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Letters to the editor

Eight years ago we sold our home in Lake Creek and moved to the Sweetwater Community. On July 23, a horrible thunderstorm wreaked havoc on our little paradise by sending a tremendous gully washer down from “Lucky Gulch” and onto our property. Kathy Heicher did a very nice article about it in the Enterprise. We cannot believe how many people have called or stopped by to offer help, support and prayers.We were not home when the storm hit. We would like to thank Cliff and Kay Vincent for getting in touch with us at the Stagecoach Reservoir where we were camping with family and friends. Cliff, Kay, and Angie and Scott Suntken went to our property after talking with us and made sure our horses had survived. Angie took some great pictures for us also. Scott and Angie have also allowed us to park our fifth wheel at their house because we couldn’t get it in our driveway. They also loaned us their power washer to get the mud off our lawn and flowers. Recently, a large number of our Sweetwater neighbors came with equipment to help restore our property and remove the debris. We would like to thank the following people: Doug and Donna Fasi and family; Hope and Matt Kapsner; Carol MacUmber and family; Monte and Doris Miller; Adrienne Brink; Brian and Jennifer Widhalm and family; Brent Smith; Scott and Angie Suntken; Bill and Annalies Stephens; Bill and Mary Stephens; the Tartaglia family; Cliff and Kay Vincent; Justin Oaks; Heidi McCollum; Stephens Nursery crew; G.H. Daniels and Associates. If I have forgotten anyone, please forgive us. Thanks also to Pat and George McCollum, who loaned us some chairs and coolers for beverages for all the workers. It has really helped to have our daughter, Katie, here all through this and our son, Chris’ concern and support.Thank you also to John Harris from Eagle County Road and Bridge, who came out and gave us suggestions to help keep this from happening again and leaving signs to slow traffic for the workers. We would also like to express our sincere appreciation to Gallegos Masonry for hauling off a lot of the rock.One of the most difficult parts of this has been that during the storm when cars were stuck on the road, someone stole our tractor and got it stuck and abandoned it and didn’t call or leave us a note. Our house was also entered and there were muddy footprints and handprints on everything in the house. Some jewelry was taken, but it isn’t that. It is just difficult to understand why people would do that. The Sheriff’s Office is working on it, but it is still difficult to understand how someone could do that. The grass will grow back, the jewelry can be replaced, but our sense of security here is gone. We are just grateful that no one was hurt, the animals are all fine, and to know we have such great neighbors. Thank you again to everyone who helped clean up, who gave us ideas, who called or stopped by. It is wonderful to live in this community. Bob and Cathie Jarnot Scores with usTo Vail Daily sports team: Way to go! Keep the Vail Rugby team and stories going. We have friends and family in South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, U.K., Scotland, Ireland, Wales and throughout the U.S. that are following the Vail Rugby season and the players here due to alliances via friendship and family. They all catch the latest on-line. Thanks! The photographers and writers this year, as in the past, that cover local rugby are excellent with details of the game, the humor and the team atmosphere. Kudos to the sports team that comes and hangs out with us – thanks again for taking all the time to cover our Vail Ruggers! See you on the field. Galvin HastingsGlascow, ScotlandNuanceIn response to the Reverend Jack Van Ens’ column of July 30 and my thoughts on nuance at a lower altitude: While enjoying the rarified air of Beaver Creek, I read your article in the Vail Daily. After nearly five years of asking liberal friends and acquaintances to sensibly articulate why they have such visceral hatred for President Bush, I find the answer in your column. He lacks “nuance.” As I descended into the lower altitudes returning from my mountain weekend, I started thinking about that.While enjoying eight years of “nuanced” foreign policy under former President Clinton, I thought of the surviving families of Sept. 11. What might they think of the nuance of the Clinton years? After all, the event may have occurred on Bush’s watch, but the wheels had been put in motion years earlier. When terrorists bombed the World Trade Center in 1993, this was treated as a crime and not really an act of terror, cutting and running in Mogadishu, the African embassy bombings that killed over 400, and the USS Cole. But the response to each event was nuanced and the Arab world, the U.N. and people like you were grateful. The murder of innocents in Israel continued, but Mr. Clinton, seeking a Nobel Peace Prize, felt nuance the only way to bring peace and brotherhood to the Palestinians and Israelis. Then I thought of Bosnia, and wondered about the nuance applied there, bombing from 30,000 feet and risking little. The biggest risk was not getting U.N. approval. But little finesse is really all that’s needed.I thought about the terrorists who continue to kill in London, Baghdad, Israel, and couldn’t recall them using nuance to explain their behavior. They prefer to “chop the world into good and evil camps with little merging of the two.” They speak of their hatred of the infidel and our way of life without mincing words. As a matter of fact, people like you, Rev. Van Ens, seem to be the ones that spend a great deal of time trying to explain their rather black and white positions to the rest of us with just the proper amount of “nuance” so we understand just how “misunderstood” these people are. It is fortunate, for us and Western civilization that there are men and women who see our freedoms in black-and-white terms and are willing to fight and if necessary to die to preserve them and our way of life, even fighting for your tax-exempt status.What I find curious is how people like you are capable of rationalizing away the fact that millions of Afghan women are now receiving an education, are part of the body politic and have a future other than that of chattel. Thousands of Iraqis can go to bed without the fear of the 3 a.m. knock on the door, the truck ride to the desert and a bullet in the back of the brain. That now democracy and self-determination in many areas of the world is flourishing in the same way as Vail’s wildflowers. Here, we go about our business in relative peace and tranquility, able to make a living and enjoy, if we choose, quiet weekends in the mountains. Isn’t the real reason the left despises Mr. Bush is his demonstrating that “nuance” can be just another word for indecision, inconsistency or downright cowardice? Isn’t this the real burr under the saddle?I also had to wonder what God’s position on nuance might be, thinking that a man in your position might have more insight than myself. I think that “I am the Lord thy God” doesn’t leave a whole lot of wiggle room, nor does the parable of Cain and Abel, or when Christ says “ye who do unto the least of my brethren do unto me.” I believe applying Golden Rule concepts to our foreign policy is as appropriate to achieving national security as is “peace through strength” if a by-product of both has provided an opportunity for freedom to millions. I get the feeling God wouldn’t particularly object. I don’t think He’s into nuance but rather neutral to the application of His Word. After all, don’t you reap what you sow? But I see churches like the Presbyterian, for example, shriveling like cellophane in a campfire and I can’t help to believe that it may very well have something to do with trying to nuance the Word of God, to tailor it more closely to those who prefer to maintain a self-indulgent lifestyle and not be constrained by a few rules.You quote Abraham Lincoln as a means of reinforcing the need for nuance in our affairs. But Mr. Lincoln had awoken and after a four-year civil war the nuanced statement you quote became this: “Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman’s 250 years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said 3,000 years ago, so still it must be said, ‘The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.'” The elegance of his writing is there, but the nuance has departed.Maybe at 8,000-plus feet in a quiet little mountain valley, not doing nuance is “dangerous and dumb.” But in the real world nuance, in foreign policy at least, has already proven time and again to only provide a false sense of security, it’s too bad you can’t ask Neville Chamberlain.Tim ReedDenverVail, colorado


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