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Your Letters

I recently read Aron Ralston’s ad in the paper.

It sounds a lot like the info the Hidden Gems Group is putting out where they state that only 2 to 3 percent of our national forest land is designated as wilderness. This may be true on a national level, but one third of the White River National Forest is already set aside as wilderness.

Aron states that 4 out of 5 users prefer to recreate without a machine.

He seems to think that downhill skiing and snowboarding, fishing, hunting, boating, photography, sightseeing, camping, (to mention just a few) are not recreation.

National forest users also include people with limited physical abilities, working people who have limited time to use the forest, people who don’t have horses or can’t afford to keep horses, people who get firewood permits to cut wood to heat their homes and furnish firewood to the ski lodges, ranchers, loggers, etc., etc.

The national forests were set aside for all people to enjoy not just a few so-called elite people.

I read Paul Andersen’s ad supporting Hidden Gems. He says, “The wilderness is my church.”

Paul should be very happy one third of the White River National Forest is wilderness.

How big of a church does Paul need?

Ron Byrd Sr.


Several years ago my daughter inspired me to research the history of Veterans Day. I was quite surprised by what I found:

Veteran’s Day originated as Armistice Day – Nov. 11, 1918 – the day that marked the end of World War I. Many people believed this day would be the beginning of everlasting world peace. In 1938 the U.S. Congress passed a bill declaring that Nov. 11 shall be known as Armistice Day and “shall be dedicated to the cause of world peace.”

Of course, these hopes for peace did not come true. Armistice Day was renamed Veterans Day in the U.S.

In 1954 President Eisenhower called on all citizens to observe Veterans Day by remembering the sacrifices of all American veterans and by “reconsecrat[ing] ourselves to the task of promoting an enduring peace.”

As we observe Veterans Day celebrations in our community this Nov. 11, I hope we all keep in mind that this holiday originated from a celebration of peace and a commitment to work toward peace. As we honor our veterans, we need to be careful that we are not also sending a message to our children that war is a good thing.

In the words of Iraq War veteran Aidan Delgado: “I want people to look at all the tremendous sacrifices made by veterans and draw the right lesson from them: that war is terrible and we must do everything we can to prevent it.”

Debbie Bruell


Yesterday I purchased $400 in merchandise from Lowes in Glenwood Springs. I wrote a check and presented my driver’s license as ID. They refused it. I asked why. They told me their check verification agency – Certegy Check Services Inc. – had declined it based on their computer models.

I called my bank, which confirmed that I had well over 10 times that amount in that particular account. That made no difference to Lowes local management (for whom I had to wait for 10 minutes), who advised that they were bound by Certegy computer decisions.

Obviously, I was upset and extremely embarrassed in front of my contractor, store personnel and other patrons.

The next day we discussed the matter with Certegy supervisory personnel. They explained that declining my check had nothing to do with my credit, my check writing history or anything to do with me personally but that somehow I fell into a computer model risk category. They refused to provide any details, specifics or rationale.

I find that difficult to understand as I own my own ranch, have no criminal record, no bounced checks, not even a parking ticket, pay all my taxes, am happily married and volunteer my time and resources to people less fortunate. Now, what part of that puts me in a profile with cheaters and crooks?

Along with so much else that is happening in this country, what kind of society have we become where honest, hardworking people are being punished for the dishonesty of others? Worse yet, a society that thinks that makes sense.

J.K. Mattis


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