Email Letters: September 26, 2016

Refusing to stand for national anthem is shameful

As a World War II veteran, I am incensed at the sports teams and players who refuse to stand for our national anthem. When I think of their anti-American actions, my first thought is, “they should be ashamed,” but of course they’re not. Perhaps they believe they are making an important and symbolic statement about America today, but in reality, they don’t have a clue about America and what it means to be an American.

The fact that they are able to play their sports and achieve some small measure of notoriety is due to the freedoms afforded them by the country they live in and the people who have fought and died for the freedoms they so carelessly enjoy. So no, they are not ashamed. They do not have the wherewithal to know that they should be ashamed for the disrespect they show. But I am ashamed of them – and for them. They shame us – their actions shame us.

A suggestion to officials of all sports teams that many colleges have already adapted – play the national anthem before the teams come on to the field. They can show their disrespect in the locker room and spare the rest of us the shame of their actions.


We should appreciate Tipton for his support on important local issues

A recent op-ed in The Daily Sentinel had several accusations against Rep. Scott Tipton. One of the familiar attacks was the refrain that Tipton wants to sell off our public lands. Ms. Konola supports this claim by saying Tipton voted against a recent amendment by Jared Polis on the appropriations bill. Anyone that follows politics knows that “riders,” as they are called, particularly on an appropriations bill, is often a non-starter that can sink the entire appropriations process. Polis’ amendment stated that the use of funds from illegal land sales was illegal: a pointless and redundant political ploy. One vote against an amendment is not indicative of his general philosophy on public lands.

Tipton sponsored legislation to designate Chimney Rock as a national monument and fought to designate the Hermosa Creek area as the Hermosa Creek Watershed Protection area, with over 38,000 acres of designated wilderness area.

He has sponsored bills to protect our national forests from wildfires and protect our water rights.
Ms. Konola ends her article, “amused” and accusing Tipton of crushing community banks. I am not sure which bill she is referring to, but one of Scott Tipton’s signature pieces of legislation is the TAILOR Act, designed to grow our community banks and local credit unions by tailoring regulations to the business model and risk profile of institutions, relieving them of the more onerous requirements of Dodd-Frank if they are not considered a systematic risk.

While Scott Tipton has been in Washington passing laws to protect our public lands and create common-sense financial regulation, Gail Schwartz has been lobbying for a carbon tax, something she admitted to supporting at the Club 20 debate this month. A carbon tax would only add onto the increasingly high utility rates we have been experiencing in Colorado. I appreciate Scott Tipton’s support on these important local issues.

Former Grand Junction Mayor, Retired Banker
Grand Junction

You Said It complaints should have attribution

The You Said It pieces in The Sentinel offer anonymity to those writing or calling in to make remarks. I consider those who criticize a specific person in writing or directly refer to an obviously known person to be cowards. If you are to complain about or denigrate someone you should own up to your comments.

Using You Said It to thank some unknowns, to the writer, is quite acceptable, and a way to praise someone or a group for good deeds.

Complaints should have attribution. Thus, I sign this as my own.


Grand Junction

Reasons for supporting Trump may be focused on what he will not do

In response to “Which letter to the editor do we believe?” I respect one who states his/her position. I find no satisfaction discussing important issues with one who wears out the “?” key, looking for a “gotcha.”

I, too, have changed my mind as to whom I support in this election. Dr. Ben Carson was, and is, my first choice. He has a good mind, has tact, has compassion and has courage. However, the political process eliminated him and Ted Cruz. Now, along with Dave Kearsley, I support Donald Trump.

My reasons for supporting Trump, regrettably, are focused on what I believe he will not do.

Trump will not be actively hostile to the coal industry. One only has to drive on the Parkway and see the endless lines of idle railroad locomotives that used to be driven by idled train crews and hauling coal produced by idled miners. Hopefully, a conservative government will provide incentives to promising alternative energy concepts, rather than destroying existing business.

Trump will not import “refugees” and provide them with more benefits than to our veterans and seniors, in return for their vote.

Trump will not degrade our military further and will not tolerate taunting tactics by foreign units involving our aircraft or ships at sea.

Trump will not further increase taxes and regulations on business. I expect a more conservative government will provide incentives for manufacturing to return to the US. I am a product of the industrial Midwest and, as an engineer, experienced good income, good benefits, good housing and safe neighborhoods to raise our family while working “at the plant.”

