Recent letters to the editor from Gazette readers.
Little local traffic law enforcement
Recent discussions about traffic control cameras, toll lanes and widening I-25 (in Douglas County no less) and record road fatalities (Dec. 18) have me fed up with local traffic law enforcement. We don't have any! I drive most parts of the metro area almost daily and rarely see a police cruiser except in the notorious southeast or when there's an accident. At accident scenes there are often 2-4 patrol cars, yet it seems officers take their sweet time clearing the roads even though it's a state law to do so quickly.
What I do see, invariably within minutes of getting in my vehicle, is a large percentage of drivers aggressively going, not the customary 5-10 mph over the posted limit, but routinely 15-30 mph over, in all lanes - making it extremely dangerous to pull out from a side street or change lanes. It's often bumper to bumper, especially on I-25, a major pile-up waiting to happen.
I rarely see driver courtesy anymore. People change lanes without signaling (especially when on a cellphone), cut you off if you leave any space between vehicles, and tailgate regardless of the speed limit. It's not unusual for an aggressive driver to weave in and out of traffic at excessive speeds with no signaling.
Then, of course, there's the running of red lights matter. It's now the norm for 3-4 cars to continue through a left-turn signal after it's turned red, forcing through traffic to wait or create an accident. Even with through traffic, it's routine for people to speed up when the signal turns yellow rather than prepare for a stop as the law reads. And then, two or more cars run the red light. And nobody seems to care.
On top of all this, traffic has increased way beyond what our streets can efficiently and safely handle, yet City Council wants more growth?! I'm amazed we don't have more road rage, crashes and fatalities. Something has to be done before traffic gets totally out of hand. We desperately need more properly trained, competent police officers.
This season of peace and goodwill
This letter is in response to the letter written on Dec. 15 titled, "Observations on growing older." We celebrate this season of peace and goodwill, extending from the tiniest baby to the oldest senior citizen. The blessings of family and friends and the traditions we create bring joy to us all.
We celebrate those of us who exercise, socialize with friends, eat healthy foods, and enjoy intellectual opportunities in our community. This group of proactive people have taken charge of their health and life. During this season, we also remember the 69,000 Coloradans who suffer from Alzheimer's disease and dementia. We acknowledge the effects this horrendous disease has on families and the drain on our health care system, particularly Medicare and Medicaid. Although Alzheimer's is the sixth cause of death in the United States, is it the only major disease for which to there is no proven prevention, treatment, or cure. The most current data from 2014 documents indicate 1,346 Coloradans passed due to some form of dementia. (alz.org/documents/colorado/Facts_Figures_3-7-17.pdf).
As we think about extending goodwill to all people this holiday season, may we hope, pray, and give so that 2018 is the year advances are made in the diagnosis, treatment, and eradication of all forms of dementia. And may God continue to bless those seniors who live a healthy and happy life.
Answering tax reform questions
The Tax Cut and Jobs Act will reduce corporate and family tax burdens (permanently for the former and temporarily for the latter). But Jeff Snow in his letter, simplistically compares this legislation to previous acts of Congress. He wrote, "Tax cuts will work a whole lot better when the U.S. government reduces the amount of money it spends." This legislation does not reduce government spending. It will add over $1 trillion to our deficit.
Is the problem Democrats obstructing an opposition to President Trump's agenda, or GOP crafting legislation without minority input? Unfortunately, too many of us answer this question based on party affiliation.
Column didn't present all the facts
In her recent guest opinion piece: "Tax legislation will have mixed results for most," the Rev. Dr. Stephany Rose Spaulding engages in the type of one sided "analysis" typical of far too many of today's politicians and pundits, on both sides of the aisle.
The Rev. Dr. Spaulding is obviously a very intelligent woman, too intelligent to have missed all the facts in her research on the recently signed tax legislation. However, she chooses to present only the negative facts that she wishes her readers to consider in forming their own opinions, save a very small section concerning student loan interest and, Oh yes. ...the positive effect on Colorado's brewery industry! Strangely missing are the real major positives in the bill concerning tax relief for tens of millions of middle class Americans, the doubling of the child tax credit or the nearly doubling of the standard deduction for both single and married taxpayers.
The Rev. Dr. Spaulding does an excellent job describing her opinion of the downside of issues like lowering the corporate tax rate or raising the inheritance tax threshold, but her criticisms of the perceived negatives (her perception) make up roughly 90 percent of her article. Readers can always have honest disagreements about the facts. For example, will the reduction in the corporate tax rate make American companies more competitive or merely put more money in CEO's pockets (or both); is it anybody's business how much someone who has built substantial wealth over time, and paid taxes on it in the process, chooses to pass on to their families? Honest people can and do have differing opinions on these and other topics covered in the new legislation, but it would help people who are trying to make their own judgments if they were presented publicly with all the facts, not just the ones the author wants you to consider.