Printed letters, January 8, 2013

Thanks for running the column by Tom Purcell regarding the $500 million attached to the Hurricane Sandy aid bill. This money has no relationship to damage caused by Sandy and is a sneaky way to hide unrelated spending to a bill that that helps Sandy’s victims.

It’s no wonder Speaker John Boehner did not call it to a vote immediately. Now Obama and other big spenders have called him heartless.

The $500 million “pork” includes:

✓ $336 million to Amtrak;

✓ $150 million to fisheries in Alaska and Mississippi;

✓ $4 million to Kennedy Space Center;

✓ $2 million to the Smithsonian;

✓ $8 million for federal-agency cars.

If these appropriations can’t stand on their own merits, they should not be sneaked in on another bill.

I hope the Sentinel will run a regular story on this sneaky end run. By the way, what happened to Obama’s pledge to stop earmarks?


Grand Junction

Column about Sandy aid 
was upsetting and laughable

On Jan. 2, putting the Commentary page (4A) next to the cartoon page (5A) was quite appropriate.

Tom Purcell had a column called, “Pork-barrel spending lards up aid bill for Sandy’s victims.” I couldn’t decide if I should be upset after reading it and was amused when I saw the column next to the comics.


Grand Junction


Auschwitz survivors teach 
vital lesson in bleak times

It was 2 a.m. in a 1992 blizzard when I began to load people into my van. Seated first was an elderly couple. The airport was closed and I was the last van. “Don’t worry about us,” they said as they held hands in the cold. “We’re so happy to be here.” The Denver bus stood empty, as bags were unloaded.

With tenderness, they hugged together. An hour later, they were the last to be unloaded, and I felt for them. I watched as late arrivals were cranky and impatient, though not all. High in Snowmass, I found their condo and carried their bags inside. “What is so special about you?” I asked.

“We met in Auschwitz,” she said. “We lost our entire families to Hitler.”

That night was their family’s 25th Snowmass reunion. Children and grandchildren would arrive later that day. Joy shone in their eyes like candles.

What compels us to kill? Why does rage lead to hate and violence? My rage deters me from being armed, for their sake and for mine. I learned rage in high school. It’s still there.

The savagery at Columbine High School and Aurora? At Sandy Hook? Who can answer?

Soon, I will visit Auschwitz  — the corpse factory — at Bergen-Belsen, Poland. Four years ago, I stood frozen at My Lai in Vietnam where berserk Americans mutilated 500 women, children and old men. Their names and faces are in my heart.

Years ago, Aspen Marine Rick Busch stated, “The circle was broken.” Have we our lost our intellect, morality and compassion for one another? Please share. America listens.


Grand Junction


Founding Fathers would have 
seen right to current weapons

David Cook’s attempt, in his Jan. 3 letter, to rebut Greg Corle’s letter about the intent of the Second Amendment is incorrect in several aspects.

Does he think the Founding Fathers meant to restrict the right to keep and bear arms to muzzle-loading rifles?

Of course they could not foresee the development of armaments to their present state, but that doesn’t mean that they would not have been comfortable with current firearms being protected by the Second Amendment.


Grand Junction


Patient-centered homes can 
provide access and cut costs

The Colorado Academy of Family Physicians thanks Gov. John Hickenlooper for his efforts to expand eligibility while strengthening our state’s Medicaid program. Coupled with the insurance exchange program, nearly all our state’s citizens will have access to primary health care.

This will truly be an impressive achievement.

But simply insuring more people does not automatically grant access to quality health care. As family physicians, it is our responsibility to ensure every patient gets the best possible care.

Physician-led, patient-centered medical homes bring together a team of health professionals, providing each patient with the right care, by the right professional, at the right time. Properly run PCMHs are proven to significantly reduce costs while improving quality and the patient experience.

As the largest medical organization representing primary-care physicians, CAFP is a leader in promoting these medical homes as essential components in Colorado’s health care system.



Colorado Academy

of Family Physicians



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