Email letters, May 23, 2013

The House strengthens fragile lives of teens

In getting to know the program called The House, I realize it is so much more than a place for teens that have, in some cases, been abandoned. It is a place that allows a new beginning. It is a place filled with positive adults who want to invest in the lives of these young people.

While perhaps, in a perfect world, we would not even need a homeless shelter for teens, in the reality of our world, we do. Let us be the community that cares what happens to them. Let us be the people who seek them out and offer a smile and helping hand.

In our program at The House, there is a sense of family and of community. There are rules, guidelines, a dinnertime and a curfew. We provide the teens with 24-hour care. It is easy to assume the worst, but in this case, we see the struggles and the breakthroughs in these fragile lives that are left alone too easily and too often. We are there for them.

It is a privilege to work with the professionals and the teens that make up The House.

Grand Junction

Coverage of broken sprinklers petty so soon after news of huge tornado

Just two days after the Oklahoma tornado, in which thousands have lost everything, their homes, their community, and some their lives, you run a story with a picture of a guy with a broken sprinkler angry about living next to a teen shelter.

Can’t you feel the love and compassion?  New low, Daily Sentinel.


Sheriffs’ lawsuit crosses important ethical line

I lose respect for officials who use their power or office’s authority, or their job to attempt to influence what they disagree with. That’s bullying.

Isn’t it unauthorized or insubordinate for county sheriffs to place themselves in position to represent every resident in the county’s personal views on a private lawsuit? I don’t believe that’s why sheriffs are elected. Is that their job description?

My fellow Republicans claim to be against bigger government, but seem unaware that sheriffs are government, overstepping their authority and showing lack of integrity using their titles, offices, influence and any perceived authority to support a privately financed lawsuit. I don’t believe it’s proper or within their authority. Are we setting a precedent for all county employees?

It was pointed out no county funds were involved, but isn’t it just as improper to misuse a county’s name and influence? Of course, a sheriff can speak his opinion about his office’s involvement, but to campaign against and join a private lawsuit as sheriff? Nah. They have every opportunity to speak their views as private citizens, just like us.

I can only hope that by joining the gun lawsuit, my fellow Republicans understand we can see they obviously have only one stand on the issue, and that’s great as long as they voice their own personal opinion and not that of a county sheriff on a privately funded lawsuit.

Isn’t it a misrepresentation for a sheriff to join a private lawsuit while still acting as a county employee, representing the county and all its residents? It seems Sheriff Stan Hilkey crossed a line if he signed on as Mesa County’s sheriff. Whether or not I agree with the law, neither sheriff nor private citizen Hilkey has a right to speak for me on a private lawsuit.


Squelching oil shale industry strange way of fixing economy

Why is the Obama administration doing everything it can to stymie oil shale production in this country? Apparently it was not bad enough to bow to special interest groups taking most of the land for oil shale development off the table, but now it looks as if they are intent on changing the royalty rates, making it even harder for oil shale operations to get off the ground.

The rates were set up as they are in recognition that oil shale projects require more upfront investment than regular oil and gas operations. Hiking those rates, as it seems the administration wants to do in amendments that it is making to oil shale regulations, serves only to further discourage oil shale research and development.

I would like to know what else is contained in these proposed rule changes; if recent history is any clue, royalty rate increases are just the beginning.  Oil shale opponents like to repeat the mantra of the industry being “unviable,” and always “10 years away. If the government had taken the same approach to the electronics industry that it does to oil shale, the laptop and cell phone would still only be pipe dreams.

With all of the talk we hear coming out of Washington about how the Obama administration is going to fix the economy, discouraging domestic industry sure seems to be an odd way of going about it.

Grand Junction




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