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Friday letters: Mitsch Bush, Rio Grande Trail, vote!, Perry Will, election, League of Women Voters, CD3, and census

Mitsch Bush is the more qualified candidate

Lauren Boebert has no qualifications for the House of Representatives. Her only skill is marketing herself and her restaurant. She believes in right-wing conspiracy theories, which shows a lack of good judgment. She broke the law by opening her restaurant during the pandemic, endangering us all. She is not a good choice, and frankly, as a third-generation native of Rifle, I find her embarrassing. In this election, there is a better choice. Diane Mitsch Bush is experienced, educated, and qualified for the office of Congressman. She has experience working for rural voters. Vote for Diane for Congress.

Judy Cook
Rifle

Rio Grande Trail is legally still a railroad

As one who worked long and hard to get the Rio Grande Western Railroad Right of way into public ownership, let me say that I was encouraged to read in the Monday edition of the Post Independent that the right of way from 14th Street to Eighth Street is under consideration for use by RFTA buses. Also, as one who, along with many others, unsuccessfully attempted to prevent Highway 82 from sharing the Grand Avenue right of way, I was also pleased to learn that RFTA bus traffic on Highway 82 from 14th to 8th streets might go away.

To the objection that Councilor Steve Davis has to “buses running up and down in the backyards of houses,” let me simply observe that the Rio Grande Railroad right of way formerly served the actual railroad before houses were ever built south of 11th Street and, furthermore, that the Rio Grande right of way has been legally rail banked by RFTA. Rail banking means that the right of way, although it may be in use as a bike path, is legally still a railroad. To use the right of way for RFTA buses would, per force, be a temporary use, just as the bike path is a temporary use.

I advise Councilor Davis to seek legal briefing from both the city attorney and RFTA’s attorney as to the legal status of the Rio Grande right of way. To serve as a municipal councilor means that you must be prepared to learn something new every day.

James Breasted
Carbondale

Vote!

I recently completed my 85th journey around the sun and during all those years I don’t remember feeling as discouraged about my country as I do these days. I know that there are good people who are trying to solve difficult problems and deal with difficult challenges, but in spite of their best efforts, we seem to be more and more divided.

This division appears to be dependent on the categories we use to identify group membership. If people are sorted by party affiliation, we see a split between Democrats and Republicans. If we sort into liberal vs. conservative piles we get a different breakout. Putting people into ideological groups we get (1. A faction that values the rights of individuals to make choices (selfish or otherwise) above those of the state or other groups, and (2. A second accumulation of people who believe that we don’t live independent of each other; that we’re all in this together.

Clearly, there are other ways to categorize division, but regardless of labels, there appear to be piles, and serious consequences can follow when those piles are poorly informed, and/or harden into clumps that can’t or won’t communicate with anyone outside their armored bubble.

This is particularly true when we are reeling from multiple crises such as a pandemic which is likely to get worse as flu joins the mix with COVID-19, civil unrest, racial tensions, unemployment, recession, contentious political issues that are polarizing positions as we race toward a presidential election, foreign meddling in that election process, and clear evidence of climate change as fires ravage entire communities while multiple hurricanes batter coastal regions.

It’s easy to blame all of this on poor leadership, but that lets each of us off the hook. Hoping that everything will simply return to normal with a new or redirected administration is wishful thinking. We need to (1. Make certain that we are registered to vote, (2. Learn about issues (consider adding your computer search engine to this effort), (3. Engage in meaningful and respectful discussions about the issues, and then (4. Vote!

John Palmer
Glenwood Springs

Will has represented district well

I am writing to share my personal support of Representative Perry Will for reelection in House District 57. As a public health practitioner, working in leadership at the state and national level in cancer prevention and control, it is important to me that legislators represent their districts while considering statewide implications, as well as keeping Colorado amongst the healthiest states in the nation.

In this last legislative session, Rep. Will supported initiatives to help increase colorectal cancer screening, reduce barriers to care and to increase access for the insured as well as the medically underserved. Rep. Will, has pledged his continued support in the cancer prevention work and the need is even greater based on the impact of COVID-19 and delays in screening and care.

As a native, Coloradan from a rural community, it is important to me that we have representation for policies that save lives, preserve livelihoods and also help maintain health care costs for all Coloradans. Rep. Will has represented your district well and shown great ability to advance legislation and effectively reach across party lines. We need Rep. Will back this session to help carry forward the great work.

Andrea (Andi) Dwyer
Denver

Irony and hypocrisy

Wow, the ads from a PAC supporting the former governor of Colorado claim that Cory Gardner wants to do away with insurance coverage for people with pre-existing conditions. In reality, Gardner wants to fix Obamacare, AKA the Un-Affordable Care Act. Gardner wants to make health care better. What a jerk!

Now Karl Hanlon is saying “Under Colorado’s private insurance marketplace, Connect for Health, a family of four in Senat District 8 to purchase a catastrophic health insurance plan, it would cost $1,800 per month, plus an $8,000 deductible.” Guess what Karl, the plan you are crying about is the so-called Affordable Care Act, Obamacare. It’s ironic that what the left praise’s one day, you hate anyone that wants to fix it.
In one breath, the progressive left attacks Cory Gardner for trying to fix the disaster of Obamacare, and in the next breath Hanlon and the left hate the same thing and attack Gardner.

Want even more irony and hypocrisy. County Commissioner candidate Leslie Robinson is worried about taxes owed by Ursa Resources. According to an article in the Post Independent, “Robinson joined Battlement Concerned Citizens in expressing worries about back taxes owed by Ursa Resources in its Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing earlier this month at a commissioners meeting.” If Robinson was a Garfield County Commissioner for the past 12 years and had another left wing progressive liberal on the board, Garfield County wouldn’t have had to worry about the Ursa tax dollars. She and her party would have made sure there was no drilling in Garfield County. Garfield County wouldn’t have gotten a dime of tax dollars from any energy company. Robinson would have made sure of that!

If Robinson and her party had been in control of Garfield County instead of Martin, Sampson and Jankovsky, the county would have been dead broke, the accomplishments of this group of commissioners wouldn’t have happened, and Garfield County would hear three things coming from the board, no drilling, more taxes, more spending!

Doug Meyers
Glenwood Springs

Boebert should join forum

A chance remains to hear both Third Congressional District candidates in a virtual forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters – if Ms. Lauren Boebert will accept their invitation.

On Aug. 18, the League of Women Voters (LWV) of La Plata County invited Ms. Boebert and Ms. Mitsch Bush to a community candidate forum, co-sponsored by local Leagues across the 3rd District. Offered five dates, Mitsch-Bush accepted Oct. 8; the Boebert campaign also accepted the date and offered to send their Communication Director.

But the nonpartisan LWV format doesn’t allow for candidate substitutes. Each candidate has a 2-minute opening and closing statement. Voters can submit questions in advance or pose them, live. Candidates have one minute each to respond.

The Boebert campaign countered that Ms. Boebert had participated in the League Primary Forum in June and would only do one forum per campaign cycle. However, in that primary, Ms. Boebert was only running against Scott Tipton, a member of her own party.

Now the candidates are running to represent all the Third Congressional District voters, in the vast scope of a Congressional election.

In this LWV forum, voters could finally ask both candidates questions. An LWV forum can be watched virtually on Zoom, streamed live on Facebook, or viewed on a recording that will be made available to all voters before they cast their ballots.

The LWV is 100 years old and their goal, which I think worthy, is to engage all voters regardless of political party.

Our democracy depends on people voting with knowledge and confidence. I urge Lauren Boebert to courageously join this historic forum on Oct. 8, so that we may learn who each candidate truly is, and how each stands on the issues that so deeply divide and affect us all.

Sandra I Dorr
Grand Junction

Answer is clear in CD3

Let’s see if I have this straight. As a QAnon sympathizer Republican candidate for Congressional District 3, Lauren Boebert supports the bizarre baseless claim that Tom Hanks, Pope Francis, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, (the Clintons and Obamas of course); and numerous Democrats, Hollywood celebrities and billionaires are Satan worshipping, baby eating, child sex trafficking pedophiles that enslave and torture children, extracting the life-extending chemical Adrenochrome from their blood. That doesn’t sound crazy at all does it?

Vote Diane Mitsch Bush for Representative of Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District for intelligent, experienced and competent leadership. Mitsch Bush for common sense or Ms. Boebert for QAnon nonsense? The answer is clear.
Tom Hanks? Really?

JM Jesse
Glenwood Springs

Together we count

As September winds down, I would like to encourage anyone who has not yet participated in the Census to do so — to help bring federal funding for transportation, health and human services, and education/schools to our state. Census takers, until Sept. 30, will be knocking on doors to reach people who have not yet been enumerated. Statewide, the total percentage of people who have been counted is at 95.1 percent, which means that just under 5 percent have not yet been counted. And for each person who isn’t, Colorado stands to lose $2,300 for important community needs each year. With just a few days left, you can still fill out the questionnaire online at www.2020Census.gov.

Please help us make sure that everyone in Colorado is counted.