Grand Junction

Articles in paper about Grand Valley transplants were deceiving

We moved to Colorado in December of 2015. Since our arrival it has been one of the worst experiences of our lives. We have been on the front page of your paper twice, leading people to believe that we are squatters and that we have children. We came to Colorado to retire thinking that it would be a nice change. Due to the misleading articles we have been harassed daily.

I think the paper was very unfair. People think that we are the reason that Enoch Lake was shut down for day use only. Not one of the two emergency calls that were made while we were there were for us. We were in the paper as squatters, meanwhile another camper had been at Enoch since the first of May and was planning on staying till October and has done so for the last 10 years. True, people break the rules, but are only given warnings. Why not tickets? I am very angry that we got such treatment. I find the articles in the paper very deceiving

Grand Junction

Government shouldn’t be involved in personal health care business

I read Dr. Pramenko’s column on understanding the complex issues of health care in this country. Well, actually it was a hit piece on Donald Trump. One paragraph stood out as to why we are where we are in regards to paying for the health care in this country. He writes, “Donald Trump lacks the understanding that unpopular policy rules are needed to enable and finance the very popular coverage of pre-existing conditions he supports.”

Let me put this in another way. It is OK to lie about what the law will do (save $2,500, keep your current health care plan, and keep your present doctor), pass the law that no one read, pass it with no support from the Republican party, exempt themselves and their staffers from it, and it is one of the primary drags on the economy, it is OK because we are smarter than you and you don’t know what is good for you (the public).

The government doesn’t need to be involved in our personal health care business. Repealing Obamacare and starting over is a great first step to getting this economy going again. Then we can find, hopefully, some common ground from which more affordable plans can be offered through private enterprise. Dr. Pramenko is correct in that the health care issue is complex. Is Obamacare the answer? If you are like Mrs. Clinton and some Democrats, they want to continue on, even though the whole thing is about to collapse under its own weight. Do you want socialized health care? That is the road we are traveling down right now.

Grand Junction

Recent event with Donald Trump Jr. was a wonderful experience

I attended the Donald Trump, Jr. event at the Fairgrounds Thursday night. He is such a nice young man, and what an amazing and fun event it was! And I would suggest that Charles Ashby invest in a new pair of glasses because there were 1360 attendees there (actual count, not 300) plus staff and security of more than 100.

It was a wonderful experience being in the middle of a large crowd that cheered lustily in support of Trump and his family. The Trumps stand for the real American values and common sense that are fast disappearing from our country. That is why he is surging in the polls. We the People don’t like what liberals have done to our country. We the People want a real leader running our country. We the People want a president who is an American in his heart, who truly loves this country. We the People want to make America great again.

Grand Junction

Why thoughtful Republicans and independents should vote for Hillary Clinton

Assuming arguendo that Donald Trump has spoken the “truth” (an increasing rarity according to various fact-checkers) about any of his dubious policy proposals, Sentinel readers can cut through the welter of competing claims by taking him at his word.

First, based on the nonpartisan Tax Foundation’s estimates of Trump’s most recent tax plan, the similarly nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget projects that – over the next 10 years – his would add $5.3 trillion above current projections to our national debt (increasing federal deficits by $530 billion annually), while Hillary Clinton would boost the national debt by only $200 billion ($20 billion annually). See: Thus, Trump’s “trickle down” plan is almost 27 times more irresponsible than Clinton’s, and her $20 billion shortfall can be readily eliminated by any of several common sense tax “reforms” (increases), which Democrats support and Republicans routinely oppose.

Second, on September 21, 2016, the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released its report on the “Economic and Fiscal Consequences of Immigration” – which factually eviscerated the centerpiece of Trump’s bigoted campaign. (See:,

Thus, contrary to Trump’s divisive rhetoric, the report found that “immigration has an overall positive impact on long-run economic growth in the U.S.” with minimal effects on either employment levels and/or wages of native-born workers (mostly, on those who have not completed high school).

Moreover, “in terms of fiscal impacts, first-generation immigrants are more costly to governments, mainly at the state and local levels, than are the native-born, in large part due to the costs of educating their children. However, as adults, the children of immigrants (the second generation) are among the strongest economic and fiscal contributors in the U.S. population, contributing more in taxes than either their parents or the rest of the native-born population.”

