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Letters to the editor

editor@vaildaily.com

Mike enough

Sunday’s Vail Daily carried a story about someone burning an antiwar banner hanging in front of the headquarters of a pacifist group in Colorado Springs. This was just the latest in a series of harassments inflicted on the group. Apparently it has to do with their opposition to war with Iraq.

Even those who support the Bush administration about Iraq should agree that these pacifists have the right to express their views in a peaceful manner. That’s what free speech is all about. Who was it who said: I disagree with what you say, but defend to the death your right right to say it?

So if the harrassers are caught, they should be prosecuted and punished severely for interfering with a basic right that is necessary for a free society.

But that is not all. This story had a large headline and over five column inches of text. A story about something that happened a couple of hundred miles from here. Compare this with the Vail Daily’s failure to cover at all the destruction of Michael Cacioppo’s Speakout newspapers right here in the Eagle Valley.

I suspect the difference lies in whether the powers that be at the Vail Daily are sympatheic to the point of view being obstructed. As Orwell put it in “Animal Farm”: All animals are equal; but some animals are more equal than others.

And while we’re on the subject of The Great Satan – Michael Cacioppo was charged with disorderly conduct and some similar offenses involving a traffic incident. There was a three-day trial ending Nov. 20, in which the jury returned not guilty verdicts on all counts. Even though Cacioppo represent himself, being too cheap to hire a lawyer.

If there was any mention this case in the Vail Daily, I missed it. Was there? If not, why not? If he had been found guilty of anything, would the Vail Daily then have done a story?

Terry Quinn

Eagle

Editor’s note: Short answer on the trial: No. Individual traffic cases, while no doubt fascinating to the parties involved, are plentiful enough and generally lack enough public significance to take up that much of a reporter’s time, even for such colorful figures as Cacioppo. We figure we’ll read all about it in his publication, and that is fine.

Thanks for

being thoughtful

On behalf of the entire crew of Vail Fire and Emergency Services, we would like to take this opportunity to thank the chefs and staff (especially Kim) of the Sonnenalp Resort and Hotelvery very much for their kindness and caring during this holiday season.

Their annual gift of a turkey dinner on Thanksgiving has become one of the season’s highlights for our working firefighters. During a busy and often hectic day, the time and effort they take to bring some holiday cheer to our duty staff is truly appreciated.

Again, we thank them all very much for such a wonderful dinner and know that they are in our thoughts and prayers this holiday season.

Captain J. G. Spell, Technicians Bosworth and Eich, Firefighters Sutter, Ocepek, Michels, and Balzer

Vail Fire Department

Caught ducking

rope at Vail

I would like to make a point with regard to rope closures, specifically on Vail Mountain.

Monday started out almost as perfect as a day can begin here in Vail. The valley awoke to 7 or so fresh inches of pow, and sunny skies no less. My friend and I hurried down our breakfast, and bolted to the gondola. After ripping some fresh lines through the Chair 5 region, rumor quickly passed about Blue Sky being open. Like two magnets we were pulled in that direction. On the way our minds were obviously clouded by the thoughts of the runs ahead and we shot ourselves in the feet. Coming around a cat track my friend told me of this line, and how it was the most direct route to the base lift to Blue Sky. Without thought I followed. As we came to the spot my friend was certain he saw the gate open and he shot down the face of fresh powder – and I not knowing where he was headed followed like a lemming.

After finishing our descent we were met by a ski patroller as we approached the chairlift. He informed us that we had cut a rope and that there were dire consequences. As things were being explained I couldn’t help but feeling like a small child being reprimanded by my parents. It didn’t matter if we saw the rope or not, it didn’t matter if we had no prior knowledge of the law, it didn’t matter if we were sorry – we were busted. Banishment from heaven was eminent.

I totally understand what I did, take full responsibility for it, and wish I could wave off all circumstances by way of stupidity. But no such luck. The fact is, I ducked under a rope closure and got caught. The only rope I’ve ever ducked and I got caught. So next time you are in an area you’re not 100 percent familiar with, pay attention to your surroundings. More importantly next time you come to the crossroads between a right and wrong decision – make the right one. I wish I had, but now I’m here sitting on the couch for the next two weeks without my pass, as Blue Sky officially opens for the season.

Respect the mountain, respect the rules, respect those who enforce them. Realize it or not we are people of privilege here and those privileges can be taken just as quickly as received.

Jeffrey Barwig


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