Letters to the Editor
I do not want March 16 to pass without remembering a brave 22-year-old American college student, Rachel Corrie, who was killed last year on this date.
Two Israeli soldiers ran over Rachel with a 9-ton Caterpillar bulldozer, manufactured in the United States, while she stood unarmed and visible in her orange fluorescent jacket protecting a Palestinian home slated for demolition by the Israeli army.
Over 12,000 Palestinian homes have been destroyed in the past three years by Israel’s collective punishment policy.
This policy is a violation of the fourth Geneva Convention that prohibits punishment of unarmed, innocent civilians. It also violates U.S. arms laws that prohibit the use of military aid against civilians. We give Israel over $3 billion in aid each year.
Israel absolved the two Israeli soldiers.
I am disturbed that the Garfield County Commissioners are paying $100,000 to Colorado Mosquito Control Inc. to blanket spray insecticides over 50 square miles of the most populated areas of Carbondale, Glenwood Springs, New Castle, Silt, Rifle and Parachute without public debate on the risks and benefits of such a program.
Before spraying occurs, the public deserves to know the potential effects of the chemicals on wildlife, pets, livestock and most importantly children and adults. We also deserve to know precisely when and where the spraying will take place so we can take steps to protect ourselves.
As Rachel Carson warned Americans in 1962 in her landmark book Silent Spring:
“The crusade to create a chemically sterile, insect-free world seems to have engendered a fanatic zeal on the part of many specialists and most of the so-called control agencies. On every hand there is evidence that those engaged in spraying operations exercise a ruthless power.
“I contend furthermore, that we have allowed these chemicals to be used with little or no advance investigation of their effect on soil, water, wildlife and man himself. Future generations are unlikely to condone our lack of prudent concern for the integrity of the natural world that supports all life.”
If the prospect of a “silent spring” in your community troubles you, I urge you to call Steve Anthony, the Garfield County vegetation management director, and let him know.
As the parent of two potential Carbondale Elementary School students, I am deeply concerned with the apparent lack of positive leadership emanating from the office of the Roaring Fork Re-1 school superintendent.
The recent slew of letters and articles reflect a management style that is neither appealing nor conducive to a long-term commitment by teachers or students to the school system.
I recall that in the last school-board campaign one of the candidates expressed concern over apparent “white flight” from the Carbondale schools, and the district’s desire to thwart this trend. With the current leadership I think the district should be more concerned with flight, period.
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