Printed Letters: August 20, 2017

The FRAM drilling 
proposal is concerning

I’d like to express my appreciation to the staff of Western Colorado Congress and members of the local community for taking the time to research and provide a look at the FRAM drilling proposal on the southwest flank of the Grand Mesa.

As I look at the proposed project area found on the BLM website, it appears to me that Grand Junctions watershed could certainly be impacted. According to the BLM’s report, three different methods of hydraulic fracturing may be used, which will require a tremendous amount of water. In addition to questions I have about hydraulic fracturing, I wonder about the city of Grand Junction’s willingness to sell between 52.75 and 361.50 acre feet (326,000 gallons in an acre foot) of city owned water for “drilling, completion, dust control, and hydrostatic testing.”

I wonder why oil and gas apologists have recently expressed dismay that Western Colorado Congress and its citizen leaders should question the safety of the valley’s watershed. I know that Western Colorado Congress is about supporting and creating citizen leaders that make a difference in their communities about issues they care about. I believe that’s called democracy. Every citizen in this county should be concerned and asking questions about this project going forward.

STEVE ALLERTON
Grand Junction

Efforts to grow CMU will 
result in wins for community

Congratulations to President Tim Foster and his entire team at Colorado Mesa University for continuing to make smart and effective moves that will help establish Grand Junction as Western Colorado’s university town.

As CMU’s 10,000 students return for the new school year, they are being welcomed with banners along our streets, the opening of a fantastic new health-sciences facility and the continued construction of an incredible new engineering building on campus. The students in those programs will earn degrees for high-demand, well-paying jobs.

The Grand Junction City Council is doing its part to support the cause. Each year the city contributes significant funding towards the expansion of the campus. The council recently voted in favor of University Boulevard, and they will undoubtedly be asked to do far more. We should all thank them for their continued support.

Alongside these efforts, the CMU20000 initiative was recently launched by the Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce to spearhead efforts to bring the university and our community closer together. Businesses are getting engaged with “We Are CMU” window stickers, special discounts for students and the development of a more robust internship program. Efforts with on-site high school councilors to get more District 51 students on track to college are already underway.

Did you know CMU already contributes $450 million annually to our economy? Efforts to grow CMU will result in plenty of more wins for everyone in our community: A more highly-educated workforce, more parents that fly to our airport, stay in our hotels, eat at our restaurants and shop at our stores, and more students that decide they want to live here, start a career and raise a family.

I suggest all of us do our part. Attend a CMU event this year or simply walk around campus to check out all of the new facilities. Keep updated, suggest ideas or volunteer to help at CMU20000.com. And please share your enthusiasm for all of the positive things taking place at Colorado Mesa University, whether it’s with friends, neighbors, on social media or a letter of support to the newspaper or City Council. Because when CMU grows, we all grow.

ALEX CHAFFETZ
Grand Junction

It is extremists who think 
rewriting history is good

I traveled in China a few years ago and was struck by how well Mao’s Cultural Revolution wiped out the monuments, the historic sites of ancient China. More recently I was in Russia and saw how well they have restored their historic sites that were heavily damaged during World War II, so I can’t ascribe rewriting history to just communists. It is extremists of any stripe who think that rewriting history is a good thing.

Slavery is evil, plain and simple, and is a curse on our country. I traveled in the South in 1964, just after the Civil Rights Act was passed. We have come a long way since then. Yet most attempts to help blacks in inner cities have failed. President Trump sees that and is working to bring jobs and better education to these inner cities. It’s a tough job. Too many black children are born to single parents.

On an ancestry site I found that three Kearsleys fought for the South in the Civil War and two fought for the North. In school in the 50s we were taught that it was a war that had brothers fighting brothers. We were taught to be sad, not mad. It is a complex part of our history. Soldiers for both the North and the South fought bravely. PBS has a great documentary on the Civil War that points this out.

Does tearing down a monument to General Lee help backs? I wish it were that easy. Lee’s plantation was taken as spoils of war and is now Arlington National Cemetery. There is a modest section there for soldiers from the Confederacy. That is the lasting memorial to General Lee. He respected all brave warriors, as most soldiers do.

DAVID A KEARSLEY
Mesa

Proton radiation a viable 
treatment for prostate cancer

On Tuesday, The Daily Sentinel carried an article from the AP discussing the current thinking about the pros and cons of two of the choices for men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer. The options compared were “watchful waiting,” monitoring with additional testing and biopsies, versus radical prostatectomy (surgery to remove the cancerous prostate). The article, probably quite accurately, described the risks and benefits associated with the surgery: a likely cure for the cancer but about a 15 percent chance of impotence and 17 percent chance of incontinence.

To print this article suggesting that these are the options seriously shortchanges readers in not telling them that there are several other viable treatment options, and one in particular, with a higher “cure rate” and far less risk of collateral damage in the form of impotence, incontinence or secondary cancers. This much-better option is proton radiation and, even though the nearest treatment facility offering it is 800 miles away at Loma Linda Adventist University Hospital, dozens of Grand Valley residents have had their prostate cancer treated and cured by this remarkable medical technology. There are now 26 institutions around the country offering this treatment, including many top-ranked universities and cancer treatment centers.

