Friday letters: Gun violence, health forum, choosing school principals, and new development parking restrictions |

Friday letters: Gun violence, health forum, choosing school principals, and new development parking restrictions

Even Syria doesn’t experience level of gun violence as U.S.

I wonder how Rep. Lauren Boebert would explain to Officer Talley’s seven children why her right to play with her toys is more important than their father’s life. She’d probably say I didn’t kill him. Some crazy Muslim did.

Yes, Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa is a Syrian who came to this country as a small child, and Syria probably has as many mentally ill people as most countries do. And they’ve been involved in a civil war for 10 years.

But even Syria doesn’t experience the level of gun violence we do. We lose 40,000 people per year because a radical fringe insists this country be an armed camp. That’s you, Rep. Boebert.

Fred Malo Jr.    


Why is Valley Health Alliance not part of health forum?

Just read on the Post Independent website the Garfield County commissioners will be hosting an online forum Monday to discuss health insurance costs in our region. Per the announcement, the CEO of Peak Health Alliance based in Keystone will be one of the presenters. I find it very odd and remiss (perhaps intentionally?) that the executive director of Valley Health Alliance (VHA), based in the Roaring Fork Valley, is not listed as a panelist. 

I’m sure our Garfield County elected officials have their reasons to not have a locally based Roaring Fork Valley organization on the panel. Perhaps a result of envy, egos, bad blood, up-valley elites versus down valley trash? Are they really representing the residents of this county by not working cooperatively toward exploring all regional options and mutually beneficial solutions to the myriad problems and challenges we face, including health care costs?

Maybe a Wild West shootout is being waged in the opinion pages of the Post Independent, starting with the opinion column by Commissioner Tom Jankovsky and responded to by Chris McDowell, the executive director of VHA. Who or what organization will be next? I hope those in need of reasonable health care and health insurance costs will benefit from this shaky, hurtful, lacking start. 

Greg Jeung

Glenwood Springs

Superintendent should not unilaterally choose school administrators

According to school board policy in the Roaring Fork School District, the superintendent has the final word in who is hired as principal, and his vote is the only one that counts. Four years ago, despite the unanimous support by her staff, students and community members, assistant principal Kelsie Goodman was not hired as principal at Roaring Fork High School by Rob Stein. The person that Stein unilaterally chose, against the wishes of the entire school community, lasted just two years, as did the subsequent one that he chose. We are now onto No. 4 in nine years. The class of 2020 had three principals in four years, all chosen by Stein.  

I was a teacher at RFHS for 34 years before my retirement last June. I served on various hiring committees (pre Rob’s tenure as superintendent), and the recommendations of the hiring committee were honored by all of the previous superintendents. The superintendents respected the integrity of the process and the careful and thoughtful decisions made by the people who know the school and the community the best. A public school should reflect the community and its values and not the values of the superintendent.  

Although Zoe Stern has been the assistant principal at RFHS for the past three years, it is clear that she has been the de facto principal during those three years. Her leadership in these hard times has been exemplary. Kelsie and Zoe have provided the only stability and continuity at RFHS at the top for the past eight years.  

The hiring process as it now stands is a sham and a waste of time if the outcome is predetermined — when the superintendent does not ask for recommendations or a vote from the hiring committee or if he disrespects the choices by the people who have the most to lose.  

His disregard is a slap in the face to the professionalism of the staff and to the community he is supposed to be serving. It also creates distrust in Rob’s ability to successfully lead. I urge the school board to change the policy so that one person, the superintendent, does not have all the power in choosing school administrators — power which can make or break a school.

Jill Knaus


Why do all new developments have limited parking?

Why is 1.7 the magic number for parking spaces in large, new  housing developments? I don’t know anyone with 0.7 vehicles. What about the other 0.3? 

Seriously, most families, even those that qualify for “affordable” housing, have at least two vehicles. And I imagine that residents of these developments periodically have friends over for dinner or family visiting. 

So, why allow the developers to get away with only 1.7 parking spaces per unit? This is the number cited in the proposed development behind the Glenwood Springs Mall. 

Other developments, such as the one at Buffalo Valley, the one on Highway 6 in West Glenwood, and the one behind the RFTA station on Highway 28, all have limited parking. 

It seems that City Council and P&Z should face reality when approving these large and, granted, needed developments.

Sharon Andersen

Glenwood Springs

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