Email letters, Jan. 8, 2013

Secret web of slavery a fact of life in U.S.

Thank you for covering stories in the past year regarding an unfortunate situation called human trafficking. Although we often think this happens only in foreign countries, it is also found in the United States.

We thank our Colorado lawmakers and law enforcement agents who are working to eliminate the trafficking of people, commonly referred to as modern-day slavery.

Under the federal Trafficking Victims Protection Act (2000), human trafficking is the use of force, fraud or coercion to induce/compel/subject an individual to provide labor, services or commercial sex against his/her will. Any minor involved in commercial sex acts is a victim, not a prostitute.

Friday is Human Trafficking Awareness Day. Perhaps each person reading this can let this be his/her first or second step to being informed.

Expose the secret web of trafficking.


Grand Junction

Majority of citizens pay no income tax at all

James Reimer’s letter stating “increasing taxes affect everyone, more or less, equally” is a statement looking for comment.

How equal can it be for the 52 percent of all Americans who pay NO INCOME TAXES and the 48 percent who pay for all the taxes? 

Those who work pay for those who don’t.

Grand Junction

ATM trails already mar enough wilderness areas

In his letter to the Sentinel (Jan. 4) Brandon Siegfried advocates for more ATV routes in Bangs Canyon.

In the eyes of many people, however, the great outdoors is already marred by too many motorized “trails.” Maybe BLM should keep that in mind.

Grand Junction

Energy industry ought to appease citizens

David Ludlam’s recent column opining about environmentalists’ hypocrisy and Victorian attitudes toward gas drilling lacks historical and most Coloradans’ perspectives.

Persons involved in the original 1970 Earth Day expected U.S. buildings’ electrical and space/water heating to be sourced from at least 60 percent solar, geothermal and other renewables by the 1990s.

Dismay has turned to anger for them when 42 years later they see a less than 10 percent utilization of clean energies, federal subsidies/tax breaks for extraction industries three times the amount for renewables, continuing air and water pollution, and now the disruption of the world’s climate.

Many Colorado valley ranchers, mountain-town recreationists and urban retirees never imagined that their areas would become pseudo-industrial sites, either. Many of these people chose to live in Colorado because of the natural environment, not because of industrial jobs. Of course, they don’t want dirty activities in their backyard.

I beg to differ that environmentalists don’t recognize the need for gas drilling. Their furnaces, boilers/hot water heaters and electricity only function on the gas source, and most have only one monopolistic supplier.

If they have little choice, one would think the gas industry would be appeasing citizens, not combating them with lobbyists, PR spinners and attorneys. Industry should do as Ludlam suggests and use the best standards possible — not just begrudgingly make tiny changes after litigation occurs.

Best standards might include drilling only in areas that don’t impact residences, critical wildlife and watersheds; using only non-toxic, biodegradable fracking fluids; and limiting dust-creating road construction. Unfortunately, the overbearing profit motive will probably foster nothing but contentiousness between parties in Colorado’s future.


Grand Junction


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