmare as though it is your personal political property is obscene. I have been a registered Republican for my entire voting life, but until a sense of decency and respect re-surfaces in my party, I will be doing everything possible to see that the current win at all costs administration is removed from office. ' John McKelligott, Grants Pass