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Human compacts

Letters to the Editor

Cheap ideas gleaned from listening to talk radio programs (you get what you pay for):

Recent activity in discussing how to formalize and recognize the relationships between unconventional partners has caused consideration of forming some entirely objective and possibly new ideas on the subject.

If civil and/or religious institutions are competent to administer contracts for goals to achieve their own purposes and desires, can they not intelligently create standardized contract forms to be made available for people to codify (or otherwise have forms for numerous specific circumstances) unconventional agreements between two or more human beings and they then could be prudently turning the codification responsibilities over to the parties involved in the mutual agreement?

This would be a unique agreement. Pages for a published document would be selected from an assortment of a few pages (out of the hundreds available) to be comprehensive and meaningful for the specific relationship that is the purpose for composing an agreement.

Contracts covering an individual, or several human beings, mutually agreeing to cause-specific situations – including but certainly not limited to insurance policies, medical and retirement benefits – could cover all sorts of civil and legal aspects. Also, religious and spiritually based emotional needs could be accommodated.

A formal church wedding celebration or the signing of a form in front of a justice of the peace could be the simple solution to an unconventional partnership that is legal in all other aspects.

The situation may be standardized or inclusive of specific needs of the individuals. For the individual human beings involved, who happen to have completely normal emotions of affection, fondness, love and attraction to physical attributes, no piece of paper is going to make a difference.

Prenuptial agreements for numerous considerations between pairs of human beings have been recognized as legally adequate for a long time.

Just as one can sign a quit-claim document to real property, the next step is to assign the title to some identifiable entity such as a trust. In the case of a living trust, the trust has a beneficiary. In the case of two humans becoming partners, the beneficiaries could be the pair or an acquired family unit.

Imagine this: claiming the intangibles involved with pairing or coupling as items which may be documented or agreed upon as prenuptial agreements. Differences in opinions or personal values could be documented and agreed upon just as if in divorce settlement negotiations that are sooner or later reduced to statements that can be written in a formal legal document. And the negotiations are certain to be settled in an amicably agreeable basis.

For civil or legal purposes, the coupling could be referred to with “union” as part of the title. To allow for religious or spiritual priorities, “marriage” could be part of the root word. You could call it “uni-age” for the legal or civil purposes, or a “marria-on” for the romantically inclined.

A newspaper announcement could refer to a “uni-age marria-on” or to a “marria-on uni-age,” placing the emphasis on the word that is used first.

Please note that these suggestions are made with tongue firmly placed in the cheek.

Recognizing that many are voicing distress and concern at altering or changing the traditional concept and definition of marriage between a man and a woman. These could lead to an abundance of descriptive verbiage added on the simple classic woman-man definition.

It would seem logical (and possibly even reasonable) to let the names to be used evolve from the couple involved.

A polite introduction to others could include the phrase, “my significant other” or as “my good friend and associate.”

Difficult as it maybe to listen to all voices of concern over values that are mostly unfathomable to my ignorant mind, the single solution might be to say that this is either a conventional union or a completely acceptable satisfactory agreeable alternative modification.

Americans should not need Washington legislation in our private lives.

Steve Zorichak

Vail

Not right

I am a 30-year local of Eagle County. I wanted to draw to your attention how unfair the adoption policy can be for the Eagle County Animal Shelter.

I have been looking for a new dog companion for our home for a few weeks. My visits have taken me to several shelters over a multi-county area. On a visit to the Eagle County Animal Shelter, I found a small, female Chihuahua terrier mix that was approximately 9 months old, which had been picked up, I believe, in the Dotsero area and brought to the shelter the previous week.

She was on impound status and not available for adoption yet. I came to visit her five times over the next few days and fell in love with her. We really bonded, and she was to be my companion. I even gave her a name. Cleo.

I inquired if there was any way I could assure that Cleo could be my new companion, but was told the Eagle County Animal Shelter policy is first come-first serve the day the animal goes up for adoption. That day was Thursday, March 11.

I had planned to be there that morning at 9:30, but because of the nature of my job, I was unable to be at the shelter until 10:20 that morning. I am a driver for a local transportation company and my guests dictate my timing. I guess that was truly my loss, because after arriving 20 minutes past shelter opening, someone else had already adopted what I had hoped would be my new pet.

Your policy has discriminated against me and kept me from the dog I had chosen. I was heart-broken. Even Cleo carried on when she saw me. One of your shelter employees or volunteers said that he felt so bad knowing how much I had wanted that dog.

I can’t imagine that I am the only person that has been discriminated against because my job does not allow me the flexibility to come into the shelter at a certain time on a certain day to get an animal that I had spent hours with.

There are other alternatives here. How about a $25 or $50 deposit for an animal? That would allow someone with inflexible hours a 24 to 48 hours window to come in and to complete the paperwork and pick up the animal. The deposit would be non-refundable and it would show my sincere intent to give an animal a home. And it would not apply toward the adoption fees. It would just be a way to allow someone like me the opportunity to put my reservation on a particular animal so that I would be able to adopt it on my time schedule.

The deposit money would cover the additional paperwork cost to the shelter, and if I chose to adopt that animal, the money would still be in the system for the shelter. You would not be discriminating against a potential animal owner because of hours of availability and it would be a win-win for potential masters and adoptable animals.

Besides, at least two other shelters I visited had adoption fees of $100. With a $25 reservation fee, and the $75 adoption fee that total fee structure would still be in line with some other shelters.

I know that our shelter has a good track record placing animals, but it sure failed me. Why would I come back and set myself up again to go through the pain and potential loss of not being able to adopt a pet again through your shelter?

I am so hurt and upset by the whole ordeal that I will not step foot in your shelter again with your current rules. And I have adopted 21 animals over my 30 years in Eagle County: two cats, one horse, one donkey, two bunnies, four gerbils, one hamster, two dogs, and eight birds all total. I would have provided a good and loving home for Cleo.

In the future, I will go to and support other shelters that actually allow me to adopt an animal that I have fallen in love with and help make it happen for me on my time schedule. How sad that rules cannot be flexible enough to actually pair potential animals and caring masters. Someone should rethink your adoption rules.

In the meantime, I miss Cleo. I hope that she has a good home!

Debbie Comerford

Right on target

I just wanted to let you know that (Don Rogers’) commentary in Monday’s edition was right on target regarding the issues of Nelson Gould’s forced resignation, the underhanded tactics of disgruntled teachers and parents terrified of change, and the realities of Eagle County School District education that provided the catalyst for implementation of TAP.

You also made the point that needs to be reiterated every once in a while that 3-D probably would not have passed without the performance pay component attached to it.

I’ve volunteered in the school district for several years and am finally beginning to see the changes and vision that had been sorely lacking in the past. While we may not agree with every decision made by those in our schools, I have confidence that our district is headed in the right direction by doing away with excuses and challenging the status quo.

You expressed my thoughts, and I’m sure those of many others, very accurately.

Janet (and Richard)

De Clark


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