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Monday letters: Ascendigo, fireworks

In full support of Ascendigo

As parents of a 12-year-old girl with Down syndrome, we feel compelled to write in support of Ascendigo Ranch. We know that Ascendigo will welcome our daughter to participate in activities even though she does not have a diagnosis of autism.

Families like ours rely on support and guidance from local organizations, like Ascendigo, as this valley is still lacking in resources for families such as ours. Ascendigo has an opportunity to strengthen our community and bring people together even more by building this educational ranch. That is the hope, really, that our daughter and others who may be different can find a place in our community where they can contribute meaningfully, find friends and be happy.

Amid some questionable arguments about the true nature of Ascendigo as an organization, and well-meaning but unwittingly ableist concerns about the participants’ ability to evacuate in the event of wildfire, every single opponent has praised the value of Ascendigo’s program and the importance of providing such services in our valley … just not in their backyard.

At the heart of the opposition to this project is the fear of a loss of the quiet rural feel of Missouri Heights that drew the neighbors to move to this area. If you talk to the ranchers who have lived on Missouri Heights forever, they feel the same way about all of the opponents’ “ranchettes” that have sprung up over the past 30 years.

The cluster design of the buildings leaves the majority of the 126 acres undeveloped, maintaining the rural feel so much better than 21 homes evenly spaced would (we suspect the resident wildlife would strongly agree). We firmly believe that once completed, neighbors will grow to appreciate the way Ascendigo Ranch will actually protect the rural feel of Missouri Heights and feel proud to have a facility in their community that allows people differently abled from them to experience the enrichment and joy of adventures in nature that the majority of us take for granted.

We fully support Ascendigo Ranch and encourage the Board of County Commissioners to approve this resource.

Deborah and Julian Hardaker

Glenwood Springs

Wrong area for camp

I have lived in the valley for 40 years, 16 of those years in Missouri Heights.

I have a daughter with profound autism. She is 30 years old and still lives at home with me and my husband. We both work multiple jobs while being her primary caregiver(s). I know about disabilities and the challenges they bring. I know about the importance of services for our children and adults with disabilities.

Though we have never received services from Ascendigo, I appreciate what they offer and the population they serve. While a summer camp for autistic children and/or adults sounds amazing, it doesn’t belong in Missouri Heights.

Ascendigo’s proposed development is commercial. It doesn’t belong in a neighborhood. It belongs in an area zoned commercial, in an area with plenty of water, quick access to emergency services and especially in an area with roads that can accommodate the amount of traffic that their development will bring. Missouri Heights is not that place.

GarCo, please keep Missouri Heights rural.

Gwen Carew

Missouri Heights

Water is the issue

(This letter was originally addressed to the Garfield Board of County Commissioners.)

Ascendigo’s services are valuable, no doubt, and my compliments regarding their organization. Ascendigo represents a needed resource for the less fortunate among us.

White Cloud on Missouri Heights is not the right property for their large facility.

Our community rose to the occasion in 2008 when developers applied to build a large subdivision on Hunt Ranch, 600-some acres nearby on the north side of County Road 102. They painted a pretty picture but, as with Ascendigo, lacked some understanding of the basic facts governing our environment.

This is high desert. No rushing creeks, no large stands of trees or snow runoff. Missouri Heights is unique in that respect.

As our opposition proceeded, smart leaders took their findings to Colorado Water Court to challenge the subdivision based on potential water use. A very restrictive decision was issued by the high court and so limited the developer’s proposed land use — they quit.

I have lived in this immediate area since 1980 and been involved in water both domestic and agricultural. After 40 years of dealing with irrigation water, this summer is the first when no irrigation water is available in my neighborhood. Combine that with hearing about failing wells, and the whole dry picture becomes clear.

There is not enough water to support Ascendigo’s facility. Their original plan for a 2-acre lake says a lot; the proponents don’t have a clue about how scarce the water picture is on Missouri Heights. They own water rights but apparently didn’t get the part about that never being a guarantee water will flow from the tap.

Commissioners, please see here that a precedent has been set by Hunt Ranch opposition over a decade ago, a decade of rising temperatures and increasing drought. Water is scarcer on Missouri Heights now than 2008. No one anticipates this scarcity ending anytime soon. Don’t allow your constituents’ taps to run dry.

Vote no.

Susan Cuseo

Missouri Heights

Ban fireworks sales

The Garfield County commissioners’ ban on fireworks through July 5, while still allowing the sale of fireworks, looks like a “wink wink” to me.

I would love to hear the logic behind that convoluted ruling. Our fire risk could hardly be higher. The notion that those knuckleheads buying fireworks aren’t going to use them is naive at best, suspicious and dangerous at worst.

Loran Randles

New Castle


Monday letters: equity, Take a Minute, Hubbard cleanup thanks, wildfire mitigation thanks, watering restrictions

Refreshing perspective

Ms. Sturm’s opinion piece (June 7 Post Independent) was a refreshingly honest look at the term equity. We believe all are created equal but none identical. All are unique, and our outcomes are shaped by genetics and environment. The latter, our home upbringing, is the most important, as that’s where values and moral tenets are learned.

Unfortunately, today’s economic/social structure has altered the family dynamic. Now, both parents must work, often multiple jobs, while single parents face twice the challenge. The sad result is parenting responsibility has been unfairly foisted upon teachers. If learning isn’t stressed in the home, how can it be taught in school?

Can we achieve equal opportunity if inner city schools “graduate” students who can’t do the three Rs of education? If Johnny can’t read, will he find a job or join a gang?

Critical Race Theory, the 1619 project and like woke witlessness indoctrinate our children to a culture of victimhood. It teaches that our race limits or improves our life’s potential. This is untrue and un-American.

