Monday letters: it wasn’t cows, unmask Colorado, vote McWhorter, Teitler’s the choice |

Monday letters: it wasn’t cows, unmask Colorado, vote McWhorter, Teitler’s the choice

Cattle grazing is not to blame for this summer’s poor air quality

​​I wanted to comment on Mr. Sundin’s recent article about the hottest and driest year on record. I appreciate and share Mr. Sundin’s concern for our environment and our future. However, I would like to clarify a few of the points that he makes. The natural process of turning carbon dioxide into plants by photosynthesis and the subsequent conversion of those plants back into carbon dioxide and methane by bacteria, herbivores and fires has been going on for as long as the earth has been in existence. I find it interesting that people, including Mr. Sundin, point the finger at cattle as a source of global warming when this natural process of the carbon cycle is as old as the earth.

The smoke, carbon dioxide and methane that plagued our otherwise beautiful vistas and made breathing difficult for some people this summer was not caused by cattle grazing. To blame cattle for methane emissions in the worst fire season in history is either ignorant or deceptive. Forest fires are simply a quick release of methane and carbon dioxide that should have been recycled long ago by more controlled and productive methods such as livestock grazing and timber harvesting.

Mr. Sundin and I are on opposite ends of the political spectrum and could probably find much to disagree about. However, I think that the management and prevention of catastrophic fires is a banner that we could unite under. The way to prevent fires is to minimize the fuel. There are two ways to do this economically: livestock grazing and timber harvesting.

I invite Mr. Sundin to take a drive up the Buford Road and look at the difference that the timber harvest has made there and then use his column to report to us how that project has or has not prevented catastrophic fires in an economical way. He could also do some research on regenerative agriculture and teach us how very innovative people are taking carbon out of the air and putting it back in the soil with properly managed livestock grazing. Mr. Sundin and other so-called environmentalists could make a positive difference in our environment by uniting with rather than vilifying some of their most powerful partners, America’s livestock producers and timber harvesters.

Shane Porter

New Castle

Unmask Colorado

I just read in your newspaper that on Monday, Sept. 27, the Garfield School District Re-2 will be mandating masks for all students and staff.

My first thought was, if this was urgent, why wait?

My second thought was, is the school going to provide the masks?

As the article stated, this is a decision not everyone will be happy with. This is true, so let each parent make that decision for their child.

I have seen firsthand how difficult it is for students to wear masks all day. I substitute teach in the district and have witnessed students putting them on after touching doorknobs, their nose or retrieving them from the floor.

Ever try to have a conversation with a first grader when you are both wearing masks?

So many of the masks do not fit well, are not worn properly and offer little protection. Schools require certain paperwork to admit students and hire staff, so why not exempt anyone with a vaccine and/or positive test for antibodies?

My concern is beyond mask mandates; it is the slow but steady erosion of our God-given freedoms stated in our Constitution. The same freedom I gave up while I served in the Air Force.

I just wonder how many students and staff will be “sick” that day. I, for one, will not be returning to teach so long as this policy is in place. This saddens me, because I enjoy the kids, and I know the district is chronically short on substitute teachers.

Trish O’Grady


Vote Chase McWhorter for ‘education free from political agendas’

The upcoming Board of Education election is critical for our community. Re-1 has been shifting its focus off top-quality education and more on social services for the last several years. All of our children and their futures are suffering as a result.

If you value high-quality education free from political agendas, freedom, the ability to be yourself at school, for your kids to be encouraged to reach their potential, to take personal responsibility for results, and to trust one another again, then it is time to elect Chase McWhorter.

Our current BOE is taking away personal freedoms and rights from parents and kids. Our voices are not being listened and the board is not transparent in its actions, make it difficult for parents to voice concerns and does whatever it wants without fear of being held accountable.

Parents, students and the community are listed at the top of the district’s organizational chart. Yet it feels anything but. The BOE and superintendent work for us. They answer to us. And this election is a reminder that our votes matter and we matter.

I fully support Chase McWhorter because he is not a bureaucrat, nor a part of the education system. He will not continue the status quo policies that result in declining student performance. He has vowed to listen to the parents and be held accountable for his actions on the BOE. Chase is the outsider and leader we need right now to change the direction our local education is heading.

Vote for Chase McWhorter.

Mindy Arbuckle

Glenwood Springs

Kenny Teitler supports ‘not just his students but all the families’

Mr. Kenny is our best option.

Mr. Kenny, an angel that doesn’t need wings to support kids and families now is moving to support colleagues. Way to go, Mr. Kenny.

I met Mr. Kenny some years ago when we moved to Carbondale, and since that day I have seen how Mr. Kenny, a bilingual teacher, has used his skills to support not just his students but all the families in need of understanding of the educational system and basically with any situation that may arise. He is a hands-on supportive teacher.

Mr. Kenny has a bilingual education background of more than 25 years. Being first in Basalt and then in Carbondale schools has helped him understand the roots of the problems that education in this valley is facing, and I know that he would do whatever it takes to support students, teachers and families. I totally know that he is the best option to be part of the RFSD board.

Muchas gracias, Mr. Kenny, por seguir ayudando a la educacion de este valle.

Please consider giving your full support to Mr. Kenny.

Ricardo Zavala



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