Call out the council

A month ago, the Ashland City Council passed a groundbreaking Climate and Energy Action Plan that sets targets for emissions reductions and outlines ways to achieve those targets.

This action is exciting, but we need to go further. For the past year, I along with other high school students have been calling for an ordinance to better ensure that our city is held accountable to the plan's goals — otherwise, the climate plan is a symbolic statement instead of a legal commitment to action. In response to our appeals, the city council has given two major arguments: First, that an ordinance will be too strict, and, second, that that an ordinance is too easy for future councils to change and therefore isn’t binding at all.

I am on the high school debate team, and in debate we call this kind of fallacy a "double-bind." These two arguments contradict each other: an ordinance cannot both be too difficult and too easy to alter. Additionally, the goal of an ordinance is not to trap future councils but rather to provide a vehicle for public discourse about the city’s actions. The ordinance sets up a biennial meeting for community members to give input about the plan, thus holding the city accountable. Without an ordinance, our climate plan could easily be put on a back burner or even abandoned.

Please join us in calling out the council on this paradox and supporting a ordinance that holds our city accountable to its climate goals.

Claire Pryor

Ashland Youth Climate Action

Congress won't act

Here are a few adjectives (i-words) that perfectly describe our presidunce: inane, ignorant, immoral, indecent, ineducable, inept, illegitimate and ill bred.

Trouble is, with an indolent and incompetent GOP Congress, we can’t soon expect to see the liar-in-chief undergo that wonderful matching pair of i- and o- words: impeachment and ouster from office.

T. Gunn

Talent

End the violence

Please end the violence against the beautiful wildlife we have been blessed with on this planet. The use of guns, poison and traps is cruel and does not move us toward peaceful coexistence with other species.

Let's evolve and move toward the light of respect and compassion.

Lorraine Donlon

Ashland