The coincidence of publishing Paul Greenberg's opinion column and John Darling's piece on driving while phoning eight pages apart on Friday just begs for comment.

Greenberg's article centers on the "soft tyranny" of many layers of seemingly minor laws. Darling's piece is subtitled, "While most admit they use cell phones while driving, all interviewed agree the proposed ban is a good idea." So: lacking self-discipline, we want government to make our flaw a crime. — Joe Ward, Shady Cove

Picture this: the mighty Rogue River reduced to half its current flow. Ski seasons that last six weeks or just disappear altogether.

Irrigation water virtually dried up. Drinking water becoming scarce and expensive. A rapidly changing forest ecosystem where widespread beetle kill, or worse, is the order of the day. Fire seasons that last 10 months.

To find a similar scenario you need only look south, and there is every indication it's coming our way. So when you hear the climate change deniers telling you it isn't real, ask yourself if they are the ones whose forests, rivers and drinking water are at stake. Ask yourself why the Arctic is melting, why the Sacramento River is turning to mud. Do you really want to take the gamble that they are the wise ones? — Christopher Lewis, Rogue River

The Forest Service has a plan to close roads, restrict access, and combine access for motorized vehicles for more than 426,589 acres. Changes will be from "open year long" to closed to cross-country travel. Also, there is a proposed closure of 197,780 acres from open seasonally to closed.

If the idea of being closed out of your forest bothers you please contact the Umpqua National Forest, 2900 N.W. Stewart Parkway, Roseburg, OR 97471. Please express why you think this is good or bad for you and your family. The Forest Service says a simple yes or no will not be counted. You must state your reasons and be specific. The deadline for submissions is May 15. (Seniors, handicapped people, and small children will be affected by this plan.) We think letters will carry more weight than e-mails. Ask for the next hearing date.

These roads rarely are opened again once they are closed.

"Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly while bad people will find a way around the laws." — Plato. — Cathy Kaech, Roseburg

The other day at Little Squaw Lake we saw almost all around it the invasive plants you wrote about recently. It is easy to realize they are choking the lake. Workers have made a start in pulling them out, but they have left small piles close to the edge.

I hope they plan to thoroughly remove these weeds as they are beginning to grow. If not, it will be defeating the very purpose of rescuing the lake from the weeds. — Elaine Witteveen, Jacksonville

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