Jenn Ooton
Glenwood Springs

Letters: Trump on veterans, Kamala Harris, Generation Z, greenhouse gas emissions, RBG replacement, Ursa, Soto, Ginsburg

U.S. war dead are not ‘losers,’ ‘suckers’

On June 6, 1944, allied forces landed on the coast of France, an essential part of the struggle to rid the world of the Nazi menace. Around 10,000 either died or ended up missing or wounded that day, 6,603 of them American.

Most Americans would regard those who lost their lives as heroes who made a noble sacrifice for the liberty and well-being of their country, but not Donald Trump. Instead, he referred to the fallen as “losers” and “suckers.” Presumably, he would say the same about those who fought and died at Iwo Jima, the Chosin Reservoir or in the deserts of Iraq.

This should be no surprise. Trump has a history of disparaging veterans. Referring to John McCain — who survived five years at the “Hanoi Hilton,” even refusing to be released because he was the highest ranking man and saw it as a duty to stay with the other prisoners — Trump said sneeringly, “I prefer those who weren’t captured.” This from a man who used his father’s influence to secure five deferments and avoid serving in Vietnam!

Trump’s disrespect for those who serve their country has not been limited to rhetoric. When he learned that Russia’s Vladimir Putin had put a bounty on American troops in Afghanistan, Trump, the Commander in Chief, did nothing! On the contrary, he has continued to cozy up to the Russian dictator. Trump’s refusal to protect American servicemen and women is a fundamental betrayal to those who wear this nation’s military uniform.
Anyone who cares about our men and women in uniform and the democratic birthright they’ve defended for over 200 years should rush to the polls to give Donald Trump a dishonorable discharge.

David Lien
Colorado Springs

Harris could be president

Voters should know that if Biden is elected, he could be removed from office within 6 months, according to the provisions in the 25th Amendment. Kamala Harris would then become President and pick whomever she wants for VP. Voters should consider this possibility very carefully.

Mark Barritt
Glenwood Springs

Time for youth to rise

It’s time for the youth to rise to the challenge of local, national, and even international politics.

As a young person in Garfield County, I have seen and heard some appalling things in our schools. Racism and bigotry is commonplace. Students give blind fealty to candidates that they clearly haven’t researched. Even outside of just my school, the issues plaguing my generation continue to grow. School shootings have been normalized. The economic divide continues to widen. Misinformation is peddled as fact. Corporations destroy the planet day by day, and push the problem onto us.

This is unacceptable.

Generation Z, defined as anyone born from 1996-2010, has become the largest age group in the United States. We know the internet and social media like the back of our hands. We’re able to find and spread information like wildfire, and talk about local and international issues we’re concerned about. Yet, hardly any change has occurred. Some of our generation has risen up to the occasion, but enough of us haven’t. Why are we letting politicians who have horrible intentions rule our lives? We can grab politics by the reins. We can make the world we want — not the world that others want for us.

Educate yourselves. Concern yourselves with local issues — even if you’re not old enough to vote yet, you can make a difference. Campaign for candidates that will help our communities. Vote with your dollar by supporting local businesses that put money back into the local economy. Contact our representatives with issues you’re passionate about. If you see injustice, point it out. Start conversations with your friends, your family, your coworkers. Connect with individuals online who have similar passions. Post about issues on social media. Volunteer with local groups like food banks, libraries, outdoor cleanups.

This is a duty for all of us. Our voices matter, and they will be heard. Youth have always been underrepresented in politics, and that will change. We must refuse to sit in silence as the country gets destroyed.

Aren’t you sick of waiting for change?

Kiley Robinson,
Battlement Mesa

Most greenhouse gas emissions are not from automobiles

I appreciated the thoughtful comments of Char Miller in Friday’s paper regarding the root causes of the devastating wildfires in the American West. I have to take exception, however, to his focus on the automobile as a significant source of greenhouse gases.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the main sources of global greenhouse gas emissions are: electricity and heat production (25%), agriculture (24%), and industry (21%). Together, these account for 70% of all greenhouse gases. All forms of human transportation account for 14%, the vast majority of which are commercial activities, not your family car/truck. Go to www.epa.gov for more information. Look up the equivalent emissions from a trans-oceanic cargo transport ship if you want a shock. Also look up the carbon footprint of cloud computing.

So, if you do the math, no more than 6% of global emissions are from your car. Stop feeling guilty! It really doesn’t matter if you drive a Tesla or a Suburban, in terms of the effect on global warming. In fact, if you buy a Tesla, you should ask if it comes with a railroad fireman to shovel the coal into the power plant that is supplying the electricity! Intellectually lazy climate activists confuse smog (particulates, plus sulphur and nitrogen oxides) with greenhouse gases.

Always question authority.

Jeffrey E. Fegan MD
Glenwood Springs

Calling all freedom loving Americans!

With the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, we truly need Sen. Cory Gardner reelected. President Trump will have the opportunity to appoint a replacement for Justice Ginsburg. He will need the Senate’s support. Cory’s vote is essential to support President Trump placing the right person on the bench. Remember what the Democrats did to Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

Some disturbing information ended up in the paper about Lauren Boebert, our Republican candidate for the 3rd CD. We have not heard much about her opponent. However, let’s be very clear. Her opponent will support the Democrats’ agenda! It will include policies and laws that remove our freedoms under our Constitution, reduce the production of oil and gas, reinstate stricter rules under the Environmental Protection Act, advance more lawlessness as seen in major cities today, reduce funding for our military, replace democracy with a socialist government, and so much more. Just listen to what is being said by President Trump’s opponent and his running mate.

We must look at the big picture and the direction our nation is headed. Make no mistake; we need every citizen in Colorado who believes in freedom and capitalism to vote for Lauren, Cory and Trump. Think how much Trump has done with the Democrats battling him every step of the way. Vote Republican and give him the support he needs to “Make America even Greater”. It’s for all of us.

Sandra Caskey
Grand Junction

Goodbye and good riddance to Ursa

Ursa Resources, the wicked witch of Battlement Mesa, has joined a growing group of oil and gas drillers filing for bankruptcy. The company has proven to be a poor neighbor to the PUD by drilling gas wells within 500 feet of housing and planning an injection well within 600 feet of the municipal freshwater intake and 300 feet of the Colorado River.

The Denver-owned operator currently has one well in production in the Piceance Basin manned by a total of 21 employees. Should we feel for these people if and when they lose their jobs? Of course, but remember these aren’t unskilled workers. These are well-trained construction tradesmen; ironworkers, welders, pipefitters, etc. They’d fit right in with the production of renewable power sources called for in the Green New Deal.

At a recent Garfield County commissioner’s meeting, Commissioner Tom Jankovsky blamed the Western Colorado Alliance, chaired by commissioner candidate Leslie Robinson, and Senate Bill 181, which prioritizes public health and safety over promotion of the oil and gas industry, for Ursa’s downfall.

Robinson pointed out in its bankruptcy filing Ursa cited falling natural gas prices beginning in 2014, interstate pipeline contracts currently under litigation, and a $282.7 million debt primarily from the losing proposition of fracking as the reasons. Five million dollars of that debt is owed to Garfield County and Robinson expressed concern about that.

Those are the free-market influences you’re so fond of, Tom Jankovsky. Further subsidizing the industry or forgiving their debt would be socialism, wouldn’t it?

Fred Malo Jr.
Carbondale

Soto a candidate to get excited about

One of the many lessons I am learning in 2020 is that the old way of doing things isn’t good enough. This is one of the many reasons why I am voting for Beatriz Soto for Garfield County Commissioner, and I hope you will, too.
The old way of doing things in Garfield County is based on the idea that white men know what is best for a diverse population. But they don’t know. And they can’t know because they lack the experience of being anything but in the population with the most privilege. Garfield County deserves to have County Commissioners that more accurately represent the population of this county. With a more diverse Board of County Commissioners, more of our residents will have a voice that speaks for them, a voice that knows them and understands their experiences. No one person can speak for everyone, but I can tell you that the three people who are currently our County Commissioners certainly can’t speak for me.

Beatriz is a candidate to get excited about! She is smart, compassionate, knowledgeable about local issues and truly wants to see every resident living their best life in Garfield County. It is long past time to elect someone who will prioritize a vibrant, healthy future for our county. Vote Beatriz Soto for Garfield County Commissioner (and Leslie Robinson, too!).

Zuleika Pevec
Carbondale

Honor Ginsburg’s wish

The best way to honor Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s love and service to America, is to honor her last wish to wait, and only be replaced by the newly elected administration. Petition Sen. Cory Gardner. Contact him any way you can, phone, email, mail, visit his offices and respectfully ask that he honor her wish.

John Hoffmann
Carbondale

Monday letters: Soto, vote!, support Glenwood, commissioners, take action, Soto and Robinson, brazen candidates, vote!, and Will

Soto represents hope and a breath of fresh air

I have lived in Garfield County for almost 15 years and have known Beatriz Soto for almost a decade. She is not only a hard-working young professional and a great mom, but she is also a dear friend who has always been there for me.

