We have a great Police Department and I think the chief and everyone in the department is doing a great job in a very poor physical environment, but I agree with your March 20 editorial. Why does the city constantly look at building a new Cadillac, instead of recycling older class A buildings?

The national chain Natural Grocers is moving into the old National Furniture Warehouse and Mattress store (a 40,062-square-foot space that would have been large enough for the police with a huge parking lot). Closer to downtown, the old ScanDesign furniture store is also a class A building that looks like it could work as a police headquarters.

Instead of sticking to its longtime game plan of building new, why doesn't the city mirror the game plan of businesses like Natural Grocers and others that seek out existing buildings to rehab to add new life to a community? Yes, rehabbing can be more expensive, but it doesn't have to be. Also, why doesn't the city make it a priority to hire a local firm to design public buildings? These local professionals understand the spirit of the local community they live in! — Mark Dennett, Ashland

Amanda McCracken's March 16 letter, "Overturn Citizens United" is an attack on freedom of speech.

"Citizens United" is a nonprofit organization that brought suit against the FEC for prohibiting members of an organization from exercising their right to speak through an organization. The Supreme Court ruled that a person's right to freedom of speech does not end just because he or she speaks through a voluntary association of individuals.

A corporation is in this category as are many other organizations such as unions, nonprofits and for-profits. The left, in an attempt to suppress speech they don't like, assert that a corporation is an artificial person (whatever that is) and consequently is without First Amendment rights. Bans on corporate speech are necessary, they say, to promote equality of influence or "fairness" in elections — as if that could be objectively determined. "Fairness" is their standard, not the protection of freedom of speech. They want to pick and choose who can speak and who cannot.

Contrary to McCracken's assertion, Citizens United is a ringing endorsement of the First Amendment. "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press." No exceptions. — Gordon Dickerson, Medford

On Feb. 12, while walking on a crosswalk in Central Point on Pine Street, my daughter was hit. It is going to be a long road for her recovery, if she ever gets there. It is a horrific, life-changing experience, and it would be nice if we had the choice rather than have it made for us.

Central Point, please do something about your crosswalks. Marked, better flashing lights, flags, pedestrian signs, anything to prevent this from happening again! I never have understood the mentality of a person having to get killed before they take the issue as being serious. — Dorothy Fallihee, Phoenix

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