Therefore, it is entirely understandable that Trump’s anti-immigrant nativism appeals to the less-educated in predominately white rural “red states” who provincially reject the reality of modern multi-ethnic America rather than embrace its true positive potential.

Grand Junction

It’s unfair to build bike trails while shutting down roads

I am just a little upset hearing they are building mountain bike trails where there have been no trails before. At the same time they are closing roads that have been there for years. How can they justify this? Some of the roads that have been closed were here since the turn of the century. Now they are tearing up new virgin country for mountain bikes.

How about an ATV trail from Grand Junction to Moab Just like the ones for mountain bikes?


The Sentinel should call out politicians who claim one thing and do another

I would like to see The Sentinel call out politicians who claim that something is going to happen when actually the opposite of what they say is planned. When we believe the meme, we can allow legislation which is against our interests to pass and upset the way we want things to work. There have been many examples of late, but one came to my attention again today. Please look at

Comment on it for your readers, or at least print the link so readers who care will know where to read how internet-involved businesses explain what is planned and why.

Grand Junction

Recent letter included falsehoods leveled in attempt to disparage business

My company, Mountain West Strategies, receives no government subsidies or government monies and charging so, as does Mr. Conkle in his ill-informed letter, is a falsehood leveled in the attempt to disparage my business.

Coalmine methane capture and utilization reduces climate change impacts. Coalmines vent methane and continue to do so long after the mines are shuttered. Capturing methane and utilizing it as a power source reduce the impact of this greenhouse gas 100 times, as methane is far more potent than CO2 in trapping infrared heat, which is the cause of human-driven climate change.

Mr. Conkle should not toss out falsehoods that border on libel, and he ought to educate himself before spouting claims regarding things he clearly knows little about. Correcting this behavior would make him a better advocate for whatever causes he supports.



Patriotism was on full display at recent event with Donald Trump Jr.

My wife and I were among several hundred “Deplorables” who were able to obtain the required free tickets to the event with Donald Trump Jr. – although the process was quite daunting and probably left many abandoning it as too complicated. Considering the venue was essentially outdoors with strong and gusty winds, we were impressed with the Patriotic program and the strong enthusiasm of those who were in attendance.

Although we both read The Daily Sentinel each morning and look forward to it, we found Charles Ashby’s banner describing the “crowd of 300” as a deliberate attempt to denigrate the support and enthusiasm of those in attendance. Did anyone actually count the attendees? We think there were likely 100 on the platform alone and approaching several hundred in the arena. Although the numbers were not as high as anticipated, the audience was filled with enthusiasm and cheered wildly as Patriotism was on full display.

Grand Junction


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Mr. Latham begins his letter with the following sentence:  “As a World War II veteran, I am incensed at the sports teams and players who refuse to stand for our national anthem.”

Perhaps Mr. Latham, for whatever reason, is the one who does not in understand what it means to have “freedom of speech” (or expression) and therefore cannot comprehend that one does not defend the Constitution by forcing others either to say something, or say only what it is we want to hear (or see).  So, as far as this individual is concerned, Mr. Latham should keep in mind that (whether he or anyone else is offended by something) is no reason to silence them or compel them to speak (and in which way). 

Sorry, Mr. Latham, but if you believe otherwise, I would submit that you did not know what you were doing in the military, if you believe that having worn a uniform makes you any better than anyone else, and thereby entitled to tell others what it is they should do, or should not, do.  It is not those “others” who should be “ashamed”, but you, and about what it is you preach.

Mr. Susuras, as he was a banker, still believes and thinks as a banker, and I know more than a few of them. 

Instead of concentrating only on relieving the pressure on local banks, he might choose to pay attention as to why those local banks cannot compete.  If they are under tighter regulation, they and Mr. Susuras, might ask the question as to how those regulations came about and who is actually responsible for them.  Perhaps they don’t want to look, either because they wouldn’t like the answer, or don’t want to accept it as they might just have to point the finger at themselves and the abuses perpetrated by those in that industry (banking and finance).

Mr. Tipton, as should many in public office, learn to recognize that they have (or should have) changed masters.  It is no longer about this or that, but about the American people.  Far too many, including Mr. Tipton, apparently cannot do that.

“Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.” - Samuel Johnson, 1775

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