Webletters Graphic.jpg
Webletters Graphic.jpg

Letters, Sept. 21

Who is the true killer?

I am truly heartbroken and outraged at the “authorities’ ” response to the recent death of a hiker on Mount Hood, most likely caused by a cougar attack. It raises the question, once again, of our (i.e., human) relationship with the wild and natural world.

This is the first potentially cougar-caused human fatality in the history of Oregon and there have been fewer than 30 fatal cougar attacks on humans in North America in the past 100 years. Authorities are now going to descend on Mount Hood and kill every cougar they find to see whether it matches animal DNA taken from the body of the hiker who was killed. And once they do, then what??

We humans have killed hundreds of thousands of cougars. And why is that? What is the motivation? Is it fear, hatred, human narcissism (how dare one of us be harmed by another species), etc. We have moved into their territory, as we have moved into the homes of countless other species, with the assumption that we have a right to do this, and that any resistance from other life forms constitutes retaliation on our part.

My question is: Who is the killer here? Truly. And by what right do we give ourselves such far-reaching permission to do this? And finally, do we recognize that what we do unto others we do unto ourselves? The truth of the web of life which is at the core this earth life would suggest that our survival depends on our living in harmony with this perennial wisdom. If we continue to kill off that which offends, angers, frightens, etc., we will not be able to live as human beings, as we grew into being human out of relationship with all other living things.

Anne Stine

Ashland

Art preview offensive

I’m eager to see the Malburn/Schnitzer’s collaborative art exhibit at SOU opening Sept. 27. However, I found Jeffrey Gillespie’s comments insulting.

He depicts our regional galleries as needing “aesthetic guidance” as he notes, “commercial dreck and mediocre décor masquerading as fine art is the order of the day.” Hanson Howard is recognized statewide and beyond for its fine art. Ashland Art Works and the Ashland Art Center also feature collectible works of art and craft by talented regional artists. Several other local galleries shine as well.

I suggest that it is preferable to commend eminent art and support, and uplift unrecognized artistic talent rather than disparaging these.

Susan Roudebush

Ashland

Endorsing Seffinger

I met Stefani Seffinger soon after arriving at Southern Oregon University in 2014. From that time I have gotten to know Stef as an intelligent and kind person with a core of integrity and deep commitment to our community. She is very aware of our City Council’s responsibility for prudent fiscal management.

I support Stef for Ashland City Council, not only for her experience and broad understanding of city complexities — from forestland management to senior programs to climate change — but also for her humanity. Whether meeting with SOU students, serving at the Empty Bowls fundraiser, or reading the peace proclamation at the Nagasaki Day observance, time and again she demonstrates her commitment to diversity, inclusion and collaboration.

Roy H. Saigo, former president of Southern Oregon University

Ashland

Candidate forums

Environmental challenges abound in Southern Oregon, from the fracked gas pipeline to the fires and smoke that compromise our health and threaten our forests, to the climate consequences of global warming that cause dwindling snowpack compromising water supplies and increasing summer temperatures drying our soils and vegetation and stimulating even greater future fire risk. And then there is the impact of marijuana grows on our groundwater supply, and the toxic chemicals released into our air and water.

These represent questions to ask the candidates from Southern Oregon for the Oregon Legislature and county Board of Commissioners.

Southern Oregon Climate Action now will offer two candidate forums for those seeking to serve: the first, on Monday, Oct. 1, will involve candidates for Oregon Senate District 3 and House Districts 5, 6 and 55. The second, on Monday, Oct. 15, will involve candidates for Seats 1 and 2 on the Jackson County Board of Commissioners. All candidates have been invited.

Both forums will comprise questions from the organizing team and the audience, will be held at the Medford library, 205 S. Central Ave., and will run from 7- 8:30 p.m., followed by a short opportunity to meet candidates individually in break-out sessions.

John Limb

Ashland

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