Lawn poisons are a nuisance
Spring is finally here, and all its glory of gardens and beautiful flowers and trees.
Unfortunately in my neighborhood, I have a neighbor who poisons their lawn. I haven't been able to go outside for three days without getting a headache, the kind that makes light uncomfortable.
I appealed to my City Council folks in Talent last year. Nothing happened, and the poison kept coming. Don't get me wrong. I don't like weeds either, but I do it with physics. I like to pull them out and send them away, never to be seen again. If I do that I don't have to breathe in that stuff, and neither does anyone else.
Loud music as a nuisance is not allowed. Aren't headache-making fumes more than a nuisance? Isn't it a hazard to live animals, including cats, dogs and us?
Celebrate World Book Night
Tuesday, April 23, is a triple important day: Shakespeare's birthday, UNESCO's Day of the Book, and World Book Night. For the latter occasion, 25,000 book lovers across the U.S. will be distributing (free) nearly half a million books to spread a love of reading. This project is made possible by authors who waive their royalties and publishers who pay the production costs of 30-plus titles. Watch for volunteer distributors in your own community.
In Ashland, I will have 20 copies of Cheryl Strayed's "Wild," the book that inspired the movie partially shot on the Plaza last summer. My husband, Charlie, will carry an armload of his favorite book, "Catch-22." For more info: www.us.worldbooknight.org
Vote for special library district
We live in a world today in which democracy or the "voice of the people" is constantly drowned out by corporate and militantly reactionary voices. It is, therefore, a relief and a bracing opportunity when voters at the local level have a real chance to demonstrate their views and to achieve something that most of them really want and truly value, and that, moreover, is a valuable benefit to every citizen: I refer to the opportunity in May 2014, for the voters of Jackson County to establish a publicly-supported "Special Library District" to provide for the stability and continuity of our public libraries throughout the county. Such a special district will have its own elected board, manager, and citizen's budget committee, working under fiscal guidelines that must be strictly followed. Our public libraries will be maintained for all of us.
Public libraries were established in America even before the actual founding of the nation. They have been, from the beginning, sources of learning and centers of social cohesion ever since. They remain crucial to us all, as a people, as individuals, and as a community, and as supporters of literate, informed, and disciplined political understanding and action.
Support the Special Library District proposal in the May election.
Vote to save our library
My family — my 7-year-old daughter, my husband, me and my octogenarian parents — all love and rely on the library. If we had to purchase all the books we read we would be bankrupt.
Not only can many of us not afford digital readers, but that is not an adequate substitute for having a book in your hand, especially for children's developing minds! Our Ashland library is wonderful in itself, but even better because we can share resources with all the libraries in the county.
Nothing can replace a library in a community; it is a de facto part of our public education system (for all ages) and an essential resource for all members of our community. Vote to save our library!
Say no to global corporations
We are very privileged to live in an area where conscientious farmers grow healthy organic readily available food, and I vote to protect the basic property rights of the family farms and the important part they play in our well-being. This real threat to their livelihood affects all of us, physically, economically and socially.
Part of living in beautiful Southern Oregon is precisely to cultivate a lifestyle that embraces the "small is beautiful" ethic, and to live in harmony with the natural world. The corporations promoting genetically modified foods seem far from that picture.
I oppose putting local food production in the hands of mega-corporations, bringing increased exposure to herbicide pollution, and chemical dependance in agriculture.
I encourage others to act locally and say no to global corporations by voting yes on Measure 15-119.
Pamela Joy, Founder and director,
Ashland Food Angels