Friday letters: Petitioning Glenwood Springs, qualms with U.S. Forest Service, Israel, giving thanks, Troy Hawks says goodbye


A petition is circulating right now that the City Council should not approve any sales or development of city owned property and should not approve any annexations referred to in the Comprehensive Plan adopted in March 2023 without a public vote. I totally support this petition. The areas proposed to be annexed include the Four Mile Area, West Glenwood and land on the eastern side of the City up to the side of Lookout Mountain. Actions taken by recent councils do not give me any confidence that they will abide by previous councils’ wishes. The development of the confluence is in the council’s sight, which would turn the merging of two great rivers into a commercial hub, limiting this area from being a wonderful recreational area for the locals and tourists. We need quality growth, not quantity.

Don Gillespie, Glenwood Springs

Don’t stay neutral

“If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse and you say you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality.” — Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

Oppression is the state of being subject to unjust treatment or control.

Drastic measures are necessary to have the elephant (US Forest Service) get their foot off the mouse (the community of Carbondale, population roughly 6,600). The USFS continues to disregard vocal outrage concerning redevelopment plans to begin on their Carbondale property in early 2024. The USFS deceitfully bypassed the need for adequate public input in November 2019 by originally using a Categorical Exclusion of “Repair and Maintenance” reserved for minor projects such as painting and roofing contracts for a $6.3 million Site Redevelopment in the heart of downtown Carbondale.

In letters submitted to Colorado Congressional Representatives the USFS believes this was “the appropriate level of analysis” and falsely claims “our staff has spent significant time coordinating with the Town of Carbondale about the project since 2019.”

The Carbondale Board of Trustees endorsed a detailed letter that was submitted to Scott Fitzwilliams, White River National Forest Supervisor. The BOT raised concerns about the deceitful Categorical Exclusion and failure to list the project on USFS website until it was belatedly added to the website on 9/25/23. A contract was awarded on 9/29/23. The BOT believe USFS plans are “a rushed process” with “a lack of formal comment period.” The BOT endorses a need “to incorporate more public comments” to pursue a “mutually beneficial collaboration.”

Fitzwilliams “acknowledged that the level of community concerns suggests extra discussion would have been helpful.”- Aspen Daily News 10/7/23

Call your three Congressional Representatives to demand the USFS place their redevelopment plans on hold to pursue mutually beneficial collaboration to maintain the integrity of our beloved community. Time if of the essence!

James Coddington III, Carbondale

On Israel

I am a Jewish resident of Carbondale.

Israel is to blame for this present Mideast crisis. It is Israel’s ongoing terrorism and evil doings from the very beginning that spawned the evil of Hamas.

The writings of Ben Gurion, the first Prime Minister of Israel, make it clear that the Jewish people had no intention of settling for the 55% of historic Palestine the UN allotted to them. They intended to take it all, from the Mediterranean Sea to Jordan. After the May 1948 war, Israel occupied the western half of the land allotted to the Palestinians. They promised to give it back to the Palestinians if admitted to the UN. They never did and now the West Bank comprises 22% of historic Palestine, half of their allotment

Prior to Israel declaring statehood in May 1948, Israeli forces drove out 300,000 Palestinians from lands the United Nations had designated for the Palestinians. Prior to 1948 Haifa was an Arab village of 70,000. Israel drove out almost all. In July 1948 the remaining 3,500 were moved out and packed into ghettos.

According to Wikipedia, in April 1948 Jewish forces went into the Arab village of Deir Yassin, murdering over 100 Palestinians, men, women, and children. A number of Palestinian prisoners were executed, some after being paraded in West Jerusalem, where they were jeered, spat at, stoned, looted, and eventually murdered.

In October 1953 a crazed Arab in the West bank killed three Israelis. In retaliation, Ariel Sharon, the future prime minister of Israel, led Israeli forces into the West Bank town of Qibya, destroying schools and houses, and killing innocent men, women, and children. In Nuremberg trials after WWII, Nazis were jailed or executed for similar retributive actions.

Israel knows that eliminating Hamas will not change anything. They know that their policies will spawn another generation of their likes. Then the Israelis will still have an excuse for continuing their displacement and killings of the Palestinians in the West Bank and the appropriation of their land.

Robert Stone, Carbondale

Giving thanks

I would like to thank the New Creation Church and their organization for taking the time to decorate so beautifully for the holidays. Each time I drive by their establishment I am in awe of the beautiful lights and decorations! Happy Holidays!

Jessica Monano, New Castle

Farewell, Troy

We are heading on to new adventures after nearly eight years as marketing director at Sunlight and wanted to share appropriate thanks to our local community. We enjoyed many successes through the years and much of that was a result of the support we enjoyed from the wonderful folks we had the pleasure of working with.

Topping the list is Andrea Stewart, executive director of the Tourism Committee of Carbondale and the Carbondale Chamber, also Lisa Langer, executive director of Visit Glenwood. We formed many new partnerships and friendships as a result of being on those committees and the community is well served by these organizations. Thank you to all the chamber members that joined our Chamber on the Chair event.

Thank you to Jennifer Rose, GM of Bighorn Toyota. We were proud to carry Bighorn as our official vehicle sponsor for so many years and truly enjoyed each and every local parade we participated in, from Gypsum to Rifle, Glenwood to Redstone. We enjoyed many special partnerships with local businesses including Alpine Bank, ValleyOrtho, the hot springs, local hotels, and more than two dozen others that signed on to our Friends of Sunny program. This community truly supports its local ski mountain, and we are very appreciative of that.

Of course, we want to thank all the local kids and parents-slash-campaign managers that participated in our Mini-Mayor Campaign. We gained a lot of media attention and national recognition thanks to the work of our Mini-Mayors, and it proved to be a big win for Sunlight.

We also want to thank John Goss and the Vaudeville Review for hosting our Winter Stoke Film Festival and to all who submitted videos. Hats off to Tommyknocker Brewery for helping us produce our very own craft soda, Sunny Pop.

Thank you to the Post Independent, Sopris Sun, KMTS, KSPN, and other media outlets for sharing the news of all the aforementioned activities and actions from the mountain.

Finally thank you local skiers and riders for supporting us and cheering us on along the way. Here’s to a bountiful season to come for all.

Troy Hawks, Glenwood Springs

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