After last year's reports of legislators' lobbyist-paid junkets, I reviewed all trips made since I became a legislator. I found several that were taken for educational and training purposes; none were sponsored by lobbyists.
As I stated in my Nov. 30, 2006, newsletter (www.dennisrichardson.org/lu113006.htm), "Although I have not accepted any trips paid for by lobbyists, in an abundance of caution, I want to publicly remind my readers of the legislative trips I have taken since my first election in 2003."
I want to thank Tribune reporter Don Jepsen for correctly stating, "Richardson said he decided to file the amended reports even though he received no benefit from any lobbyist or organization with an interest in bills before the Oregon Legislature." The matters being considered by the Oregon Government Standards and Practices Commission, are in response to the information I sent to them myself.
If there are any questions, please read the Nov. 30, 2006 newsletter, where everything about my legislative trips is fully explained. — Rep. Dennis Richardson, R-Central Point, Salem
What an incredible community Medford is! Thank you to everyone who provided the overwhelming support system to me during the Prevention/ABC News Picture of Health contest. This first annual event was, according to Prevention and ABC News, a "smashing success" with 56,000 people casting a vote! If my winning inspires even a few people to choose a healthy life, then I will have succeeded as well.
Part of the amazing honor is the opportunity to donate some of my winnings to Dunn House. Helping to ease and hopefully one day eliminate domestic violence is a goal that will require many people to become involved; I am grateful for my involvement.
With the remainder of the prize money, my husband, Bob, and I plan to assist local people interested in healthy endeavors (sports shoes, entry fees, reading material, health food). When the details are in place, they can be accessed through bjreed.com.
Here's to good health for everyone, regardless of age or situation. It's a choice you'll never regret! — BJ Reed, Medford
Bill Varble's general praise of the OSF's current production of "Romeo and Juliet" (June 19) fails to mention that the play lacks gravitas — depth of passion.
Romeo is played as a goof-off — with lightness and almost a mocking of the romantic words that should be delivered with feeling, not with a comic element. Juliet alone saves the play, as this actress is truly convincing as well as fitting perfectly the image of Juliet.
Varble's take on the different generations, the older in traditional dress and the younger in modern, fails to convey my sense of distraction from the classic beauty and poetry of the play, plus these anachronisms at OSF are getting downright cheesy and tacky.
This production beats the one of several years ago, but not by much. Appealing to the masses by shocking them (e.g., use of yellow crime scene tape and ridiculous modern prep-school dress) perhaps should be rethought.
Would that OSF would return to the glorious traditional presentations of earlier years, with appropriate costuming and setting. This "Romeo and Juliet" is farcical, not the greatest romantic tale of them all. — Margaret Felder, Medford
Mr. Hymer (Letters, June 21) apparently has a dysfunctional or, at best, selective memory.
There were no terrorists in Iraq when we invaded, remember? They only arrived after we conveniently set the stage for them. Terrorists need chaos and anger and despair in abundance in order for their message to gain traction. Otherwise they have no means to prosper.
When we destroyed Iraq's physical infrastructure and its civilian government and its military, we opened the door to al-Qaida, through which they obligingly walked. Of course, this has been most useful to BushCo, which daily touts the notion that we are "fightin' terr" in Iraq. But it is a "terr" they themselves made inevitable.
The lesson here is that you can treat human beings like dogs, but beware — the dogs may turn and bite you. — Christopher Lewis, Rogue River