Printed Letters: May 10, 2017

Tipton should vote with the 3rd District in mind

Rep. Scott Tipton should vote with the 3rd District in mind rather than party politics.  As he votes in the appropriations process he must consider the impact that budget decisions will have on constituents here in Western Colorado especially children.

His health care vote did not do that but there are still so many opportunities to help his constituents.

Rep. Tipton must vote to maintain high-quality public schools with solid Title 1 funding for essential reading and math interventions. He must vote to fund critical nutrition programs like the free and reduced school lunch program and WIC. He must vote to fund programs to lift people out of poverty.

Every time he comes back to the 3rd District, he is traveling by whole communities of people that are barely getting by. It is his job to look after his district and to work to lift people out of poverty or at the very least, support children with a high-quality education and essential nutrition so they can lift themselves out of poverty.

MARIE MCGOWAN
Grand Junction

Dinner honors foster 
parents in community

May is National Foster Parent Appreciation Month. Last week, The Mesa County Department of Human Services held a dinner for our foster parents to honor them and the work that they do to provide safe and loving homes to children who come into care due to abuse and neglect. We had a fun-filled evening with all of our foster parents, including games and door prizes.

I want to personally thank all the local Grand Junction and Fruita businesses that donated gifts to all our foster families. Your generosity is simply amazing. If anyone is interested in becoming a foster parent, please visit our website at FosterCareOfMesaCounty.org.

JONI A. BEDELL
Child Welfare Manager, MCDHS
Grand Junction

Antiquities Act is increasingly relevant to our time

I found Roland Reynolds’ May 3 letter to be disturbing, showing an inadequate understanding of why national monuments are designated and misunderstanding of the processes involved in establishing these monuments. Review a piece of the 1906 Act (16 USC 431-433):

“That the President of the United States is hereby authorized, in his discretion, to declare by public proclamation historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are situated upon the lands owned or controlled by the Government of the United States to be national monuments . . .”

First, the Antiquities Act is not antiquated. Despite its being written in 1906, it is increasingly relevant to our time when priceless prehistoric and historic places and artifacts are disrespected because their value is not understood. They are all we have of the past. The groups that protect them — native peoples, archaeologists, historians and museum personnel as well as their stewards, volunteers and the monument staffs — have been consulted in many cases, such as Bears Ears, where extensive conversations with locals, native people, and former Interior Secretary Sally Jewell took place before that monument’s designation.

Second, places designated as national monuments are places of beauty, respite, and wilderness where a precious ecosystem resides and, with protection, flourishes. Local control, despite what Reynolds says, often translates into inroads for commercial interests. Envision public lands and national monuments utilized and destroyed by “economic” interests, ATVs, desecration of rock art, destruction of native sacred sites, drilling, and so on. Federal designation is some protection for history, beauty and public access for enjoyment of the wild and traditional sacred sites.

With commercial interests blatantly salivating with thoughts of national monuments’ designations being reversed (if that is actually legally viable), it is naïve to think that local control without proper funding or commitment to wild places and historic and prehistoric treasures would be a shoo-in for preserving these places. The federal Antiquities Act, far from being antiquated, preserves lands, ecosystems, history, and the wild for our children and grandchildren.

ELLEN K. MOORE
Grand Junction

Whitman Park homeless issue may tell us something

Anyone with a sense of history can tell you it is safe to assume a city will always have some, shall we say, rowdy and unruly people congregating someplace. Assuming 1 percent is a valid number, then out of 100 people, you have one troublemaker. In 150,000 (today’s population in Mesa County), you could expect 1,500. Even if it is just one half of one percent, you are still facing 750 rowdy and unruly souls.

Having lived here for 47 years, it seems there has always been a place where they congregated: on Colorado Avenue, on South Fifth, at 27 Road and 6&50. Now it seems to be Whitman Park. Does all of this tell us something about economic development, population growth, and their unintended consequences?

D.D. LEWIS
Clifton


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