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Letters to the editor

Death with dignity

Glad Death with Dignity prevailed in the Supreme Court. But John Roberts wasted no time aligning himself with Thomas and Scalia, showing why we must oppose Alito's replacing a centrist justice. Contrary to assumptions, law professor Martin Flaherty, Fordham University, stated that it's entirely legitimate for the Senate to consider judicial philosophy and ideology, in other words, to object to Alito purely because he would move the court further right. We need the filibuster, now. ' Diana Morley, Talent

Forgotten presidents?

George Washington led the armies that gained our independence, was chairman of the constitutional drafters, and set the standard as our first president. Abraham Lincoln led the Union through the Civil War, paid for that with his life, and gave Martin Luther King a voice. Dr. King has a day for his remembrance. Washington and Lincoln's memories must share one day that doesn't even bear their names. Why? ' Joe Ward, Shady Cove

Let's not get burned

A scientific study finding that post-fire salvage logging harmed forest recovery and increased fire danger in the Siskiyou Forest (Jan. 7) merits attention as Congressman Greg Walden and Sen. Gordon Smith push federal legislation to require such logging in the future.

OSU scientists counted more than enough naturally regenerated Douglas fir seedlings in the Biscuit fire area to meet reforestation standards before any management occurred. They learned that salvage compromised seedlings' viability and the chances of reforestation are now diminished.

Their study also notes how logging increased fire danger by moving tons of unburned kindling from tree canopies to the ground all at once. A reburn is more likely now than it was continues before salvage, and this danger until the slash melts into soil.

The timber industry and U.S. Forest Service sold the public a bill of goods with Biscuit. Let's not get burned by our congressional delegation, too. ' Jay Lininger, Ashland

The bill always comes due

A recent letter writer suggested Medford police need more training dealing with the mentally ill in light of a police shooting of a young man who was attacking his neighbor with a knife. The letter writer misses the bigger picture. It's not a matter of training but of resources.

Newspaper accounts indicate the officers involved tried in vain to find an appropriate place for this young man before he attacked his innocent neighbor, only to find there weren't any available resources for him.

It's a shame the no new taxes mantra begun a generation ago has left our community woefully under-funded in treating the mentally ill and in providing adequate social services in general, not to mention a state police force on the verge of collapse, all at a time of unprecedented population growth.

The anti-tax crowd talks loud and people have listened, but at some point the bill comes due. ' Jeff Palmer, Medford

Add an Expo off-ramp

Easing parking problems for events at the County Expo could easily be achieved by the addition of a dedicated off-ramp located just north of the Central Point freeway exit. (This exit would be utilized only for Expo events.) All traffic coming from the south could be shunted directly into the parking lot without jamming up an area already congested by the traffic entering and exiting the commercial center anchored by the Pilot Truck Center on Pine Avenue.

The construction of such a ramp would also greatly benefit southbound drivers in that they would face far less traffic after exiting the freeway to get to the Expo. By contrast Dennis Richardson's freeway-bridge proposal, in addition to costing a bundle, would disrupt quiet residential areas on the west side of the freeway and subject all-ages to a mile-long trek at both ends of their visit. ' Bob Warren, Central Point

Democrat with guts needed

What made me so mad was when they were counting the votes for Bush's second term, and the Democrats just laid there and didn't do anything about the fraud. Where is a Democrat with the guts to do something about it?

It's not just one thing that Bush has done, it's three or four things that he needs to be impeached for. Like the lies he told to get us into a war in Iraq, and now this illegal spying on American citizens. It doesn't have anything to do with whether I'm a Democrat or not, it's just not right to let him get away with all those things.

And how does he control the newspapers? That's what I think is really dangerous. No matter what he does, they all just let it go and let it go. That's the way I feel about it. ' Nellie Jackson, Phoenix