E-mail letters, December 16, 2010

Killing bear in den
is hardly sporting

I was curious when I saw the headline about the 750 pound bear in The Daily Sentinel on Dec. 15. As I began reading, my curiosity turned to disgust.

What sport is there to track a bear to his den and shoot him at point-blank range while he is in a sleeping stupor? When an intruder breaks into our homes and shoots a person it is called murder. This is no different. How can Mr. Kendall and his crony honestly be proud of what he

How can the Colroado Division of Wildlife condone this behavior? This should be illegal. When such behavior is glorified, other unethical hunters will follow Kendall’s example.

Shame on Kendall! The sad part is the loss of the fabulous bear’s life and the fact that he shows no remorse. I can assure him that no one with any sense of decency is jealous of Kendal.
Vicki Brickey

Dream Act a nightmare
for American citizens

I must take issue with people who have been advocating for congressional passage of the so- called DREAM Act. It is always described as being “for the children” or “justice for scholars.” This is total nonsense.

According to the Heritage Foundation, the DREAM Act would put an estimated 2.1 million illegal immigrants on a pathway to citizenship, and would also give them access to in-state tuition rates, federal student loans and federal work-study programs.

Illegals who gain citizenship through this bill would have the legal right to petition for the entry of their family members, including adult brothers and sisters and also the parents who
illegally brought them to this country in the first place. In less than a decade, the resulting chain migration could easily double or triple the 2.1 million green cards that will immediately be distributed.

Some of the major flaws are, according to NumbersUSA:

—No alien who files an amnesty application may be removed from the U.S. before the application is adjudicated completely. This includes those with criminal records and even those with outstanding deportation orders, who would no doubt game the system to remain in the country.
—The DREAM amnesty would begin with illegal aliens filling out applications. They merely have to claim—not provide evidence—that they meet criteria of having been brought to the U.S. before age 16 and being under the age of 30. Once they allege these minimal criteria, they are given “conditional lawful permanent resident status” and are given a 10-year work permit to compete directly with the 22 million Americans who want a full-time job but can’t find one.

Despite the fact that some media outlets have taken to referring to the potential recipients of the amnesty as “the best and the brightest” and “stars,” illegal aliens can get the 10-year work permit merely by completing a GED and enrolling in a single course in a community college or trade school.

With all the pressing matters before our country regarding job creation, tax policy, the budget, national security, etc. why is this being pushed on us now? Could there be a political agenda here? In spite of the heart-tugging stories you hear, could this be all about political power?
Gary Akers

Wagner is incorrect
that rich are overtaxed

This is in response to Rick Wagner’s contention that the rich are being overtaxed. In fact the opposite is true.

Wagner misses the obvious: The rich are being taxed more because they are amassing an increasingly disproportionate share of the wealth.

I suggest that Wagner read “Winner-Take-All Politics: How Washington Made the Rich Richer — And Turned Its Back on the Middle Class,” by Jacob Hacker and Paul Pierson. The authors write that in 2007, the top 25 hedge fund managers raked in $892 million on average. Through a tax
loophole, the managers paid only the capital gains tax at the rate of 15% on this income.

In 1965, the average CEO of a large U.S. corporation made around 24 times the earnings of a typical worker. By 2007, average CEO pay was approaching 300 times typical earnings. Now I understand why Carmelo Anthony won’t sign for $15 million a year. On that he couldn’t afford to live in the best neighborhoods.
William Voss
Grand Junction

Senators opposed to earmarks
seek billions worth

What makes the $1.2 trillion, 2,000 page Omnibus Spending Bill so interesting is the fact it contains so much “pork” ($8.1 Billion) inserted by senators “opposed” to the practice.
Mithc McConnell, R, wants $86.1 million, Ben Nelson, D, $30 million, John Cornyn, R, $93.5 million and John Thune, R, $38.5 million. The list includes 24 senators who claim to be
opposed to “earmarks”.

How to they defend this? They say it is not really pork or the requests were made before they were in opposition, and, thus, already part of the bill or it is okay because they will vote against it (knowing it will pass), and finally — always a crowd favorite — the bill is so voluminous at 2,000 pages they do not have time to read it.

Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah has asked that his requests be withdrawn from the bill. Sen. John McCain appears to remain staunch in his opposition to this practice and has no requests
included in the Omnibus Bill. Maybe others will emulate this behavior.

The practitioners of this craft are quick to point out that it is less than 1 percent of the spending. Are we expected to believe that spending $8 billion does not matter? Where is devotion to deficit reduction and “fiscal conservatism”?  We need representatives who care about America, who feel that America is more important than a newly re-designed waterfront in Paducah, Ky, and who are willing to make hard choices about not continuing to play the same game as has been played in Washington, D.C.

If citizens demand deficit reduction, what are we willing to let go? If not Social Security reductions, home mortgage deductions and military cutbacks, then what? We cannot demand that spending be reduced without expecting some personal impact. Getting our nation back on track may require some sacrifice. It is not realistic to hope that all benefits will be retained, that taxes that support the benefits will be reduced, and that government will give us more of what we want and take away from others about whom we do not care.
Jim Hoffman
Grand Junction

Community giving made
toy drive a success

I want to express my gratitude for the giving spirit of Mesa County. During the early part of November, in the midst of a very contentious and negative political season, I was privileged to witness the power of positive action.

In late October, I learned that there would not be a Marine Toys for Tots drive in Mesa County this holiday season. When I notified the community through the media, I was overwhelmed and extraordinarily humbled by the response.

I received over 600 telephone calls and too many e-mails to count from local businesses, organizations and every variety of individual volunteering to do whatever it took to ensure that children were remembered this holiday season. Once again my faith in the giving heart of this community was renewed.

It soon became apparent that the children of this community would be best served by all of us partnering with the local Salvation Army Annual Christmas Drive. A huge “Thank you” needs to go to the local Lion’s Clubs that stepped up and, in partnership with the Salvation Army, placed toy boxes throughout the community, providing pick-up, storage and delivery of all of these gifts.

This year’s toy drive has been a wondrous event that has brought joy to all involved. Because of the generosity of this community, every child who was signed up for the toy drive will receive gifts and their families will receive a wonderful food box, also. Capt. Dan Wilson and his wife Capt. Terrie and all of the Salvation Army staff and volunteers, including the local National Guard, are all owed our gratitude for a job well done.

I wear a pin frequently that says, “Believe,” and the generous heart of this community has strengthened my belief in the innate goodness of people to reach out and touch the lives of those less fortunate than them.

Thanks to everyone for stepping up to “get ’er done” for the children of this community I hope there is warmth in your spirit and a smile on your face. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.
Sue Tuffin, Director
Mesa County Workforce Center
Grand Junction

Eastgate isn’t adequate
to host a Costco store

In response to Ms. Luellen’s letter asking readers to e-mail Costco asking them to build a store in Eastgate Shopping Center, I would encourage all potential letter writers to visit at least one Costco location (such as the near in Gypsum) before writing.

It will quickly become apparent that the Eastgate location might be large enough to hold the store, but there would be no room for parking.

These stores have huge footprints and massive parking lots and create significant traffic. Eastgate is nowhere large enough for them, nor is there adequate access on existing roadways.

I’d love to see a Costco here in Grand Junction, but the site needs to be chosen carefully and there just isn’t adequate space or access at Eastgate.
Darrel Sartin
Grand Junction

Vote on gays in military
shows an immoral nation

The 250 House members who voted to repeal “don’t ask, don’t tell” would not be retained past
Christmas if we were yet a moral and religious people.

The House refused to listen to Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos, who clearly told them this change will risk combat Marines coming home maimed.

I agree with Col. Oliver North, who said the change would gut the military. He said it would not
end ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,” but ensure it would continue.

Also, the House ignored the Pentagon report that said this change will legalize sodomy on military bases.

Most military chaplains are trained by orthodox Christian churches and the scriptures are very clear: The men of Sodom were wicked and sinning before the Lord exceedingly. The example of the destruction of Sodom as a message of how God deals with the unrighteous is the same message today as when Peter and Jude wrote their epistles. The fool says that the scriptures are
irrelevant today.

This change will harm and not make our military stronger. I cannot support any mere politician from any political party who favors the immoral and irreligious change that Rep. Barney Frank and his buddies wish for our military.
Robert Burkholder



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