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Letters to the Editor, Oct. 18

Politics tarnish military service

All in all I have spent more than 60 of my 70 years in or around the military as a dependent; as a member; and, today, I’m married to a retired Army officer.

In all my years associated with the military, I have never seen anyone who used their military title for political gain. I have seen and can understand using your military background, but to use your military rank is presumptuous and pompous. We don’t use our military titles in this country; it smacks of elitism and authoritarianism. We who served, served for our country, not for ourselves. To take your service to our country and use it for gain, especially political, rubs most vets the wrong way. That’s not why we served.

Former military who wish to further serve their community, would do well to be more humble about themselves and their military service.

Robert Stermer-Cox, Talent

Some Muslims are extremists

Americans are extremely concerned that President Obama will not acknowledge that certain elements of the Islamic faith are radical Islamists and extremists.

There are approximately 1.6 billion Muslims in the world of which 7 percent or 113 million are considered radical. These extremists value death over life (willing to give their lives to the cause), which means just one individual can cause substantial fear, harm and death.

We have already experienced their carnage in America:

  • Only 19 Islamist extremists took down the World Trade Centers and hit the Pentagon in 2001, resulting in 2,996 deaths and 6,000 injured.
  • Nadal Hasan murdered 13 and wounded 32 at Fort Hood in 2009 in the name of Allah.
  • Alton Nolen beheaded Collen Hufford at a food plant in Moore, OK on Sept. 25. His web site indicated he was a Islamist extremist.

These Islamist extremists are evil. Their only goal in life is to murder anyone who does not conform to their ideology of hate, intolerance and warped religious belief. Most likely there are a number of lone wolf or wolf pack Islamist extremists (home bred or who came across our porous southern border) waiting to spring their evil on America right now.

Marty Koval, Eagle Point

Bates caved to pressure

What a joke! Alan Bates talks about “protecting the environment,” but what about protecting our women and children from the sexual predators and domestic violence criminals he agreed to release from prison? Because of Dr. Bates and his ilk, these felons got an early out and are now free to seek new victims.

Is this someone who protects our rights, our neighborhoods and our environment? I don’t think so! Senator Bates has caved-in to political pressure when he should have stood strong and voted against allowing these criminals to walk away from well-deserved punishment.

This, more than any other wrong decision Bates has made, is what has convinced me it’s time to change our representative in Salem. From my recent conversations with Colonel Dave Dotterrer, I believe he will protect the safety and welfare of our community on all levels.

Ken Casteel, Ashland

Dotterrer uses fear ads

I am appalled at the campaign ads that Mr. Dotterrer is putting out, the latest is an old "Willie Horton" fear-mongering proposition. This is so old news — the fact is, the prison systems across the country are usurping state budgets to the point of strangulation. In that consideration, the best minds handling Oregon State Corrections have come together to make recommendations for some prisoner releases.

Dotterrer's ad suggests he will do better — which very simply demonstrates he does not have a grasp on the issues facing this state.

Teri L. Tankersley, Talent

Wolf in sheep's clothing

The election hyperbole begins. At this point, I default to the lesser of two evils, that is, who is lying the least.  I carefully read the text of the initiatives.

I have big problems with Measure 91. As pointed out recently, the state has sole taxation authority (section 42) and any local taxation ordinances are null and void (section 58). Oregon is estimated to get $45 million. Jackson County's earmarked per capita share would be  about $500,000. Hardly a cash cow.

What bothers me most are sections 74 and 76. Section 74 includes tax law changes, and never mentions marijuana. It is one of the largest sections in the bill. Section 76 concerns alterations to penalties connected with controlled substances and peyote. 

Until I read a legible explanation of these two sections, I view Measure 91 as a wolf in sheep's clothing, and will vote no.

Matthew Morey, Shady Cove

Dotterrer will be a leader

I support David Dotterrer 110 percent, with no doubts. He is running for our Oregon Senate. He is a man of integrity and has wisdom on how to improve our community issues. He has a heart for our families and communities. He may have knocked on your door to meet you because he truly cares and knows he can handle the job with excellence. It is time for a positive change. In the next few days we will be receiving our ballots. Please take a moment and vote for Dotterrer.

Let's not miss this opportunity to elect a man who will put his all into the job and will prove to be a great leader who works to support us and what will benefit the families who live in Jackson County. We are fellow Americans who need those to represent us who we can trust.

Illis Casteel, Ashland

Tree farms are a hazard

In a recent guest opinion, the timber industry association claimed that "profuse in-growth and the lack of management" led to this year's explosive wildfires. The inference is that if we just allow the industry to log enfettered, intense forest fires would cease.

What the timber industry association failed to mention is that industrial logging continues to create mono-cropped, densely packed tree farms that are prone to intense fire. Information released by the National Forest Service in 2003 revealed that young vegetation found in tree farms burns hottest of any forest vegetation. Another report by the Oregon Department of Forestry found that of forests 200 years and older that burned that same year on another fire, only 10 percent burned high intensity, while 100 percent of the tree farms less than 35 years old burned so intensely that all the trees died.

Most conservation organizations, federal agencies and science-based foresters support forest management through prescribed burns and the thinning of tree farms, small diameter trees, and ladder fuels in dense, fire prone forests. These projects can also produce timber as a byproduct.

The timber association should know that when our streams, communities and remaining old forests are protected, we all benefit.

Barbara Comnes, Ashland

Talbert's widespread support

Our View in the Mail Tribune, Oct. 10, is the best comparison of the candidates for Jackson County Commissioner Position 3, to date. All points were well-stated and accurate.

Talbert’s endorsers represent both sides of the aisle, enforcing his view that this position should be nonpartisan.

Don Skundrick (R), Dave Gilmore (D), CW Smith (R), Jon Deason (D) and John Rachor (R), current or former county commissioners, and Mark Huddleston, former district attorney, endorse Talbert.

Alan Bates (D) and Peter Buckley (D), our current state senator and state representative, support Talbert.

Bill Thorndike, Pat Huycke, Marilyn Hawkins, Mike Naumes and Jim Wright, owners and leaders of companies that support our local economy, endorse Talbert.

Educators Cheryl Markwell and Jeff LaLande, and Peggy Moore, president, Friends of the Animal Shelter, endorse Talbert

We need Talbert’s practical approach and professional experience to solve problems and promote the future of our county.

Roberta Heinz, Central Point

Letters to the Editor, Oct. 18