Like me, she is concerned about climate justice and the future of our county. The oil and gas industry will keep filing for bankruptcy without addressing the loss of jobs and loss of revenue in the county. These industries also destroy our natural resources and the health of our communities while heavily contributing to climate change. I know we also use natural gas, but now that we know the severe consequences of our actions, we can’t simply ignore them anymore, we have to do everything to fix this crisis. It’s time to invest in new energy sources that will create good-paying jobs while accelerating the transition to a clean energy economy.

Beatriz’s campaign represents hope and a breath of fresh air. She has innovative ideas that will lead our county to a new era with prosperity without the influence of corporate money. We need a more diverse Board of County Commissioners, with representatives that reflect the diversity of our region, and Beatriz can be that missing voice on the table. She will make decisions based on the well-being of all residents, not just a few. She will listen and she will act in our best interest. I hope you join me in this election in making history.

Maisa Metcalf
Carbondale

Register and vote!

With less than 50 days left to the general election on Nov. 3. Now is the time to register to vote! If you think you are registered then go check your registration, if you have moved in the last 2 years check your registration. If you are not registered now is the time. If you want to be notified by text, email or phone that your ballot was received and counted then go the website govotecolorado.gov. This is a state of Colorado website that will check your registration, if not registered enable you to register and more. No matter what your political preference the right to vote is one of the basic rights of citizenship. Use it or lose it!

Marty Silvertstein
Carbondale

Keep Glenwood alive and healthy

Oh, what a year we have all had. The challenges of the last 7-8 months, even for us retirees, let alone our local businesses, rivals no others in recent history. Not a news flash!

Now is the time we must gather and support our local businesses. When you don’t know what to fix for dinner, enjoy a dinner at one of our many restaurants around town. Or when you need a goodie for a friend, head to one of our nice, creative gift and clothing stores for that unusual item. And when you need a change of scenery, walk our streets and see what you can discover.

My message is simple, if you like the amenities of Glenwood, you have to support them. Let’s keep Glenwood alive and healthy.

Suzanne Stewart
Glenwood Springs

Time to elect candidates who represent residents

I would like to know how the clowns on the Garfield County BOCC managed to purloin the mitigation funds paid by the gas industry that were to be used to off set the damage caused by drilling operations. The BOCC is now using these mitigation funds to exacerbate the effects of drilling by opposing regulations that are designed to protect the health and property values of the residents who reside near the drilling operations.

It is also apparent that from the comments the Commissioners have made that they have no understanding of what the law of supply and demand means and how it effects the operations of any business. Due to these circumstances it is time to replace all of the commissioners and elect candidates who will represent the interests of the residents who elected them and not just the interests of the BOCC’s major donors. The voters can also invoke term limits by electing new candidates after a Commissioner has served two terms.

Garry Evenson
Parachute

Action for the future good

Dear Neighbors of the Roaring Fork Valley, The future cries. Let’s take action!

While casting our votes is imperative, we cannot expect our elected representatives to create policy that can avert climate disaster unless many of us act boldly as individuals. The welfare of billions is at stake.
Here is one thing most of us can do: Eliminate the burning of fossil fuels to power the electricity in your home or business. If Holy Cross Energy is your provider, call 970-945-5491, or visit Holycross.com. If you have Xcel, call 800 895-4999 or visit Xcelenergy.com.

It takes just one call, and pennies per month to make a material impact. The President and CEO of Holy Cross Energy, Bryan Hannegan has confirmed that every customer who joins their PuRE program will add renewable energy to the grid.

Take action. Inspire others. Build political will.

Please, take an action for the climate and let us know at NeighborsInActionRFV@gmail.com

Jimmy Byrne
Carbondale

Soto, Robinson are qualified and committed candidates

Garfield county amazes me in its diversity of natural environment, people and talent. With the right leadership, this richness could grow a thriving economy instead of the unstable and stale one we currently have today.
Our current Commissioners continue to waste our resources and positions of influence. I am so angry that my tax dollars are being spent on legal fees to fight regulations on a dying industry. This is just an obvious indication on the lack of foresight and ingenuity these Commissioners have.

I want County Commissioners looking to our future, leveraging our talent and environment, and building the opportunities for growth and stability.
Beatriz Soto knows how to do this. Her background in architecture, conservation and cross cultural coalitions prepared her for this leadership role.

Leslie Robinson knows how to do this. Her long history in this county, deep knowledge of government and policy making prepared her for this leadership role.

I am relieved to have qualified and committed candidates on the November ballot. Beatriz Soto and Leslie Robinson have my vote, my support and my trust.

Gretchen Brogdon
Glenwood Springs

Brazen candidates be gone

The brazen man we elected President in 2016 was a newcomer to politics who has now shamelessly misled us on matters of life and death. He may also have set the record for the most partisan administration in history. Some of his most minds-made-up partisan followers may still be happy with that.

It’s likely that some of them are also happy with “Brazen Boebert,” the pistol-packing publicity-hound newcomer now pursuing purely partisan politics.

But what has our partisan President actually gotten done for Colorado? Beyond reducing taxes for Aspen’s millionaires and billionaires, what has he actually gotten done for our widespread congressional district?

Brazen and new may be exciting, but it doesn’t help pay the bills or build the bridges. I’ve voted for good Republicans, good Independents and good Democrats over the years; and this year I’m voting for bipartisan Joe Biden, bipartisan Diane Mitsch Bush, and bipartisan John Hickenlooper.

Brazen be gone. It’s time to build back better, together.

Nick Kelly
Glenwood Springs

Why do we need to vote!

Many of the early settlers on the land that was to become the United States of America were not “immigrants” needing freedom and care and possibility, they were explorers and adventurers and conquerors — English, French, Italian, and Portuguese agents on a mission of discovery and expansion of national interests and power.

The early years of conquest and settlement are tarnished with tales of war, and disease, and confrontation, and distrust, of power and domination and displacement and death. A review of the world today might indicate that we have not moved far from that description of life on this small planet.

Yet, United States Attorney General William Barr, who is supposedly hired by and working for all of us, is currently explaining that the agency he directs must be led from the top down (meaning Trump/Barr), and that one cannot expect the employees (meaning long term, experienced, committed individuals at the lower level of the agency) to determine how to manage the agency! His comment suggested that a participatory process of governance and leadership “might work for the “3 year olds” in a “Montessori School,” but such a plan will not work in the Trumpian world.

An honest review of our nation’s early history indicates a far less attractive history than the image of early settlers enjoying a shared Thanksgiving dinner with the earlier residents of the land. Many of those residents (Iroquois, Cherokee, other members of the Five Nations) enjoyed a well established system of governance and leadership that involved discussion, interaction, review, decision, and implementation of agreed upon goals! Perhaps we might learn from that vision of leadership.

Our founding fathers used the structure and ethics of the Five Nations to outline our structure in the Constitution. If that system can work for the Montessori students, which it does, perhaps it can work for the rest of us who are trying to create a society that can share different views but that can discuss, and trust, and care, and create a method of governance that works for us all.

The structure requires thoughtful, informed, respectful and diligent participation. The task right now is to become informed — read and listen to respected, recognized, and legitimate sources, consider impacts of your behavior and your decisions (do no harm), and make the effort to vote!

Dorothea Farris
Crystal Valley

Vote for Perry Will

Perry Will represents House District 57, encompassing Garfield, Moffat and Rio Blanco Counties. He was appointed to replace Bob Rankin who is now Senator Bob Rankin, SD8. Rep. Will was sworn in on March 5, 2020. He serves on the House Health & Insurance and Rural Affairs and agriculture committees.

Perry Will has an extensive knowledge of West Slope water law and rights. Serving on the Health and Insurance Committee has given him an understanding on the extent of the Coronavirus and the problems facing Coloradoans.

His 43 years with the Division of Wildlife has given him experience in testifying before both the House and Senate committees on various land, livestock, agriculture, wildlife, natural resources and various county and federal issues.

Perry Will has the experience, the community knowledge, the willingness and, as he said,”I like working for the people of the 57th”. Perry Will deserves to be elected as our Representative. Vote Perry Will for House District 57.

Patti Blakey
New Castle

Friday letters: Swimming pools, CMC Glenwood Center, Boebert, socialized medicine, Will, and Mitsch Bush

Swimming pools proposal all wet

With all due respect, the new Carbondale swimming pools proposal is all wet. I’m afraid I live in a community that is divorced from reality. The expression “another day in paradise” comes to mind. Maybe it’s “never, never land.”

We live in a country that is almost simultaneously burning up, suffering from “aridification” (turning into desert), blown over with hurricanes, major wind disaster, a COVID pandemic with nearly 200,000 dead, deep racial fault lines exposed, politically manipulated governments, millions unemployed without a future, and the inability to run our schools. (Just the short list.)

No problem with all that, let’s throw a few million at some new swimming pools. Swimming laps is so very important.

