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Pilgrims were illegals, too

People sure love to whine and gripe about illegal immigrants. America's original illegal immigrants came to Plymouth Rock and Jamestown, Va., over 370 years ago without permission, without visas and without any immigration documents. These illegal immigrants and their descendants wound up murdering more human beings than the Mafia, the Crips, al-Qaida and the Waco Terrorist Cult put together. Something for the whiners and crybabies on talk radio programs to think about. ' James Snyder, Medford

Salvage logging works

A recent political cartoon implied that successful salvage logging of fire-damaged timber is a myth. Cartoonist Harriman apparently based his assumption on some recent research, done by Oregon State University students on the Biscuit fire.

The study is several years short of being adequate, for what is important is the seedlings that survive to maturity. To do so, they must out-compete fast-growing brush and grass.

Foresters know they can be successful by salvage logging and planting because of empirical knowledge gained by looking at actual results of actual events.

The list of successful salvage logging followed by reforestation has been repeated often but continues to be ignored by those who are repulsed by any of man's activities. The list includes 1970s Quail Creek fire, the 1962 Columbus Day storm, the 1970s Oxbow burn, and, first and foremost, the Tillamook burns of the 1930s. There are no myths here folks ' just reality.

Private landowners whose timber is damaged are well-advised to salvage-log and plant, otherwise they may wait for decades before a forest is established.

— Unfortunately, the federal agencies are caught in a political quagmire which could become the dark ages of forestry. ' Pat Clason, Medford

Creekside living has costs

I believe in helping my neighbors when truly unexpected or unanticipated disasters occur. However, I do get frustrated when I see people look to others to pay for flood damage that has occurred because water follows the laws of physics.

I enjoy living on a creek, but it does not come without costs. I have invested considerable funds to mitigate potential problems, but ultimately realize that there is never a complete guarantee against future problems. ' Marc Heritage, Rogue River

'Hug-and release' policing?

Do we really want to support an ordinance that undermines the effectiveness of the Ashland Police Department? Even the fringe members of our community who inevitably support these pointless initiatives may need effective police assistance one day. The hug-and-release approach to policing is not going to do it.

We really have no business and no need to interfere with our very professional and conscientious police force. They have done nothing to warrant this insult. We have exemplary police officers working in this town who deserve our respect and support.

It is unfortunate that our City Council, which is so painfully indecisive on most issues, should consistently choose to support these red-herring initiatives. ' Julian Hamer, Ashland

Donors deserve a hand

If you went to the Greystone Court Food Drive on any of the four nights before Christmas, raise your hand. Secondly, give yourselves a huge round of applause, for altogether you, the community, donated over 7,000 pounds of food and over &

36;10,000 to help feed the hungry.

On Christmas Eve, it was the place to be. Hundreds of people parked their cars a few blocks away and took a leisurely stroll around the cul-de-sac. Over 1,000 cars backed up almost to Hillcrest, slowly edging their way to see the lights and catch a glimpse of Santa. Whether walking or driving, people of all ages delighted in soaking up the magical atmosphere of holiday giving.

We at ACCESS thank you for your generous participation and help in making this a wonderful holiday tradition. For those who missed it, mark your calendar, we hope to see you there next year! ' Philip Yates, ACCESS nutrition programs manager, Medford