Wednesday letters: Government separation, 2C support, Couey support, Frisch support, Oscar remembered

Separation of church, state important

One of the primary reasons our Founding Fathers established a separation between church and state was to avoid the centuries of religious wars that had embroiled Europe, primarily around Christianity. The split between Catholic and Protestant branches caused some of the most brutal wars, including civil wars, even as recently as Northern Ireland.

Many people immigrated to the colonies specifically to escape the religious persecution they faced back home in Europe — only to face persecution again, in some cases, by a particular colony’s official religion. In most cases, this was Christians persecuting other Christians because of differing views on Christianity. Our Founding Fathers firmly believed that one should be free to follow one’s conscience on religion, and that the state should not intrude upon that decision.

Our Founding Fathers clearly stated in the constitution that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” Indeed, the idea of making our country a “Christian” nation is problematic from the very start. Whose version and doctrine of Christianity would prevail? There are over 200 different denominations of Protestantism alone. And, what about Catholicism and Mormonism?

Preserving the historic wall between church and state, for all the reasons our Founding Fathers erected it in the first place, is simply too important to allow people who would tear it down to control the levers of government. This is true of U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert, who is on record fully endorsing eliminating separation of church and state, and Tom Jankovsky who is on record refusing to endorse keeping that separation in place.

Jerome Dayton, Carbondale

Support Glenwood’s 2C

I have been fortunate to have been in Glenwood for over 50 years. I love our town. Like so many others, I was able to move here when housing was attainable and affordable. I was a teacher who could afford a house as could my friends, nurses, cops, firefighters and plumbers and electricians.

Many of us have benefited from entry-level housing and great appreciation. That opportunity does not exist any more and threatens Glenwood’s character as a traditionally “real” town for living. We can’t be “real” if our workers, teachers, seniors and kids can no longer afford to live here.

Ballot Issue 2C, Accommodations Tax for Workforce Housing, is part of a solution to help provide housing for Glenwood’s workforce. It is a reasonable and impactful way to potentially help provide housing for many Glenwood workforce families while helping to keep Glenwood “real” and livable without sprawling new development. The workforce-housing tax is modest but impactful and will not create significant impact on the lodging businesses and will be paid for primarily by visitors to Glenwood. The workforce-housing fund is part of a solution for housing and has been recommended since our 2010 Housing Strategic Plan. 

2C is not a recommendation from our current council. It is the recommendation of a very diverse group of community members as a significant part of a strategy for workforce-housing solutions. When passed, it would be in effect for 20 years or five generations of future councils. Our current council has given us the opportunity to implement this important recommendation.

I encourage us all to give workforce housing a chance. Let’s provide opportunities for the future that are so needed and that so many of us had in the past.

Please support 2C.

Sumner Schachter, Glenwood Springs

Remembering Oscar McCollum

Oscar McCollum, a former citizen of Marble and Glenwood Springs, was a wonderful neighbor and one of the brightest men we ever met. Among his many accomplishments and contributions to our communities, he was a founder and steward of the Railroad Museum in the Glenwood Train Station, which provided countless hours of entertainment and education for locals and visitors before it closed. 

If you were lucky enough to know him and, like us, didn’t get the chance to say goodbye before his family moved him to the Front Range, you will be sad to learn that he passed away in January of 2021 and glad to know he attained the age of 100! You can read his obituary, the story of a life well-lived, at this link:

Linda Schuemaker, Glenwood Springs

Frisch a breath of fresh air

I was reading The Sun magazine August 2021 sunbeam section. There was a quote from William Ralph Inge: “The enemies of freedom do not argue, they shout and they shoot.” 

I think that pretty much sums up U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert. Looking at her record in Congress, I can’t find anything that she has done to benefit the people in her district. She appears to be busy promoting her “brand” and helping out the gas industry, so her husband can keep his “consulting” job.

Adam Frisch is a breath of fresh air in a pool of negativity. He talks about the issues that are important to the people in CD3 and proposes solutions. He doesn’t talk down to or about anyone and he is a successful businessman. He says that he will work with people on both sides of the aisle to pass legislation to benefit the people in Colorado and CD3. 

That is the opposite of how Boebert operates. I could list the many ways that she is unfit for the office she is in; however, I don’t want to be perceived as stooping to her level.

Please elect Adam Frisch to represent us in Congress, and keep Colorado from being the laughing stock that Boebert has made it into.

Stanley Trulock, Glenwood Springs

Couey the accountable treasurer choice

As the Teller County Treasurer, I would like to offer Garfield County insight on what it takes to succeed in the often obscure but important position.

Successful county treasurers will agree on three basic themes: leadership, service and accountability.

Humble leadership is important. The county treasurer not only leads her team, but also touches every office within the county government. A fully-autonomous elected official, the county treasurer must be able to work with peers across the county government and across the state 

Service is critical. The county treasurer is not handling the “county’s” money; she is handling the taxpayers’ money. Knowing exactly who you work for, and why, is step one to service. 

Accountability is paramount. Accountability is that unique mix of transparency and integrity. Doing the right thing, at the right time and for the right reasons is the glue that holds it all together.

An interested and knowledgeable observer of Garfield County’s Treasurer’s Office, I assure you that Carrie Couey possesses all three of these attributes — and in spades. 

Treasurer Carrie Couey walks her talk. As the current Garfield County Treasurer, she and I worked closely with her on statewide issues. I worked with her as she pursued, without relent, thorough understanding and application of Colorado Statutes, which are neither clear nor consistent. She has and will do the right thing by the law and by her constituents. 

Carrie is one of my “go-to” peers. I leaned on her for creative ideas to unique problems in my county and leveraged her ideas as best practices. 

She is widely respected across the state and across party lines. Her election to the Statewide County Treasurers’ Executive Board, after only a couple years on the job, attests to this fact. 

She has an amazing family and is a quiet Christian. She understands, both intellectually and emotionally, the principles of our Republic and our Constitution. She is respected by her peers, and I am proud to offer this endorsement; and I ask that you give her your vote.

Mark Czelusta, Divide, Colo.

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