Racist generalizations only divide us; teaching truth will heal us.

Good luck, teachers.

Bruno Kirchenwitz


Support Take a Minute

I support the Take A Minute campaign in Glenwood Springs. While driving in Glenwood on Grand Avenue I noticed how fast cars were going in a 25-mph zone, and I was getting caught up with the speeding traffic.

I tried an experiment and turned on my cruise control set to 25 mph. I was blown away with how really fast cars were going in a pedestrian and tourist area.

Won’t you consider supporting this important effort to slow down traffic and take an extra minute while you drive through downtown Glenwood?

Laura Hanssen


Hubbard cleanup thanks

I want to express my sincere gratitude to all who volunteered and supported our annual cleanup of BLM-managed public lands on Hubbard Mesa. Over 40 volunteers graciously gave their time and hard work to remove over 60 cubic yards of garbage and over 25 cubic yards of metal to be recycled from public lands, just north of Rifle.

I want to personally thank the White River Trail Runners, High Country 4-Wheelers, Rifle Area Mountain Bike Organization, the city of Rifle, Garfield County, Rifle Rendezvous, and the many individual volunteers from our local community that came out to help. Your hard work and dedication continue to make a tremendous difference in your public lands.

I would also like to recognize Green Zone Recycling and Native Waste Solutions for their valuable sponsorship, providing dumpsters and disposal costs.

In addition to this effort, I would like to thank the 93 students and staff from the Rifle High School Athletics Department who helped with a cleanup near Fravert Reservoir this spring.

Finally, I want to thank the entire community of recreationists that use and enjoy this area. Your voice and efforts in keeping your public lands in Rifle’s backyard clean, as well as your responsible recreation, keeps these lands and resources enjoyable for current and future generations. The effort and cooperation from everyone go a long way in the success of your public lands.

Larry Sandoval

field manager,

BLM Colorado River Valley Field Office


Wildfire mitigation thanks

On behalf of Swiss Village subdivision near Redstone, we extend heartfelt gratitude for the collaborative efforts of Pitkin County Emergency Manager Valerie Macdonald, Carbondale Fire Department Chief Goodwin and USFS manager Kevin Warner on a recent wildfire mitigation project near us.

Despite our best efforts at mitigating within our neighborhood, the reality is we are surrounded by forested public land. USFS land to our north (the project) was densely packed with aging and dead scrub oak, and contained a huge amount of standing fuel. If it burned, our neighborhood would burn.

Our neighborhood used to be mostly summer cabins. Now, homes are selling in the $600,000-plus range, and most are occupied year-round, many with small children. The property damage and potential loss of life in a wildfire is now much greater than in decades past.

It is a privilege to live surrounded by so much natural beauty, and we recognize the biggest threat we face to our homes and lives is wildfire. We greatly appreciate these three entities (Pitkin County, CFD and USFS) working together to help protect us if/when wildfire strikes.

Now that fire season has arrived, it’s a relief to know that the forest next to us is much less of a hazard. The more mitigation projects that can be done near neighborhoods like ours, the better prepared we all are for the inevitable.

Thank you for being on the cutting edge of collaborative effort, climate responsibility and forest management.

Diane Madigan, SVHOA secretary

Jon Amdur, SVHOA president


City should practice same watering rules

Please practice what you suggest others to do. The citizens of Glenwood Springs were recently advised by the city of Glenwood Springs to take measures and suggestions for water conservation. This information was recently mailed out. Our water bills starting June 1 went up by 30% to offset costs from the Grizzly Creek Fire.

I am not excited about the rate increase, but I do understand this probably needs to happen, and I am all on board with more water conservation on everyone’s part, including the city.

One of the suggestions is to water early in the morning around 6-8 a.m., which I always do and believe is the most effective and efficient way to water. As I was driving down Midland Avenue passing the Community Center, the sprinklers were running. It was 4:30 in the afternoon.

Now, I’m not a landscaper or a horticulturist, but I’m guessing it is still pretty darn hot to be watering anything at that time. This is not the first time I have seen city properties watering in the hot temperatures of the afternoons.

The suggestions you make are really good ones, and the city especially needs to lead by example, so please do so.

Patty Grace

Glenwood Springs


Monday letters: Ascendigo, Hershey

Development option worse

(This letter was originally addressed to the Garfield County commissioners.)

Ascendigo Autism services is proposing to develop a property on Missouri Heights for a permanent program and housing facility. That property is a beautiful and desirable location and is destined for development. As it is platted now, it will have more square feet in single-family homes, leading to traffic equal or greater than this facility might create.

Outdoor lighting from residential development is sure to exceed Ascendigo’s proposed lighting. Ascendigo’s proposal is the best option for that property.

The buildings will be energy efficient, going beyond required codes, and the project will be an environmentally exemplary development, because they have already committed to working toward net-zero buildings.

Another positive aspect is that those buildings will be grouped together, leaving a large portion of the land undeveloped to continue to keep open space for wildlife. The proposed small pond should be attractive and beneficial to birds and other animals.

This project will also be an example for other facilities that may be developed around the region, state or country that will offer programs and life-development skills to people with autism. Ascendigo is one of the leading programs in the country, and this is another step in continuous innovation for which the organization is known.

I encourage support for Ascendigo’s proposal to develop this property for those reasons.

Mona Newton


If not there, where?

Interesting opinion that Karen Moculeski, president of Keep Missouri Heights Rural, submitted in response to Andrea Chacos’ column. Karen’s concern for autistic recreation is commendable; however, there are no positive suggestions for alternative sites. It’s all defensive, and here too, no alternatives, no hard facts.

