Letters to the editor
It was heartening to read Dan Smith’s commentary on the giant flag that will soon fly in celebration of our freedom in the center of the Eagle River Valley. Despite all the negative NIMBY-type chatter and other musings, I think it will be great to see this terrific symbol of our great country flying high where so many can see it as they pass by on an interstate highway. Appreciation for it was heightened by Mr. Smith’s explaining the significance of the flagpole’s design. Plus, what’s all the flap about it being purple? When I saw it, I didn’t perceive it as purple or offensive, just a beautiful dark blue to match the field of blue on our flag. I was amused by this comment I heard in more flap by speculators about the coming flag phenomenon: “And can you imagine the sound? When that thing flaps, it will be like the jolly green giant’s snapping a towel at someone’s butt!” May its flapping and snapping represent the sound of our country’s whisking the fear of terrorism out of our neighborhoods, our country and the world. I think it’s very appropriate to place a super-size symbol of one of the world’s superpowers, among the county’s new super-stores, along our nation’s superhighway. The sight of our flag anywhere brings me a feeling of joy, pride, and of gratitude to all who have given of their lives to create, preserve, protect, and maintain our great country and all of our rights and freedoms. I have wish I could afford to put one up in my back yard to grace the public activities in the nearby soccer field and playground. I say thank you, Mr. Lindholm and Traer Creek.Sandy RoseA bad ideaI recently attended the Avon City Council meeting regarding the 14-story flagpole on the Traer Creek property in Avon. I am convinced after hearing Mr. Lindholm speak that he feels that anyone who is against his flagpole is unpatriotic and malcontent. Several citizens in the community have told me that Mr. Lindholm suggested that they were unpatriotic for not supporting his flagpole. None of the citizens who attended the council meeting are against the flag and what it stands for. This point was stressed by Avon Mayor Buzz Reynolds. Citizens are upset because Mr. Lindholm has imposed his flagpole on everyone. I think any person in the valley would be in favor of a flagpole display in the current location that is similar in scale to the flagpoles at the entrance to the town of Avon. Mr. Lindholm stated at the council meeting that neither Home Depot or Wal-Mart had anything to do with the decision to place the flagpole. I believe Mr. Lindholm has done a disservice to his tenants by creating such a negative attitude within the valley toward his development. There were many statements made by citizens at the council meeting to “vote with your dollars.” In other words, a dollar spent at Wal-Mart and Home Depot is a vote for the flagpole.Mr. Lindholm obviously has no intention of listening to the vast majority of citizens who wish to have the flagpole removed and a more appropriate flagpole installed. Perhaps, he will listen to his tenants when his decisions are affecting their business.I am not advocating a boycott of any businesses. I am hoping that the citizens of the Vail Valley and Mr. Lindholm’s tenants, Wal-Mart and Home Depot, together can persuade Mr. Lindholm that a 14-story flag pole is a bad idea. Tom BassettVailWhat is anti-American?Why is it that the flag proposed to go up in Avon has created such a stirring of emotions among our citizens?Why is it that Americans dying every day in Iraq and Afghanistan doesn’t stir that great feeling of patriotism and chest thumping of letter writers to the Vail Daily enough to write about those concerns rather than the size of our flag?I wondered how many letter writers in support of the size of the flag actually lived in Eagle-Vail or Avon or somewhere directly connected to its effect, whatever that might be. Looking at the June 25 letters to the editor in the Daily, I noticed that those calling the protestors unpatriotic were from Gypsum and Vail. Does that mean you are unpatriotic if something is in your back yard and more patriotic if it isn’t?I am taking the liberty to remind another Daily writer from June 25 that it is not necessarily anti-American to protest or have a difference of opinion with someone regarding Old Glory.Old Glory is not a Republican flag, nor is it a Democratic flag. It is the American flag.Isn’t it ironic that someone would think that a real estate developer from another country, who owns most of Eagle County, understands better than Americans what Old Glory stands for? I guess that would be freedom, or is it the chance to profit, or what is it?As chance would have it, there was another letter to the editor in the paper on the same date by Jim Newsom regarding the flag and quoting “… commercially exploits our national symbol as do car lots in Denver.” I couldn’t help but think of those car lots and the giant flag that stands at that motel on I-70 in Denver. Are you not an American if you do not stay in that $19.99 a night motel when you go to Denver for the night?Before I go any further, I should explain I am a Marine Corps veteran, having served my country for four years. I love my country. I love my freedom. Most of all I love the fact that I have the privilege and good fortune to raise my daughter as an American citizen. (By the way, even if I didn’t see Magnus lying in the mud next to me hoping to stay alive, I am not really making any observations of his character nor do I have the right to judge his reasons for the flag any more than to judge those who oppose it. At best I only have the right to harbor my own feelings for or against it.)The size of patriotic symbols, the noise of the fireworks on the Fourth of July are nice, but sometimes people use them to serve their own political purposes and they wrap themselves in the flag. By doing so they deny those who think differently the freedom of thought, which if I am correct is a fundamental part of what America is all about.To me, true patriotism lies within one’s heart and soul. True patriotism is quiet, it is deep, it is the tear in your eye, and it is the remembrance of those who have served and died for our freedom.One does not always have to wave the flag (no matter what the size) and proclaim themselves patriotic to fully understand how lucky we are to be Americans. Not a Republican, not a Democrat, independent, or any party.No one should have the right to call anyone else anti-American because he or she doesn’t agree with you. After all this is America, everyone’s America.The more we play politics, the more we divide America. Funny, ever notice how many campaign signs are red, white and blue?Gerry SandbergEagleSuck it up, you whinersTo those complaining about the flagpole, you have that right to complain. Why? Because of the soldiers willing to fight to keep your freedoms.I have heard so many whining about the flagpole and the blue lights and all these petty little issues that seem to make your lives so hard. What sacrifices have you made for your freedoms? You can’t seem to have this perfect little life because of all these horrible things around you going on. That’s just so sad, is it not? We have men and women trying hard to stay alive and bring hope and peace to others around the world. My son is now in Afghanistan and will be there for some time bringing hope and peace to others and making a difference in our world what are you doing besides whining about flagpoles and blue lights and what ever else you seem to feel makes your life so hard. Wake up and thank God you are safe and the worst you are worried about is flagpoles and blue lights and remember how you got the freedoms you are allowed to whine about. Theresa LadenburgerName for poleNumerous writers have weighed in this past week about the flagpole controversy. I suggest we reject its use as a flagpole and keep the “post” as the perfect landmark for “Wm. J. Post” Boulevard. Maybe we should name it “Wm. J.” Like “Bob the Bridge,” we could then have “Wm. J. the Post.” Todd Rymer Too obnoxiousI would be within my legal rights to erect in my back yard a 150-foot Plexiglas sculpture of Ronald McDonald, complete with flashing red nose. And my DRB would be within its rights to approve it, as there is nothing in our covenants that specifically excludes large clowns. But I would sure as hell not be a good neighbor, and I suspect my neighbors in the adjoining developments would have a good strong case to take to court. Granted, a flagpole is not a clown, but when it’s that big and that obnoxious, it sure is a joke.If only Avon had something that prohibited clowns. Jane ImberWolcottA suggestionIf they are going to fly a giant flag, it should be Chinese, like most of their nongrocery merchandise. Bert Nordin Vail
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