We wish the good citizens of Jacksonville would recognize the conscientious work by our volunteer mayor and City Council members. Their years of volunteerism contributing to the betterment of the city does not warrant any recall effort.

We wish Mr. Hubert Smith would use his energy in a positive way. Collecting signatures for individuals willing to commit to the extensive required training, and volunteering a portion of their week to firefighting, would be positive. Singling out selected officials for a recall because you disagree with them seems arbitrary.

We are left with the impression the petitions aren't about fiscal mismanagement or volunteer fire departments but rather about misplaced anger, power and control. It reminds us of the partisan climate in our governments.

We wish some self-appointed civic leaders would conduct their business in the open and not resort to "skuzzy back-room dealings" as described by Mr. Smith. The private lunch that resulted in the withdrawal of one councilman's recall petition seems to fit his terminology. Could our next mayor be this individual?

We wish other members of our great community would speak out in support of our volunteers. The recall process manipulated by Mr. Smith is ill-advised at best. — John and Bylle McCulley, Jacksonville

The Gold Diggers Guild, the group that supports the Southern Oregon Historical Society, would like to thank all the participants in our recent fundraiser. We were able to donate $5,000 to SOHS from the proceeds of this fundraiser. Thanks, Southern Oregon. — Mary Jo Bergstrom and Phyllis J. Nelson, Medford, co-chairwomen

While shopping at my local Safeway, I noticed a flier proclaiming the store will be open on Christmas Day. I don't have family members or friends who work at Safeway, but I think it's absolutely awful. Are there no sacred holidays for people to enjoy time off with their families — not even Christmas? I wonder if Steven Burd, the CEO of Safeway, will be with his family on Christmas Day?

In the last few years I've watched Thanksgiving evenings become co-opted by retailers and shoppers for the sake of Black Friday, and now it seems they've set their sights on Christmas. In a matter of time, Christmas will become just another workday. Do we really want to return to the days of Ebenezer Scrooge, when everything comes down to making a buck?

I've noticed it's become popular now to lament that we've taken "Christ out of Christmas." In reality, it's not Christ that's disappeared from our Christmas celebrations, but family and friends who have to work — sacrificing precious family time for one more day of profit. Please folks, get your shopping done in advance and send a message to retailers: Don't shop on Christmas Day! — Sharon Schieber, Grants Pass

Is there an electric car in your future?

An electric highway with 1,100 charging stations will be built, how nice. Before I would consider an electric, I would have some questions. How do so many charges affect the life of the battery? What is the life of the battery? What is the replacement cost?

The Nissan Leaf lists for $32,720, I'll keep my Honda Civic.

Electric cars are not new; in 1904, the Studebaker Electric built by Studebaker Bros. Mfg. Co. in South Bend, Ind., came on the market.

In 1908, the Rauch and Lang Electric built by The Rauch & Lang Carriage Co. in Cleveland, Ohio, hit the road. They advertised, so safe and easy to run, it can be operated by woman or child. Twenty dealers signed up. In 1911, The Standard Electric built by The Standard Electric Car Co. in Jackson, Mich., came on the market, price $1,850 for a Model M Coupe.

They advertised — a price, a car — that will revolutionize the utility and sales of the electric vehicle.

What happened to the electrics? Drivers would not give up their Model T, Reo, Mercer, Maxwell, Cadillac, etc. — Red Smith, Medford

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