Margulis may not be missing out




In her column Monday, Aug. 6, Jennifer Margulis ("What we take for granted") wrote about how lucky we are to live in America. Having just returned from a year spent in West Africa, she ended her piece by stating, "But here's what we have that they don't: roads without potholes the size of mattresses; ... electricity that doesn't surge wildly throughout the day and doesn't ruin electronic devices (we blew out two computers in Niger) ..."; hmmm, just last September right here in Ashland, my family had an electrical surge rip through our home that not only blew out our computer but also our AC/heating unit, refrigerator, TV, stereo, microwave, garage door openers, clock radios and anything else that was electrically connected at the time.




The surge was caused by a buried neutral wire failure, which also burned a hole right through the surge protector in our home office. The most interesting part of this story is that right here in America we were told that this failure was no fault of the electric utilities because they have no way of maintaining the service wires. So, Jennifer, if you're missing Niamey's electrical surges, you may be lucky enough to blow your third computer right here in Ashland.




Susan Aaronson









A proud Ashland resident




Reading the "Letters To The Editor" section in the Aug. 7 edition made me proud to be an Ashland resident. I hope that these letters represent a clear majority of our community and that those who applied pressure tactics resulting in the decision to cancel the production of "My Name is Rachel Corrie" are a small minority.




These letters make it clear that such intimidation tactics were not the result of an organized effort by Jewish members of our community and it is a serious mistake to entertain any such notion.




I am an enthusiastic supporter of Oregon Stage Works and its artistic director Peter Alzado. I strongly endorse the suggestion that the play be presented as originally planned and that it be accompanied by discussion forums representing all viewpoints.




To those who would picket and shout slogans in an attempt to shut down the production, I say come inside and be involved in reasoned discourse &

which is a much better method to make your concerns and opinions understandable to the community. The shutting down of our county libraries has already made the national news. Let's act now to make sure that the home of the prestigious Oregon Shakespeare Festival does not become known as a community that allowed what would clearly be perceived as censorship of this controversial work of art.




Gary Greksouk









World faced with challenges




Given the boldness, the intelligence and the courage of the Central American movement to the left and their brilliant struggle against U.S. imperialism, we on the American and European left &

and all the people who hope for a better, more just world &

face a challenge at this moment and in the near future.




Faced with a circumstance that is similar to the defeat in Vietnam and the Reagan response to that defeat, which was, of course, the attack on the socialist victories in Central America and South America, and the emergence of the red conservative movement, whose playground was in fact the horrific torturous undermining of the struggle of the Latin American's democracies, we must stand together at this precarious moment.




As the official defeat in Iraq draws near, we must be ever vigilant that the same dynamic does not take place. We must fill the streets, the banks, the e-mails with protest. That cry out against any attempts to interfere militarily, covertly or economically against the truly democratic governments in Venezuela, Bolivia, and the whole of Central America and South America, as the people are struggling toward a new tomorrow. It is we who must answer their courage, for they are the hope of the world.




Cynthia Zavatski