Email letters, March 28, 2014

Opt for classy, not trashy

Memo to City of Fruita, Cobb Marketing and Communications, and the Sentinel editorial board: Here’s an idea … let’s try for clever and classy instead of edgy and trashy. It’s hard work, we know, but if you put your minds to it, you might surprise yourselves.

BRAD and SHERI WRIGHT
Grand Junction

Record number of members of Congress are millionaires
   
A quick read of the morning’s headlines this a.m. produced four news items relating to politicians being arrested yesterday. Kickbacks, accepting bribes and plotting to provide guns to terrorist were on today’s list. These are the people we trust to spend trillions of our tax dollars and to pass laws that affect our daily lives. 

Why do we hear a candidate give one emotional speech and decide to trust him with families’ well-being. Shouldn’t our press actually investigate candidates, local and national, and inform the public? Shouldn’t we hold our politicians to a high standard? 

A recent survey found that the percentage of members of the House and Senate who are millionaires is at a record high.  To paraphrase James Michener, Ppoliticians run for office to do good and do really well.

GARY MONTGOMERY
Grand Junction
     
Young student was kind, but Caprock was not evil

Regarding the recent hysteria involving a student at Caprock Academy, who shaved her head in support of her friend who is fighting cancer, yay! We need more like her and her family.

However, berating the school who was navigating its way through its by-laws and standards for the school, was unnecessary and unfair. As you know, they made, what most of us consider the right decision, and I would have been shocked to see anything else.

My granddaughter attends Caprock and I have volunteered in her classrooms. I’ve seen nothing but concern and consideration for each student and their welfare.

Take a breath, folks. Give people a break to work out solutions when faced with out-of-the-ordinary circumstances. That includes you, Daily Sentinel.

PATRICIA PAIZ
Grand Junction

       
Efforts by Udall and Gardner to hasten LNG exports lauded

We commend Sen. Mark Udall and Rep. Cory Gardner for promoting faster approvals of liquified natural gas export terminals. Their leadership will create markets that are more free and a world that is more stable. While detractors can reasonably argue the merits of energy exports, one point can’t be denied: LNG exports are critical to the Western Slope economy.

Vast new reserves of natural gas have been discovered locally in the Mancos Shale. Our community, as a result, now has more natural gas than we could have ever contemplated, even five years ago. This extraordinary development has only one downside: New markets are needed for new-found local energy products. The new national abundance of natural gas is a boon to the nation but major headwind to our regional economy. Experts show that LNG exports may displace just enough natural gas to get local rigs drilling again without significantly raising energy prices on consumers and manufacturers.

The  potential for such a balance is clearly understood by Gardner and Udall. We hope others in the U.S. Congress follow their lead. As Western Colorado awaits a report from the Grand Junction Economic Partnership and Colorado Mesa University on what LNG exports might mean for our own economic development potential, our organizations will continue supporting elected officials who show leadership on this issue.

The Mancos Shale has potential to shape and boost our regional economy for generations while also helping insulate European allies abroad from military and political aggressions. For this reason members of Western Colorado’s business community are doing all we can to help Gardner and Udall in their efforts.

BONNIE PETERSEN
Executive Director, Club 20
DAVID LUDLAM
Executive Director, West Slope Colorado Oil & Gas Association
FRANK LADD
President and CEO, Rifle Area Chamber of Commerce
DIANE SCHWENKE
President and CEO, Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce
Grand Junction
LINDA SMITH
Executive Director
Western Colorado Contractors Association

Sentinel urged to publish historical U.S. documents

     
Since this is an election year, I thought it might be a great idea to publish the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights and possibly the Colorado Constitution in the Sentinel to give some of your readers a chance to read these documents — some of which they may never have read before.

From now until November would provide plenty of time to publish each one, or each one could be published in part during a week. This would be a great nonpartison way to help educate voters.

BOB KLEIN
Grand Junction

Havlik’s ethics are more important than his party affiliation

I cannot imagine anyone being upset that someone running for any office in Mesa County would switch his or her party from Democrat to Republican. How else would one get elected in Mesa County? Many top officials have done this in Grand Junction, and we know who they are. This is not, and should not be, the issue.

A far deeper issue and the one to consider is that evidently our former county coroner accepted taxpayers’ dollars for work that he did not complete, crucial and critical work that would be revealing and germane to individual situations respectively.

Consistency of actions, values and principles are what our citizens need in their elected officials. Make sure Mesa County is served by a forensic pathologist who is ethical and honest and has strong moral principles as his guiding force. Support and re-elect Dean Havlik, M.D. for Mesa County coroner 2014. Havlik follows the standards set by the governing body of this office and follows the code of ethics for which he took an oath, both as an elected official and as a physician.

I had the honor to formally second Havlik’s nomination when he ran as a Democrat. It would never be upsetting to me that he switched political parties to run again. This is simply practical, nothing more. I am a very loyal Democrat, but more importantly, I am someone who expects our elected officials to be ethical and to fulfill the duties outlined in their position.

MARGARET LINGER PEARSON
Grand Junction
     
Caprock Academy deserves unwavering support

I have about as much regard for The Daily Sentinel editorial board’s opinion of the Caprock Academy matter (“A Bone-Headed Move”) as I did when Barack Obama weighed in on the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. in 2009. Both parties rushed to judgment when presented with low information. I guess if you’ve got ink you’re gonna spill it, and if you’ve stumbled across a viral social media “story” you’re gonna print it.

