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Letters to the Editor

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Porchlight PlayersPorchlight Players recently performed a free musical, “How to Eat Like a Child,” at Gypsum Daze. On behalf of the company, thank you to our sponsors for their continued, generous support of local community theater in the valley: Jerry Hosier of Aspen, the Town of Gypsum, Wells Fargo Bank, Old Gypsum Printers, Alpine Bank, Arris West Architects, Alpine Lumber, and Sherwin Williams. Thanks also to the many special people who were part of this production. Porchlight Players is a 501(c)(3) non-profit. Our mission is to provide the community with opportunities to participate in and attend live theater in a convenient and economical fashion. To find out more about Porchlight Players, please e-mail porchlightplayers@centurytel.net. Ann Olin Eagle No to this taxThis new proposed child-care tax put forth by Commissioners Menconi and Runyon is flat wrong and I say no, nyet, nem, nada, etc. to its passage. My wife and I work hard to pay for our children’s care. Why should we pay for someone else’s children? I believe that most of this child-care problem can be found in the our illegal Mexican community who are not assimilating into our society and never intend to. They are here to work for a while and then go back home to Mexico. If Commissioners Menconi and Runyon want to do something about this perceived issue, I suggest they look to someone else’s wallet to pick. I also ask them to think out of the typical old Marxist mindset box if they want to solve this perceived problem. There is a huge black market labor economy in this area that is not being taxed. This money is also being sent to Mexico on a weekly basis. Case in point, look at the lines of people waiting to make wire transfers to Mexico at any given time at City Market or Wal-Mart. Since the child-care problem exists mostly in the Mexican community in which a high percentage of those are here illegally, why not tax a percentage of all wire transfers to Mexico to fund Arn and Peter’s child-care program? In addition, I believe a percentage of the money raised through this tax should be used to pay back the Vail Medical Center for all the unpaid bills that are delinquent from Mexican patients. I would also recommend that Arn and Peter lobby Summit, Lake, and Garfield counties to pass a similar tax so people sending money to Mexico can’t avoid paying the tax by going to another adjoining county. Rob Spangler Edwards Fact of evolutionI would hope Bob Branden would attend at least one meeting of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science. There he would find that evolution is a biological paradigm that actually works. No testable hypotheses derive from the work of William Dembski, Michael Behe, or other anti-evolutionary “scientists.” As for books, none better than “Darwin’s Ghost,” as if written by Darwin today, with current science at his disposal, or “Intelligent Thought,” a compilation of the best that evolutionary scientists and philosophers have to say. Refusing to accept the fact of evolution just does not make sense. Gene Bammel Vail Outraged at LammA response to the words of former Colorado Gov. Richard Lamm:I am a 72-year-old retired African American United Methodist minister. I have been involved in the struggle against racism in The United Methodist Church and its predecessor, The Methodist Church, for many years. I am also a veteran foot soldier of the civil rights movement. That involvement included participation in Mississippi Freedom Summer in 1964, the Selma to Montgomery March, the March on Washington, and the March against the Boston School Committee led by Martin Luther King Jr. I could include other moments in my history when I joined others in resisting racism, cultural insensitivity and the arrogance of those white persons who believe that they and some other groups are “more equal than others.” I list the above to indicate that I am no stranger to the attitude and assumptions expres-sed by Richard Lamm. It is obvious, and the words attributed to Mr. Lamm clearly indicate, that the more things change, the more they remain the same. Women and men wearing the uniforms of our nation with great pride, are dying in Iraq because the foreign policy of the current administration has been incapable of or has no desire to understand, respect and embrace the humanity of persons whose culture, religion and history differs from that of those who made the decision to wage war. The blood flowing in the Middle East is the result to some degree of a USA foreign policy that believes that some persons and groups are more equal than other groups. As I quietly and prayerfully view the pictures on television of those soldiers who have died, representing our nation in the Middle East, many of those persons are black and/or brown. Where do they fit in the “solutions” offered by Mr. Lamm? I share these thoughts in brief as my response.1. In 1979 when Andrew Young, civil rights leader with Martin King, was the USA ambassador to the U.N., he met with representatives of the PLO, and the furor that resulted forced him to resign his position. How might things have been different if the “overperformers” that Lamm speaks of had not forced him to resign?2. It is clear now that the cautious wisdom of Colin Powell when he was secretary of state, if followed, would have approached war in Iraq in a different way. Powell’s understanding and appreciation of humanity with its cultural distinctives would have shaped in a different way our incursion into Iraq. Are Andrew Young and Colin Powell devoid of the “culture of learning” of which Lamm speaks? They are black and have some acquaintance with the “ghettoes” of the USA!3. In August, we will be observing another anniversary of the unleashing of nuclear weaponry upon Japan. Who were the “overperformers” who made this decision?” Each time I hear words of rage about others who may have or want to have nuclear weapons, I wonder if there is for a moment any acknowledgement of a double standard practiced by those nations that possess nuclear weaponry. Does the racial and cultural superiority that Gov. Lamm speaks of carry also a “moral superiority? Apparently he believes that some are morally worthy, and others are not.4. Where was the location of the Holocaust? Was it not in culturally and technologically “sup-erior” Germany? 5. Those “overperformers” who wrote the magnificent founding documents of the USA did so even as they “owned” fellow human beings as slaves. They thought themselves superior to persons of African descent, but that did not keep them from fathering children with the women who were their slaves.6. European immigrants who arrived in North America had no respect for the native population that was already here, because it was obvious they were “underperformers” and the newly arrived Europeans were “overperformers.” I write with passion because at this time near the end of my life, there are so many signs that despite the progress we claim in human relations, despite the legal changes wrought by Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King and those of us who followed them, despite the many contributions persons of Latino/a-Hispanic descent have made to the USA, persons like Richard Lamm indicate that so many of those who claim friendship and solidarity with those of us who have seen the nation from the bottom up demonstrate they have changed without changing. They want our votes, they want us to do the work they and their sons and daughters would not do, they speak of commitments to diversity, but in those moments when there are differences among us, their true colors emerge. Whether they call themselves Democrats or Republicans, liberals or conservative, the quality of their humanity, they believe, is superior to others – particularly to those of us who think of ourselves as brown and/or black.It is no wonder that Richard Lamm in his choice of “wands” chooses to use the one that would “infuse the inhabitants of ghettoes and barrios with Japanese or Jewish values.” My hope is that there are Japanese and Jewish persons who would speak out and challenge Lamm’s verbal prostitution of their values. If Lamm used his wand that “could eliminate racism and discrimination from white America,” he would have to use it first on himself. Self-declared “overperformers” seldom have the ability, willingness or capacity to transform themselves. …Gilbert H. CaldwellVail, Colorado


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