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Letters to the editor

Ted Springer

Some time ago, Vail Daily Editor Don Rogers described how the desire to scoop competition can lead to false reporting – insufficient background checking, turning hearsay into fact, a political leaning, etc. The occasion then was how the media was utilizing gossip and unproven material to be seen as on-the-in, and first to reveal the real Kobe Bryant story. He correctly, and admirably, kept his paper’s nose clean, reporting facts when he was assured of their veracity. Fast forward to the CBS-Rather-Bush National Guard brouhaha. CBS has been reprimanded, as they should be, and those directly involved fired. That’s good for journalism, short and long term. What I would hope, as the dust settles, is that people realize that the forged material used by CBS was basically correct about Mr. Bush. The facts remain – Bush did, in fact, get into the National Guard through the influence of a family friend. Then speaker of the house in Texas, Ben Barnes, called a brigadier general of the Texas Air National Guard and lo and behold, George was accepted, getting a direct commission – over thousands of others, and 150 pilot applicants who had to wait 18 months to be considered for flight school in the Texas unit. This is after scoring the absolute minimum on the qualifying test. The same National Guard unit also included the son of former Texas Sen. Lloyd Bensen, the son of former Texas Gov. John Connolly and numerous other rich Texans’ sons – plus several members of the Dallas Cowboy football team. George, of course, didn’t serve out his term, not showing up for the required physical, deciding on his own he didn’t want to fly any more, then journeying to Alabama to work on a political campaign where the commander can’t remember seeing him even though he was supposed to report regularly as required.Bush was a strong supporter of the Vietnam war, but on his form, checked “no” on the question would he serve on active duty in Vietnam. (Many years later, in his first political campaign, he padded his military resume, claiming he had served on active duty – a lie. When confronted, his press secretary said, with a straight face, that flight school plus two weeks per year with the Guard, equaled a tour of active duty.)So why dredge this up, and where are we now? In trouble. This is the selfsame man who is our commander in chief, the same person who as a young man ducked the Vietnam war, yet now oversees a disastrous foreign policy where military might trumps all else. His arrogance, his posturing, his limited understanding of other cultures, have cost many thousands of dead and dying in Iraq. It was predictable. One of Bush’s Harvard professors felt obligated to speak out, saying that as a student, Bush was arrogant, an inveterate liar and a lousy student. Put that together with his non-service, and we have what is, guess what, an arrogant (he believes God has chosen him to be president), an inveterate liar, visualize his clever selling of the non-existent Hussein-Al Qaida relationship where well over half of Americans came to believe Hussein was a part of 9/11, and his not-the-sharpest-bulb-on-the-tree lack of understanding of other cultures.His donning of the flight suit for the carrier photo op, an airborne jacket when addressing paratroopers, a 1st Army shirt when serving food to the troops is typical. And hypocritical. This from a guy who got special treatment to avoid fighting in Vietnam. Here we have the essence of a chicken hawk and we’re paying the price. Worse, many brave Americans and up to 50,000 Iraqis have paid the price.May Americans see that this emperor has no clothes. And I hope it’s not too late. Ted SpringerAvon Pure gratitudeWe would like to thank all our friends and family for the beautiful flowers, cards and letters, the donations and food that were sent to us. The letters, poems and stories of our beloved Jerome were very heart-warming. We are very lucky to have such great friends and wonderful families that truly care. We would like to thank our employers, Vail Resorts and VVMC for doing whatever they could to help and continue to help. We also could not have been able to make all the arrangements without all the volunteers. There are not enough words to express our gratitude to all of you. Thank you to all the teachers and staff at the schools in this district. Thank you to the BMHS Husky Cabinet Co. for making the beautiful cross and naming Jerome for the memorial scholarship fund. Thank you to St Patrick’s Parish for all their help, prayers and support. Thank you also to the other parishes in the valley that have also offered prayers for Jerome and our family. Jerome was a very special person and he touched a lot of hearts in his short time here. We know the friends he made were very special and we wish we could thank everyone personally. Know that we truly appreciate everything that everyone did and for all the support you showed. Jerry, Susie, Alicia (Jon Spears) and Clarissa Gallegos Vail, Colorado


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