Mr. Howe's opinion piece on Wednesday, March 23, regarding the management of public lands was excellent — well-reasoned and well-written. Even though I am a member of the generation he proposes "step aside," I agree wholeheartedly with both his ideas on the subject and the way he presented and supported them. Logic is still timeless, after all. — Michael Whipple, Medford

Hubert Smith's letter (March 20) detailing his version of National Public Radio's communication style gives a clearer picture of Mr. Smith than NPR.

It might be useful to Mr. Smith to take a deep breath and try to smell the roses.

If he's not so inclined, he should have his blood pressure checked — soon. — P.R. Kellogg, Grants Pass

In regard to Mr. Steely's letter (March 21), I suggest he read up on the history of unions.

They were initially set up as a bargaining agency, not as a dictating agency. Their day has come and gone with the horse and buggy. They now have too much power, telling businesses how much they can or cannot pay.

I have belonged to three unions (all company unions) and we were given what the company could afford. Additionally, our present educational system can only be saved through eliminating the teachers' union (i.e. having a full calendar of school days, eliminating "tenure"). — Willie Fischer, Central Point

I am totally outraged about the closure of Hawthorne Pool.

A city the size of Medford without a public swimming pool is a disgrace. And then we are talking about a water park! That will be much more expensive than what most families can afford and there is already such a facility at Emigrant Lake.

What we need is a city pool available to everybody. Hawthorne is already there and can be converted at a much cheaper price than a full-fledged water park. What about the extra money that MURA has and does not know what to do with? — Ursula Robichaud, Medford

I feel like there is something more sinister going on in America, something beyond greed. Our food supply is being altered, people are not warned of chemicals in food and water, the FDA as well as other agencies are looking the other way when products and especially pharmaceuticals come out without proper non-biased testing.

Now, a U.S. Supreme Court decision has just given drug companies total liability protection for injuries and deaths caused by government-mandated vaccines. The National Vaccine Information Center called the decision a "betrayal" of the American consumer. What has happened to us? — Linda Garble, Medford

I attended Sen. Merkley's Town Hall Monday. I believe it should have been called the Town Hall Lottery.

They asked if you wanted to speak as we came in; if the answer was yes, you were given a raffle ticket. After the preliminary remarks, they drew some numbers and those drawn spoke, but the meeting was closed before at least 50 percent of those wanting to speak had an opportunity to do so.

It would seem to me that if the senator was truly interested in what we had to say, he would have made the time to hear us, too. We took the time to come for nothing ... politics as usual! — David B. Hammond, Medford

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