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I see where the state Board of Education may require some high schools to change their mascot names. Apparently after all these years, the names may give American Indians heartburn or something. Brilliant idea, simply brilliant; if the name change is implemented, student test scores should skyrocket and school budget woes should vanish.

During the name change, will the school people also explain to the student body that some American Indians are not obligated to pay state income tax or that American Indian casinos are not obligated to pay property taxes to support local schools? Don't hold your breath. That will never happen.

While name changes are being considered, North Medford High School should change its mascot name. Every time I see the name "Black Tornado," I think of global warming, I mean climate change. I lie awake at night with heartburn fearing the end of the world. Change the mascot name to Fuzzy Kittens or Happy Puppies, or maybe something more elegant like Graceful Swans. Besides, no self-respecting football player would ever tackle someone who has a happy puppy on his jersey. — C. Andrew Beck, Medford

Great article on Mazatlan, Mexico. We have spent many great days there. In fact, we are down there now enjoying the great family-oriented people along with the warm sun and great food. Beautiful city! — C. Darland, Central Point

Responding to the April 23 letter, "Defend our democracy" presents a perfect analogy to irony.

On one hand Mr. Verdieck seems pleased that four giant corporations have severed themselves from the sinful ALEC organization, but then concludes that ALEC's vision for the future is a "corporate oligarchy." If I were a CEO of a large corporation, why would I cease to support a coalition that acts as a grassroots voice for corporate power? What is a democracy?

A recently adopted Oregon sustainability standard for middle school students delineates the three groups that make up a democratic society: the state, civic organizations and business!

I don't see "The people" in this neoplatonic partnership, or what did he accuse ALEC of wanting, a "corporate oligarchy?"

I'm not a member of ALEC, but its supposedly sinful principles are held by many people who believe the new health care package is unconstitutional, that private vouchers or school choice would give children a better academic education than paying for public school failures and having a valid ID to sign a ballot is not a difficult or expensive burden on the poor.

Taxpayers pay the bills democracies incur. As a taxpayer I would rather defend our republic! — Diana Anderson, Shady Cove