Email Letters: June 2, 2017

Letter attempts to dissuade the intellect of voting for school bonds

Why is it that when articles of transparency are written about District 51 the whiners appear in attempts to dissuade the intellect of voting for school bonds? Mr. Owens would have us believe our new superintendent of schools has a king’s salary unworthy of service to us peasants. A closer look will show the salaries are closer than thought.

Additionally, why is it that Grand Junction is thought of as the only community with senior citizens where schools exist? Attempting to hold 22,000 students hostage by suggesting the defeat of essential bonds is disingenuous at best. Instead of whining, it would behoove Mr. Owens and other likeminded “voters” to schedule a tour of OMMS and other facilities that need immediate maintenance needs or complete replacement before forming your final opinion. I’m sure the District would accept your input and accept any volunteer opportunity you could provide.

Yes, we live in a community of seniors but that does not mean these 22,000 students need to walk a mile in the rain and snow to school and sit on dirt floors.

STEVE PHILLIPS
Grand Junction

We should pay consumption taxes for out of state purchases

I see on the business/financial TV channels that banks project that a minimum of 20 percent of retail malls will close within five years. With the way state, city, county and federal governing bodies are always thinking of how and why to tax, why are we not paying the consumption taxes for purchasing things in another county, city or state? Is there a good reason I do not know of that our governments allow businesses to do this? Towns lose jobs and Amazon engulfs the world’s money. I carefully consider taxes on the ballot but come on; this is how our government runs.

GORDON NIELSEN
Grand Junction

Don’t let us be bullied or tricked by anti-drilling activists

I’m writing to express how refreshing the article “State regulators stand up to anti-drilling activists” by Simon Lomax in Tuesday’s paper was. Being raised in Grand Junction I have seen the rise and sometimes fall of the oil and natural gas industry, following the media backlash often caused by activists.

As a small business owner in Colorado I have seen and felt the effects of how quickly our economy falls with the decline of oil and gas in the area. I was feeling relieved to hear that our state regulators are not acting as puppets or being bribed by theses activists and are instead calling for the truth. When activists use children as a front in their cases that have been trained and told what to say it is extremely deceitful. Also as a mother I cannot understand what people would allow their children to be a tool for these organizations.

As a small business owner and long-term resident of Grand Junction, I urge all of my fellow citizens to look into this issue more and not be tricked by these national activists’ media tools. Be educated, understand the issues, and also urge your state and county legislators to stand up for what you believe is right. Don’t let us be bullied or tricked by national activists. Their main goal is to ban all oil and gas production and it is clear that they are relentless in trying to achieve that.

JES ECKHART
Grand Junction

Sentinel tardy in reporting on recent events

One day after the shooting incident in Manila in which many people died and President Trump opting out of the Paris Climate Accord, there is no mention of either in The Daily Sentinel.

How long can news be left to marinate before it’s no longer news?

If Trump were suspected of involvement in the Manila incident, the Sentinel would have carried the typical extensive AP article today moaning about his apparent involvement.

Likewise with pulling out of the Paris Accord. Although with the typical liberal pap that the Sentinel has come to be known for, maybe we’re actually spared by Sentinel tardiness.

RICHARD RININGER
Grand Junction

AHCA does not provide adequate healthcare coverage for Americans

I am writing not as a Republican or a Democrat, but as a registered nurse of 38 years’ service. The AHCA proposal passed by the House does not provide adequate healthcare coverage for Americans. Making the 10 Essential Benefits optional in order to fit the healthcare plan into a tax reduction plan fails to recognize what insurance is, how it works, and why and when we might need it. It puts regular people at financial risk, as nobody can predict what their healthcare needs will be.

Rep. Tipton says the GOP plan covers pre-existing conditions. But a person with a pre-existing condition like diabetes or hypertension will be penalized with a higher insurance premium (asthma could cost an extra $4,000, for one example) if they have had an insurance lapse of more than 63 days. This could happen if you get laid off and cannot afford the high COBRA premium or if your COBRA coverage runs out before you get another job with health insurance. The average time out of work nationally is 168 days.

People aged 50-64 will pay a higher premium under the AHCA, whether or not they have pre-existing conditions. Penalizing older people and putting our healthcare at risk is not keeping America great. Colorado’s Sen. Gardner is part of a Senate group working to craft another version of healthcare coverage. Tell him you cannot predict the future about your family’s health or your job; and that we need a plan that protects both our physical health and our financial health.

FRANK HOLT
Fruita

Attack on national security requires severe consequences for all perpetrators

As news erupted of Trump’s son-in-law seeking a secret communication channel through the Russian embassy, Trump’s national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, said he “would not be concerned about” back-channel communications. When initiated by our government, with approval by the president, they can be useful. When initiated by a private citizen, they may be seditious. As advisors to the president-elect six weeks before inauguration, Jared Kushner and Michael Flynn were violating the law. They were undermining the authority of our one and only legal president at that time. If he knew about this, and condoned it, Trump would be equally culpable for this treasonous action.

It’s obvious that back-channel communications must be secret, or at least confidential, but that doesn’t mean being withheld from appropriate governmental authorities. By trying to set up a secret channel, and then by not reporting his contacts with Russian government representatives. Kushner was intending to hide something.

Was he trying to arrange secret payoffs from Russian oligarchs to his father-in-law? Or was he simply a “useful fool” naively enabling Putin’s people to influence the American presidency? We don’t know, yet. But this attack on our national security requires severe consequences for all its perpetrators.

BRUCE JOFFE
Piedmont, Calif.

We have more to fear from homegrown terrorists

Regarding the Portland murders by the white supremacist, hate groups tripled while President Obama was in office and most white supremacists cheered when Trump was elected. We have way more to fear from homegrown terrorists than we do entities like ISIS. Thanks to Trump’s campaign and election and the right-wing talking head media, which spews all kinds of conspiracies, these hate groups are flourishing and they feel emboldened to believe that they are regular America.

These are the terrorists we should be worried about. Yet our government spends very few resources investigating hate groups in our country. We are so focused on foreign terrorists that we let these right-wing nut jobs operate right in our own communities. Imagine if an ISIS member were to engage in a terrorist attack. Our law enforcement personnel would be all over that, investigating their ties to other groups or individuals with additional arrests to follow. A white
supremacist commits murder in Portland and not much happens except his own arrest.

There is also way too much hate speech allowed in this country. I differ with the America Civil Liberties Union when they support hate speech as free speech. We need to have limits on what people are allowed to spew in the public realm.

Unfortunately, Trump is not going to take any actions toward these hate groups because these are the very people who make up a significant part of his voting bloc. Instead, we the citizens must request action from our lawmakers and law enforcement to see that these groups are monitored on a regular basis and to pass legislation limiting what can be classified as free speech.

JIM DENTON
Grand Junction


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