Letter: Support for Sheriff van Beek | VailDaily.com

Letter: Support for Sheriff van Beek

I read a letter in the April 18 edition of the Vail Daily from Susan Thistlethwaite criticizing Sheriff James van Beek for the fine article he had written in response to the poorly-conceived House Bill 1177 that was passed by the Colorado legislature this year.

This was a feelgood law for the Democrats but does nothing to make us safer, just like her letter criticizing the sheriff made her feel good but did nothing. We will have to elect a responsible governor and legislatures to change it now.

Sheriff van Beek is one of the finest sheriffs in Colorado and was very clear about the deficiencies in this bill, also known as the red flag bill or Extreme Risk Protection Orders. The bill is extreme in the way it tromps on an individual’ss rights and does not give the respondent the protection afforded by the constitution.

It would have been nice if the article had been published sooner, but the time of publication does not mean that Sheriff van Beek was not working along with many other responsible sheriffs in Colorado to provide some common sense to the misguided legislature. I am disappointed that our county commissioners did not join the other Colorado counties that declared sanctuary status.

In the United States, we generally have a legislative branch of government, an executive branch and a judicial branch. I take exception to Dylan Roberts serving in the Colorado House of Representatives creating poor laws and then working in the District Attorney’s Office prosecuting these poorly-drafted laws. He needs to choose one or the other, or if this is an example of his interpretation of the constitution he needs to resign from both.

If someone that is having a mental problem, under the influence or just intent on suicide is faced with multiple officers showing up at their door to confiscate their property, that person is likely to react violently causing injury to themselves or the officer. If that person is intent on suicide, death by an officer will get someone a lot more attention than if that person took his or her own life.

Thousands of babies are killed every year by Planned Parenthood and others but Susan and many Democrats do not seem to have a concern about the life that these babies did not get to enjoy. In the first 111 days of 2019, 96 people have died in crashes on Colorado highways with 17 of them being impaired by alcohol or drugs. Most of these crashes are avoidable. Is there no concern for the rights of these people to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? Maybe it’s more important to Susan to oppose the president and the sheriff than do something to stop this loss of life.

I’d suggest she moves to someplace with some of the most restrictive gun laws like Chicago, although it’s obvious that gun laws don’t make you safe when Chicago has one of the highest rates of gun violence in the country.

Mental health and the actions of someone suffering is a true concern to the citizens. There are many ways for someone to hurt themselves or others, the use of firearms being only one. Actually treating the person with care and compassion or removing them to a secure location would be better than alienating the person and causing injury or death to the individual or others.

I wish the members of the legislature had the same concern for the citizens of Eagle County as Sheriff van Beek does.

Mike Lederhause


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