Letters to the editor

If it ain't broke, don't fix it

Lithia Park and our water supply are currently forbidden by the city charter from being sold to commercial interests. Why on earth should that protection be removed by the proposed charter amendment?

Some elected officials have assured us that there is no plan to sell these irreplaceable assets that belong to all the people of Ashland. Then why should we give the current and all future city councils the power to do so?

We can all remember numerous examples of elected officials' promises being broken as soon as they were elected, or their minds changed because of "new circumstances." And now we hear that the state protections are full of holes.

Hey, if it ain't broke, don't "fix" it!

Susan A. Hunt

Libraries: Don't spoil a good thing

If we try to run our county library system with volunteers, as some have suggested, we'll soon have a mess on our hands. If volunteers replace employees, will anyone who shows up be allowed to take charge of sensitive computer systems filled with patrons' personal information?

Who will troubleshoot, update, and repair the computers that must function before materials can be found or borrowed?

Who will spend hours undoing the shelving mistakes of confused kids or daydreaming adults so that patrons can locate their favorite videos, CDs, or magazines? Who will pack the materials needed by a reader in another community and who will truck them to that person's local branch?

The library is the only place around where important and desirable consumer items are given out completely free. Let's not spoil a good thing.

Pat Berglund


Serious problems need serious people

Every so often, there is a movie made about a fictional presidency that comes out with some messages that are right on the money. A few years ago there was a movie called The American President in which the president made at least two statements that were right on target. The first was "The sole purpose of the ACLU is to defend the constitution." Sometimes the ACLU is wrong or goes overboard, but defending the constitution is its only purpose. The second statement was "America has serious problems that require serious people to solve them."

We currently have an administration that is not the least bit serious about anything but maintaining power for its party by whatever means necessary and enriching its wealthy donors and itself. We have a population that is very unengaged in the process. Less than half of our eligible voters bother to vote and less than half of the ones who do vote pay any attention to the issues or the qualifications of the candidates. Because of this, our current president was able to become president twice, in spite of his glaring lack of adequate intelligence or any other form of qualification, as displayed in the debates of 2000 and 2004 and any public appearance he has made during his presidency.

We must quit listening to fear tactics, statements like "If you question us, you are unpatriotic" and to declarations by candidates of their Christianity, when their behavior contradicts that Christianity. The right to question authority is a main part of the foundation of democracy, as is separation of church and state. Any time throughout history that this separation was not maintained it caused huge problems, including persecution and death sentences.

We also need to realize that having played a president in a movie does not qualify someone to be president. Actors, even mediocre actors, are able to make us believe that their acting is real. Most of the presidents of my lifetime have been brilliant, including the very paranoid "Tricky Dicky." Even Reagan and Bush (41), in spite of their "poor memories" during the Iran-Contra hearings, were not totally lacking in intelligence. It is time for serious people to work on solving the real problems of America!

Ed Dillon

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