Email letters, April 3, 2014

National park issue raises questions worth examining

Thanks to the Sentinel editorial page for admitting that having a mini-national park in our backyard will not unleash a tourism bonanza.

Now, if only the news side of the paper could routinely include dissenting opinions or contrary facts when reporting on the boosterism behind renaming Colorado National Monument.

If I were news editor, I’d charge reporters with digging into the following:

• Why does an initiative that has received only tepid public support keep being dragged back for yet another round of consideration? Who actually stands to benefit? Name names and show the numbers.

• Why has the lead advocacy for this effort come from a Democratic U.S. senator who lives on the Front Range and polled only 38 percent of the county’s votes in 2008? How does the anti-federal government movement figure into the opposition?

• Why would one of the nation’s smallest national parks neither be expanded nor shielded from nearby encroachments that might detract from enjoyment of the park? How does the bill’s “no buffer zone or protective perimeter” provision square with the announced campaign by the Mesa Land Trust to buffer areas along Monument Road?

• Why, of all the potential stakeholders, were Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce and West Slope Colorado Oil and Gas Association written into the bill to advise on a national park, while groups representing park users, the environment and public land uses were not stipulated?

• What’s the big deal about Class II Air Quality standards under the clean air act? Clearly explain what relationship park status could have to air quality enforcement and who would be affected if standards did change.

I’m sure you could come up with some other interesting and newsworthy story ideas if you really tried.

CHARLIE QUIMBY
Grand Junction

What are readers’ top reasons for changing to a national park?

I read in the Thursday edition of The Daily Sentinel that the tourism community is “abuzz” with the possibility of Colorado National Monument becoming a national park.


Let me ask a question and invite other readers to submit letters containing answers.


Concerning the Grand Valley and discounting economic benefit, what are the five most compelling reasons to change from monument to park?


RICHARD RININGER
Grand Junction


Sheriff editorial seems to favor King

The Sentinel asks, “ Is the sheriff executive or ideologue?” It asks that question and others of John Pennington, but not Steve King. It implies that Pennington doesn’t understand the job, but, in contrast, King does.

Normally one would expect a hometown paper to be welcoming to a newcomer, a nonpolitician, someone to give the electorate a choice. It begs the question, why wouldn’t the Sentinel embrace Pennington’s candidacy and provide some background information?

Well, it should not surprise anyone that the Sentinel disapproves of a conservative constitutionalist. For liberals, that combination is lethal.

It is worth noting that the Sheriff has more power in his county than does the President of the United States. So says the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. Supreme Court. The Sheriff has the ultimate authority to stop any and all confiscations by Federal Agencies, like the confiscation of guns or land use. He is the peoples protector and in this day of Obama’s tyranny, I think it’s important to have a constitutionalist Sheriff.

It was correctly stated at the assembly that Sen. Steve King voted in favor of giving a Federal Agency police power in Colorado. I don’t want a flexible politician as my sheriff, even if he purports to be a conservative. Apparently a majority of the Republican delegates on Saturday felt that way too.

I was a delegate at the assembly and I, and many others, thought that Mr. King would run away with a hefty majority of the votes, as did Scott McGinnis for county commissioner. King and McGinnis had the greatest name recognition, having previously served.

Arizona Sheriff Richard Mack, the founder of “Oath Takers” gave a rousing speech in his seconding of Pennington’s nomination. Pennington himself gave a stirring speech espousing constitutional values and his solemn pledge to protect the rights of Mesa County residents.

It was apparent to me that the majority of the delegates were inspired by Pennington’s remarks. He appeared unequivocal in the face of usurpation and evidenced true character.

I suggest that voters learn about John Pennington, and take the recommendations of the Sentinel with a grain of salt. Doing so will likely lead to the same conclusion that the informed delegates at the Assembly reached. Please vote in the primary June 24th. Your liberty depends on it.

RICHARD GAVIGAN
Fruita

President has had numerous flubs

Yesterday President Obama’s mouth was moving again when he happily announced the enrollment of 7.1 million people in Obamacare.  When his mouth is moving, some real “beauties” have come out of it.  The following are just a few.

     “I’ve been in all 57 states.”
     “The intercontinental railroad.”
      Verbally spelling “RSPECT” when introducing Aretha Franklin and her chart topping song.
    “You’ll save $2500 per year on insurance premiums.”
     “If you like your doctor, you’ll be able to keep your doctor.”
     “If you like your insurance plan, you’ll be able to keep your insurance plan.”
     “The Benghazi murders were in response to a crude and disgusting video.”
    