If weighed side by side according to the 2030 master plan, how would Ascendigo Ranch compare to the developed use of the land as low-density housing? If the collective impact would exceed Ascendigo’s, it could, by her definitions, preclude proposed future build-out.

Unfortunately, her concerns don’t seem sincere because they’re one-sided. Sure, wildfires, winding roads can be considered, but water cannot be made readily available if it’s not on-site. It begs the question if water would be available to future housing.

The bottom line, if people are not receptive, facts don’t matter. This is the issue that looms the largest. Sound familiar?

Fred Stewart

Grand Junction


A few things occurred to me while reading Tony Hershey’s “counterpoint” in the May 12 edition.

I understand that spending money on a community survey seems frivolous to Mr. Hershey, but to those of us not gifted with omniscience, it seems like the most objective way to determine the citizens’ priorities.

If fixing potholes and basic infrastructure are Mr. Hershey’s top priorities, I don’t understand why he voted in favor of spending $6 million on a tunnel to preserve a runway used by only a handful of Glenwood Springs residents, while at the same time he voted against the entire 2021 streets maintenance budget.

Mr. Hershey says he’s very much against frivolous “beautification” projects, yet, as I recall, he voted in favor of spending $800,000 to landscape the new exit 116 roundabout. I, for one, would be curious to know whether this was a higher priority to Glenwood Springs residents than funding the Parks Department or keeping the Rec Center open, both of which Mr. Hershey has opposed.

I would be interested in hearing Mr. Hershey’s explanation for how the votes he’s taken fit into his stated priorities.

Personally, I’m experiencing some cognitive dissonance trying to make sense of them.

Mark Kirch

Glenwood Springs


Monday letters: masks, Buddy Program, motorized scofflaws, West Glenwood development, Holy Cross election, Chelsea Self

Odd comment

I read the most unthinking, unreasonable and totally devoid of logic but totally politically correct statement in the Glenwood Post Independent this morning (May 24).

It was a quote from the article concerning the vote to rescind mask requirements, made by the Glenwood mayor encouraging those who are not vaccinated to continue wearing masks, “as you are still able to spread (COVID-19) to people who are vaccinated.”

Are we now to think that those vaccinated are the most vulnerable segment in our society? Many who choose not to be vaccinated have already had the virus and are the most immune. If the vaccine really gives no real protection, why is that still being pushed, and why take it?

Are we to continue shaming those who, for whatever reason, choose not to have any foreign substance injected into their bodies?

It is time that people think for themselves and refuse any longer to allow themselves to be controlled by unreasonable shame or fear.

Ramona Talbott

New Castle

Be a Buddy

Now more than ever, during these times of uncertainty, youth in our community need your time and support. As a mentor of a young girl, I can assure you that this is one of the most gratifying experiences that I had in this country, where I emigrated 11 years ago.

In 2011 I took a very important step in my life, offering my time and sharing it with a young girl who was then only 8 years old. I remember perfectly that September day when we got matched and I met my little buddy. She had a beautiful, big smile that barely fit her face, and we were so nervous, happy and full of excitement.

Now that little girl is a young woman who soon will turn 18 years old and will graduate from high school to start her college journey. Ten years of friendship, first getting to know each other, gaining trust, learning from each other, trying new experiences together in our community. Ten years full of laughter but also tears and consolation.

During all this time the two of us went through very difficult times in our lives, and we always had each other. Now I realized of everything I learned from this mentoring experience, of how I became a better person and that my buddy is and will always be a fundamental part of my life and my family.

So what are you waiting for? Do not let more time pass by. Our youth are the future of this country we live in. Mentoring is an experience that changes your life and a youth’s life positively forever.

To obtain more information about how to become a mentor in our community- or school-based programs, contact Laura Seay at lauras@buddyprogram.org or visit our website, BuddyProgram.org.

Ainhoa Buján


Bad back road experience

I am writing you to express my dismay about what I witnessed May 16. My wife and I hiked from the bottom of Daniels Hill to the Crystal Mill and back. We chose this day because it was clear to me (and the world) that motorized travel along this stretch of road was prohibited until May 21. During my hike, I observed at least 12 jeeps and trucks, as well as half a dozen one- and two-person ATVs, half a dozen four-person UTV’s and three motorcycles traveling this stretch of closed road. Some of these folks were openly consuming alcohol and allowing their dogs to run unattended.

It boggles the mind that these individuals would be allowed to blatantly violate federal law and not be held to account. There was no enforcement authority present whatsoever.

Something needs to be done promptly. I urge you to close County Road 3 to motorized travel immediately, until reasonable regulations can be enacted. Although I favor a complete ban of motorized travel, sharing this pristine stretch of Colorado backcountry is a reasonable first step.

Currently, motorized travel is permitted from May 21 to Nov. 22. Why not ban motorized travel every other day, week or month? Nonmotorized users should be given occasional access without having to tolerate the noise, dust, boozing, pollution and environmental degradation that always seems to come with motorized travel.

Please do not allow this gorgeous part of Colorado to become another Moab — where motorized use of public lands runs amuck.

Ed Holub

Garfield County

Right P&Z decision

It was heartening and confidence-

inspiring that the Glenwood P&Z commissioners, after long and careful scrutiny of the proposed annexation, rezoning and development of the land behind the mall, unanimously voted to deny the proposals, and for all the right reasons.

Local opposition, virtually unanimous also, reflected awareness that the scope and timing of the project were threats to basic safety. The neighborhood, which criss-crosses the city/county border and is occupied by residences on small, mostly dead-end roads, has proven to be impossible to evacuate in an emergency. We dodged a bullet last summer but learned our lesson: We lack the infrastructure capacity to evacuate the current population. It would be unconscionable to bring in more people and vehicles before we remedy this.

