Recent letters to the editor from Gazette readers
Restore honor to those in authority
After contemplating the remarkable life of Deputy Micah Flick, I wanted to send an entirely inadequate "Thank you!" to all law enforcement, first responders, and military - past and present. We witness the moral decline reflected in disrespect to those serving our country and communities, but I want to decree that Colorado Springs will see honor restored to those who place their lives on the line for us.
The services for hero Deputy Flick were inspiring in many ways, but I was encouraged that a great level of honor was demonstrated on behalf of law enforcement. The conversations to respect authority begins at home. Romans 13:4-5 says, "For the one in authority is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God's servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore. submit to authorities. as a matter of conscience."
At Rockrimmon Elementary, my daughter's art teacher opened up discussions to create opportunities for kids to express themselves in art projects for local law enforcement. After the funeral, my husband was moved to gift officers at Chipotle with gift cards. These are small gestures, but what would happen if the passing of this young man, dad, son, brother, friend and officer was the impetus to flipping the script in El Paso County - to expressing our gratitude toward civil servants?
We love this family and continue to grieve with them, but in response to this tragedy, we anticipate seeing a turnaround in our community as respect and honor are restored to those in authority.
Lisa Taskerud - Colorado Springs
Change is certainly needed
We just laid to rest with well-deserved honors one of our true heroes. Deputy Micah Flick died in the line of duty while attempting to investigate a stolen vehicle case. His selfless bravery under fire reportedly saved the lives of fellow law enforcement officers who were with him. He left behind a grieving wife and twin 7-year-old children.
Deputy Micah Flick was the third Colorado law enforcement officer killed in the line of duty in recent weeks. Elsewhere in our country, four law enforcement officers were killed under similar circumstances.
His widow, Rachael Flick, spoke eloquently about her husband at the funeral. She also pleaded for a change in our culture to restore respect for authority and for our police. This is certainly needed. Additionally, we should also revise the rules of engagement for police that foolishly put their lives in danger when involved in a potentially violent confrontation with uncooperative or combative suspects.
We should certainly demand that our police exercise the highest level of professionalism and use reasonable restraint in dealing with citizens. However, the full burden of risk in a dangerous confrontation with police caused by a combative or threatening suspect should be placed on that individual - and not on our brave men and women of law enforcement.
The general public needs to be better educated regarding the highly demanding and increasingly dangerous conditions faced every day by the brave men and women who wear the badge to protect us.
We need to revise some officer safety and officer survival procedures, tactics, and techniques to ensure that the priority favors our law enforcement personnel, not criminal suspects.
Robert Vegvary - Colorado Springs
City should get with the times
My family moved to Colorado Springs in 1950. At that time Omaha and Oklahoma City were comparable in size to Colorado Springs.
Today, compare the sports facilities of the three cities. The Springs is a total embarrassment. Near-sighted politicians have not had the nerve to stand up and support growth in that area. After all, isn't Colorado Springs the home of the USOC? Those folks must have the same concerns.
Spend some of your marijuana money, not only on a stadium, but also on an indoor facility. Get with the times.
Pat Holligan - Tustin, Calif.
Pursue location on the east side
The consternation over the City for Champions sports and events center is specious and myopic. Arguing that we will "lose" $28 million is a prime example of the adage about going broke saving money. If we don't build the center, we don't "lose" anything; we simply miss out on an opportunity to reduce the cost of something.
But that aside, why doesn't the term City for Champions mean the whole city? We have a sports facility for professional baseball and soccer. It is easily accessible by car, is served by Mountain Metro transit, has shopping and restaurants within walking distance, is easier to get to from the airport than downtown locations, and is surrounded by available land to develop for an event center and parking. So why not pursue that? Oh yeah. It's on the east side of town; no way you can expect us to go all the way out there. Let's keep tilting at windmills for a downtown site. We'd hate to lose that $28 million.
Kevin Curry - Colorado Springs
There is no 'free money'
The never-ending saga of a downtown sports/event center continues. One thing is clear. That is the fact that, once in politics, everyone seems to forget that "there is no free money". No matter what government entity may have set aside $25 million to be applied to a project, the source of each dollar is the individual taxpayer.
A majority of taxpayers in our city have expressed their opinion on this expenditure in the past - they don't think it is appropriate. Given that the news stories have repeatedly listed a number of "unanswered questions" surrounding the current version of this idea, it seems even more ill-advised to pursue it. If the state can afford to back this project, they can afford to back widening I-25. I know the dollars are in different buckets, but that seems an to be an addressable problem. At least it would be for any private individual or business facing a similar issue. But we all know that governments are different. Once you enter it, you check your common sense at the door.
Gerald McGonigle - Colorado Springs