I would like to address a portion of Mr. Talbott’s contribution to the PI on Dec 13.There is no “necessity” that any nation be of a particular religion. Mr. Talbott, why do you hate the 1st Amendment? Religious diversity is fine – so long as everybody’s a Christian? Hopefully you won’t start demanding even more specific conformity, such as, “Everybody must be a Southern Evangelical Baptist,” or, “You must be Lutheran.” I think you make a decent living from your properties. Good for you. The roads that bring tenants and customers to your businesses, though, did you build them? No. We built them, and you profit from their existence. Since all Americans helped you get where you are today, the least you could do is (begrudgingly) allow the rest of us to exercise the same right of personal religious choice you have enjoyed for yourself. And if they don’t choose the same as you? Good for them. That’s what religious diversity is all about.On another point, you rail constantly that there are building codes in this county that must be complied with, and you must prove your compliance by submitting to inspections by trained, qualified engineers. Tell me, have you gone back to visit that good doctor in Haiti? How’d his home stand up to the earthquake? And the other buildings in his neighborhood, they’re all intact, right? The answer is probably that his home, and many buildings around his, collapsed due to a lack of building codes, shoddy construction and the use of sub-standard materials. But building codes and the enforcement of them are still bad, according to you. Likewise, you state that you know how to install a mobile home in your park, but are forced to use professionals and submit to inspections. That’s because not everybody’s as skilled as you. Bad things happened to innocent people, so laws were passed to help everyone be as safe as your tenants must be. Your complaint sounds to me like, “I hate that I’m not above the law and must obey it like everybody else.” Becky PennGlenwood Springs
Dan Bokenko’s letter about Ross Talbott and his column is typical of the left wing, anti-God movement in this country today. He attacks Ross’s writing skills and in my opinion his intelligence instead of the content then uses examples of support that are not the best. For instance he uses India as an example of a democracy existing without Christianity. India is a country whose streets are filled with overloaded bicycles and motor scooters covered in holy cow pies. Their religious temples and shrines are overflowing with poisonous snakes and insects deemed holy then covered with a thick layer of monkey crap. Their people starve yet India has a nuclear bomb that can be delivered only by a late Roman catapult pulled by holy cows. One Indian man, who is known only as Pegi, in my opinion should be considered for sainthood. He alone handles all American credit card disputes and whose English skills should cause Dan to leap for joy.The Iroquois Nation indeed was great, but they were defeated by undocumented European immigrants that refused to learn their language and never did assimilate to their ways. Even though they helped them survive by teaching survival skills and providing them food, the ungrateful illegals soon outnumbered them and wiped them out. A good example of what happens when God is removed from a particular area of America is our schools. We were number one in education until God was cut out and prayer banned. Now we rank in the high 20s.A democracy is not what this country was intended to be. Thomas Jefferson and others founded this country as a republic. Big difference, look it up, Dan. The Constitution and Bill of Rights gives every American the right to say what he feels and believes as long as it does not bring harm to others. Ross has the right to have his say. No one is forcing you to read it. I don’t read the columns from the Washington Post the PI prints. Keep on writing your columns, brother.Norm ShrollGlenwood Springs
Yesterday, a typical day turned into a reminder of why we live here. I was reminded of this yesterday when we almost lost our house to fire. In those panicked first moments, when everything is a blur and you realize it’s time to choose your home’s most irreplaceable items, the community showed itself. I had only minutes to remove what I could, and seemingly, out of nowhere, friends, neighbors and complete strangers literally ran into our burning house to rescue what they could. I’m sad to say, their faces in my memory are fuzzy. I probably wouldn’t recognize them today, but to those people I would like to send a heartfelt thanks. As quickly as they appeared, they were gone. My family and I are forever grateful. That is why we live here.The firefighters were simply amazing. Long story short, they showed up and saved our house, which we all thought was to be written off due to the size of the fire, and they left without so much as mud on the carpet or water through the broken window.Before the fire was even out, our seven kids were offered clothing and Christmas presents from so many people I can’t even count. My phone was ringing nonstop from no less than 10 people offering their houses so we would have a place to stay. One woman from Olathe drove my wife from Grand Junction so she wouldn’t have to drive herself after hearing the news of the fire. My wife’s professors and fellow students made the necessary accommodations she needed to leave in the middle of finals.Yes, some insignificant possessions are gone, the roof needs to be replaced, and the siding and windows are destroyed, but we got to sleep in our house last night together because of our wonderful community. What could have been a pretty bad situation turned into an even stronger feeling of appreciation for our neighbors, family, and friends. Thank you everyone, from the bottom of our hearts. Merry Christmas. We are truly blessed.Lonnie & Mary Bowles and KidsNew Castle
Here at the Executive Service Corps, it would not surprise us if you had not heard about us or were unaware of the work we perform in the Roaring Fork Valley. We are a nonprofit organization that exists solely to strengthen other nonprofits. We deploy some extraordinary volunteer management consultants to work with local charities on fundraising, strategic planning, board development, financial management and community relations, so that they may do their good work better. Our own fundraising activities are deliberately limited; we don’t produce benefits or galas or even annual appeals, because we don’t want to compete with our clients. We pretty much fly under the radar: We’re swift, we’re sure, we hit our targets, and if we do our job really well, we’re hard to detect, preferring to give the credit to staff and elected leadership. To paraphrase Jeff Foxworthy: If you’ve seen new energy on your board, you may be an ESC client. If you’ve noticed more success in your fundraising efforts, you may be an ESC client. If you’ve weathered a difficult leadership transition with minimal trauma, you may be an ESC client. If you’ve seen a tjuz in your media coverage, you may be an ESC client. And if you’re seeing financial reports you actually understand, you may be an ESC client. So, in this season of celebration and thanksgiving, we’d like to recognize our supporters, who like us, firmly believe in the power of our community nonprofits to turn misery into magic for so many of our challenged citizens: the Aspen Community Foundation, our major donor and the originator of the ESC in 1998; Colorado Mountain College, which has given us a home; Alpine Bank, our BFF (Best Financial Friend); and the city of Aspen and Pitkin County, which in difficult economic times have reaffirmed their belief in the need to teach a man, or a woman, to fish. Bless you all. Christine Nolen, executive directorExecutive Service CorpsAspen
I just want to let all parents be aware there is some freak walking around in a Santa outfit and on Friday showed up at GSES. This person is luring our children to him and thankfully I don’t know what his intentions were. But I will tell you they could not have been good, or he would not have run away when a teacher went toward him. Thank you to Mrs. Hoover and the protection and efforts of all the staff over our children everyday. Our children are out of school for the next two weeks and I for one certainly would not like to be reading about a missing, murdered or abused child in the paper anytime soon (or ever). As for the freak who ran away… get some help.Kim WalkerGlenwood Springs
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