The developer defended plans to irrigate the lawns and ornamental plantings in the complex based on water rights and historic availability. But we remain on water restrictions from last year, facing even more severe drought conditions this year. Longer term, the lively controversy over water speculation bespeaks awareness of future severe water shortages. Failing to acknowledge this and implement xeriscaping was unforgivably short-sighted.

Proponents of the development were largely compliant with the 2011 Comprehensive Plan. But now we face crises the plan failed, due to both uncertainty and denial, to consider and which are now apparent. We have a housing and jobs crisis, ongoing severe drought and a traffic congestion/transportation crisis (aggravated by geography). What “small town character” will mean for our future depends on how we resolve the land use issues that are also issues of unsustainable inequality. There is no going back to any previous “normal,” however cherished. Mere survival, let alone survival as a community, demands something from the city, county and each of us.

Relinquishing nostalgia is painful, but we must do it to release the creativity and determination essential for common purposeful action. The choices seem grim, but they are real, with actions full of consequence. Let’s shed our illusions, our divisions and roll up our sleeves.

Laurie Raymond

Glenwood Springs

Vote for climate action

As a mother and a skier, I urge you to take action against climate change by voting in the current board election for our electric utility, Holy Cross Energy. Holy Cross provides stable, reliable and affordable power with an increasing clean energy supply.

Two incumbent board members, Bob Gardner and Kristen Bertuglia, are each running for one more term to complete the amazing transition to renewable energy. And a newcomer in the Northern District — Kristen Hartel — is being supported by the same coalition that backs Kristen B. and Bob.

Your ballot should have arrived in the mail. Please vote by June 7 for Bob Gardner, Kristen Bertuglia and Kristen Hartel.

Tarn Udall


Thanks, Chelsea

I lived in Glenwood Springs for most of my adult life and still consider it my hometown. My thanks to Chelsea Self for her stunning photographs reminding me how beautiful Glenwood Springs and the Roaring Fork Valley is.

Kehn Ogden

Satellite Beach, Florida


Monday letters: Boebert, COVID-19, special rocks, Dept. of Labor, drive safely

CD3 deserves better than Boebert

I am a Colorado native living in the 3rd Congressional district. I am an independent (unaffiliated) voter and have been for many decades. I believe in my country and believe she should stand first in our hearts above all. She should be held strong before and against radical ideas or conspiracy theories or the thirst for votes or reputation.

Some people find the actions of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) and her radical far-left “squad” to be disturbing. And, some find the actions of Marjory Taylor Green (MTG) and the radical far-right “gang” equally disturbing. Some people on each extreme demand that they resign, be removed from office or even be killed. I, at times, have also found some of these individuals and their extreme ideas beyond belief and disturbing.

I can’t do much about those crazies who represent constituents in New York, Georgia, North Carolina or in any other state or district outside of my own. But I can do something in Colorado to reduce the craziness in Washington. I can do everything I can to make sure that our own resident crazy (Lauren Boebert) is not reelected.

I believe our district, our state and our country deserve better than Lauren Boebert. Better than she who believes and supports QAnon. Better than she who incites insurrection and riots with her words and falsehoods: (“today is 1776”, “3%ers will prevail”, “Nancy Pelosi has left the chamber” …). Better than she who believes herself to be above the law or beyond following the rules of the institution she was voted into.

So I encourage all of you to look into your hearts and determine if you really want Lauren Boebert representing you, your families or your neighbors. I, for one, do not.

James D. Garcia

Grand Junction

Disappointed by elected officials

I am disappointed that local elected officials chose politics over science, demonstrated by their participation in the recent “Stay Free Colorado” rally.

COVID-19 is now the leading cause of death in the United States. The virus is neither liberal nor conservative. Its only goal is to continue infecting as many people as possible. The human cost of the misinformation and mishandling of the pandemic by the previous administration is a large percentage of the over 455,000 American lives lost. This number does not take into account the people who will suffer long-term health consequences and those suffering from anxiety and depression as a result of this disease.

It is clear that it did not have to be this way. The United States has experienced more deaths than any other country with a similar economic structure. Consider the examples of South Korea and Australia, both Western-oriented societies with democratically elected governments. Both South Korea and the United States reported their first case of COVID-19 on Jan. 20, 2020. Australia reported its first case approximately a week later. The death rate per 100,000 people in the United States is 40 to 50 times higher than that of South Korea and Australia. The death rates per capita to date are as follows: 2.83 in South Korea, 3.6 in Australia and 139 in the United States. Additionally, South Korea has not had to lock down its economy at any time during the pandemic.

We are all indebted to the front-line health care professionals who have worked tirelessly during this unprecedented public health crisis to save us from ourselves. Garfield County is fortunate to have a dedicated public health staff that have fought and will continue to fight, along with other health care agencies and schools to protect the community we live in. We owe it to them to follow simple public health guidelines: Wear a mask. Socially distance. Wash your hands. Follow isolation and quarantine recommendations.

Get vaccinated when possible.

Wanda Berryman

Glenwood Springs

‘An insult to some very special rocks’

Page 2 of the Feb. 1 PI included a picture of “orange rocks” off Midland Avenue in Glenwood Springs.

That seemed such an insult to some very special rocks and the beauty of that hillside.

We lived on West 13th Street (below the said rocks) for 20 years, raising a family of four kids. We enjoyed our wonderful view of that hillside (as well as a view of Mount Sopris through the valley’s V).

Those rocks are called “Angel Rocks.” They glow in the dark. And of course, we would not like any of you to think of them as “orange rocks.”

We now live in an area with another beautiful view outside of Rifle. Please enjoy that wonderful hillside, Glenwood Springs.

