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OK, we now have an REI and a Trader Joe's.

Now we need one more thing so the Rogue Valley can hold its head high and call itself civilized: a radio station that carries the games of at least one NFL team and one Major League Baseball team. — Craig Callaway, Eagle Point

I would like to respond to the letter from Thomas Allen on Oct. 6, which states that the government and media have promoted a "myth" that there are "vast numbers of Americans without access to health care."

Unfortunately, this is no myth. While it is true that hospitals are unlikely to turn away uninsured patients in need of care, the hospitals will raise their prices for everyone in order to risk losing money on uninsured patients. Private practitioners do the same. Insurance companies respond in turn by raising their premiums to cover these costs. This fuels the rising cost of health care in our country.

If everyone had insurance, then hospitals and other health care providers wouldn't have to raise their prices in this manner, and costs would come down. Citizens wouldn't have to choose between health care and losing their home or risking bankruptcy if they become ill. Hence the idea of an individual mandate on insurance.

With the current system, not everyone can afford to just go out and buy insurance. If our government can somehow help people obtain affordable care and thereby improve access to care, then I'm all for it. — Karen Basin, M.D., Medford

To the person or persons who stole the electric trolling motor from the Faith Fulmer Foundation's mega yard sale, shame on you!

I guess you needed it more than the children fighting for their lives from cancer! Faith's grandfather donated it to help raise money to help find a cure for childhood cancer!

I wish you well, and hope you never catch a fish with that motor. — Annie King, Medford

Many thanks for the recent article about Bear Creek, "Sins of the Past," in the Oregon Outdoors section. Bear Creek is most worthy of our time and attention!

If I may, I would like to clarify "a project to restore a side channel along Bear Creek near the US Cellular ballpark." We are Coyote Trails' Jefferson Nature Center, an independent nonprofit in the heart of the US Cellular ballpark.

But more important is the group of professionals; Steve Koskella, Robert Coffan, Janette Kerbo, Scott English, Kerry KenCairn, Frances Oyung and dozens of volunteers which include the Job Council youth, Lithia School and Rogue River High School, who along with us are undertaking the reintroduction of the historic side channel.

This is being done at no cost to the taxpayers through direct donations, volunteer efforts and grants. We are extremely proud of all the work being done at Coyote Trails Jefferson Nature Center since being granted our lease from Medford Parks and Recreation and the City of Medford. We will continue creating an outstanding Nature Center with a healthy Bear Creek for all of Southern Oregon to enjoy! — Molly Kreuzman, grounds and facility manager, Coyote Trails

Perhaps the following example of Native American Wisdom can help us put the upcoming elections in proper perspective:

"In our every deliberation, we must consider the impact of our decision on the next seven generations" — from the Great Law of the Iroquois Confederacy. — Tom Brussat, Jacksonville

I read the other day in The Week that the world's tax havens currently have between $21 trillion and $32 trillion. What with all the fear of a fiscal crisis in our country and the current status of the euro, why couldn't the people that control the tax haven trillions use some of it to fix the world's currency problems pay off our $16 trillion debt, save the euro, etc.?

In so doing the remaining tax haven trillions will retain their value and our dollar will once again be the currency the world depends on. — B. Story, Central Point