Vail Daily letter: Take a stand for something
August 7, 2015
I am writing in direct response to Thursday's front page quoted letter to the editor by Robert Castellino. Robert, I have to admit this is the first time in my life I have drafted a letter to my local newspaper. Thank you for inspiring me.
Mr. Castellino, I must say it may be time to expand the conversation that you are in the world. Either that or make some new friends. I am a conservative and quite frankly, sir, you do not know me. The fact that you don't know anything about me or my friends, albeit conservatives, liberals or conservationists for that matter, is quite apparent in the public comments you felt compelled to share on Thursday. I don't know you ,sir, nor will I pretend that I do. Thus my retort is not personal, rather simply in response to what I feel your inflammatory language represents: No possibility.
First, let's handle this conservative, liberal and conservationist conversation. I am a passionate man, and I appreciate passion and beauty in the world however it may show up. People have a right to think, believe and stand for anything they want. You strike me as man with a passionate point of view. However, your view is simply one of millions of possible views of life … and I am totally unclear of any difference you are out to make. I am clear you have a firm yet narrow view of life regarding conservatives. Frankly, I don't blame you, given in all likelihood it isn't even your own view. Most of us human beings inherit the conversations we are in the world, whether it be our parents, environment, education or propaganda. I find it remarkable looking for myself how most of what I and other people have to say I simply heard some other place and adopted for my own. How much original thinking is actually taking place here?
While this not the place to discuss the "human condition" that is present in every conservationist, liberal or conservative, I do feel it's relevant. Let's be honest here, sir — there are examples of man's transgressions against the environment anywhere you look. The beauty of life and the privilege of being an American is you have a choice in the matter. There are plenty of environment touting liberals living in this state or Beverly Hills for that matter that speak openly in similar fashion to you. Yet many of them maintain hundreds of acres of finely manicured lawns, while thousands are without running water due to this drought. Are these people wrong or bad? Are you? Not at all, sir. They are people with a choice, and if anyone wants to work their tail off in this lifetime and spend their own money on watering their lawn or goods and services at Walmart, Costco or Coach, Gucci or Perch for that matter, God bless em!
As a conservative and an American, I believe fully that I have the right to work for a living and spend it on whatever I want. Those causes, passions, charities or people I choose to give to are my choices. Whether someone gives everything or nothing, it is their right to do so, and I respect them either way. As a conservative I happen to love the environment and this community and spend time in both every single day. I do not have "self-sufficient systems" in my home. What is that, anyway? I think you may find in reality that 95-plus percent of the world doesn't have these systems that you speak of. One thing I do know is should catastrophe strike, I would not starve nor die of exposure, nor would my family, friends, anyone on my street in West Vail, or in my immediate community. This doesn't have anything to do with my political or financial views in life. People are extraordinary. I find that in inspiration, love and certainly out of necessity people of all walks of life, backgrounds and beliefs band together and impact this world in inspiring ways. I am often moved to tears by the human spirit, especially when it trumps judgment, criticism, and the business as usual mentality that so easily accompanies being human.
I implore you, Mr. Castellino, to get off the couch or come in from your walk in nature and take a stand for something rather than against anything. I think we have all heard the old saying "what you resist persists." I am inspired by your passion although its expression in your letter shows up to me as wasteful. A passionate stand for something is contagious, while spite and judgment suck the life out of people. You, sir, are 100 percent entitled to your own view, however I invite you cease or put aside the judgment of different beliefs or practices and start standing for something. You may find a greater difference gets made and people clamoring to join you through inspiring them rather than condemning others. Keep me posted … I may join you myself.
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Come take a walk in nature with this conservative — you might be surprised with what there is to discover.
Your conservative nature lover,
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