This abbreviated list of “Obamanisms” is proof that, when his mouth is moving, he either doesn’t know what he’s talking about or is just flat lying.
    
The debate about the 7.1 million enrollees then is, which is it?  Doesn’t know or is lying.  There’s plenty of evidence for either but little evidence for truth.

RICK L. COLEMAN
Grand Junction

Grant inconsistent in his views on protecting innocent lives

Bill Grant’s piece in Wednesday’s Sentinel brought to mind Bill Clinton’s splitting hairs about the definition of “is.”

This week Grant argues against a Republican candidate’s pro-life stand. Last month Grant wanted the Second Amendment circumvented to protect innocent lives from the horrors of firearms.                                                

The most recent estimate is that 50 million lives have been ended by legal abortion since Roe v. Wade. The number killed by firearms during that period is  minute when compared to the deaths by abortion.The very least we can expect from a Sentinel contributor is consistency. Grant should be for life or against it. 

GARY MONTGOMERY

Grand Junction

Harlem Ambassadors look forward to more roundball here

On March 25 the Downtown Kiwanis-Lions-Rotary Clubs hosted the Harlem Ambassadors professional show basketball team for a night of high-flying slam dunks, hilarious comedy and feel-good family entertainment.

The Harlem Ambassadors would like to extend a special thank-you to event organizers Rick Nisley, Kevin Price and Vikki Bell, who planned and promoted the game. The Community All Stars proved to be an energetic and enthusiastic challenging team, and we thank all of the players for their good sportsmanship. The event would not have been possible without the support and generosity of local community sponsors, members of the Downtown Kiwanis-Lions-Rotary Clubs and the event volunteers.

The Harlem Ambassadors thank the community of Grand Junction for its warm hospitality and look forward to returning to Grand Junction in the future.

DALE MOSS
Harlem Ambassadors President
Fort Collins

Hold Republicans accountable for their tax-and-spend attitudes

If the operators of a casino give you a free room, they only do so in the expectation that you will go and lose more money than the room was worth at the games. If a defense contractor “donates” drones worth 50 grand, it has an expectation that you will give it millions (or billions) of dollars in contracts in the future.

That is the way the game is played, and guess what, Mesa sheriff? You are expected to buy millions in drones in the coming decade.

Another tax-and-spend Republican sheriff who outfits his department with big fancy gas-guzzling Kardashian grocery-getters instead of cars and fancy (and pricy) high tech gizmos.

When does it end? When are so-called “Republicans” going to quit blowing our tax money as if Bill Gates and Warren Bufett are the ones paying taxes?

I am sick of seeing one cop in a seven-passenger car talking on the phone ... those cops look and act no differently than teenagers in North Scottsdale. Difference is the sheriff’s office doesn’t have a trust fund from Daddy ... but they sure spend like they do.

It is high time to hold Republicans accountable for their tax-and-spend attitudes on fancy toys or just sit back and watch your children’s debt bill continue to grow (not only are we leaving them a police state to live in, but they will have to pay for it). Obama isn’t the only problem in government, and that the sheriff doesn’t hold a candle to Obama doesn’t excuse being wasteful with money that isn’t his.

NELS LUKE WERNER
Cortez

In bipartisan fashion push path toward immigration reform

It is great to see the amount of progress our Colorado congressmen and women have made on the issue of immigration but unfortunate to see it stalled in the House. It’s time to put our bipartisan efforts together and push a path toward immigration reform so that we see economic growth and development, job creation and an overall American competitive advantage. Since Colorado is one of the most popular states that attract immigrants to help serve our large agriculture sector, I urge constituents to call their representatives in DC
to focus on a comprehensive reform to address this growing concern.

MATT HOLMES

Denver

Lessen pressure on mule deer population

Colorado’s Department of Wildlife is trying to figure out why the mule deer population has drastically declined. As a lifelong on-and-off hunter and outdoorsman myself, I think the answer is simple. For many years we have an extended archery season, muzzle-loading season (using modern not primitive type rifles) and 4-high-power rifle seasons. These seasons begin mid-August and terminate late December (the deer rut is typically between mid- September to late November).

We drive noisy motorized two- and four-wheelers and mountain bike, and we hike all over the outdoors. In the winter we go everywhere with noisy snow machines.

