Email Letters: March 3, 2017

Recent play was exceptional
Broadway plays do not normally come to Grand Junction but one could easily believe that the cast of “My Fair Lady” had taken a break from Broadway to perform at the Moss Theater at CMU.
Under the direction Mo Lamee, head of Department of Theater Arts, the two 19-year-old leads in the play, Heidi Snyder as Eliza Doolittle and Joe Castinado as Henry Higgins, command the stage whether acting or singing having voices any Broadway producer would envy.
The costumes are beautifully detailed in period fashions that give the play a feel of authenticity. Broadway experience without the expense.

BOB SAMMONS
Grand Junction


Congress has better things to do than obsess about Russia
Outside of a couple of hundred politicians in Washington, the main stream media, and maybe a couple of thousand political junkies around the country do the other 300 million plus citizens really care if Sen. Sessions spoke to some Russians before he became the attorney general? I doubt it!

Don’t these people from the loyal opposition in D.C. have anything else to do other than spending all their time in front of microphones pretending that this is a scandal of crisis proportions and takes precedence over doing the nation’s business for which they were elected? Why don’t they just quit wasting our time and theirs making political mountains out of meaningless mole hills and get back to work?

Ms. J.C. SMITH
Grand Junction


We’re in a new age of propaganda
I remember when Fidel Castro came into Power in Cuba. The news was constantly reporting that he was spreading propaganda. And still nowadays America’s foreign enemies do the same. Since the presidential election the propaganda is at its highest level here in America, from the unhappy party.

Our enemies are looking to see if we destroy ourselves from within. The facts are we have a president who was voted in by the majority of the people.

The Democrats are in a state of shock because their agenda got blown out of the sky, even by the help from people that in the past believed in them like I did many years ago. The news has become propaganda here in America.

The press is free to print the truth and the untruth. It has no responsibility to build up or tear down. It has taken up the job of investigating everything and making things seem, what they want they want the public to know only.

RAFAEL A. SALAZ
Grand Junction


OMMS still have some value
It seems to me, that if Orchard Mesa Middle School needs rebuilt, why don’t they build in front of the existing school, and the joint city/county could take over the gym and pool, and demolish what isn’t needed as far as classrooms. The cafeteria could also be of benefit. Being right on the river trail and Eagle Rim Park, this seems like a perfect fit.

DONNA COX
Grand Junction


No more projects that require a taxpayer subsidy
Several times this past week, The Daily Sentinel has published articles concerning the major cutbacks now facing the county government — layoffs that threaten the workforce, leaving authorized positions unfilled in order to meet the anticipated financial crisis, and possible cuts to human services.  And the possibility of a proposed tax increase for public safety purposes coming soon.

And yet we are told that a new multimillion-dollar event center will be on the ballot in April — a month from now!  Despite the fact that sales taxes and other revenues are not adding up.

Has anyone heard of Tiara Rado, Two Rivers Convention Center, or The Avalon?  Do any of these support themselves without a continuing taxpayer subsidy?  And it’s been suggested that we might need to defer the bond principal payments for the Riverside Parkway in order to fund street repairs. 

Is this madness, or what? Is it worth millions more in order to lure a basement-level basketball team and possibly a hockey team? Both of which also will need a subsidy?

It’s understandable that the Reimer brothers are all in on the event center — they want to build another hotel downtown.  And the Sentinel seems to be completely supportive as well.

The Sentinel shouldn’t try to have it both ways.  Are these difficult financial times or are they not?  Is this a good time to take on millions more in debt?

RICHARD RININGER
Grand Junction


Let’s devise a human solution to immigration problem
There is a timely column today in the Sentinel by Ruben Navarrette regarding our national schizophrenia about immigration, and particularly illegal immigration. Our ”system” for legal immigration is outmoded and a mess. There has been a bill for a new system in the Senate for a long time but the House will not act on it.

For quite a while now illegal immigration over the Mexican border is negative. In other words, intrusion over our border is a minor problem since more people without documentation are leaving the country than entering it.

It has been estimated that there remains in the country some 11 to 12 million people who are in the country illegally. Many are here because they have overstayed their legal papers but most are here because they found their way over the border on foot. Why?

Mainly, they were looking for work for pay beyond what they could get in Mexico, assuming they could get work at all there. Isn’t it illegal for employers to hire people who are here illegally? Employers say that it is impossible to determine whether a person is ”legal” or not. But for some reason, there are people from Mexico working here for sub-normal pay rates. Employers know very well why that is.

So with our desire for ready availability of cheap labor isn’t our situation an unstated invitation for others to cross the border?  So what do we do about those millions of ”illegal” people here? The law is clear. Send them home. Obama was following the law and now Trump is advocating the same thing but much more aggressively. They were and are trying to follow the law.