I wonder if we just might give a little thought to a few little things? Instead of adding to carbon emissions with new construction, maybe we could work at cutting the emissions we are producing all day every day. Let’s really get after new solar arrays. Let’s get the batteries to go with them. Let’s fix the grid to handle that. Let’s really get behind a local food supply for when the trucks can’t (won’t) get here. Let’s get the gas burning heating systems out and get the heat pumps in. More hydroelectric. Kick some homeowner butt in Aspen and put the hydro equipment in. What about some alternative housing for when the virus digs in here and hundreds or more will need quarantining? And the same thing for wildfire. All of these outlying subdivisions can (some will) go up in flames and smoke. How about more firefighting capability? There is a lot more.

More pool water might come in handy, they could spray it on burning homes.

Pat Hunter
Carbondale

Keep CMC Glenwood Center open

I am not satisfied with the statement CMC provided on Aug. 28 nor the Post Independent story that ran days later regarding the plan to close the CMC Glenwood Center location. The CMC “statement” and the PI article say, “despite the rumors,…” It is not just rumors! I didn’t just make this up for no reason. There was a meeting on July 15 where many people who attended heard the same thing, that Matt Gianneschi has plans to close the Glenwood Center. There are also minutes from a meeting on July 8, “We are moving ahead with the Campus Consolidation – it is an open process please send your questions and concerns to Heather.”

And for the record, in July before I posted anything on social media, I individually contacted Matt Gianneschi and every board member with my concerns. No one responded! Therefore, I took the next step to inform the community.

The articles mention to send concerns to Heather Exby and there is a taskforce who will decide what is best. I spoke with Heather and requested to be on the taskforce. She said she didn’t know if that would be possible because it had already been formed. I reiterated the importance of community input. Heather replied that there were community members on the committee. I asked to be another one and was told, not at this time. I took my request further to Carrie Hauser and her reply was “The current taskforce is an internal working group.

Simple question CMC — Are there community members on the committee or not? Is the community being represented? Do we have a voice?
Heather also mentioned that this is actually not a democratic process. Carrie and Matt will make the final decision despite what the community wants. My fear is that the Glenwood Center will close like Buena Vista and Eagle. See article chaffeecountytimes.com

My desire/objective is to have:

  1. Glenwood Center ideally remain open
  2. Inform the community
  3. CMC be transparent and accountable with the community about the process
    Community — please continue to send emails/make calls and let CMC higher ups know your thoughts and concerns.
    Meredith Kasper
    Carbondale

Left wondering where Boebert stands on issues

The computer science term GIGO (garbage in/garbage out) describes Lauren Boebert, the pistol packing candidate.

She is not a conservative by any reach of the imagination. She runs as one for the U.S. Congress, but the only Conservative Party in America is in New York State.

She’s a ventriloquist’s, puppeteer’s, a talking parrot trainer’s and a robotic computer programmer’s mindless dream girl talking dummy from the Twilight Zone TV series.

For many months she refuses news reporters interviewing her with her unprofessional excuse that she is still studying issues and policies before she publicly releases her political agenda, stands and solutions.

We are left wondering what this know-nothing/do-nothing candidate has to say about the national budget, health care, COVID-19, agriculture, drug addiction, veterans’ affairs, senior citizens, tourism, national defense, social security, budget deficits, public lands, rural economic development, natural disaster relief, mining, telecommunications, oil and gas, racism, transportation, highways, the U.S. Postal Service, education, tourism, foreign affairs, white collar crime and other issues important to American voters.

She keeps yapping about guns and wearing one openly. A gun is a phallic symbol and represents male domination. Perhaps, she should work on her inner female self to rectify her perspectives and emotional insecurities.

Emzy Veazy III
Aspen, Burbank, Calif.

Socialized medicine not right for U.S.

We hear Democrats talk a lot about Medicare for all because “free” healthcare sounds great to a lot of people. That’s why Diane Mitsch Bush cozied up to Bernie Sanders to tell us all how great things would be with socialized medicine. What Diane conveniently forgot to mention is the horror stories of the countries who try such things.

In England they had over 4 million people on a wait list for surgery. 30,000 people died while waiting. England is also a relatively small country, but they have a shortfall of over 40,000 nurses and 11,000 doctors.
I don’t want AOC and Bernie Sanders and Diane Mitsch Bush in charge of my healthcare. Use your vote wisely. Vote for Lauren Boebert.

Amber Madrid
New Castle

Will will fight for our issues

The residents of northwest Colorado’s 57 Congressional District have a stellar opportunity to select a state representative who will bring a most impressive set of skills and values to the table: Perry Will. In representing the diverse interests of this region, Perry’s technical knowledge, intimate understanding of our residents and resources, coupled with an acute level of common sense make him a valued voice for rural Colorado.

While on Rifle’s City Council I had multiple opportunities to work with Perry in his capacity as Warden for the Colorado Division of Wildlife. His fairness and detailed insights were always helpful in choosing proper paths regarding our precious environment. In a state with increasingly heavy Front Range influence it is critical that we select a state congressman who understands our issues and has the intelligence, common sense and courage to fight for them. Thank you all for considering Perry Will as your representative for the 57th Congressional District.

David Ling
Rifle

Mitsch Bush will listen to all her constituents

The ideal congressional representative should combine a wide knowledge of issues in our state, life experiences that help her understand the concerns of a public with diverse views, and an understanding of the political process. Diane Mitsch Bush has all of those qualifications. Her opponent, Lauren Boebert does not. Ms. Bush has been a Routt County commissioner and served in the Colorado State legislature for 4 years. Her opponent has not even held an elective office in Rifle. Ms. Bush has lived on the Western Slope for over 40 years and understands the issues. In fact, her campaign website describes her plans on several topics, while her opponent has no plans at all to help solve problems this country faces. I support Diane Mitsch Bush for Congress because I believe she will listen to all her constituents, not just those she agrees with, and will use facts, not just emotion, to guide policy decisions.

Vickie Johnson
Glenwood Springs

Wednesday letters: Soto, Mitsch Bush, Soto and Robinson, Boebert, Soto, Wilhelm, indignant intolerance, Robinson and Soto, and civic mindedness

Beatriz Soto is the obvious choice for Garfield County

The 1.5 million dollar handout gifted by the current Garfield County Commissioners to oil and gas executives is a stunning act of fiscal irresponsibility with eyebrow raising implications. Oil and gas is a significant sector of the County’s economy, but it has a dubious long term outlook for multiple reasons. Of course, this type of spending would be entirely appropriate were private companies to do it with private funds. However, the fact that the County Commissioners did this with public funds is absolutely mind boggling. Our taxes should not be used as a lobbying slush fund for the cronies of our Commissioners.

Any true conservative should believe that the Garfield County Commissioners should not be interfering in the free market by doling out subsidies. Personally, I believe that thoughtful tax policy and strategic subsidies are an effective way for government to guide the market away from harmful externalities. But even those who believe that smart government spending can benefit the efficiency of the free market do not believe that taxpayer funds should be used to subsidize some of our largest, wealthiest companies. It makes no sense, and it stinks.

The danger of elected officials without term limits is that they tend to represent special interests more than their constituents as time goes on. Come election day, the Soviet-style cronyism by the current County Commissioners should make you think twice about giving them power over our budget any longer. Beatriz Soto needs a seat at the table to make our local government accountable again. She is an advocate of term limits, and she clearly understands that our local economy must continue to evolve with the market if we want to ensure a prosperous future for ourselves. She is also leagues ahead in her ability to communicate with modern tools, a skill apparently elusive to our current leadership.

Felipe Luisi
Carbondale

Diane Mitsch Bush is a real fighter for our real problems

The new candidate out of nowhere, Lauren Boebert, who managed to topple Tipton and is aiming to take on Diane Mitsch Bush, has learned quickly that all she has to do is sling the catch words of the right — guns, God and freedom — and use guns as a coded symbol to catch the attention of media.

If you support her, go to her restaurant, eat her food, buy her merchandise, let her live her life. But don’t give her your vote. She wouldn’t let an oil rigger run her restaurant, why should we let her anywhere near our government? Her website has no ideas for taking on the problems we face.
Diane Mitsch Bush knows the people of the CD3 from Pueblo to Steamboat, Glenwood Springs to Carbondale and Rifle. She knows the issues for agricultural workers, the healthcare needs of small town and rural voters, the changing job environment for places like Pueblo going from industrial to the new technology future. She supports balancing those needs with taking care of the water, the forests, the open land, and private property concerns of our area.

She’s a fighter for our real rights, not pretend ones like the other candidate is shadow boxing with.

Charmaine Locke
Carbondale

Bring Garfield County out of the Dark Ages

Garfield County voters have an extraordinary opportunity this November to pull Garfield County into the 21st century. Two forward thinking women, Beatriz Soto in District 2 and Leslie Robinson in District 3, are vying for the county commissioner’s seats currently held by oil and gas industry lackeys John Martin and Mike Samson respectively.

Alright, let’s forego the discussion of climate change and health and safety and talk Republican, i.e., finances. Any investor who has his chips on the fossil fuel square will see them disappear into the croupier’s pile very quickly.