When in hell do we expect to relieve the human pressure on these animals so they can try to get a bit normal in their neighborhoods?  If we humans had this type of alien-to-us, year-round equipment noise, trespass pressure coupled with another species actively hunting to kill us for five months of the year in our neighborhoods, we wouldn’t have babies either.

We should restrict a lot of this motorized traffic, cut back the seasons some and raise the price of out-of-state licenses. The state won’t.

JIM SHULTS
Grand Junction

Incident in public school was quite simply proselytizing

This letter is in regard to columnist Rick Wagner’s rambling Thursday about religion, government and the relationship of the two.

Wagner seems to imply that morality flows from religion and without religion there would be no morality. What is morality? To me it is very simply the Golden Rule. Treat others in the manner that you want to be treated by them. You may differ.
 
Religion of some sort might be a big part of your life. In this country there is no state religion telling you that you should behave in a certain way and believe certain things. You are free to believe what you want, associate with others of the same belief and, in a non-governmental setting, freely try to get others to join you in your beliefs.

Personally, I take offense at those who violate my personal space in attempting to convert me, such as people knocking at my door or stopping me on the street telling me to repent and join them in their beliefs. But they are free to do so. And I’m free to turn them away.
 
In a setting like public schools I want to be free of such activities. That is a place where, above all, we recognize that others can have any religious beliefs they choose, or not.

I understand their zealotry in wanting converts because they feel everybody would benefit by believing as they do. And as soon as I leave that place recognized as being governmental — meaning established and run with the taxes we all pay — anyone is free to approach me in any manner he or she chooses, and I’m free to accept, or not, that person’s advances.
 
The incident in question is, pure and simple, proselytizing. It has no place in a public school.  Morality is not the issue.
 
JOHN BORGEN
Grand Junction


COMMENTS

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As usual, Rick Coleman’s puerile critique of President Obama’s malapropisms proves nothing – other than Coleman’s virulent disrespect for our elected commander-in-chief.

As for 7.1 million “ObamaCare” enrollees, despite dire prognostications by the same pundits who confidently predicted that Mitt Romney would comfortably win the 2012 presidential election, enrollments on the ObamaCare insurance exchanges exceeded the mark predicted by the Congressional Budget Office.

While incredulous “conservatives like Coleman continue to question the numbers, the best available current data indicates that – of the 7.1 million new enrollees – about 80% have paid their first month’s premium, two million were previously uninsured, and five million previously insured found affordable coverage on the market-based exchanges.

Taking together the two million previously uninsured enrollees, plus the 4.5 million who have enrolled under Medicaid expansion and the three million young adults who remain covered under their parents’ policies, ObamaCare has already reduced the number of previously uninsured Americans by 9.5 million.  Isn’t that a good thing?

Conversely, some 8 million Americans otherwise eligible for coverage languish in those 25 “red states” that have not yet embraced Medicaid expansion.  Because the Supreme Court allowed those states to opt-out of that provision of “ObamaCare”, Republican governors and legislatures have (as Sarah Palin unintentionally but accurately predicted) become de facto “death panels”—allowing 7,000 to 17,000 entirely avoidable (with health insurance coverage) needless deaths to occur thus far.  Isn’t that a bad thing?

Meanwhile, the latest polling shows that a majority of Americans now fully support the Affordable Care Act (49% to 48%), a 9% improvement since the website debacle.  The real question is why folks like Coleman want to deny their fellow Americans access to affordable health care.

The utter bankruptcy of Republicans’ “scorched-earth” anti-American ideology is clearly exposed in the photographs of three “lines” – those that formed-up to vote last November when Republicans attempted to suppress turnout, those that formed-up Monday to enroll in ObamaCare, and the unemployment lines that have resulted from Republicans’ failed economic policies.

Where many of those record numbers of sign-ups for “Obamacare” are coming from? PRISONS. States are signing up their incarcerated prisoners to the ACA in record numbers.

Guess who’s going to pay for this? yep, us good ol’ hardworking taxpayers.

As usual Bill Hugenburg is ignorant of the fact that the tally for Obamacare recipients is trying to include convicts and those that have not actually signed up and PAID for a policy. Being the resident Liberal moron for the Daily Sentinel makes his smarter than anybody else and able to leap large lies in single bound. Todd Miskel hits the homer. Mr. Hugenburg’s vitriol and hate for anything conservative comes out everytime he sends a comment. His use of Roget’s Thesaris is impressive, his knowledge of what his policy and acts of the Liberal party are not. I’m pretty sure if we gave him the $648 million to throw away on a website he could do just as good a job as his buddy Barry. Nice going!

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