Perhaps the Medford police are citing privacy of "medical" records as a reason to deny the public the vitally important facts about the Pyles affair because Chief Schoen is now a "doctor." But, as you pointed out, you asked for police records, not medical records.
The police also claim that internal communications trumps the public's need to know the truth about what our officials are doing behind closed doors, but nothing trumps that right, not even their fear of being caught doing unlawful acts.
Finally, they try to hide behind Pyles' "right to privacy," something they seemed unconcerned with when they called in the SWAT team. However, since Pyles has publicly identified himself, that's the weakest of their irrelevant arguments.
Keep after them! And happy Sunshine Week to you and everyone! — Laird Funk, Williams
I was extremely disappointed to read the article concerning the 14-year-old client who pleaded to manslaughter whom Jim Mueller and I represented in Juvenile Court. The article was a product of a conversation with one of the DAs on the case, David Hoppe.
I think the people of Jackson County would have liked to have read more of the story. Mauricio was sentenced in front of Judge Greif in Juvenile Court. This sentencing was very important to the victim's family, to Mauricio's family and to the community. Judge Greif made some comments that were moving to hear — about the state of gangs in our community and the tragic, senseless death that occurred as a result. Printing some of what the judge said could have had a positive impact on our readers, other than just getting David Hoppe's perspective about what occurred.
It has been years since a youth in our community was prosecuted and convicted for a crime resulting in death. The impact this has was very compelling.
It would seem that a story this large and of such severity would be fully covered and others interviewed. Unfortunately, that did not occur and the result is rather sad. — Christine Herbert, Medford
I'd like to propose a marijuana law that should be passed through Oregon's initiative process. The thrust of this law would be for Oregon to not legalize, but refuse to spend any resources on enforcing the federal illegality of marijuana.
The federal government would be helpless to block this law, which also would expand and legitimize Oregon's marijuana economy (creating good jobs,) and help desperately ill patients get easy access to their legal medicine.
I don't have the health or legal expertise to personally take on this project, so I'm inviting anyone who does to spearhead it. I believe this law has the power to shift Oregon's cultural paradigms in a number of positive ways, and if we do it first: the titanic economic benefit surrounding it will make it hard to stop. But there must be no complications or concessions to violate the single-issue law or sully our principles.
We'll literally free the prisoners from the Bastille. — Sean Lawlor Nelson, Medford
The credit card banks thought they could pull the greatest heist, hiking our interest rates before new credit card rules went into effect in February.
We have the right under the new law to have rate hikes reviewed every six months, reduced if the reasons for it have changed. This could be a real opportunity to undo the unfair rate hikes we've been hit with.
The Federal Reserve Board has a bad proposal: delay our right for a rate review until next year, and let the banks keep higher interest rates if they have new reasons for the increase!
We have a few weeks to inundate the Fed and Congress with our comments. If you've had a rate hike for seemingly no reason, go to www.CreditCardReform.org, easily e-mail your complaints to the Fed, and demand a review of your interest rate hike!
Congress passed these rights for us in the Credit Card Act, and they need to know if the Fed isn't living up to the law. Make sure the rate review is as strong and fair for consumers as possible — and not another giveaway to the banks! — Gary Davis, Harbor