Diana Anderson


Colorado needs to fix Department of Labor and Unemployment

When is the Colorado government going to get the Department of Labor and Unemployment straightened out? I and many others have received fraudulent 1099-G forms. Not something we can just throw in the trash — it means dozens of calls, filling out forms online and reporting to police. Then comes tax time, and we have to worry about how to make sure they know we didn’t actually get any money. Need to have a “corrected 1099-G.” Thank goodness I am able to navigate all these hurdles even though I am a senior citizen. I hope no one will get in trouble because they threw one of these forms in the trash thinking it won’t matter.

How about stopping such nonsense as “tagging” wolves and helping people who need it. I know that there is also a problem with this department in processing new and valid claims. How about an answer, elected officials? Starting with our local government representatives.

Peggy Steldt


A reminder to drive safe

It’s been a while since I’ve actually seen an accident happen in front of me. Let alone two within 24 hours. I always wonder why is it nobody cares when it’s snowing and the roads are icy. It seems people take it as an invitation to see how fast they can go without sliding off the road. Well, it’s not an invitation.

I watched a fella do about three 360s this morning and end up in the median on I-70. I’m glad he wasn’t hurt. I’m glad all he probably needed was a fresh pair of underwear and not a trip to the ER or coroner. If you want to risk hurting yourself that’s your decision, but don’t risk hurting others around you because you’re not patient enough to take it easy when the road conditions aren’t good. Please and thank you.

As far as the semi drivers go, you are not the kings of the road, either. I don’t know what the procedure for going up and down steep grades is, but when it’s normal interstate driving grades, don’t be jerks and ride close behind somebody. Give the car in front of you some space.

Ryan Reeves



Monday letters: Boebert, Trump, D.C. violence, politics, new hope

Responsible parties

This was the darkest day this nation has seen since I was born in 1983. Far darker than any foreign attack, this was the culmination of Trump’s attempt to stay in power through his lies and combative rhetoric.

We all saw an attack on the citadel of democracy. This was an insurrection, a failed coup d’état. Make no mistake, Trump has lied to the American public. We are all shocked, but none of us should be very surprised; a small part of each of us saw something like this coming.

His desire to stay in power is so strong that, since Nov. 3, he has lied about winning the election, and his language while perpetuating this lie has gotten increasingly combative. Worse, he is not alone. While the president and his lackeys were fanning the flames and whipping a crowd of thousands into a vengeful mob in D.C, some members of the House and Senate were agreeing with this lie throughout the soon-to-be-invaded halls of Congress. At that same time, one of Colorado’s representatives was pledging that this day was the new 1776.

In some of the far reaches of the internet, on message boards and the social media app Parler, calls for revolution and violence have grown since Trump lost his re-election. This was no surprise.

What was surprising was to learn that many people calling for a revolt to keep Trump in office were claiming “this is the new 1776” or “a 1776 moment.”

When she signed a 1776 pledge that morning, I believe our congresswoman knew what that meant to Trump supporters. She was openly asking for an insurrection. What may be worse is, after the violence, she, unlike the eight other delegates from Colorado, continued to perpetuate Trump’s massive lie by voting to object to certification of the Electoral College.

Our congresswoman and the president are directly responsible for what happened on Jan. 6, 2021. We know Trump will be leaving office in two weeks, and our congresswoman should save us all some trouble, acknowledge what she has done and resign her seat.

Colin Wilhelm

Glenwood Springs

Condemn the violence

The violence on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, Jan. 6, should be condemned. It is very clear that there can be no peace in America until the Democratic and Republican parties are gone.

This violence is the first step toward a civil war started by both the Democratic and Republican parties. All of their corruption, monetary greed and election rigging has brought us to this dangerous point. Look at all of the billions of dollars spent on these elections.

The spending is way out of control. All of this money was wasted on two corrupt political parties during this time when millions of Americans are suffering. Legally, these two political parties are mere political clubs fighting for control of America’s election system. They have no legal right to control America’s election system. Election reform can only come from nonpartisan open elections managed by independent nonpartisan election commissions.

Neither of these two parties care about the American people. While these two parties debated for nine months over how little money to give to the American people, they had no problem giving their corporate sponsors billions of corporate welfare.

Apparently, the American people are not worth much, according to these two parties. It is our money, not theirs.

These two parties are dangerous to America and to the American people. Nothing good can come of their continued existence. Their continued existence can only escalate into more violence and civil war.

With only two skimpy survival checks, the violence of 2020, and now the attack on Capitol Hill, the Democratic and Republican parties have written their own political obituaries for 2022, for 2024, and hopefully forever.

Randy Fricke

National Election Reform Committee/Independent Voting

New Castle

Flipping the game board

The Jan. 6 insurrection, ordered by Trump and sons, grabbed me with the thought that we’re waging sedition against Congress, over a vote, despite it following the rules and procedures set out in the constitution.

We stormed the halls, in the name of the Constitution, while flying a confederate flag. Dang, it’s like flipping the monopoly board because everybody’s playing fair.

Seems to me it’s a demonstration of the cognitive dissonance that is daily broadcast to and absorbed by a third of our population. Information from the nonscience, alternate fact universe, where cellphones are made like lollipops.

John Hoffmann


Awaiting new chapter

Another terrible day in Washington, D.C. — Jan. 6, 2021 — unfolded as our current president held a rally and told his supporters/protesters that they should march to the Capitol. He also said, “You will never take back our country with weakness.”

In America, we all know that peaceful protesters are allowed to voice their opinions. Many of these protesters sadly transformed into a violent mob. The attack on our U.S. Capitol left four people dead, many injured and much property damage.

