National monuments threatened

President Trump signed an executive order requiring a review of all monuments under the Antiquities Act that were designated after 1996 with over 100,000 acres of land. President Teddy Roosevelt signed the Antiquities Act in 1906 to safeguard and preserve federal lands that have cultural, scientific and historical objects of interest. No president has ever revoked a national monument, and for good reason: Such an attack on our nation’s public lands and heritage is deeply unpopular and likely illegal.

This executive order threatens dozens of national monuments, including our own Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument. We must join our voices together in strong opposition because an attack on one monument is an attack on all.

The monument is home to an extraordinary variety of species and habitats. It connects three distinct ecosystems, offering unrivaled vistas, access to the Pacific Crest Trail, protection for cultural sites and learning opportunities for youth, and provides year-round outdoor recreation.

The Friends of Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument acts as a voice for the monument’s landscape and the biologically diverse communities of plants and animals that describe this environment. We oppose any action to revoke or reduce the protections to this and other monuments. Please stand with us and take action.

Terry Dickey, chairman, Friends of Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument

Ashland

Diversity

I am interested in joining or forming a multiracial discussion group. I am a white man and have lived in Ashland 31 years. In recent years I have seen the number of people of color increase significantly, and I personally want to connect with them. I don’t know of a group I can join that includes people of color, so my thought is to create such a group. The idea is for us to cross the lines that reinforce separation, get to know each other, and form friendships.

I am particularly inspired by the fine guest editorials on the front page of the March 1 issue of the Ashland High School newspaper, Rogue News. In one editorial, Grace Pruit tells of being born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya, where she attended an international school where 43 countries were represented. In her words, she “went from living in a world where everybody looked like me, to living in a world where it is dangerous to look like me.”

The other writer was Halle Lowe, an Asian-American coming to Ashland from the Bay Area where, in her words, “it was impossible to grow up without making friends with someone from every major ethnic group.”

I am fairly certain that both of these students are doing OK navigating the racial and ethnic lines they are encountering in Ashland, and getting over the shock of their first immersion in a community that has been lily white until very recently. These young ladies are obviously blessed with intelligence and social experiences that will allow them to find the relationships they need and want, but at what personal cost?

I think Ashland is ready for a group, or groups like the one I’m talking about, where people of very different backgrounds, colors, ethnicity, can meet each other, learn about each other and experience cultural differences in a safe, mutually supportive setting, where real bonding and friendships can take place.

If this interests you, I am Jerry Nutter, and I can be reached at 541-890-4149.

Jerry Nutter

Ashland

The problem with UC Berkeley

It's clear from Alyssa Rosenberg's ​ column​ (April 28) that she hates Ann Coulter. She has a right to hate Ann Coulter, as anyone who writes for the Washington Post should.

But that's the problem with UC Berkeley and Rosenberg. They're willing to sacrifice free speech because Coulter says things they don't agree with.​ UC Berkeley would readily accept a​ speaker who advocates destroying Israel.​ These "progressives" who hate free speech will someday control America.

Maynard Telpner

Talent

EPA's scary explanation

Last week, when the people of Ashland were marching for science, the EPA removed information on climate science from its websites. The Washington Post reported that “... The staffer described the process of reviewing the site as ‘a work in progress, but we can’t have information which contradicts the actions we have taken in the last two months ... (emphasis supplied).’ ”

That bizarre explanation is scary, given the stakes and the public’s need and right to the information the EPA has assembled. It is sobering proof of the anti-science bias which has taken over the U.S. government agency created to protect our environment!

On Saturday’s TED Radio Hour, Prof. Lord Martin Rees ("How Can We Ensure Our Survival As A Species?") warned:

“(I)f an event is potentially devastating, it is worth paying a substantial premium to safeguard against it, even if it is (deemed) unlikely, just as we take out fire insurance on our house.”

He was restating the engineering “fail safe” principle:

When a mistake can be catastrophic, fail safe — choose the alternative in which you are most likely to survive a miscalculation, even if it is the slower or more expensive option.

And, don’t bet the farm — or the planet. That's one bet you can't afford to lose!

Eric Weisberg

Central Point