ExxonMobil, having lost $1.7 billion in the second quarter, is moving away from the production of fuels and focusing on plastics. They’ve grown weary of ruining the planet with their greenhouse gases and are now intent on plugging up our oceans and landfills with nonbiodegradable plastics. The sharper businessmen at British Petroleum, who only lost $17 million, are looking at renewable energy in their future.

Garfield County Finance Director and former Williams Oil employee Theresa Wegeman needs to be replaced with someone who doesn’t have their head stuck in the muck of fossil fuels. Once firmly seated on the board, I’m sure Soto and Robinson will make that one of their first priorities.

Fred Malo Jr.
Carbondale

Vote for Lauren Boebert

I have never publicly supported a candidate until now. I am tired of the status quo. I feel like the frog in the frying pan — the heat is becoming too much and I finally recognize the need to jump out.

I am voting for Boebert because (1. She is a patriot not a politician. (2. She is a business owner not a bureaucrat. (3. She believes in hard work not welfare. (4. She is conservative not complaisant. (5. She is a fearless freedom fighter.

Most importantly, I will vote for her because she is a God Fearing Christian. Lauren, may you be blessed in your quest to represent your fellow Western Slope Coloradans.

Trish O’Grady, SMSgt USAF, Retired
Rifle

Beatriz Soto will represent people of Garfield County

At the heart of a vibrant and strong democracy is representation. A government “of the people, by the people, for the people,” requires the representatives to change and grow to reflect the people it serves. Currently, Garfield County is solely represented by white men over the age of 60 on the Board of County Commissioners. We need fresh representation that speaks for young people, for women, for immigrants, for mothers, and for the countless under-represented individuals that live in our county.
If you want our Board of County Commissioners to represent Garfield County, vote for Beatriz Soto. As a young professional woman, born and raised in Garfield County, I believe in the people of our county and I believe in the power of a representative government.

Beatriz is the representative that the people of Garfield County deserve. She will speak for us, but more importantly, she will listen to us over special interests that have found a loyal representative in John Martin over the last 24 years.

Vote for Beatriz Soto. Vote for a Board of County Commissioners that truly represents the beautiful, vast and diverse Garfield County. Vote for a better and brighter future for all.

Claire Noone
Glenwood Springs

Wilhelm will help Gov. Polis keep his promises

In 2018 we elected Jared Polis as Governor of Colorado, because he promised to make healthcare more accessible and affordable, make education better, and to make higher education more affordable. Gov. Polis is working to accomplish things he promised. It takes time and support from us to make change happen. Colin Wilhelm, who is running for Colorado House District 57, will support Gov. Polis’s agenda.

Healthcare is a right, and education is especially important, now more than ever with technology moving so fast, challenges and breakthroughs in medicine, Coronavirus and climate change threatening our existence.
Our young people should not be saddled with lifelong debt because they went to college to better themselves. We need educated people to be doctors, engineers, lawyers and mechanics.

The Republican platform is whatever Trump wants to do. What is that supposed to mean to us when we are trying to decide who to vote for, and what they stand for?

We have a choice this Nov. 3, we can elect people who will help Gov. Polis do what he promised, what we elected him to do.

I will be voting for Colin Wilhelm this November, to help get things done for all Coloradans.

Vote. Encourage others to vote, up and down the ballot.

James Gilliam
Carbondale

Indignant intolerance in City Market

On Thursday, Sept. 10, I went to City Market in Rifle around 4 p.m. It was a busy afternoon and I looked for a handicap cart. There were none available. I carried on with my shopping, and after a time, I noticed two handicap carts being driven by two young boys. They were driving fast and causing a commotion; knocking into the aisles, causing items to fall off shelves. These children were not handicapped. They were not supervised. One dragged the other on the back of the cart while he was on his knees — he was about 6 and the driver about 8. The younger boy fell-off crying. The third boy, in the second cart, was about 10.

While I was waiting my turn to checkout, I saw one of the boys and asked him, “why were you driving a handicap cart?” He did not respond and I began to load my groceries. A woman approached me from behind. She asked, “What did you say to my son?” I told her and she replied, “It’s none of your business.” But it is my business. I am handicapped.

While this situation could have been a teaching opportunity for those children to learn consideration, respect, and mindfulness, it instead became an example of indignant intolerance.

Barb Ward
Silt

Robinson and Soto for County Commissioner

The candidacies of Leslie Robinson and Beatriz Soto for the Garfield County Commission are exciting and full of promise. Leslie is a long-time Rifle resident and citizen activist, with particular expertise in oil and gas regulatory issues. Beatriz is a leader in the local Latino community, dedicated to environmental stewardship as a means of creating jobs and safer, healthier communities. Both offer creative visions for the county and inclusion of new perspectives from a changing electorate. Check out their websites — you’ll find their ideas refreshing!

Joyce L. Jenkins
Glenwood Springs

Vote for candidates who demonstrate education, wisdom and civic mindedness

I know just who I’m going to be voting for. It is anyone who doesn’t want to breath polluted air, drink foul water, eat poisoned food, or arm an angry population with stink bombs. I want someone who is awake enough to see the fires, hurricanes, droughts and floods as symptomatic of a thoughtless humanity, and is wise enough to listen to the science and work thoughtful solutions. I want my children’s health and education to be more important to them than having enough money for a private jet and pilot. I want every person that owns a gun to have a license, showing that he has been taught the proper use of a deadly weapon, the same way that every person driving 2 tons of speeding vehicle my way, is inculcated into its proper use and mind set.

There are forces working to build strife and discord within our country and I do not want my legislator to be in the thrall of some wackadoodle, un-fact checked, news stream bent on seeing this country torn apart. Yes, I will be voting for Democrats and any Republican that also demonstrates education, wisdom and civic mindedness.

John Hoffmann
Carbondale

Monday letters: Residents’ health, Cory Gardner, riparian setbacks, fake news, and Leslie Robinson

Commissioners should put residents’ health at forefront

The recent article covering Garfield County’s Board of County Commissioners’ Tuesday work session left me more convinced than ever of the importance of electing new commissioners who will both respect state laws and put consideration of residents’ health above all other concerns in their decision making.

In late March I had a conversation with John Martin concerning the feasibility of creating a county-wide mask order. At that time I was told that the county could do only what the state required. Now, even though state law requires masks in public places the county commissioners have chosen not to enforce that law.

Mike Samson asked for clarification about the county’s intent to enforce our state’s mask order. John Martin was quoted as saying that, “While some municipalities are enforcing the mask order, the county was not.” This is just another example of blatant disregard for both state laws and resident health. What’s next? Perhaps laws regulating the oil and gas industry that drills in our backyards are a little too onerous and should be disregarded even if residents’ health is at risk.

Face masks work. They are worn, not to protect the wearer, but to protect the entire community. While the county’s virus numbers are low right now, we are already seeing a slight uptick in numbers, according to our Public Health Director. There’s nothing slight about Coronavirus if you’re part of the at-risk population or end up with long-term debilitating conditions. Large increases in case numbers could result in business closures (again) such as the ones we all experienced this spring. Wearing a mask in public places and businesses is a small inconvenience and certainly not difficult while protecting the health and economic wellbeing of others.

Garfield County’s residents need county commissioners who respect the laws and put the health of their residents at the forefront of decision-making. We have an opportunity to create a Board that will do this. A vote for Beatriz Soto and Leslie Robinson will benefit all of us in Garfield County!

Susy Ellison
Carbondale

Gardner doesn’t represent me

(This letter was originally addressed: Dear Senator Gardner)

Thank you for serving your country as a U.S. Senator.

I have a couple of questions I would like to ask you. First, I saw that you were in Glenwood Springs, at the RFTA facility doing a tour. Thank you for coming here. But would you come to Glenwood Springs to hold an in-person town hall? I would be happy to set up a place here for you to do so. I know I would love to be able to ask you questions, and I know a lot of your constituents here would too. I will call your Grand Junction office and leave a message with my contact information. Could you please get back to me about your willingness to come to Glenwood Springs for an in-person Town Hall?

The second question I have is about healthcare. You have stated that the competition in the private sector would drive down healthcare costs. The ACA kept the private sector in business, providing insurance for millions of people who were not covered. Yet, you have voted to repeal the ACA several times. If you are successful in repealing the ACA, people with preexisting conditions would not have to be covered. What a travesty in this time of COVID-19.

My question is, if we would have worked as hard to make the ACA a good law, as you did trying to repeal it, wasting valuable tax dollars, in how much better shape would this country be now, especially with COVID-19 crisis hanging over our heads?

You were elected to represent all of Colorado; President Donald Trump lost in Colorado by a huge margin, yet you have voted with Trump almost every time.

I do not feel I am being represented by you, or the GOP right now.
I hope you will come here and explain yourself. Until then, I will tell my fellow voters we have a choice this November as to whom we send to D.C. to represent us.

Vote. Encourage others to vote.

Update your registration at: http://govotecolorado.com/.

