Sound off for March 29, 2003 |

Sound off for March 29, 2003

Say no big-box retailers

Let’s not turn Steamboat into “Anywhere U.S.A.,” with expansive cement parking lots and ugly buildings. We survived without Wal-Mart and McDonald’s, we can certainly do without Target, Gart Bros., Burger King and the rest. Think of all the money you save by not being tempted daily by the “great deals” on things you don’t really need. Many of us moved here to enjoy Steamboat’s beauty and small town character. If the shopping is not adequate, maybe you should move to Silverthorne.

Bush’s motives are wrong

No, I do not support the President’s Bush invasion in Iraq. Without any firm proof, based entirely on assumptions, Bush attacked a sovereign country with weapons, claiming he fights for peace. I doubt it very much — the war is for the petrol — everybody knows it. If somebody must have been attacked — why Iraq, but not Iran, North Korea or maybe Pakistan. The answer is that they are lucky for not having oil reserves. Otherwise they would have been as dangerous as Iraq in terms of weapons.

It is likely that Bush’s militarism and drive to war is also motivated by a need to obscure the current worsening state of the US economy. This may be far worse than the administration is willing to admit. America’s huge military build-up and bribing of allies are extremely costly. Debt is at a record level, social services are being slashed and over 40 million people are without the most basic health insurance coverage.

No, I do not support Bush invading Iraq, but I do support our military personnel over there.

Supporting war effort

Anybody who is “pro-war” from the comfort of their home should spend just one day on the front. The sight of maimed human beings, children blown to pieces and other horrors created will make them face reality and change their mind immediately.

Iraq’s foreign minister was interviewed Sunday in Cairo and stated the American people do not support the military action taking place in their country. This is giving the Iraqi army hope that if they can sustain these battles long enough, America will lose interest in war. Those of you who oppose this war and protest against it publicly are indirectly hurting our young soldiers with your lack of support of this action. Our young men and women are fighting for our freedom and they deserve every degree of respect and backing we can give them. If you can’t do that, then leave our free country. If you can’t do that, then shut up.

I very much support President Bush and the action in Iraq. I think Iraq being a nation of tyranny has the potential of developing weapons that could be used by terrorists. Now is the time to draw the line in the sand as far as proliferation of weapons, chemical, biological and nuclear.

Why the French bashing?

French bashing seems to be at a height in the U.S. However, the vast majority of the population of nations around the world feel just like the French about the war. How can America be so intolerant and hypocritical not to respect France’s right to disagree with Bush’s bellicose posturing? Particularly since France’s feelings mirror much of the world? Let us nor forget the profound bonds between France and the USA. America’s most famous statue is French after all.

State budget crisis

I’d just like to make a comment about the editorial in Wednesday’s newspaper. The state’s budget crisis was not caused by the TABOR Amendment and Amendment 23, it was caused by the Republican legislature making tax cuts permanent instead of temporary. So when Bill Owens brags that everyone in the state got an $800 tax cut which I am sure helps him get re-elected, on the other hand the state is suffering. It is a problem the Republicans in the Legislature brought upon themselves and now we are all paying for it.

Motors at Howelsen

City Council has asked the Parks and Recreation Commission for a recommendation to allow motorized events at Howelsen Hill. Parks and Rec of course said yes. Who is pushing this? Two sources, obviously: folks who enjoy breathing the fumes and hearing the noise, and the Chamber Resort Association. The chamber’s motive is to promote more special events to fill more beds in the over-built lodging sector. City Council majority was looking for and counting on a ‘yes’ answer, because of its close partnership with the chamber, and to generate more spending and sales tax collection. What about the wishes of the many who don’t appreciate the motorized hullabaloo and the added stress on our already overtaxed street system?

Speak up on new court

The new judicial facility is going to be built, even without voter approval; voter approval is only for new taxes. If the voters don’t approve of a new tax, then the funds will come out of existing budgets. Based upon an informal raised-hand vote held at the last judicial facility meeting, the new building will be built downtown.

The question wasn’t asked of how many of these downtown voters also worked in the legal profession, but I bet it was a majority.

If you really think the new facility should be by the jail, you better make sure to voice your opinion at the final meeting discussing its location, to be held at 6 p.m. April 1 at the courthouse annex, otherwise you will be reminded every time you drive past the downtown Taj Mahal.

Gravel pit a bad idea

Yes, wrong place for the Lafarge pit. Even a mulit-million dollar French company cannot control the fog conditions on State Highway 131. This, for years, has been an accident waiting to happen for the school buses and vehicles that travel this dangerous road.

Three hundred vehicles were counted going north from 7 to 8 a.m. on March 20, 2003. What is one life worth? Think of your children and your loved ones.

There have already been too many deaths caused primarily by the fogs in this area. Nancy Stahoviak travels this road almost every day and she, of all people, should understand the poor visibility conditions.

This is discussed in the State Highway 131 fog mitigation plan. The Routt County Planning Commission and Routt County Commissioners should be held responsible for the health, safety and welfare of their public.

Lafarge’s and Mr. Tuttle’s concerns are that tourists will see the pit for 22 seconds from Rabbit Ears; the locals will see it for everyday from 131 for years to come and probably the next generations, too.

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