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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Oh, so it's an "employment agreement" which gives the Medford School "non" District the power to violate the laws regarding concealed carry?

Moving forward with the heft of Judge Arnold's logic, let's declare all school teachers are to be paid only $1 per hour. As long as it's in the employment agreement, which they'll know about before signing, it must be legal, right? — Bill Meyer, Jacksonville

Up for public comment this month are the Western Oregon Plan Revisions, through the BLM, which would affect nearly 2.6 million acres of federal forests. Making a farce not only of the Northwest Forest Plan but the Endangered Species and Clean Water Acts, these plans by the Bush administration would include over 1,000 miles of new logging roads, 140,000 acres of clearcuts and a sevenfold increase in old-growth logging.

Healthy, protected forests are one of Oregon's most important assets, and the areas which still contain ancient trees are planetary treasures.

We must not be so short-sighted that we sacrifice irreplaceable areas of beauty, diversity and ancient natural history for very short-term financial advantages. Our ancient forests also function as the "lungs" of the planet, which we definitely need in this time of climate crisis.

We need to redirect plans toward thinning pre-existing plantations and cutting small-diameter trees in areas where it would not damage water quality and habitat. Please join me in asking for a different direction in managing federal forests by writing to the BLM, Western Oregon Plan Revisions Office, 333 S.W. First Ave., Portland, OR 97208. Comments are due by Dec. 10. — Joyce Stahmann, Ashland

The subject of bicycle safety arouses feelings of concern. The concern carries with it a wish that cyclists would adhere to some basic safety rules ... for the sake of both cyclists and motorists.

In general, most roads are often narrow, winding, hilly and, in places, rough. While this is part of the charm of Jackson County, the increasingly heavy traffic loads on these roads can place the careless cyclist at risk.

Share the road.

Be predictable. Ride so drivers can see you and predict your movements. The rules that apply to autos also apply to bikes.

Be alert. Ride defensively and expect the unexpected. No matter who is at fault in an accident, the bicyclist loses.

Be equipped. You will ride easier and safer if you and your bike are properly equipped. Always wear bright colors or a neon vest when possible.

Maintain your bicycle regularly and know your abilities. Don't become mentally and physically exhausted. Carry light snacks and water.

Sobriety is the rule ... not the exception. — Gary Myronick, Jacksonville