As a Caprock parent, I want to express unwavering support for the school, those who wrote the charter, those who interact with the students each day, and those who govern on the board of directors. Some people view the outcome as a triumph for social media and the pressure it brought to bear. But Facebook is like fire. It can be used for the advancement of mankind, or it can be used to wreak havoc and destruction.

It’s a shame that a lot of hurtful innuendo and character assassination has occurred over a small blip on the disciplinary radar screen. Caprock is an amazing school of choice that is educating children in the classical tradition, creating scholars who are taught through the introduction of primary sources and challenged to defend their opinions. This could have been a positive lesson in civics and the proper avenue to effect change. Instead, students and parents have been polarized, administrators have been demonized, and the community has formed opinions based on rumor and ignorance of the facts.

I have attended Caprock board meetings for years. Most of the members are Caprock parents and other community members who are reasonable, intelligent, intuitive, discerning and compassionate adults who have the welfare of the Caprock community foremost in mind.

The headmaster and deans of students are simply enforcing the policies set forth in the charter. Criticizing them for upholding those rules is like blaming a policeman for enforcing the law. There is an orderly and methodical process by which to change or waive those policies, and board members are open-minded to the appeals of concerned
parents.

It takes years to build a successful school that makes a positive impact on the surrounding community. It only took 24 hours to trash the good reputation of that school in the eyes of casual observers. The real scandal here is that Caprock Academy, while funded by state monies, is one of several charter schools that receive roughly $300 less per student per year than mainstream district schools. Caprock consistently does more with less and gets superior results.

If you like your Common Core school you can keep your Common Core school, but those who are ready for change should consider the positive outcomes of the Core Knowledge sequenced curriculum. If I thought there was a better place for my child to receive the preparation he requires to be a productive, educated, creative, problem-solving citizen, I would have enrolled him in that school.

CARLA JOHNSON
Glade Park
     
It’s unfair to cut programs into which citizens contributed

The Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) stripped more than $700 million from Medicare. Why is it that the programs that get cut are always those that benefit people who actually contributed to them? People are required to contribute to Medicare with every paycheck (some for more than 40 years) and then pay monthly Medicare premiums after eligibility. And now the program is going to be cut?

These cuts will help to fund the expansion of Medicaid, a government ‘freebie’ program that pays health costs for people who never contributed to it. How often (never!) do you hear that the government is going to cut Medicaid, or “heating checks” or food stamps? The only cut I’ve heard of is that the “stimulus increase” in each recipient’s food stamps recently expired.
 
Dr. Ben Carson notes that our nation is beginning to shift from one centered on the rights of individual citizens to one that accepts the right of the government to control our lives. He wrote, “Some well-known radicals have publicly written and stated that in order for their idea of a utopian, egalitarian society to emerge in the United States, the government must control health care, which ensures the dependency of the populace on government. Historical analysis of many countries that have gone this route demonstrates the obliteration of the middle class and a massive expansion of the poor, dependent class with a relatively small number of elites in control.”

How dependent are you willing to be?
 
BRUCE MANY
Eckert

Activists squelch vital oil, gas industry on Western Slope
Here we go again. The headline on the front page of Friday’s paper reads: State studies fetal anomalies in Garfield, Co., and highlighted in large print is a quote from Activist Dave Devanney stating, “I think anyone would be concerned about having their children born in that area!”

As usual, at the bottom, the article jumps to an inside page. I have to wonder how many readers actually search out the rest of an article? It goes on to state that these anomalies happen every day throughout the country.

Many factors have to be considered, anything from genetics, to the state where conception occurs, to use of tobacco, alcohol or marijuana by the mothers. It also states that researchers agree that this study has limitations and is not conclusive.

If you feel those of us who work in the oil and gas industry are just upset that the activists are winning, you are correct.

The oil and gas industry is thriving everywhere in this country except for Western Colorado. Why? It has little to do with the price of natural gas but everything to do with activists lsuch as Devanney and the news media who support them.

Once they get the oil and gas shut down here, beware, they will start in on your business or livelihood. It’s what they do.

IRENE WISSEL
Grand Junction
     
WCAF does not wish to see ‘blatant violation of law’ in public schools

The people who wrote negative comments about Western Colorado Atheists and Freethinkers’ defense of the separation of church and state in public
schools are missing the point.

Promoting a religious youth indoctrination center in a public school violates District 51 policy and U.S. law. WCAF members are “intolerant” to the extent that they are unwilling to accept this kind of blatant violation of law in a public school.

District 51 admitted that showing a promotional video for Fellowship Church’s “4640” youth indoctrination center and the subsequent instruction to kids to take home permission slips to use the facility were unauthorized and should not have happened. District 51 promised to review the relevant policies with its employees and be more vigilant about preventing further incidents of proselytizing in local schools.

Had the video shown to middle-school students in gym class promoted an Islamic youth indoctrination “recreation” center, the uproar from the local public would have been unprecedented.

ANNE LANDMAN
Grand Junction

 


COMMENTS

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Bruce Many of Eckert brings up good points, I hope people Like Bill Hugenburg and others that voted this nest of Liberals into office will awaken with common sense one day, yeah right. Thanks Bruce.
Not Mrs. Bright

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