Wednesday letters: Still unified, winning back CD3, Re-1 mission, remembering Mr. Grandstaff

Still unified for the Divide

Once again, it is time to rally in support of protecting the Thompson Divide. As a grassroots community, we have been working for over a decade to protect our beloved public lands from oil and gas drilling. We have made progress with the White River National Forest and BLM management plans, but we are not done yet and must again make our voices heard.

Our hard work is paying off and Washington D.C. is listening. President Biden announced in October that he would ask for an administrative mineral withdrawal for the Thompson Divide and the Department of Interior has started the process with a 90-day public comment period. We need to let the feds know loud and clear that we support protecting the Thompson Divide from oil and gas drilling.

Carbondale, the Roaring Fork Valley and extended communities have loved and protected the Thompson Divide for all the diverse benefits it provides. Most everyone has hiked, biked, walked dogs, rode horses, watched birds, hunted, fished, grazed cattle, snowmobiled, taken a Sunday drive, or enjoyed the uninterrupted views of this beautiful area. Elk and deer and an ecosystem of animals depend on the Thompson Divide for food, shelter and raising their young. Everyone benefits from its clean air and water.

We must speak up now for the Thompson Divide. There will be a meeting at the Carbondale Firehouse on Dec. 14, 5-7 p.m. where you can learn more about the process and make comments. The BLM is also currently accepting written comments until Jan. 16, 2023. Email comments to let them know you support the proposed administrative mineral withdrawal to: or mail to: Doug Vilsack, State Director, Bureau of Land Management, Colorado State Office, 2850 Youngfield Street, Lakewood, CO 80215.

Let’s show we are Unified for Thompson Divide!

Judy Fox-Perry, Carbondale

Winnable Congressional district

The fact that Democrats were surprised at how close the CD3 race was is the exact reason Democrats have not been able to win rural districts. Anyone who has worked in politics in CD3 knew this was a competitive race from the start. 

Democrats have largely focused on urban areas and their policy reflects such, leaving rural voters to feel left behind. Adam Frisch blazed a trail to show how Democrats can make these voters heard, but he just scratched the surface. 

Democrats need to start listening and paying more attention to the discrepancies policy has on rural and urban areas. This starts by spending time, money, and effort in rural districts to meet and talk with voters. Adam Frisch did well targeting the Coram Republicans in the district, but he did so at the cost of the Democratic and liberal base. He still received a good turnout simply because of the pure disdain voters have for Rep. Boebert, but it was not enough. 

The next candidate who runs to unseat Rep. Boebert must be more detailed when pitching policy, to not exclude one group of voters for the next. To be able to toe this line, it will take more insight and nuance when presenting policy. This district can be won by a Democrat, but not one running only as a moderate conservative. Even if successful, that strategy will only get you one term in office. 

Adam Frisch showed us the blueprint of how to get the voter’s attention. He spent time on the road, met face-to-face with voters all over the district, and gained respect by standing up to Boebert and keeping calm in the face of absurdity. Now it’s time to learn from where his campaign came up short and no matter the results of the recount or whomever the next candidate is, they must be ready to ask the right questions and present the right answers to get voters of all backgrounds to come together; not only to unseat Rep. Boebert but to hold CD3 in future elections. 

CD3 will continue to be a competitive district and one that should not be overlooked by donors and leadership moving forward. 

Westley J Crouch, political consultant, United Western Voices LLC

Glenwood Springs

Stick to mission, not agendas

A mission/vision needs to be simple. Simplicity of mission leads to “buy in” from all stakeholders as all parties know the goal to be reached and the path to get there. The fact that Ms. Kuhlenberg acknowledged in her recent letter (11/20) that “the path to achieving this vision in our unique community is not clear or direct” is alarming. Maybe the issue is the vision itself? Or maybe the vision explained to the public varies from the priorities Re-1 leadership has internally? 

It is encouraging to read that the board values developing adults who can think critically. Some people in the community might question if this is being put into practice or just something being put in writing. Due to the heightened focus on inclusivity some people might feel that voicing an opposing view, regardless of how politely delivered, would be considered “hateful.” Being able to question is foundational to developing the ability to think critically, so how much questioning is the Re-1 board open to receiving when it comes to their mission and policies?

Here is an example of questioning to encourage critical thought that increasingly might be viewed as “hateful” or “bullying”: the NHS and other health organizations have come out and said gender dysphoria should be treated psychologically rather than medically. Is Re-1 treating or encouraging gender dysphoria? From an educational perspective, how does Re-1 educate children on scientific laws if one of the most fundamental laws of nature, biological sex, is not taught as a conclusive reality, but as something that can simply be chosen and changed based on what an individual feels? 

Re-1 appears to have two choices to make their mission clear and direct: 1. Refocus the vision solely on education and developing critical thinkers, which would require dropping underlying agendas; or, 2. Go all-in and focus on the inclusivity/equity/LGBTQIA+ agenda. Option 1 requires dropping special agendas. Option 2 requires updating the Re-1 mission and clearly explaining its value to all stakeholders.

Thomas Mises, Carbondale

Arch and cross connection

Morning Glory Arch in what was once known as Negro Bill’s Canyon draws a lot of Moab hikers. It’s not much longer than the trail to Hanging Lake in the Glenwood Canyon, and like the Glenwood Canyon it’s on a tributary to the Colorado River. 

The elevation change is 350 feet from Negro Bill’s Canyon trailhead to the arch. The elevation change is 1,080 feet from Hanging Lake trailhead to Hanging Lake. So, it’s a more rigorous hike to Hanging Lake.

Negro Bill’s Canyon has been renamed. His last name was Grandstaff; the same man who was named in Monday’s Post Independent (“A symbol of hope”) is the namesake of Grandstaff Canyon.

The cross on Red Mountain gives no one else in Glenwood a more fitting memorial legacy; not even Doc Holiday … except Jesus Christ.

Fred Stewart, Grand Junction

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.