Letters are special.

We’re proponents for the use of commenting (mostly through Facebook) to entice citizens to think and speak about issues that affect them and the community. Yes, there are drawbacks. 

No matter how serious or light the subject is, there always seems to be at least one troll; sometimes posts become personal attacks,when a calm, logical discussion could just as easily be conducted. 

But we’re finding that many people take those quick-hit discussions seriously, comment in good faith, express themselves well, forwarding points of view that otherwise often go unreported. 

We think it does the community some good by airing and reviewing those perspectives.

At the same time, we relish a good letter to the editor. 

The ones where people care enough to sit down and type up a little longer message – a few hundred words – expressing an opinion or making an observation and perhaps adding some personal or neighborhood perspective, a little data, using some classic argumentative writing now and then.

Recently, over a one-month period, we were graced with and printed letters to the editor from 24 people. 

These people were willing to put their names and minds behind what they believe, whether we or anyone else agrees with them or not: John and Maureen Guth, Robert Mackensen, Pat Miller, Russ McAnulty, Karen Liggett, Edwin Mateus, Doris Mitchell, Bob and Winnie Bush, Fred Kawashima, George Villalpando, Mike Short, Elizabeth Rolon, Mike Sharp, George Vierra, Michelle Rankin, Keri Krzyminski, John and Donna Hickman, Karen Cartoscelli, Janel Silveira, Billy Cooper, Jessica Silveira  ... To them, we say “thank you.” 

We very much appreciate letter writers. They go beyond the quick hits. 

They consider issues, take a stand, state their case and supply some reasoning. Sometimes they write passionately; sometimes they use satire; sometimes they advocate; sometimes they simply make observations. 

Those named above wrote about quite a spectrum of issues: gun control, headline indignity, taxes, respect for life, mass shootings, the State of Jefferson, the Mueller Report, President Trump, the space program, the swimming pool, homelessness, Gold Sox, citizenship ...

The ground rules: Writers have up to a 490-word limit; we reserve the right to edit all letters for length, libel, clarity, accuracy, grammar; writers must include their names, signatures, street address and telephone number (we only publish names and communities); writers are limited to one letter per month; generally, the letters need to be written by a local person or address a local issue. 

If you have any trouble, call our reporter and newsroom clerk Veronica Catlin at 749-4770.

Please keep on commenting and writing.

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