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Your Letters

Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

I’d like to address the Glenwood Springs city councilmen’s recent discussion on restrictions in the use of Segways on public trails within the city. I’ve never driven a Segway, but I’ve seen them used and I have no objection to their use.

I’m just wondering if anyone else noticed that our councilmen’s discussion and line of reasoning represents a complete prejudice for business owners being allowed to break the law in the name of profits.

Compare their Segway discussion and conclusion with that of a private citizen who wanted to raise laying hens for her own consumption of eggs and meat. Our councilmen are letting a local business owner continue to break the law “responsibly” while they pursue a change in the law, while the private citizen, who was raising her flock “responsibly” was required to immediately remove it until the matter was decided.

What bothers me is the fact that the same men who are concerned about a local businessman’s profits because of a city ordinance, put in place to protect pedestrians, were less concerned about a private citizen’s desire to raise hens because of a city ordinance. Raising her own food allows her to take care of herself using her time and energy, instead of money. But our city councilmen were not willing to let her continue to do so until she did due diligence by gaining support from her community, training people how to raise hens responsibly, requiring certain parameters to be met in building coops, and paying a fee. It took close to a year for this process to be completed. In the meantime, it cost her more money to buy organically raised eggs than it did for her to raise her own.

I’m not objecting to the use of Segways on city trails. I’m asking our city councilmen to consider a business’s right to earning profits on equal terms with a private citizen’s rights to raise food, and to require any business to abide by the same regulations as an individual when it comes to changing city ordinances.

Mary Russell

Glenwood Springs

I knew someone would trot out that old NRA slogan, “If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.”

I’ll go on record. I would feel much safer in a community where only outlaws had guns.

I’d worry less about my grandkids visiting their friends’ homes. I’d worry less about tragic escalation of heated arguments, less about lethal consequences of frustration and rage over things like traffic jams, getting a pink slip at work, or spousal infidelity, less about teenage angst leading to impulsive suicide.

Sure, there will always be criminals. But they are a small proportion of the population, and armed criminals an even smaller cohort. Probably even that number would shrink if its members weren’t worried about armed victims and bystanders. That is the case in countries where ordinary people don’t go around packing heat.

No one wants to be the victim of a crime, but if I were going to be one, I’d rather survive and have the perp survive than:

A. Be shot.

B. Shoot the perpetrator.

C. Have some “hero” shoot the perpetrator, or shoot me, or shoot some bystander.

Laurie Raymond

Glenwood Springs

I continue to try and understand the mind of the GOP voter, since I used to be one myself. There is a book, “Republican Brain,” that indicates that biology plays an important part in the thinking behind the conservative mind. I think it has to do with fear.

Fear of democracy. The idea that every person has the same vote as the elite is unsettling to the GOP. They manage this fear through voter suppression.

Fear of successful African-Americans. The GOP cannot believe that an African-American president prevented a depression after eight years of GOP financial ineptitude and lawlessness, and now criticizes him with devious ads paid for by nameless people.

Fear of the worker. The GOP claims wages should be a minimum with no union, and it is not necessary for women to have equal pay for equal work.

Fear of immigrants. We have used the immigrant to plant and pick our crops. They have built, cleaned and maintained our houses, yet the GOP message is self-deportation.

Fear of women. The GOP has a nationwide attack on limiting women’s access to reproductive health care.

Fear of Christ’s Sermon on the Mount. Fear that we really are our brothers’ keepers and that peacemakers are blessed. The GOP wants to repeal the universal health plan, and eliminate Medicare so they can increase the amount of money given to the military and the wealthy.

Fear of science. Biological evolution, the age of the universe, man’s impact on the temperature of the Earth are all subject to interpretation and refutation based on religious ideology.

What is the result of all this fear?

America spends 41 percent of all the money the world spends on the military and has the highest incidence of death by guns of the top 36 nations. The top 20 percent of Americans owns 83 percent of the wealth and 91 percent of the stock, and ideology trumps science in many classrooms. FDR stated: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself – nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.”

Tom Rutledge

Glenwood Springs

I write in response to recent letters from Craig Chisesi, Bob Shettel and Everett Peirce, who questioned an individual’s right or wisdom to carry firearms for self-defense.

What expertise do they have? History, FBI statistics, and reality all disagree with them. Every logical person reading their letters recognized the misrepresented statistics and ridiculous claims.

The letters called those of us who carry firearms “amateur, inexperienced vigilantes” pulling guns out whenever upset. Absurd. Citizens “conceal-carry” in banks, stores and theaters, proving them wrong daily.

Watch us (and other men, women, children) on YouTube in the dark, under stress, under attack, hitting six-inch threat-targets, never hitting the innocent-targets. This stands true for Cowboy Action, International Defensive Pistol Association, International Practical Shooting Confederation, and other “action pistol” competitors.

Mr. Shettel claimed we’ll fold under pressure. False. If the sound of gunfire makes someone a scatterbrained coward, then their training and tactics are pathetic. Do not superimpose another’s misbehavior or inadequacies onto all of us.

If guns cause crime, all ours must be defective.

Firearms are used 2.6 million times a year to stop crime.

After shootings, they want to disarm the people who didn’t do it.

Off-duty police officers commit violent crime four times more than concealed-carry permittees.

Every time a liberal who claims they are anti-gun is raped or attacked, their ethos changes and they beg me for handguns and training.

Since 1955, with only one exception, every public shooting in the U.S. when more than three people were killed took place where firearms are prohibited.

If gun-owners were as violent as liberals claim, there wouldn’t be any liberals left.

When they’ve been police officers, taught for 25 years, appeared on everything from CBS to America’s Most Wanted and testified as an expert, earned $250 an hour as a bodyguard, and have directly counseled and comforted men, women, and children who have actually killed other human beings to save their own lives, then we might consider their opinion.

I promise, with full authority and expertise, if a person carries a firearm, not only are they safer, but so are all those around them.

Edward Wilks


Numerous letters have been written concerning the Garfield County Sheriff’s employee sending out invitations for a Republican gathering. If the expense of this invitation, including its make-up and notification, was at taxpayers’ expense, then there certainly is a problem.

Jack Blankenship’s letter of July 26 expressed it might be OK because it invited everyone, Democrats as well as Republicans.

The fact is, if one and only one political invitation was sent at taxpayer’s expense to even an independent voter and they never even received it, a violation of the law still exists.

The sheriff certainly should have taken action to explain the issue and taken corrective action. For if a violation exists and no action is taken to enforce that violation, then what other violations are not being enforced?

Anita Sherman’s letter of July 26 mentioned the Colorado Secretary of State would be responsible for enforcement, but he is a Republican and probably nothing would be done. That letter was probably from a diehard Democrat who may have a point.

Garfield County is a Republican county, for sure. It has a Republican sheriff who continues to be re-elected, and all three county commissioners are Republicans along with just about every other elected office.

Sometimes confidence, self assurance and control empowers those who are supposed to be representing all the people to become blinded to self promotion. Elected officials should always be aware of the fact that power corrupts and that fine line is easy to cross.

I recall a sheriff’s election in 2002 in Caldwell County, N.C., where Republicans were openly confident and boisterous about taking over the sheriff’s office in that election. They were buying votes, paying off at the Republican headquarters. I was a witness to one individual who I reported to one of the Election Board officials. It turned out they didn’t need me. The state bureau of investigation was filming the headquarters and that individual confessed he received $25 for his vote. They proved 225 votes were bought. Three people went to prison, and they still won by 750 votes.

So please go vote.

Jim Childers

New Castle

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