James Gilliam
Carbondale

Enjoy natural beauty of river banks

I have owned property on the Roaring Fork River for 35 years, and I have seen all kinds of things done to the riverbank. One neighbor wanted to build a gazebo on the riverbank, thankfully did not. And another, for whatever reason, cut down all the natural willows, and from that point on the riverbank started to erode. Even though we land owners own the river bank, actually we own to the middle of the river, it is part of the entire river experience for everyone, plus the health of the river itself.

I am in favor of protecting that river bank set back of 50 feet 100%, not just the 50% or 80% council is suggesting. No one is saying you can’t enjoy your property along the river, you just can’t change it’s natural terrain.

I understand that some physically challenged owners can’t get right to the rivers edge, but that should not give them the right to mar the river bank with ramps that will be a scar on the natural beauty forever. Be happy with what you are so privileged to have and just enjoy the natural beauty as it is.

John Korrie
Glenwood Springs

Woodward spilled the beans

When the president said the Coronavirus was no big deal and would be over in no time, the thought ran through my mind that flu and viruses don’t act that way, so why is he even mentioning it? His comment never made a ripple in daily conversations until we saw the virus spread. We now know he just plain lied to us and didn’t give us time to prepare for what eventually (and still is) coming. So that is history, what we should wonder about now is what else isn’t he telling us so we don’t panic? Is there a big space rock heading for Earth? Is his buddy Kim Jong Un about to launch a nuclear attack on California? Are we already over the line on CO2 in our atmosphere and there is no turning back? Is his real intent to be a despot like Putin, Kim, and others he seems to admire and befriend?

All of these are in the realm of possibility. Since Woodward spilled the beans, I guess we should start wondering about them. But don’t show panic, they can’t happen just like the virus can’t kill 200,000 citizens and shut down our economy. How do I know? Because the president tells me the stock market is at an all-time high and everything else is fake news. And finally, why is the president telling Woodward about a new top-secret nuclear weapon? I may panic on that one!

Tom Collins
Rifle

A Father Speaks: Vote for Leslie Robinson

When my daughter, Leslie Robinson was born in 1952 I was a college student in Rochester, New York. She weighed in at 9 pounds, 7 ounces, with a pair of lungs heard for three doors in each direction from our modest apartment. She graduated from Lyons Township High School.

Leslie showed amazing seriousness in her studies and there was little prodding needed to have her finish her assignments. Her athleticism ranged from horseback riding to skiing where she joined the family whereever we could find snow, hitting the slopes of Colorado at least once a year. When it became time to choose a college it was no surprise she chose Colorado State. But little did I realize I had lost Leslie to Colorado’s Western Slopes forever.

Qualified as a single woman to receive a “Farmers Home Administration Loan” to purchase a home in Silt, she began to grow deep roots in your community. Leslie now resides in Rifle with her husband, Jim Bradford.
Her career varied, shining in newspaper advertising sales gave her an opportunity to get to know the local merchants and their challenges. She lately has been managing local nonprofit organizations that help solve your problems. Like me, Leslie has always been a people person.

Lately, she has engaged her brain absorbing the details of the oil and gas industry, specifically how it impacts the quality of life, water supply and land usage– issues that affect all of us. I know her bull dog tenacity, she will not let the oil and gas interests dictate county policies. She will put you first when she becomes one of your Garfield County Commissioners.

Leslie is the one person I know, firsthand, that recognizes BS for what it is. She knows how to communicate, her constituents will know where she stands on the important issues. I certainly recommend that you vote for Leslie Robinson Nov. 3, Garfield County Commissioner of the Third District.

Hugh L. Robinson, father
Savannah, GA

Friday letters: Water, Will, Dems, Mitsch Bush, and USPS

Glenwood water

Thanks to the City Council for considering water use restrictions (Post Independent, Aug. 28). And thanks to Matt Langhorst, Public Works Director, for explaining what is going on and how much is at risk. For sure, the backup water from the Roaring Fork River tastes bad and is costing a fortune to pump. We have got to save and protect as much Grizzly Creek water as possible.

Meanwhile, the Hot Springs Pool is taking 400 gallons per minute, every 24 hours, day after day, of our Grizzly Creek water. And, they don’t even pay but a fraction of what the rest of us are charged. Icing on the cake – They are watering the grass daily.

Langhorst reported that on last Aug. 16 the city used 4.4 million gallons, not including the pool. By their own calculations the pool used 5.8 million gallons, and it was exclusively Grizzly Creek water, not a mix of the two sources.

OK City Council, what are you going to do? Ration the pool? How about 200 gpm, or even 100 gpm? How about limiting them to 12 hours a day? How about shutting them off entirely in case of an emergency, like mudslides in the canyon? How about finding a way for them to use only Roaring Fork water? After their usual heavy treatment people wouldn’t know the difference.

We have got to do something and it is obvious the pool is part of the problem and must be part of the solution.

Dean Moffatt
Glenwood Springs

Will holds West Slope values high

I have had the privilege of living in western Colorado. In my experience, the west slope is a place you can raise a family, instilling strong family values that build moral character of faith, family and country. Values such as these are what we expect an elected representative to possess.

I believe that District 57 has an opportunity to re-elect such a representative. While living and running my business in Rifle, I became a friend of Perry Will and his family. I am confident he will hold these values high while working for Colorado and District 57.

Will Laintz
Leesville, SC

Democrats need to vote!

I would like to take a minute and think about how our country might look right now had we Democrats not been apathetic about voting the last few elections.

Democrats not voting has us being represented by Scott Tipton, Cory Gardner and Donald Trump. Locally, we have John Martin, Mike Sampson, Tom Jankovsky, Perry Will, Bob Rankin, and Joyce Rankin, all supporters of Trump.

Trump and the GOP have taken us out of the Paris Climate agreement, relaxed environmental laws, and taken steps to do away with the EPA, which was started by Nixon. Trump and the GOP have made Democrats and Republicans hate each other.

Trump and the GOP are trying to repeal the ACA (aka Obamacare). This would have serious consequences for a lot of us. Things we will lose if the ACA is repealed: Your employer will not have to cover your children until age 26 any longer (the dependent coverage mandate). Your insurance will not have to cover preventable care at 100%. The lifetime maximum payment will be put back in place. Some people with major medical treatments, like a kidney transplant, will not have to be covered once you hit your lifetime maximum.

This is a small sample of all we have lost and will lose if the Democrats do not vote this election. The Trump supporters will be voting their hearts out. I will be voting for Democrats all the way down the ballot. We have some great Democrats running for office this election: Joe Biden/Kamala Harris, John Hickenlooper, and local candidates Beatriz Soto, Leslie Robinson, Karl Hanlon, Colin Wilhelm, Mayling Simpson and Diane Mitsch Bush. All we have to do, is vote, all of us Democrats, then we can move forward again.
Register to vote, or update your voter registration at http://govotecolorado.com/.

James Gilliam
Carbondale

Mitsch Bush will work for the common good

I support Diane Mitsch Bush for the U.S. Congress because she will work for the common good. Her support for public education and the expansion of public health care shows she put people’s well being first on her agenda. Her support for and from unions is based on the research that belonging to a union, as her mother did while raising her, improves the economic and social outcomes of all union members, particularly women and people of color who are often treated inequitably without union representation. I know how much our family income and health benefits improved when my husband joined the IATSE union while we were raising children. Supporting unions does not mean one is a political socialist. It means one supports the safety and well being of all workers, and fair access to good wages.

Diane understands the needs in rural communities. Her experience in the Colorado Congress and as a Routt County commissioner during the last recession has prepared her to represent our rural area’s needs now. Please support Diane and vote for a healthier, saner future for us all.

Illène Pevec
Carbondale

USPS guilty of election interference

Postmaster General Dejoy’s actions, of withdrawing sorting machines from POs and removing drop boxes from areas where it is difficult to get to the post office, have engaged the United States Postal Service in premeditated, national, election interference, a felony.

John Hoffmann
Carbondale

Wednesday letters: Trump and veterans, Boebert and public health, masks in downtown, and Boebert’s leadership

You have not risen to the occasion, Mr. Trump

On July 6, 1954 I stood on a point of land bordering the west side of the Hudson River in New York, and, along with 550 others, I swore to support the Constitution of the United States and to maintain and defend the sovereignty of this country.

Thirteen of those sworn into the Army that day died in Vietnam. They were not “losers” Mr. Trump, nor were they “suckers.” Their names are scattered among over 58,000 others carved into the Vietnam Wall and not one of those people was a sucker or loser for dying while serving this country.

On Jan. 20, 2017, you took a similar oath, swearing to faithfully execute the office of President of the United States and promising that, to the best of your ability, you would preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

As was the case with many people, I was appalled that you won, but I hoped that you would rise to the occasion. You have not.  

It’s not that you have done everything wrong. It’s just that, so often, you have failed to do the right thing. Consider just two of your most serious failings. First, as of this writing there have been over 190,000 COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. Your inept leadership and your repeated voicing of misinformation have contributed to a significant portion of that number.

Second, your willful scientific ignorance, your declaration of U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement, your misguided support of the fossil fuel industry, and your persistent rollback of environmental regulations will have detrimental impacts on clean air and water far into the future.   