If we accepted them with a wink and a nod shouldn’t we treat them better? Saint Reagan understood the hypocrisy and let them stay, but with conditions.

Can’t we devise a similar humane solution now?

JOHN BORGEN
Grand Junction


Humans have an obligation to protect weaker beings
A dog may be trained as a guardian, but so long as this cooperation is conditioned it is not a friend.  Nor is the ox who bears the yoke for the serf, nor the serf a friend to their King.  What, then, is a spouse or child who is afraid of punishment or desiring reward? What, then, is the man who obeys laws only to avoid jail, or performs their duties for money, power or honor? Is this a freeman?  You are not truly free so long as you desire pleasure or avoid pain.

Pleasurable rewards condition behavior. Deprivation or other pain condition behavior.  Conditioning behavior by manipulating instincts is an effective means of enslavement, whether in ensnaring other animals or other humans.

Animals, plants, and other beings weren’t created to serve humanity’s needs, or for our food — they hold no special obligation to us. Rather, having evolved the strongest species, humanity has a special obligation to protect the freedom and happiness of all weaker beings. As strong people have obligations to the weak of their society.

Other beings are not resources to be developed and exploited.  Respect the sacrifice of their lives they make for our lives as our food, the sacrifice of their wildlands they make for our homes and prosperity. 

We must protect wildlife we have endangered. We must provide refuge for the people and cultures we have endangered.

The songbird sings by your window, the cat protects your grain, the wild plums ripen without reward or punishment — because that is their nature, their duty. Know the duties of your humanity. It is possible for each of us to perform our duty free of desire or fear. It is possible to permit all beings to live so freely, if only we will not cause them harm.

AARON BRACHFELD
Grand Junction


Charter offers a tremendous community asset
Today, the internet is creating wonderful new opportunities for consumers in just about every aspect of their lives. Whether it’s paying bills, accessing healthcare information, or connecting to family and friends, high-speed broadband is a powerful tool for those who have access.

Unfortunately for too many, access to affordable internet remains out of reach for some low-income families, which is why it’s important that the broadband industry do its part to increase adoption in the communities they serve and help get more people online.

Charter is one such broadband provider who is stepping up its efforts by making commitments to increase broadband connectivity not only in Grand Junction, but across the state for eligible low-income households.

Just last month, Charter hosted an event here in Grand Junction to announce the availability of Spectrum Internet Assist, its new low-cost, high-speed broadband service for low-income families and seniors. “Spectrum Internet Assist” delivers the fastest base broadband speed (30/4 Mbps) of any such low-income program of its kind in the nation.

Creating new ways for low-income families with school-aged children to access the high-speed internet is crucial in today’s society.

Without fast, reliable internet access, a student is not only left behind their current classmates, but they can permanently lose ground over time. Students with no broadband connectivity after school are put at a severe disadvantage that can result in poorer grades. This is where Charter’s Spectrum Internet Assist offering is a tremendous community asset. Eligible low-income families with school-aged children may now have a viable option to connect to the internet in the home.

These types of private sector investments are needed in Grand Junction to help bridge the digital divide and bring more families online. Our most vulnerable residents need fast, reliable broadband service if they hope to earn an education, compete for jobs and fully participate in today’s digital economy and I am excited to see more options being made available in our community.

ANDREA NICKERSON
Grand Junction


Investigate Trump administration ties to Russian oil
Suppose…this is what Trump and Putin are up to: Exxon Mobil, under Rex Tillerson, brokered a deal with Russia in 2013 to lease over 60 million acres of Russian land to pump oil out of (which is five times as much land as they lease in this country), but all that Russian oil would go through pipelines in the Ukraine, who heavily tax the proceeds, and Ukraine was applying for admission into NATO at the time. Putin subsequently invaded Ukraine in 2014, secured the routes to export the oil tax-free by sea, and took control of the port where their Black Sea Naval Fleet is based, by taking the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine by force.

This was Hitler-style imperialism that broke every international law in the free world.

After Obama sanctioned Russia for the invasion, Exxon Mobil could only pump oil from approximately three of those 60-plus million acres. But now Rex Tillerson is our secretary of state, and as of today, there’s information circulating that Donald Trump will likely unilaterally remove all sanctions against Russia in the coming days or weeks.

The Russian government’s oil company, Rosneft, will make half a trillion ($500 billion) dollars from that much untapped oil, all pumped tax-free through Crimea, stolen from Ukraine, now owned by Russia. Putin may have subverted our government just for this deal to go through — 19.5% of Rosneft was sold off after the election ... traced to a shell corporation in the Cayman Islands. The infamous dossier supposedly includes a statement by Putin promising then candidate Trump a 19 percent stake in Rosneft, if and when he was elected.

How can this NOT be investigated?

PATRICIA G. MARTIN
Grand Junction


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