Letters to the editor: Jan. 7

Tree responses hateful

My last class in journalism was about 50 years ago. But I agreed to write this letter for my blind friend Amie Kaye, who resides in her home on B St here in Ashland, because of the hateful manner in which some Ashland residents are treating her.

During the wet snowstorm, she had a large tree in her back yard fall over and damage her roof and power lines. Prior to this event the large tree in front of her residence dropped a huge branch into the street. This left the rest of the tall and heavy branches hanging over her house. So when the people hired by her banker came to remove the fallen tree in her back yard, I indicated my concern regarding the possible hazard from the tree on the street side. Mea culpa.

The arborist ascertained that the tree was indeed unstable, and that her house was in eminent danger. The tree had to be removed. According to the arborist the center of the tree was severely rotted, which is why the other half fell into the street. The remaining branches were, indeed, a threat to Amie’s home and safety. So the city issued a permit.

The tree was very dangerous to remove. But the arborists did a wonderful job, no one was injured, Amie’s safety was insured, and all should be well. But Amie is now experiencing an inordinate number of complaints from concerned citizens.

I grew up in the redwood forest and shed many a tear observing the demise of 3,000-year-old living things killed for profit. My family took very good care of our second growth forest, and had the utmost respect for our forest environment. I am a “tree hugger” in the most supportive way.

I sincerely hope that those of us who cherish and wish to protect trees, would look a bit more deeply into the reasons for their removal before immediately assuming the worst regarding the property owner's intent. It appears to me that competent and highly trained professionals have been retained in Amie’s behalf.

Amie is very upset by the responses she is receiving. And, being blind, she is unable to respond to them in the manner she would like to. So if you need to express your feelings on the matter, express them to me. I will relay them. My friend Amie is not the perpetrator of this current fiasco. It appears to originate from the uninformed, the misinformed, the not consulted, and the rightfully concerned.

I thank everyone for his or her consideration in this regard.

Norman Barker


Terrorists carry guns

I am puzzled by the media's struggle to attach a label to the armed gunmen who seized the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. The term "activist" and "protester" were both used by the Tribune. Let me help you solve this problem. Protesters carry signs, terrorists carry guns.

Just being having white skin shouldn't prohibit the media from calling a terrorist a terrorist. And it shouldn't stop law enforcement from taking appropriate action either.

Larry Laitner


Thanks for Maslow support

The Ashland Branch Library would like to extend an enormous thank you to community members who donated warm clothing, blankets and hygiene supplies during the library-sponsored donation drive for the Maslow Project this season. We filled up the Maslow Project van twice with supplies that will help homeless youth ages 0 to 21. Thank you so much for your generous donations.

If you missed our library drive, you can drop off donations any time at the Maslow Project in Medford at 500 Monroe St. or contact them for donation information at 541-608-6868 or maslowproject.com.

Esther Mortensen, teen librarian

Ashland Branch Library

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