If you or someone you care about has received a prostate cancer diagnosis please know that there is an excellent choice available to you beyond living out your years with cancer and undergoing years of additional biopsies or risking a greater than 30 percent chance of major, life-changing surgical side-effects. There’s lots of information about proton therapy online or ask any of the 40-plus men in the area who have had this treatment. Unlike the guys whose surgeries left them with much reduced quality of life you’ll find the proton patients (and their wives) anxious to share their experiences.

JERRY NORTON
Grand Junction

Historical Civil War emblems belong only in museums

All the grand what ifs and enlightenment in humanity simply can’t beat that devil human nature. Most recently, in Charlottesville, white supremacy made its statement about their respect for themselves.

This is not about respecting the historical deep South. This is now. This is history becoming. It’s a self-aggrandizing belief system as tyrant on display like the giant pictures of “The Great Leader” scattered all over North Korea. These people are still fighting the Civil War. The emblems are historical and belong in museums. Instead they are glorified as gods of a failed self-righteous caste system.

Face it, humans are bigots. It’s a flaw, not a virtue. These people are using history to advance the flaws in our natures. It’s no different than ISIS or the Taliban.

We have strived forever to really create equality and it is no small thing to continue this. Supremacists want our country to be what early colonists escaped from in Europe. Meanwhile, all the people they have forever hated — blacks, Jews, Italian-Irish-German Catholics, anyone dark-skinned, native or oriental. One can’t even name all their hatreds. If we aren’t them, we are nothing. Maybe one day we’ll get rid of tyranny.

William Faulkner once said, probably about the South, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” But it does belong in a museum where all can study the rights and wrongs.

EILEEN O’TOOLE
Grand Junction

Council should not squander tax dollars on name change

I am a tax-paying citizen of the Grand Junction area.

I do not feel it is my responsibility to finance a ridiculous thing like a street name change. I don’t like to be told that I will pay for this ridiculous folly. This just proves that City Council has its priorities all screwed up. I think this street name change should be put to a vote by the people, not dictated by City Council.

Please, citizens, roar and make these inept City Council members aware they cannot squander our tax dollars on such ridiculous things as this.

STEPHEN HALL
Clifton


COMMENTS

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While the cowardly Sentinel has not taken an editorial position on the current kerfuffle over Confederate statuary (perhaps for fear of losing advertising revenue from local “conservative” businesses), it has responsibly published multiple letters on both sides of the issue.

Among the most sophomoric is Dave Kearsley’s latest offering (“It is extremists of any stripe who think that rewriting history is a good thing”), which – as usual—serves-up shallow toxic pablum masquerading as “food for thought”.

First, the current shift of public opinion toward removal of Confederate statuary from government buildings and public spaces is not an attempt to rewrite history, but rather to erase the remnants of unrepentant White Supremacist extremists’ crusade to do so – by obscuring their history of treason and murder behind a patina of “honor” and “tradition”.

Second, while Dave concedes that “Slavery is evil, plain and simple, and is a curse on our country”, he fails to appreciate that the statuary at issue originated as part of a deliberate campaign to perpetuate the racist bigotry that fostered such evil and still inflicts its curse .

Third, while Dave opines that “we have come a long way since” passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, he entirely ignores why it took almost 100 years to reaffirm the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments and what happened during their hiatus – lynchings, church burnings, Jim Crow, forced segregation, and now voter suppression.  Instead, Dave gives undue credence to our “racist-in-chief’s” empty pandering—while “blaming the victims”.

Fourth, during the decades following the end of Reconstruction in 1877 and again at the 50th anniversary of the Civil War (coinciding with the resurgence of the KKK following release of the movie “Birth of a Nation” in 1915), Confederate statuary proliferated throughout the South and the
“Confederate flag” reemerged as a signal to locals that whites’ political power had been restored, such that Negroes could once again be denied their civil rights. Therefore, removal of those racist symbols “helps Blacks” by reassuring us all that the Constitutional promise of “equal protection of the laws” is to be fulfilled, not given mere “lip service”.

Finally, both General Robert E. Lee himself (https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/here’s-what-robert-e-lee-thought-about-confederate-monuments/ar-AAqdaUZ) and the great-great grandsons of General Stonewall Jackson (https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2017/8/17/1690705/-Great-great-grandsons-of-Stonewall-Jackson-weigh-in?detail=emaildkre) appreciate(d) the deliberately divisive intent and effect of such symbols – even if Kearsley does not.

Mr. Hall is quite correct in his conclusion about renaming North Avenue to something else.  What is quite evident is that it is not the people who want such a change, but the merchants on North Avenue who want bigger profits for themselves and have formed a “mutually admiration society” with members of the City Council and the head of CMU, Mr. Foster.  That is quite evident by the number of compliments they keep giving one another, and praising one another at how great they are.  That, unfortunately, leaves not only the taxpayer, but the student, behind that proverbial “eight ball”.  What is unfortunate for this community is that the Daily Sentinel (or at least members of their editorial staff) has joined that parade and become their propaganda outlet.  That does not speak at all well of this media outlet, not only on this issue, but on many others as well.

One of the characteristics of far too many of their editorials is that while they may point shortcomings, will say nothing about what makes it a shortcoming.  So, they actually do what most actually do, never take the time to ask that little simple question “why?”  Failing to do that (which is true of most) they end up addressing only symptoms, and never the cause(s).  The outcome of that is that they do what most do (and really like to do),complain about the “failures” of “those others”.

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