When an alien spaceship visits earth several thousand years from now, the commander of the exploration team is likely to shake his head and say “There was intelligent life here at one time, but they apparently encountered the perfect storm of a global disease and a rise in temperature that eventually proved fatal to everyone and everything. The leader of the richest and most powerful country could have easily dealt with those challenges, but he was a loser.”  

John Palmer
Glenwood Springs

Politics pervades everything

Pitkin County officials shouldn’t have been surprised an Aug. 31 fundraiser for Congressional District 3 candidate Lauren Boebert violated state and local requirements for face masks and social distancing. Boebert initially drew attention to herself in May by getting in Dutch with her Republican colleagues in Garfield County for opening up her Shooter’s Grill restaurant in Rifle in defiance of health department orders.

Leave it to people of Boebert’s ilk to make something political outt of good sense public health protocols. I’m sure they won’t like hearing this, but the far right is exhibiting traits typical of the Soviets. Politics is always the overriding concern.

I don’t recall Boebert’s opponent in the upcoming election, Diane Mitsch Bush, breaking the law to make a political point. Mitsch Bush must be the law and order candidate.

Fred Malo Jr.
Carbondale

City needs to be responsible for enforcement of mask wearing

(This letter was originally addressed: Dear Council Members)

 Have you walked around downtown lately? Have you attended events under the bridge? If so, you’ve seen that there are more unmasked people than not. 

Who is responsible for enforcing the mask requirements in downtown Glenwood Springs? 

If no one is responsible, then you need to make someone responsible for enforcing the mandatory requirements that the people of your city have shown strong support for. 

The business groups are touting Glenwood tourism. If continuing to attract outsiders to our town is for their benefit, perhaps they should pay for some enforcement. 

Mary Bowling
Glenwood Springs

We need good leadership, not a roadside distraction

Never one to shy away from publicity, our GOP District 3 Sarah Palin wanna-be candidate for congress has been busy. She wants us to believe that dark forces of the “deep state” are at work to destroy America. I don’t know about you, but unmarked vans and unidentified “police” taking individuals to unknown locations in Portland could qualify as the “deep state.”

She claimed that protesters were bused in for the Juneteenth March in Rifle, claiming that they were here to divide our city. No proof, but truth and the GOP seem to be adversaries. If you look at her website, you’ll see that Colorado Boots on the Ground bikers proudly support her. Peaceful protesters were confronted with armed individuals and bikers revving their engines to drown out the marchers. Never mind the 1st amendment, she only loves the 2nd. My wife wondered: What if those guys on motorcycles and carrying guns had been black or brown?

Ms. Boebert has characterized the Black Lives Matter movement as “trying to elevate one group or class above another,” claiming the 14th Amendment has already made us all equal under the law. I’m curious Ms. Boebert, when did minorities and women get elevated to the same status as white men, let alone above them? Equal pay, education, housing? I’ll wait.

In 1870 the 15th Amendment theoretically gave African Americans the right to vote. Prior to that, only white men could vote. It was 95 years later that the Voting Rights Act had to be signed in 1965. Yet according to the ACLU, voter suppression is still rampant, especially since 2008. Ask Obama and Clinton.

The 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote in 1920. Yet women are still discriminated against in the work place, in healthcare, in education. Let’s not even mention freedom of choice. Minority women are especially disadvantaged in today’s society.

Perhaps stop mentioning Amendments to the constitution, as apparently you know very little about it. Except the 2nd, of course. You’ve claimed your place is the top tourist attraction in Rifle. We need good leadership, not a roadside distraction.

Craig S. Chisesi
Rifle

Friday letters: irrelevant info, fake Census worker, National Popular Vote, rejoice, take a minute

Story had irrelevant information

Post Independent editor Peter Baumann shouldn’t have identified the suspects in the Aug. 25 illegal marijuana grow bust north of Rifle as Hispanic immigrants. What did that add to the story? Why did we need to know that?

All that information did was give credence to President Trump’s racist and false claim Hispanic immigrants are bringing crime over the border.

FBI statistics show the crime rate among immigrants is actually lower than for the general population.

Baumann should’ve waited until law enforcement released the names of the suspects. Then the readers could read the surnames and figure it out for themselves.

Fred Malo

Carbondale

Beware fake Census worker

A Census worker wears a name badge that is clearly identified as U.S. Census, carries a cell phone labeled as U.S. Census and a black shoulder bag saying U.S. Census and hands out an information paper labeled U.S. Census. Do not give personal information to anyone who does not have all this personal Census ID with her/him.

Someone has been impersonating a Census worker in Carbondale to get private information. This person has targeted Hispanic people, told them she was a census worker, asked many personal questions including is the Hispanic person here legally or not and entered this info in a computer. So these targeted individuals think they have filled out the census and they have not. They have given their information to someone with no right to have it. 

This is under investigation. If anyone comes to your door saying he/she is a Census worker and does not have ID do not speak with them. Call the police. That person is impersonating a person representing an official branch of the U.S. government. The Census is the way we know how many people live where and determines our representation in congress, and how much federal tax dollars we get for schools, hospitals, roads and other government services. We all need to be counted, not framed.

Illene Pevec

Carbondale

Vote yes on National Popular Vote

If I learned anything from the 2016 election, it’s that our democracy needs an overall reform, especially the way our votes are counted when we cast our ballots for president.

As Coloradans, we can get our country closer to implementing one of those critical reforms this fall by voting YES on Proposition 113, the National Popular Vote.

The National Popular Vote would reform the way Electoral College votes are cast so that the presidential candidate who wins the most popular votes actually wins the election, every time — unlike what happened in 2000 and 2016. This is a common-sense reform that individual states can help implement right now, and it’s Colorado’s turn to step up. 

Instead of presidential candidates caring about only a few competitive swing states, winning under the National Popular Vote would require candidates to campaign everywhere. And, most importantly, it will mean that never again will the second-place candidate win the presidency through the Electoral College.

Unfortunately, the National Popular Vote won’t take effect until enough states sign on — and that’s why it’s so important that we make Colorado’s decision to join it officially by passing Proposition 113. The Colorado Legislature already took the first step by joining the compact, now Proposition 113 asks Colorado voters if we approve of that decision. So when we vote yes, Colorado will officially join 15 other states and D.C. in saying that every vote counts. 

It’s time that one person truly equals one vote in this country, so I urge my neighbors to vote Yes on Proposition 113 this fall.

Michael Curry

New Castle

Time to rejoice

A week ago I asked my wife if she would like me to do any thing for her on that day, as she has been real busy at her store. She replied, “Go pray for the fires to go out.”

This request was puzzling to me, because I thought she meant for me to do it alone. Let’s get real — with this pandemic thing going on I couldn’t just call 20 people and say let’s pray together. Well, I certainly believe there were groups that gathered to pray, but I was not in one myself.

What I decided to do was go to the Flat Tops above New Castle and have a look at the fires and pray. That is an amazing ride that compares to the Independence Pass ride and always worth navigating all those turns to get above 10,000 feet. The world always seems to have a clearer view. Anyway, I found the spot and began what the journey was all about: my prayer.

I am not one who likes a lot of words, so I started in silence. Then as I began, before I asked anything, these words hit my mind, “This is for you,” and of course that other part of the brain said, “yes.” Next came, “Nobody ever says thank you.” The other side said, “I will rejoice when there are no longer fires burning and filling our sky with smoke.”

Well, the real me is rejoicing now that our blue skies are returning and we can give thanks to all the first responders who now get to go back home and wait for their next emergency.

Giving thanks is like rejoicing, except when you rejoice, it is best if there is a smile on your face and your eyes look happy. In my world I think rejoicing helps make the world a little better place.

This summer was one to remember. Let’s remember history, because only 90 years ago was the Great Depression. If you need a little boost of memory look it up, so even though this unique summer may not have been a waste as it may be molding us for some other wild thing nature or man may bring. Bring It on, and give thanks.

Respectfully Submitted,

Roop Khalsa

Carbondale

Help Glenwood thrive

Glenwood continues to survive. Commit now, help it to thrive. The simplest, biggest investment we can make in Glenwood every time we drive is to Take a Minute and Slow Down in Town. Driving speed can create a welcoming, safe atmosphere for everyone, whether in a vehicle or not.

Diane Reynolds and Suzanne Stewart 

Take A Minute Steering Committee members

Monday letters: riparian setback, QAnon, white supremacy, Colin Wilhelm

Riparian proposal would hurt property owners with mobility challenges

The American with Disabilities Act does not apply to private property, but one would hope the City Council would pass Ordinances that would not specifically prohibit the accessibility of those with special needs to one’s own property.

The proposed Riparian Ordinance would limit access to 20 percent of one’s property, leaving 80 % unusable. My 83 year-old mother has limited mobility and would need a wheelchair ramp to access the river. With a river bank of 20 feet, the ADA would recommend a ramp of 240 feet in length (one foot length for each inch of height), the Riparian Ordinance would limit a ramp to 32 feet, such a ramp would be extremely dangerous.

