LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

Astonishment, amazement and alarm are terms that come to mind in response to the Mail Tribune's "Winners and Losers" editorial on May 20 in connection with Doug Breidenthal's decisive primary victory for county commissioner.

He beat three other primary opponents, ran a commendable campaign and stood up to recalcitrant Republican commissioners, plus news media with an aversion to conservative tea party courage. Doug also believes in economic development as the driving engine for county growth, unlike others who disguise their disdain with platitudes on spending and court decisions.

The Tribune needs to grow up and stop showing its prejudice to any Republican who really believes that government needs to diet instead of gorging on the taxpayer's wallet. Breidenthal will get to the bottom of county obscene salaries and will help expand property rights.

Doug is an honest winner; the Tribune is an astonishingly poor loser. Game on! — Joel Marks, Medford

Regarding your Sunday article on genetically modified organisms, I hope the county commissioners actually talk to our local farmers, gardeners and restaurants whose businesses and livelihood depend on being able to provide or serve local organic produce to all who live or visit here.

Get all the facts you want, but there is no dispute that when genetically engineered crops are allowed to go to seed and pollinate, as Syngenta has done in the Rogue and Applegate valleys, they directly threaten the welfare of organic farms and gardeners who choose to not use GMOs. Today it is sugar beets for seed and sweet corn, but GMO alfalfa has been deregulated and will soon threaten all of our organic dairy, organic forage and organic beef industries.

Most people do not know that Oregon has the fourth largest number of GMO test plots of the 50 states. Why should a foreign corporation get to decide the future of food grown in Jackson County? The proposed ban on genetically engineered crops is designed to put Jackson County's citizens in charge of that choice.

It is time to take a stand. Support our local farmers. Support your food supply. — Brian Comnes, Ashland

I attended for the second time one of Sen. Jeff Merkley's town hall meetings. Once again, I wasn't one of the lucky few who had an opportunity to be heard.

The senator had to rush off to somewhere else and limited his time to one hour. He obviously wasn't interested in what we, the poor folk, had to say. I would say more than half of us didn't get a chance to ask our question.

It would seem to me if the senator was really interested in what we had to say, he would have stayed until we all had a chance to be heard.

It's obvious to me that the privileged few don't care about the rest of us peons. I'm voting no on incumbents. — David Hammond, Medford

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