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Letters to Editor

Bus

Dear Editor:

The bus service.

It came to my attention that they are cutting out two more runs to Aspen and Turkey Springs, leaving only a morning run and an evening run. I also found out it’s not the county; it’s the city. They get the money from the state to fund this program; and they just keep cutting it to pieces. I want to know what they’re doing with the money for this program, because it’s pretty obvious they don’t need this service so it’s not their concern how we get to work, appointments, the grocery store and other needs. It looks like their next step is to cut this program completely. Citizens with concerns about this, please write in. It’s just not right what they’re doing.

Michael Archuleta

Politics

Dear Editor:

Sounds like the boys in the Pagosa coffee shops are getting bored with each other’s hunting and fishing stories so they have nothing better to talk about than the Arboles troglodyte’s bathing habits. So I thought the troglodyte should introduce another subject, namely, politics.

When I was a kid along time ago, we kept the cows in a building called a barn. A large part of life on a dairy farm is spent cleaning out the barn. My Dad always called it Christian labor. I wasn’t nearly as fond of Christian labor as my Dad so I would ask him why we just don’t pray to God and let him clean out the barn. Of course, I attended my Mother’s Sunday school class so I knew all about God’s miracles. My Dad would always respond, “The Lord helps those who help themselves.”

Now Americans need to clean out the barn. Many pray to God for help; others look to the government. All expect their neighbors to do the dirty work. Nobody is willing to grab a manure fork and get ‘er done. The only way America will solve its financial problems is for everyone, and I mean you and me, to pitch in. As a starter, everyone should take a ten percent cut (give or take a few points, I haven’t done the math). The politicians will never agree to a common sense proposal. The Republican, Democrat and Tea party zealots are out to destroy America. I reckon that the only Americans left are over in Afghanistan.

The other day I was cleaning out a closet, getting ready for my final move and I came across my old high school year book and a page listed seventy six Hornell High Alumni WW II service men that never came back. (Hornell was a hick railroad town then, not even that now.) In those days when a kid turned seventeen he joined the Marines and ended up jumping off a landing craft into a hail of machine gun bullets. I have been asked by young folks who Hitler was. Let me tell you, if Americans a couple of generations ago behaved like present day Americans, kids wouldn’t have to ask the question. They could go to Washington and look at a statute of Hitler instead of the Washington monument.

Bob Dungan

Arboles

Dedication

Dear Editor:

I moved here in 2001 in large part because of the caliber of the schools and the newly built high school facility. My son, Jesse, graduated as valedictorian, went on to study at the prestigious Colorado College, left there magna cum laude with a self-designed degree in international environmental policy and is now working full time at the Rocky Mountain Institute at a job in his field that he loves. In my position as drama coach at the high school, I enjoy working with my students at the best auditorium facility in southern Colorado, and have been part of the development of an exceptional theater program there. Beginning with Bill Esterbrook and with the support of David Hamilton, Sean O’Donnell and the administration, I have been able to expand performance and learning opportunities for our students and community members over the years. Especially exciting is the integration of FAMA (Fine Arts Magnet Academy) as a curriculum class at the high school this year led by Bob Hemenger. Our Archuleta County School Board has played a major role in both my son’s educational opportunities and my professional ones. I honor and thank all of our members for their dedication and work on behalf of the young people of Pagosa.

Dale Johnson

Well said

Dear Editor:

I feel compelled to answer some of the comments made by Dick Riethmiller in response to my letters critical of the Republican Party and their Tea Party followers. First of all, I did not and would not call the Tea Partiers “despicable,” “terrorists” or “radicals.” In fact, in my view, the current Republican Party is made up not of radicals, but of the opposite, “reactionaries,” defined by Wordsmith.com as, “opposed to change, progress, or reform; extremely conservative.”

He also describes a Tea Party Rally he attended in Virginia, observing that there were people “of all ages, races, and creeds.” I guess that race would be easy to identify. But, I’ll bet that the crowd did not include a proportional number of African Americans (20 percent of Virginia population), Hispanics (8 percent), or Asians (6 percent). I’m not sure how Mr. Riethmiller determined the crowd’s “creed,” defined as “a system of belief, principles or opinions.” Virginia does not require that registered voters declare a party affiliation. However, the state does have two Democratic Senators and voted for President Obama in the 2008 election. So, a fairly high number of Virginians must be Democrats. I doubt that their “creed” was well represented at the rally. A 2010 Gallup poll found Tea Party members to be overwhelmingly white, conservative and more affluent than average. So, please do not try to convince me that the Tea Party represents a comprehensive cross section of the American populace.

Finally, Mr. Riethmiller believes all liberals want to repeal the Constitution, apparently including me. Sir, nothing could be farther from the truth! I believe strongly that the Constitution created a magnificent structure for the founding of the strongest democracy in the world. However, this document was created by aristocratic white men. I don’t think they sought the participation of women, African and Native Americans, poor whites, etc. So, I think we need to view this document as a good beginning for the 18th century. But, in the 21st century, we face modern challenges that the Founding Fathers could not even imagine. Even they obviously believed that the Constitution would be a “living” document or they would not have provided for an amendment process. If the original Constitution were perfect, as the strict constructionists would have us believe, then why are there 27 Amendments, the first 10 adopted only two years after original ratification. After all, the original Constitution did not ban slavery, provide women’s suffrage, guarantee the right to bear arms, ensure free speech and religion, etc. All of these are in amendments. And now, the Tea Party wants yet another amendment to balance the budget.

The father of the Constitution, Thomas Jefferson, said, “I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and constitutions, but laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with the change of circumstances, institutions must advance also to keep pace with the times.” Well said, President Jefferson!

John W. Porco

Loopholes

Dear Editor:

Are there any tax loopholes for multinational corporations the Tea Party would like to close?

The Tea Party is dealing with symptons of the disease, not the disease itself.

High taxes are the result of several wars we are involed in around the world.

High taxes are the result of trade policies that give special tax advantages to multinational corporations.

High taxes are the result of the billions of dollars of energy we import.

Don Reid

Angels

Dear Editor:

Angels among us.

On July 19, our family made a fun hike to Opal Lake. As we began our journey down the mountain, I didn’t quite make the last step crossing over a log. Unable to put weight on my leg, the search and rescue team came to my aid. What an amazing team! Such professionals with caring, concern and a bit of humor mixed in. I thank you.

They may never know how very grateful our family is to each of you. And thank you for allowing our son be a part of your group.

Thanks to the search and rescue team, a safe journey down. Now recovering from surgery of a broken leg.

Couldn’t have made it without you — really.

Pagosa Springs community, the next time you have the opportunity, please pass along an extra high-five for the work they do, with only a “thank you.” Also, share a dog treat with Shadow.

Forever appreciated,

The Thompson family

Clyde, Texas

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