In the Bible (Galatians), it says, “You reap what you sow.” The current president has told the American people so many lies that many find it hard to know what is true. All American citizens have the right to vote, but if they don’t vote for “you,” they are enemies.

Let us hope on Jan. 20 we can start a new chapter of our history — All Americans working together to get through a difficult time.

Nancy Hess

Glenwood Springs

Accept responsibility

How ironic that the poll in Wednesday’s paper asked what we thought should be the No. 1 area of focus for Rep. Boebert.

I’m sure my thoughts are not one of the options provided, but here’s what I would suggest: Ms. Boebert — as I know that you advocate personal responsibility, I request that you accept your personal responsibility for the events at the Capitol on Wednesday, including the loss of five lives.

One of those people died trying to protect you from a mob, and I would hope that you would consider donating at least half of your congressional salary to a fund for the benefit of that officer’s family, as well as the other officers injured in the melee.

Most other members of Congress, from both parties, have acknowledged that what happened was not “patriotism” or “protest.” I also suggest serious study of the Constitution, every article and every amendment.

Sharon McLin

New Castle

Investigate hate groups

Rep. Boebert, please use your position and power to investigate white supremacy groups. They were on full display Wednesday at the U.S. Capitol where five people were killed and many more police officers were wounded.

The Southern Poverty Law Center reported in 2019 that there are 1,020 U.S. hate groups and that they have increased 30% since 2016.

As a child, I crouched under school desks during nuclear attack drills, but I am far more fearful today of white supremacy groups. They meet in secret locations like public forests to practice military drills, they are heavily armed, and they use symbols I do not understand, like the Nazis did in Germany before World War II.

I am very worried that if we do not investigate and root out these secret paramilitary groups, they will proliferate and assault free speech and ultimately cause our open society in America to close.

Ken Ransford


Boebert reference out of context

Separate but equal. Poorly written rhetoric or dog whistle?

I just couldn’t let it go. Our elected officials need to have integrity. The insurrection at the Capitol was heartbreaking, humiliating and horrifying. It was indefensible.

Then, I listened to our representative, Lauren Boebert’s, speech on the House floor. I take no issue with the necessity of civilized debate. That is what she was sent to Washington to do. She stated she had a “separate but equal” obligation to object.

Huh? Separate but equal was the Supreme Court doctrine circa 1954 that upheld legal segregation. Those three words strung together were out of context in Rep. Boebert’s speech.

On that day, at that time, those are the words that were carefully chosen to express her duty? The knot that had been in my stomach moved to my throat, and I couldn’t let it go. It must have been poorly written rhetoric, a beginner’s mistake.

Rep. Boebert came out with an ad earlier in the week, “Why I’m carrying my Glock to Congress.” In the ad she is shown walking the empty streets of D.C. (allegedly) with her Glock. She did not have her Glock with her on Jan. 6, according to an interview Rep. Fallon (Texas) gave to Chris Salcedo on Newsmax on Jan. 6. This is because Rep. Boebert has not been carrying her Glock to Congress, according to a statement her spokesperson Ben Goldey gave to the Washington Post.

Again, I am giving our newest representative the benefit of the doubt. Our elected officials need to have integrity, be honest. That is why I couldn’t let it go. Rep. Boebert represents the constituents she left in western Colorado, not just the ones outside the Capitol with her on Wednesday. My hope for 2021 is that we all focus more on the facts, the issues and working together.

Not so thinly veiled racist rhetoric was not the message southern and western Colorado should have sent to the world. I hope that was not the message the world received. That is why I couldn’t let it go.

Heather Beattie


A way out of the darkness

Everyone is unhappy these days. We are living under a cloud of suffering. Most Americans, and I believe citizens of the world, feel a certain level of frustration, fear, anxiety, anger and powerlessness.

Our leaders have failed us on both sides of the aisle. Their self-serving interests are there to divide and conquer the human spirit.

I have news for those “leaders,” you may be able to rule the limited human ego through fear. But you can never vanquish the human spirit. It is what gets us through the tough times, including the predicament we find ourselves in today.

The only thing more powerful than the fear being tossed about is the light of love that exists within the heart of every human.

We will never solve the problems we face with more of the same negative energy.

This is no time to hide in the shadows and fester in the wrongs of the past. Use your past to fuel your present and harness your inner power.

It is time for us to take responsibility for our own lives, to stop making excuses, beating ourselves up, blaming and clean up our inner attitudes.

It is time for our egos to step aside, stop taking things so personally and put our true selves in the driver’s seat.

Only light can change the dark.

That light has to come from within. Refocus on what is good in you, your life, the world. Look for what connects you to others instead of what is different. Choose to give your energy to lifting yourself and the world up through positive thoughts, words and actions.

One person at a time, we must stoke our own inner fire of potent love to overcome the darkness we face.

This is not someone else’s responsibility. It is your responsibility and mine. Will you join me in consciously letting spirit rise up while letting ego sit down?

Now is the time. The world truly needs you.

Mindy Arbuckle

Glenwood Springs

Be responsible, and resign

January 6, 2021, will be remembered as a very sad day by me. Our nation’s Capitol was looted by rioters, domestic terrorists. Five people died. One of them was an Air Force veteran. One, a police officer.

The officer died protecting Rep. Lauren Boebert from the very people she encouraged to be at our Capitol that day, her “constituents,” she called them, while she hid in an undisclosed location.

Is that how you support our law enforcement men and women, Representative? Is that how you “Back the Blue”?

In less than a week on the job, the blood of five dead people is on your hands, Ms. Boebert. I ask you to take responsibility and resign.

Surely, we can find someone that will think about protecting our Constitution and defending our democracy to take your place.

