Email letters, November 20,  2013

Funding education through lottery would burden lower-income people

A letter from Randy Fricke in Tuesday’s Sentinel regarding educational funding in Colorado cries out for questioning. Fricke suggests using lottery money either to fund education in Colorado or to at least supplement what already exists.

It has been shown many times that the expenditures by lottery participants come heavily from lower-income people. So, Fricke would like our educational system to be heavily funded by those who can least afford it? It’s bad enough that the state and its residents feel the necessity for a lottery, but to use the proceeds for a basic expenditure required of all citizens for public education is outlandish, to put it moderately.
Public education is a basic foundation of our democratic form of government. All citizens benefit, and all citizens should pay for it directly and obviously without the sleight of hand of trying to establish an indirect method of funding that falls heavily on the segment of the population that can least afford it.

It is the free choice of participants of the lottery to spend their money on what many feel is unwise, but it is quite another to try to divert those funds to shield citizens from a basic expenditure that supports our society.

Some people constantly refer to the founders of our country for their tortured analyses of what we should and should not do with our government. The founders were unanimous in their attitude of the need for education as being crucial for the survival of our democratic government.

As such, it is a basic responsibility of citizenship to pay for our educational system without deflecting all or a portion of that responsibility to only a portion of the citizenry.

Grand Junction

Local veteran served with 101st Airborne during Vietnam War

I saw in your paper the other day that you had a page devoted to veterans. The page showed photos, and they all got a flag.

So, to let you know, I am a Vietnam veteran. I served with the 101st Airborne.


Grand Junction

New air quality standards are in the state’s best interests

The largest contributor to smog-producing volatile organic compounds statewide is the oil and gas industry. As Gov. Hickenlooper will tell you, the oil and gas industry is an important part of our state’s economy, but it is not the only part.

Texas may be all about oil, but Colorado is much more (no offense, Texas). Colorado is extraordinary skiing, gold-medal fishing, world-class whitewater, the world’s largest elk herds, and on and on it goes. We can’t allow oil and gas operations to mess up any of these good things.

The state of Colorado has just proposed groundbreaking rules to limit the damage that oil and gas operation do to our air quality. These new Colorado rules are consistent with tough new regulations coming out of the not-exactly-liberal states of Wyoming and Texas. Three of the Colorado’s largest oil and gas operators, Anadarko Petroleum, Encana and Nobel Energy, support these new common-sense, practical air quality rules, as does the Environment Defense Fund.

It makes no sense to destroy the very special things that makes Colorado the amazing place that it is, while just one, possibly temporary, industry benefits. It’s un-American.

If and when the drill rig lights shine down upon us from the Grand Mesa slopes, these new air quality rules will help keep our air clean and our agriculture productive. It is in our best, long-term interest to support these new emission standards.



Former district court judge in Mesa County deserves recognition

It is very weird. My family moved from Denver back in 1955. My father, Honorable Judge James J. Carter, was born in Denver back in 1919. He went to St. Francis DeSalles Catholic Elementary and High School and Regis Catholic University. Then he went to World War II and did his service for our country.

After the war he graduated from Catholic Law School back East and then moved back to Denver and worked in the House of Representatives in the Denver Capitol. Then he ran for lieutenant governor, an election he lost. (The three Republicans ran on a ticket they called “the ABC’s of Politics” for Allott, Brotzman and Carter.)

My father ended up in Grand Junction with his beautiful bride Mary T. Carter; they had six wonderful children.

My father was the main attorney for the Atomic Energy Commission for a couple of years, and then he was asked to run for the opening that Mesa County had for the juvenile judge. He won and later on become one of the best district court judges that Mesa County had ever had. He was instrumental in making very wise and diplomatic decisions that impacted the way Grand Junction turned out.

When Dad retired in 1987, Mom and he left a beautiful legacy, and there is not one thing mentioned in any of your wonderful articles about The Daily Sentinel’s 120 years.

Our family has two very large scrapbooks full of articles from the Daily Sentinel tracking my brilliant father’s every move.

Please take the time and peruse your microfiche, files, old records and old photos and see what you can come up with. Thanks.



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