Printed letters, May 14, 2010

Energy disasters proclaim need for climate legislation

I write in the wake of the ongoing oil catastrophe along the Gulf Coast and the recent coal mine explosion in West Virginia, urging that Congress make passage of climate and energy legislation a top priority.

These two disasters are painful examples that show our reliance on fossil fuels poses enormous human and environmental costs, in addition to those posed by global warming.

The loss of life in both instances is tragic, and the scope of the damage from the ongoing Gulf Coast oil spill is already shocking, with many in fishing and related industries now facing the loss of their livelihoods.

Thankfully, the clean energy and energy efficiency solutions that can curb global warming will also create safe, green jobs and provide power without contaminating our land, water and air.

The safety features on these rigs should be required to be tested once a month to make sure they are working. A government inspector should be assigned to a group of oil rigs and travel from rig to rig with unannounced inspections, including the shutoff valves. They should be paid by the government and be in a selective service bracket so they won’t be in the pocket of the oil companies.

Now, more that ever, we need comprehensive climate and energy legislation that reduces our dependency on fossil fuels and makes clean energy and energy efficiency solutions a reality. We need to pressure Congress to pass strong climate and energy legislation this year.


Grand Junction

Proposed diversion threatens this region

Western Colorado and Utah will experience negative effects from a proposal to divert 250,000 acre feet of water from the Green River to the Front Range of Colorado.

The growing population and development on the Front Range always seem to need more water for domestic use. The Front Range growth is unsustainable without frequent infusions of imported water. Front Range communities utilize a significant amount of natural water resources from a large geographical area and covet alternative water supplies.

Diverting water from western Wyoming will drain Green River water supplies. The Green River flows through Colorado, Utah and Wyoming, supplying water for agricultural, domestic and recreational purposes. Water from the Green River flows into the Colorado River, supplying water for four downstream arid states. The Green and Colorado rivers have been depleted in the last decade due to drought and rising demand for water.

The Green River is home to endangered species of fish that are susceptible to river flow changes. National recreation areas, national parks and monuments along the Green and Colorado rivers are highly dependent on sustained river flows for both environmental and economic reasons. Removing a quarter of a million acre feet of water from the basin will be more than the area can spare and will have adverse effects over the long term.

Front Range proponents of the pipeline need to produce a more sustainable plan for water usage and water source management. Fifty-five percent of all Denver residential water is used outdoors to water lawns and wash cars. Implementing xeriscape landscaping, water re-use systems and water-conscious conservation are solutions to reduce demand for water.

Continued, unsustainable growth will only require the diversion of more water in the future. Front Range residents need to wake up and learn how to live in an arid region.



Flag should not be worn as apparel

A recent letter writer to The Daily Sentinel complained about a story of students being sent home for wearing shirts depicting the U.S. flag. His patriotic stance and rant are laudable on the surface and I’m as patriotic, if not more so, than he is. However, his anger is misplaced, probably due to ignorance.

The U.S. Flag code, Section 8d, states that, out of respect, the flag should never be worn as apparel. If fact, the entire code can be educational for most citizens.

So, those school villains were probably right for very wrong reasons. Someone, perhaps even Mr. Claussen, should look into this more closely.


Grand Junction

Columnist can’t find truth without reference point

Henrietta Hay has written many columns over the years. She has told us about what should and shouldn’t be and about justice and morality. Turns out she scammed everyone.

There are no “ought’s” or “ought nots” without a moral reference point. There is no justice without a justifiable source for this moral law. None of this exists without truth — a truth she says she never found. Without truth, there is no meaning. So how can we take her message seriously? It is just empty opinion.

Ironically, Hay had to go to the truth to make her arguments. She tried to use logic and rationality to make her points. She expected us to comprehend what she wrote. In a meaningless, irrational and unordered universe, none of this would be possible. Yet, Hay assumes it, and she expects justice and morality. Actually, she found she can’t function without them.

There is no basis for these things in her worldview and she has to borrow them from another view. If she had been more consistent in her thinking, she would recognize that she borrowed the entire basis for her arguments over the years from a worldview based on Absolute Truth. Why not look to that same one for the answers to her origin, morality, purpose and her destiny.


Grand Junction

Killing of fetuses takes place every day

I’m not sure Judge Tom Deister understood what he said when he sentenced Jared Ahlstrom to five years in prison for giving drugs to his girlfriend to induce a miscarriage.

Upon sentencing, Judge Diester said, “if there are people ... that think they have the opportunity to take the matter into their own hands and kill a HUMAN (emphasis added) fetus, I don’t know what our society would become.”

Exactly the point, Your Honor. What has our society become as thousands of human fetuses are killed each day across this nation in the name of “legal” abortion. Where is the logic here?

If I were this man’s defense lawyer, I would appeal this case on the grounds that our Constitution makes it a “right” to kill a fetus in the womb. Every day women and their husbands or boyfriends take matters into their own hands and decide to kill a child, only they use Planned Parenthood to do the killing.

The judge has it correct. Too bad he doesn’t realize it!


Grand Junction

Police made sendoff great for local Special Olympian

On behalf of the Shelledy Elementary School staff and the Lester family,  many thanks go out to the Fruita and Grand Junction Police Departments, which provided the wonderful police escort for Niki Lester and several of her classmates from Fruita to the Special Olympics event at Stocker Stadium recently.

Their participation made Niki and all the other Special Olympians feel very “special” indeed. The officers’ arrival added much excitement to the festivities that surrounded Niki, her “Nascar” and the Special Olympics sendoff, which was attended by the entire student body lining the sidewalks in front of the school.

It is gratifying that our police would take the time to make these efforts for our community. Thanks again to both police departments.


Grand Junction


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