James Gilliam



Wednesday letters: ID check, Black Lives Matter, demise of America, grocery prices, you go commissioners, Biden won, quinine, cure worse than disease

Policy of colors is wrong

The mighty and all-knowing Polis is making a huge mistake. His policy of colors is wrong.

What should be instated instead is an “ID Check” similar to pot and liquor stores. The new rule should be as follows: Anyone older than 60 is restricted. These people will have to get their groceries delivered, and are not allowed to visit any restaurant in person, or any other activity that might present a “social distancing” issue. If they show up to such public places: check their ID and refuse service to those failing the ID Check. Simple.

Everyone else: Go out if you want. Stay home if you want. I know a ton of young 20- and 30-year-olds (and even older) that have had COVID-19, and guess what? In days, they are just fine. Open up the restaurants and bars, and everything else. Sure — still wear a mask — but release the stranglehold. Please.

The current Polis dictatorship is financially killing the young (and healthy and resilient) adults of all of our communities by forcing them out of jobs and productivity. It is also placing massive strain on a ton of mom-and-pop shops to the brink of destruction. And most of this is being done to protect those who fall within the “ID Check” category.

Polis: Open up the communities except for the “ID Check” folks, and our communities will thrive. And commissioners: Thanks for fighting for our young and capable citizens, and the mom-and-pop entrepreneurs.

Dave Heyliger

Glenwood Springs

BLM using churches as cover

BLM is using churches as a cover for their ill intent. Trojan horse. The leadership at BLM is Marxist, and it isn’t Groucho Marx. The Marxist god is the state. Marxist advocates tear down statues of the Virgin Mary and impose BLM banners. Ironic.

Churches or government entities ought to be ashamed for sponsoring their own demise. Stop.

Original sin. It’s just the reverse of that Tom Cruise movie a few years ago where people were convicted of a crime before they committed it. Funny. People are now persecuted for who they were, not what they became.

Christianity works towards redemption. This current type of retribution without compassion is irrational, as Moses implied, and Jesus demonstrated.

Was the clergy asleep in Sunday school?

Fred Stewart

Grand Junction

The demise of America

The reason America is so divided is more than Democrats and Republicans. A major part of it is the lack of God in society. You can trace it back to 1962 when the Supreme Court banned school- sponsored prayer, had the Ten Commandments removed from schools, and took the Bible out of classrooms.

The problems of society started to get worse after that year, and we are seeing the effects of it today. The Democratic party has gone off the rails crazy in the last 20 years with embracement of socialism, Marxism, liberalism, progressivism and social programs that have done great damage to this country.

The Democrats embrace revisionist history. Our children are being taught this and being indoctrinated from kindergarten to college. Donald Trump is not the problem, he is the result of people being sick and tired of politicians and Washington, D.C.

A bloated and out of control government is the problem. No one is being held accountable. Donald Trump is one of very few presidents who has done what he said he was going to do and did not just say it for a campaign slogan.

Democrat policies have failed the American people time and time again, resulting in larger government and a lot of social programs we do not need.

The pandemic has been something the globalists needed to reset the world economy and seize more power and control. It looks like a feeble Joe Biden and his

ultra-leftist running mate Kamala Harris will be pushing change on America that will do great harm. Elections have consequences. Remember Barack Obama said, “We have to fundamentally transform America”.

“Any society that will give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”

— Benjamin Franklin

Curt Hanson


Grocery receipt doesn’t add up

I try to keep it short at the grocery store. You know why. Yesterday I picked up a dozen items. I have a good head for numbers, so I remember prices, and I’m a very thrifty shopper.

When I checked out, I noticed I got overcharged $4 for a couple of blocks of cheese. The checker trudged over to the dairy case with me, and she made everything right. Then, as I was heading out the door, I checked my receipt again. This time I noticed that the pomegranate on sale for $4.99 got charged at $5.99.

I caught the manager, who suggested we visit the pomegranate case. “I’ll make this right for you,” he declared when I showed him the price. Next stop: customer service counter. When we got there, no one was on duty. The manager started banging on doors. “Look,” I said. “I’ve only got so much time to hang around for a lousy buck.”

“No,” the manager declared.” I’m going to refund your entire purchase price.”

That sounded fair, but after several more minutes of searching for the customer service clerk, I told him, “You obviously have more problems than I do. Let’s just forget it.”

“Catch me next time, and I’ll pay you,” he assured me as I walked out the door.

End of story? Just the first half. This morning I was pacing the aisles again. This time I wrote down prices as I shopped. Bottom line: Crackers advertised for $1.99 sold for $2.99. Three cans of soup on sale for $.99 rang up at $1.79 each. A box of blueberries advertised at four for $5 cost me $2.50.

Today I didn’t fight it. I wasn’t about to spend my morning chasing five bucks. But if you’re pinching pennies in these challenging times, you might want to look at your checkout receipt.

Ed Colby

New Castle

Thanks, commissioners

The four liberal anti-Trump letters in Friday’s Post Independent peaked in their COVID-19-blaming hysteria with Dean Moffitt’s Pilger pointing blame for COVID-19 deaths at our Garco commissioners.

Liberal zealots know no bounds. Thank the Lord at least locally, sane sensibility is still in charge. Thank you for your service, Mr. Martin, Mr. Sampson and Mr. Jankovsky.

Bruno Kirchenwitz


Biden won

News flash: The 2020 presidential election is over. Joe Biden won, but there are still those who will not accept it. I find this interesting, but if they were all working or had a hobby, or did volunteer work at a hospital, or rearranged their sock drawer at home, these pseudo-Republicans would not be sitting in the front yard of the Secretary of State in Michigan protesting with guns strapped to their sides, while she decorated her Christmas tree with her 4-year-old little girl.

