I cannot believe that a person is not allowed to have his last name on a vanity plate because some perverted people will read something into it. I hope that family sues the Department of Motor Vehicles for discrimination and anything else they can.

What about all the bumper stickers on cars that are downright vulgar and nasty? I think people who have offensive stickers on their cars should be fined. Why is that allowed? There are a lot of immoral people putting things on their cars that you don't have to change anything to make it a reference to sex; it is real clear what the message is, nothing is hidden.

I think that the 10 members of the DMV panel are overpaid, with too much time on their hands. — Pam Schalow, Medford

To preserve neighborly relations we have refrained from responding to Ed Vaughn's letters to the editor, but we are compelled to respond to his latest letter. Mr. Vaughn has a Measure 37 claim. Although he claims he is developing a few home sites, his Measure 37 claim is for 38 lots. For surrounding farmers, houses in the middle of farm land will mean the end of farming on the Vaughns' land and for us, too. Most people do not like the spraying, noise, smells and dust that farming creates and will complain. I believe we also have rights to use our land as it was zoned when we purchased the land.

Measure 49 only affects Measure 37 claims, not the rest of us. It seeks to limit large subdivisions on prime farm land. It will help those people trying to put a home on farm land by making the process easier. It will provide the right to sell these lots, which is not presently allowed under Measure 37.

If Measure 49 passes, Mr. Vaughn would be allowed to sell three lots. As neighbors and farmers we can accept three new home sites on the Vaughns' farm. — Chris Pellett, Central Point

Every nonsmoker will vote for Measure 50, further pawning a collective responsibility off on a minority.

A tax of 85 cents a pack is steep enough to get some to quit — which would be a good thing — and steep enough to get many others (the poor, of course) to jump the borders and smuggle their smokes in from Washington or California, fueling a new criminal enterprise (as if meth isn't bad enough). Either way, funding for "Healthy Kids" won't reach the levels promoters project. The system might get a short-term infusion but it won't last long enough.

If we want to fund health care for children, why not tax the stuff that makes them sick? Slap a dollar onto every bucket of fried chicken, a quarter on every burger, a dime on fries and a nickel on every soda. It would be a financial bonanza that could fund all health care in Oregon long term. — Stephen Davis, Talent

When I voted for the school bond, I did not know I was voting to close Roosevelt Elementary School. I did not know because the voters were not told.

Subsequent to the passing vote on that bond measure, it was discovered that the older section of the Roosevelt school building was partially comprised of aging, and possibly unsafe materials, those being bricks dating back to original construction. This information was based on one engineering study. Prior to obtaining other professional opinions on the repairability of Roosevelt, the School Board has offered four options for addressing needed upgrades to the county schools, three of which recommend the permanent closure of Roosevelt Elementary.

It is my opinion that such recommendations for closure were premature. More professional assessments, and other options, should be considered before removing historical institutions such as Roosevelt, a grade school loved and appreciated by many Medford families over the years. Is this asking too much of the School Board? — Robert Ogle, Medford

Perhaps Ms. Achen attended a different meeting than the one I attended as a member of the task force? Maybe it was just the headline, "No Big Break for Jackson, Roosevelt," that was so misleading, too. The entire group all felt the utmost importance of keeping a "neighborhood" school in both the Roosevelt and Jackson areas, something the article failed to convey.

Our main goal was to keep those communities intact and keep the existing buildings, or whatever part of them, and their grounds useful to everyone. The K-8 concept has solid research to prove student attendance and test scores are higher the fewer times a student changes locations. Both Hedrick and McLoughlin are within walking distance.

As a 25-year veteran of the classroom, I know how hard change can be, but I also know if we can do whatever is best for kids everyone wins in the long run. Another plus — a recommendation for another structural evaluation; after that looking at the options would be a great idea! The district Web site would be the best source of information, not an article in the paper which seems to distort reality. — BJ Reed, bond task force member, Medford

The School Board's impending decision will be difficult at best and no matter the outcome there will be unhappy parents and residents. I am advocating for Option 4 (dropping South Medford High School new construction) as the only viable option for Jackson Elementary School and the community it anchors. Smaller community-serving schools are essential to families when factors such as lack of transportation and other resources are common, as they are for many families living in West Medford.

Jackson students have benefited from many school-based programs. Kids Health Connection provides affordable and accessible physical and mental health care. Its ability to serve Jackson students has been drastically affected. Kids Unlimited provides healthy after-school programming and Head Start serves underprivileged preschoolers and their families. Both programs have had to be relocated and thus access limited. These services have had tremendous positive impact on Jackson students and their families.

I implore the School Board to support the schools that really play an integral role in the lives and well-being of children and their families. I am sure a similar case could be made for Roosevelt. Please support Option 4 to rebuild and reopen Jackson and Roosevelt Elementary schools. — Victor Chang Ashland

In the words of Teddy Roosevelt, our dear Roosevelt school's namesake, "Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far."

Speaking as a Roosevelt parent, east Medford neighbor, bond supporter, and Medford taxpayer, none of the bond task force's proposals are acceptable. The first three permanently close both Roosevelt and Jackson elementary schools, and the fourth reopens them at the cost of scrapping the new South Medford High School.

Today's Roosevelt and Jackson students deserve a beautiful and functional high school when they get there, and they need Roosevelt and Jackson reopened now.

As for the stick: The Medford School Board and bond task force must come up with a solution that includes reopening both Roosevelt and Jackson schools, as well as building the new South high. If not, they risk alienating the very voters who supported the bond in November as well further angering the many disillusioned Medford voters who did not. — Molly E. Wolfe, Medford

I am writing to add my voice and opinion in support of retaining Roosevelt and Jackson elementary schools at their current sites, by whatever means we can find.

I realize that there are enormous financial problems in this area that make this especially difficult. However, these schools are a treasure not only for the neighborhoods and children they serve, but also for the community in general. The positive influence they provide will be quite a loss should the current proposal be adapted.

The child I care for has been attending Roosevelt for two years, and is now part of the group that is riding the bus to Hoover for two years. The contrast is sharp. We've lost the daily contact with the teacher that we had, a way to consistently check in on their progress. We've lost the routine contact with the ancillary staff and principal. We've also pretty much lost the camaraderie of routine contact with other parents that made this "small school" so special. — Mary Bakewell, Medford

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