The average width of river properties on Midland is approximately 120 feet leaving 24 feet of usable width. The elderly need not worry, as long as their riverbank is not greater than two feet, they can have ADA compatible, safe access to the river with the Riparian Ordinance.

It is ironic that if the City owned my mother’s property, they would have to follow ADA guidelines and allow Disability access. However, since the City is merely taking my mother’s property rights away without her permission: The City does not have to allow her wheelchair access to her own property.

The elderly are on fixed incomes, property restrictions such as this ordinance have been shown to negatively affect property values. The elderly also would be unable to trim trees to protect their views of the river and Mount Sopris, further destroying property values.

The City has been unable to identify a problem, has been unable to show that this ordinance will fix a problem, hasn’t done anything about the problem that exists (the 95% of polluted water that runs thru city streets), has poured tons of concrete on their projects (Two Rivers and Veltus Parks, 27th and Highway 82 bridges), but won’t allow the elderly to trim trees or access the river. Such disregard for property rights could affect the City’s ability to have people retire in our great town or recruit or retain professionals here.

Dr. Joel Dickens

Glenwood Springs

Riparian setback a solution in search of a problem

City Council is voting on Thursday to restrict 80% of private land along the waterways in Glenwood. This severely restricts a riverfront homeowner’s use of his most prized possession: his riverfront. Planning and Zoning had recommended a 50% restriction, but Council seeks to increase it to 80% or 90% for no stated reason and without any science to back them up. Any restriction takes property rights and degrades property values, but 50% is tenable to most riverfront owners.

Consider that there are 50-odd homes along the 4 miles of the Roaring Fork in Glenwood. Proponents fear that whatever is not restricted will be cleared by homeowners, but this fear is completely baseless. Homeowners have never been restricted in any manner yet virtually no meaningful clearing has occurred in decades. But let’s assume that these 50 odd homeowners do in fact suddenly clear 50% of their riverfront. They won’t, but assume they do. If each homeowner has 120 feet of river frontage (some have more, some have less) this would amount to 3,000 feet of clearing, about 0.56 mile of the 8 miles of riverbank. This amounts to 7% of the riverfront along the Roaring Fork through town. The math is simple. Seven percent will never be cleared, but even 7% would leave 93% of the riverbank untouched. That should be enough for everyone including the River Commission and the Roaring Fork Conservancy.

The figure of 50% proposed by P&Z is a balanced figure and does essentially no harm. Fifty percent should be applied to homeowners. I, as most riverside residents, want to keep our river in pristine condition and feel that Council, the River Commission, and the Roaring Fork Conservancy should steer clear of taking property rights and divert their energies to addressing the pollution that enters the river through our storm water drains. This amounts to 95% of the storm water – and virtually all of the water pollution – generated by the City. This would actually do some good. Theft of private property rights will not. 

Richard Todd

Glenwood Springs

‘Don’t take property rights without proper deliberation’

Mayor Godes, your behavior at the City Council meeting on Aug. 20, 2020 needs to be discussed. There were several versions of the Riparian Setback Ordinance in front of Council at that time, each requiring careful consideration by our elected officials. Council voted to continue discussion until September 3, 2020.

When the discussion did not go your way you recounted a comment from an unnamed citizen whom you claimed “threatened to bulldoze his entire riparian zone … to grandfather his personal property.” I have since spoken to that individual and he recounts a much different conversation. 

After using this hearsay to incite panic you tried to pass your version of the Amendment after a motion was made to continue discussion to Sept. 3. Thankfully Karl Hanlon prevented your attempt to circumvent Council procedure. Karl was diplomatic. I would have used a switch. Rules aside, you don’t take property rights without proper deliberation. And you don’t attempt to panic Council with inflammatory hearsay.

I repeatedly offered to help you intercede if the threat was real. No one wants to see a bulldozer by the river. If the threat was anything other than benign I should have heard back from you. What I heard instead was a dog whistle to those looking for river villains that don’t exist. All of this after you hosted a “Lunch and Learn” featuring the Roaring Fork Conservancy to build support for the Amendment. Too bad the Hatch Act doesn’t apply here.

You may be inspired to restrict 90% of our waterfront and return the Roaring Fork to wilderness, but there is a City here. If you want to experience wilderness do what I do: get a permit and go. That’s why wilderness areas exist. The banks of the Roaring Fork are lush and are not being destroyed. Our pristine rivers provide the next best thing to a wilderness float trip that you can find anywhere. There is no numeric science to support your cause, and you have no right to change our settled valley. You certainly can’t grandstand, make up your own rules, or take property rights without justification. 

Gary Vick

Glenwood Springs

Q Who?

Just how much demented tripe are we being asked to normalize? 

Most sources agree that QAnon is a conspiracy theory that teaches Donald Trump is battling “deep state” satanists, comprised of Hollywood figures, the media and, of course, Democrats. These alleged actors are said to be cannibals and pedophiles that engage in sex-trafficking of children whose blood they drink. Mr. Trump has said those who subscribe to such nonsense “love our country.” (White House Press Conference 8/19/20) On the other hand, the FBI has called QAnon a “potential domestic terrorism threat.” (NYT, 8/15/20) And Lauren Boebert, CD3 Republican candidate, was quoted in a July 1, 2020 article in The Guardian as having said she is “very familiar” with the QAnon conspiracy theory. Indeed Ms Boebert pontificated in a June interview with Steel Truth, a podcast that supports QAnon, as follows: “Everything I’ve heard of Q — I hope this is real, because it only means America is getting stronger and better, and people are returning to conservative values, and that’s what I am for. And so everything that I have heard of this movement is only motivating and encouraging and bringing people together stronger, and if this is real, then it could be really great for our country.” (CBS News, 7/1/20) 

While Boebert’s campaign spokeswoman, Laura Carno, understandably is anxious to close the book on her boss’s flirtation with QAnon, Boebert keeps opening it up again. On Aug. 17, 2020 Boebert tweeted that Tom Hanks was “a newly minted Greek citizen” in support of the QAnon social media theory claiming Hanks became a citizen of Greece because “it classifies pedophilia as a disability.” (Colorado Times Recorder, 8/19/20) Ha ha. Boebert may now try to distance herself from this fringe-iest of radical rightwing fringe groups that is QAnon, but the damage is done. Her embrace of Q does not speak well of her judgment or character. The CD3 deserves a serious person as its representative. The CD3 deserves an experienced, reasonable, competent public servant. That person is Diane Mitsch Bush.

Joyce Jenkins

Glenwood Springs

Democracy vs White Supremacy

This is the choice we have in the election in November. It is so very clear if you have watched the DNC last week and the RNC this week, the stark difference in the choice we need to make. It is the choice between faith or fear, truth or lies.

It would be humorous if not so serious, the lies and fear-mongering coming from the RNC. We have tolerated the corruption, over 20,000 lies coming from Trump himself, the total nonsense of injecting bleach into our veins to kill the virus, Trump inviting the Russians to interfere in our 2016 election, Trump’s closest allies in his administration indicted, Trump siding with Putin in Helsinki, and announcing ‘good people’ on both sides in Charlottesville. We are no longer the ‘shining light’ for the rest of the world to look up to. Trump has made America the laughing stock of the world and we now lead the world in virus cases and deaths.

Of all the destruction that Trump has inflicted on us, the caging of children and separating them from their parents is the worst. We now have over 180,000 lives gone from the virus, thanks to Trump’s deny and delay tactics, black men are being killed by the police almost every week, and Trump is touting his successes at the RNC. The hypocrisy is unbelievable. I am praying for the Soul of America to be restored.

Linda Carr

Eagle

Vote for Colin Wilhelm

Today, more than ever, leadership, opportunity, and equality have become three words that

every person in our country should be focusing on in significantly greater ways. As a U.S. Army

Infantry veteran, my beliefs align with the fair treatment of others as well as the protection of

the rights of the people of this great country. Recently, we have all been able to see that this

nation requires a change. We need politicians who are incorruptible, working to help those who

need our collective support more than ever, and people who desire to promote equality above

wealth distinction.

I have known Colin for some time, and what drew me to him as a decent person and friend, before I even knew he was considering running for political office, was his desire to be there for the people around him. His embodiment of the old-fashioned American adage, “placing the people first” This I can, and do, truly respect.

Policy-wise, Colin wants to adapt to what America currently needs. Economically, we need diversification in terms of industry. His desire is to keep jobs while simultaneously creating opportunity for economic expansion means that we will maintain our economic stability while still providing a greater level of opportunity for the future.

In terms of health care, Colin is leading the charge towards providing better and more affordable health care for all. It is time for America to catch up with the rest of the world, and this policy goal of Colin will take a lot of physical, mental, and economic strain off the average American.

Lastly, his devotion to water and environment rights means that our community will remain healthy and naturally beautiful for much longer. 

All of these considerations speak to me, as a veteran, and as a human being who supports the elimination of injustice and inequality. I served this country to support people who were unable to support themselves. Colin Wilhelm fights the injustices and inequalities, fights for the rights and betterment of the community, and fights for a better future for us all.

Jordan Whitney

Glenwood Springs