Think of all the money the RNC and the Trump campaign has spent since Nov. 4 contesting an obviously fair election. And, after you do that, please think of all the front-line medical workers who are being paid minimum wage to take care of all the COVID-19-infected people in hospitals right now.

We tend to think of front-line workers as doctors and nurses, but they are the minority. The nurse’s assistants, the EMS personnel, the nursing staff in nursing homes are in need of financial help, yet the Trump administration ignores them. But, when it comes to wasting money on a cause that has no positive outcome for them, there is no end in sight.

We should make Jan. 20, 2021, a national holiday.

The day celebrated because it represents our close brush with the loss of our democracy.

On the chatroom Parler Free Speech Lauren Boebert has been very busy indeed. Putting out disinformation and lies non-stop about our election being rigged. Gee, it is nice to see our new House representatives spending their time wisely.

Can’t make this stuff up folks.

Steven Gluckman

Glenwood Springs

Quinine is the cure

Yes, the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed’s COVID-19 vaccines are coming off the pharma-biotech assembly lines with more new manufactured ones to come and the selective mass inoculations have begun.

However, the news reports states that it will be Summer 2021 when the great majority of our American populations will be inoculated for their safekeeping.

What I shall be doing through these coming months to stay well and daily toast my health is to drink the age-old popular wellness carbonated soda that pre-1960 Americans relied upon.

In every supermarket in the soda aisle is tonic water, also called quinine water. It’s my beverage tonic for COVID-19 times.

Tonic water has been used for untold decades as a medicine to fight malaria, sweating, chills, fevers and other maladies to restore people’s health or as a preventive.

I am thankful tonic water with quinine in it is still around. Here’s to the older Americans, our old people, when I was growing up in the 1950s.

Emzy Veazy III

Burbank, California

Cure worse than disease

Can people please start looking at the real numbers for all this? Really, do we need to shut down indoor dining and make further restrictions on businesses? Isn’t the cure worse than the disease?

Look at the hospitalizations and deaths, people. This disease is not bad for the majority of people. Can’t people make their own decisions if they want to keep their businesses open, if they dare shop in their local businesses, if they want to sit in a restaurant that chooses to stay open? If you’re scared, feel free to stay at home or to close your business.

Many of us have already had COVID-19 or are not scared of it. Of course we want to keep our elderly and immune-compromised safe, but haven’t you heard of the huge increases in suicides, suicide calls, depression, etc.?

Please turn mainstream media off and calm the fear it is trying to illicit. Check out stopworldcontrol.com/full. Check out the Barrington Declaration. Use Duck Duck Go or an alternative to Google as it’s very hard to find the truth on Google nowadays.

We need our small business owners to survive, and many of us are wanting to be their customers, but government is trying to have way too much control. Wake up everyone before it is too late.

Jennifer Lahti



Council: We share your frustration with 27th Street bridge project

As community leaders, we were frustrated by the continued closure of the 27th Street bridge for the past week and the impacts on those who depend on this facility. This project was scheduled to be complete by Dec. 5, but it has been opposed by extremely challenging topography, an unseasonably wet early summer, early winter storms, and issues with contractor performance. We are excited that the major impacts are now over and the 27th Street bridge is now open for traffic.

This project has greatly impacted all of us and our families as we sat in traffic alongside our neighbors. Getting to work, kids to school, or running errands has required extra planning and patience and we greatly appreciate the community’s support as we pushed through this final closure. South Glenwood is one of the most populous neighborhoods in Glenwood Springs. Many City staff including the city manager, assistant manager, city engineer and the mayor live with the impacts alongside their neighbors that area. While the major impacts are over, we are still committed to getting this project done efficiently with a high standard of quality as final items are worked on over the next several weeks.

The good news for our community is that the work is near completion and all efforts are underway to complete this project as soon as possible. There are minor impacts remaining on this project now that the bridge is open to traffic. These impacts will include periodic traffic holds with alternating lanes during off-peak hours next week and for the first couple weeks of January as striping and punch-list items are completed. Neighbors of the project can expect holidays without construction noise as crews are not permitted to work on the upcoming holidays.

We continue to ask for the community’s patience during this last bit of construction. In the meantime, the contractor has been using every available technique to complete a quality installation of the pavement while suffering with winter conditions. As many of you will recall, CDOT also constructed through three years of winter conditions for the completion of the Grand Avenue Bridge using these same techniques.

During this project, the bridge has been completely offline for a total of 19 days. This falls short of the goals we set for ourselves and the contractor. The city is reviewing the commitments set forth at the beginning of the project and scrutinizing the staffing levels, equipment availability, and proposed project schedule that led to the prolonging of this project.

As elected officials we have sat in numerous open and executive sessions over the last year where we were briefed on the contract, potential remedies, and risks associated with it. We will do everything in our power to make sure that if issues are revealed with this project, regardless of cause, they are dealt with in a manner that puts the interest of the City and its residents first.

Our Glenwood residents are hardy and resilient and city staff are professional and dedicated. While we all would have liked to have this behind us, we have faced challenges before and risen to the occasion. The continued fight against the mine expansion and the 90-day GAB closure are two of the many examples of Glenwood’s strengths. This temporary but prolonged closure of the 27th St. Bridge demonstrates why we need to press forward on the South Bridge. Glenwood Springs and the entire region needs to have better access and circulation to serve the transportation needs of the community.

As city councilors, we would like to thank our residents for their patience during this challenging project.

Glenwood Springs city councilors are Tony Hershey, Paula Stepp, Steve Davis, Jonathan Godes, Shelley Kaup, Rick Vorhees and Charlie Willman.