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A little old lady is pulled over by a cop. When running her plate he notices she has a concealed carry permit. He asks, "Do you have any weapons in the car?" She says, "I have a 40 caliber in the glove box, a 9 mm in my purse and a .357 magnum under the seat." He asks, "You're in a safe town. What are you afraid of?" She replies, "Not a damn thing!"

The young lady from Ashland suggests, "Either everybody has a gun, or no one has a gun except for the cops." And she feels unsafe.

In my opinion, if a few of her teachers were armed she would be safer. If only the cops, government or bad guys have the guns, how would she protect herself and family from them?

The Second Amendment, in her Bill of Rights, states: "A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."

Perhaps they don't teach the Constitution at her school, so she should educate herself and refuse to be a victim. — Steve Bunch, Medford, Ashland High School Class of 1979

Thank you very much for your support of the folks who are "taking back the streets" in White City by publishing and writing such a strong article that is fair, yet supportive of our Second Amendment rights!

I'm happy to be a new resident of the city of Medford and Jackson County, and I just wanted to thank you for writing such a good article that is informative, firm, balanced and supportive of those who simply want to protect our loved ones and ourselves from the ridiculous influx of "thugs" and gangs harming our community. — Billy Griffin, Medford

It is a very curious thing that nearly all Oregon cities cite their inability to violate federal law as the reason when imposing a moratorium or even an outright ban on medical marijuana facilities within their boundaries. And yet, when it comes to grow sites in a community, federal law is totally ignored. How can this be? To paraphrase Captain Renault in Casablanca, "I'm shocked, shocked to find this happening."

And yet there is an even worse double standard happening in many towns. An example is right here in Phoenix, where Councilor Stan Bartell opposes dispensaries by citing federal law, and yet says in an email signed by him and his wife, Carolyn, also a city councilor, that patients can buy medical marijuana in Talent or Ashland. In other words, those towns can violate federal law even if we won't allow Phoenix to do so. It gets curiouser and curiouser. — Steven A. Schulman, Phoenix

The April 25 MT told the tale of the National Science Foundation funding a climate change play off Broadway. The NSF spent $700,000 of your taxpayer money on a play that lasted one week in the theater. Now I know this is just a rounding error on our $17 trillion national debt, but it shows how totally out of control our government is under this administration.

If the NSF is as good at figuring out climate theory as they are at picking plays to finance, we are all in trouble. That the NSF didn't give someone a research grant for Ebola or other horrible disease so they could put on a stage play seems to be a strange set of priorities.

Then the article's writer, Maria Recio, does the obligatory "According to NASA, 97 percent of climate scientists believe human activity has caused a warming trend ..." ignoring, of course, the fact that there has been no global warming for 15 years. Where are we, North Korea? Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists couldn't agree on the time unless our "Dear Leader" told them what it is. Here is a fact: 97 percent of the people outside the Beltway have serious doubts believing our government. — Lee Topham, Talent

Mercury is a potent neurotoxin, and its ability to bioaccumulate in the fish we eat is well known. California has similar mercury-laden river beds as the Rogue.

A U.S. Geological Survey study on the Yuba River in California found that suction dredging increased the mercury load in the Yuba River by 10 percent, which is one reason California has suspended suction dredging. The reason for the increase from suction dredging is because dredgers often dig much deeper into the river bed than normal flood scour. The dredgers exhume and expose mercury laden sediments that would rarely be scoured with typical annual floods.

While dredging does recover some mercury, it sends mercury downstream as well. We cannot do much to control natural mercury contamination, but we can and must control people's activities that make the existing mercury contamination much worse.

The study is titled: "Effects of Sediment and Mercury Mobilization in the South Yuba River and Humbug Creek Confluence Area, Nevada County, California," and a summary is on the California Department of Fish Wildlife suction dredge website. — Richard Nawa, Selma

Regarding the article titled "Viruses show alarming strength against traditional antibiotics": Antibiotics are used to treat bacterial infections. They have no effect on viruses. — Jay Therien, Phoenix


A letter headlined "Falls is the standout" in Thursday's paper was written by Kathy H. Cooper of Ashland. The letter carried the wrong name.