Wednesday letters: Jesus did exist, phasing out oil and gas, Saturday rally, and listen to your doctor

Mr. Malo cannot prove that Jesus did not exist

I must respond to Mr. Fred Malo’s letter in the Post Independent on Jan. 4. It is not to address his political angle, but of the vitriol that he directs toward Christians! The main thing he says, that I take exception to, is that “he can’t even prove he (Jesus) existed.” How historically inaccurate he is, nor can he (Mr. Malo) “prove” he (Jesus) did not exist.

If consulted — Josephus the Jewish historian, Tacitus the Roman historian and Pliny the Younger whose father was the famous encyclopedist who died in the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in AD 79 — these provide historical “evidence” as to the existence of Jesus. This evidence is seen in the following quote from historian Edwin M. Yamauchi of Miami (Ohio) University: “We would still have a considerable amount of important historical evidence [about Jesus without the New Testament]; in fact, it would provide a kind of outline for the life of Jesus. We would know that first, Jesus was a Jewish teacher; second, many people believed that he performed healings and exorcisms; third, some people believed he was the Messiah; fourth, he was rejected by the Jewish leaders; fifth, he was crucified under Pontius Pilate in the reign of Tiberius; sixth, despite this shameful death, his followers, who believed that he was still alive, spread beyond Palestine so that there were multitudes of them in Rome by AD 64; and seventh, all kinds of people from the cities and countryside — men and women, slave and free — worshipped him as God.” 

— Quote from The Case for Christ by Lee Strobel. 

I hope this will create a little more objectivity in Mr. Malo’s skewed thinking about who Jesus is! 

As a pastor, I pray this be the “bilge” (as you called it) that I will continue to spew forth. And speaking of seeking truth, Jesus Himself said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father, except by Me.” Now that is a discussion, Mr. Malo, which you yourself can take up … with him!

Believe In the Lord’s Gift of Eternity (BILGE),

Eddie Piker

Glenwood Springs

Kudos to Colorado for phasing out oil, gas

The Colorado State Legislature passed HB 19-1261 in 2019, which led to the publication of the draft “Colorado Greenhouse Gas Roadmap.” According to a report from 350 Colorado, the roadmap underestimates emissions from the oil and gas sector and overestimates the extent to which emissions will be reduced in the future — a dangerous miscalculation in an era when any increment of additional emissions prove highly consequential for our planet. 

The oil and gas sector is responsible for 70% of the state’s emissions, when one factors in shale methane leakage and the emissions generated by exporting oil and gas outside of the state. The IPCC calls for “deep emissions reductions in all sectors,” the roadmap simply does not meet that demand. 

Colorado is home to robust agriculture, crucial snowpack and large Western rivers. It is no longer excusable to allow the oil and gas sectors to continue to increase production efforts. The roadmap relies on outdated global warming potential assumptions, low-estimate methane leakage rates, unreported out-of-state emissions and too-optimistic forecasts for emissions reductions. While the state roadmap effort is essential, it is crucial that the report accurately quantifies both current emissions and sets stricter goals to decrease the output of methane and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. State officials should use up-to-date, science-based assumptions in their reporting.

Oil and gas are responsible for the majority of our state’s emissions. It’s time for a phase-out and rapid transition from fossil fuels — we no longer have time to spare.

Soleil Sky Gaylord


‘Surprise and concern’ at Saturday Rally

I read the Sunday article on the “Stay Free Colorado” rally with surprise and concern. 

First, Commissioner Tom Jankovsky knows better and should be ashamed of himself. He is entitled to his opinions, but as a public official, he should refrain from espousing long-ago debunked nonsense about the coronavirus. There is no evidence whatsoever supporting the idea it was created in and released from a Chinese lab. It did not “take down our president” — his own malfeasance, incompetence and cowardice did that. 

Sheriff Lou Vallario needs to brush up on his Bill of Rights. The First Amendment protects public speech from governmental suppression/supervision. It has almost no effect on private speech. A private entity, such as Facebook, is entirely within its rights to suppress whatever postings it sees fit (and those posting agree to those restrictions when they sign up). The Post Independent has the absolute right to either print or not print submitted letters. Behaviors such as yelling “Fire” in a crowded theater or inciting to riot are not protected speech.

Ms. Sherronna Bishop needs to refer back to her high school American government notes, or the dictionary. Governmental provision for public health and welfare is hardly “socialism.” In fact, it is right there in the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution: “to promote the general Welfare …” One of the primary responsibilities of government at all levels is to provide for the health and safety of the citizenry. Most of the developed economies incorporate elements of socialism in their political/economic systems, including our own Veterans Administration.

Dr. Jeff Barke really is a conundrum. Concealed weapon vs. wearing a mask? Really? You sneeze into a tissue, correct? How is wearing a mask different? How on Earth does anyone justify not taking such a simple precaution to prevent the spread of disease — whether the common cold or the coronavirus or any other respiratory ailment — to those around you? What can possibly merit such a level of callous indifference?

Finally, Dr. Ben Peery, thank you for reminding us of the seriousness of the situation and our responsibilities.

Kevin O’Brien

New Castle

‘Listen to your doctor’

I wandered into the Freedom Rally outside the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office on Saturday. (My office is across the street.) I heard Dr. Jeff Barke attack mask wearing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The doctor quoted from a New England Journal of Medicine study to discredit masks. I went back to my office to check the study. 

The study’s authors had this to say about masks: “We understand that some people are citing our article as support for discrediting widespread masking. In truth, the intent of our article was to push for more masking, not less. … Universal masking helps to prevent [asymptomatic] people from spreading virus-laden secretions, whether they recognize that they are infected or not. … This finding is also borne out by recent research associating mask wearing with less transmission of SARS-CoV-2, particularly in closed setting. We therefore strongly support the calls of public health agencies for all people to wear masks when circumstances compel them to be within 6 ft of others for sustained periods.”

Listen to your doctor. Don’t listen to Dr. Barke.

Ted Hess

Glenwood Springs

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