Recent letters to the editor from Gazette readers:
Why try to block access?
Suggestions to the TOPS Board of Directors concerning the recent trail construction in Red Rock Open Space, Section 16 and on Intemann Trail: The work to block access to the Intermittent Waterfall shortcut - an attempt to block access to a trail put in and maintained by volunteers was wasted effort/tax dollars. The shortcut is still an in-use good trail. Why try to block access?
The new Red Rock/16/Intemann trails - a lot of shrub oak, juniper, and pine trees were "vandalized" for those trails. A sign in Red Rock calls for reporting of "tree vandalism" when spotted.
The "re-alignment" of the Intemann Trail wasn't needed and new trails - decomposed granite trail surfaces that drained well have been traded for sticky red mud surfaces that don't drain. In fact, gravel had to be imported to make a portion of one of the new Red Rock/16 trails passable in wet weather.
Wiping out the connector trail from the new trail intersection at the south end of Red Rock means the contractor built about 20 mosquito breeding ponds with their mounding technique.
Perhaps a better use of our tax dollars would be to concentrate on restoring the Waldo Canyon trail. Or repairing the Santa Fe trail asphalt section from Criterium Bike Shop to Woodmen Ave. that is cracked and broken?
I urge the TOPS board to get out from behind their desks and see what their projects are really doing versus what needs doing.
Are we going to be next?
RE: Legalized marijuana turns Colorado resort town into homeless magnet.
"The city's (Durango) Business Improvement District held a meeting May 12 to review the results of a survey completed by local businesses on how to address the panhandling issue, which has become an urgent matter as the city enters its busy summer tourist season.
Among the suggestions were stricter laws for panhandling and loitering, strategic placement of obstacles such as bistro tables and flower boxes to discourage sitting and lying on sidewalks. They also proposed launching a campaign discouraging tourists to give money to the pan handlers."
Walking over to The Famous steak house last Friday evening from the Springs Orleans restaurant, there was a couple sitting on the sidewalk eating ice cream cones and about 20 feet away were two homeless people sitting on the sidewalk with signs begging for money, across the street on the other corner were probably six homeless people sitting on the sidewalk begging for money, one of them a female yelling at some imaginary person, scaring everyone around her who was trying to avoid her. Really?
Thank you Mayor and City Council for transforming this once beautiful downtown in to a homeless paradise full of depression, terror, and disgust.
What ever happened to enforcing the law of Loitering? Loitering is the act of remaining in a particular public place for a protracted time without any apparent purpose. Under certain circumstances, it is illegal in various jurisdictions.
The scene of a recent massacre
Intemann Trail between Red Rock Canyon and Section 16, has recently been bulldozed by Colorado Springs Parks Dept. It had been cleared and improved by friends of Paul Intemann in his memory after the young Manitou Springs city councilman was killed in a car accident in 1984.
Above the area named for Intemann is now a smooth, level trench bulldozed through loose forest rubble - obviously a path for bicycles. Every heavy rain will transport a tremendous volume of that rubble down the valley, and into Sand Canyon.
"The Grantor shall not change, disturb, alter, excavate, or impair any natural watercourse or wetland (canyons are intermittent watercourses) or alter the land surface through grading or soil dumping or trenching. . . ;" page 4 of the Conservation Easements, for which Palmer Land Trust received $14,000 each, $28K total to enforce.
At the top of Crystal Hills Blvd, turn onto Bevers Place and park at the trail head. Bear right, walk 12 minutes, you are at the scene of the massacre.
A right way and a wrong way
I have heard many people (including TV pundits and Senator Mich McConnell) ask "How can anyone object to FBI director James Comey's firing if that person has been calling for Comey's resignation?"
Being both in favor of director Comey's resigning and against his firing may seem contradictory at first, but the explanation is actually very simple and completely logical.
If an FBI's director resigns, then that would be in keeping with the checks and balances of the three branches of government as required by the U.S. Constitution. So, logically a person can be in favor of Comey's resignation due to his not following FBI procedures and rules when he made public the on-going investigation of one candidate, which then lead to at least some effect on the voters' view of that candidate.
But, a person who favors resignation for the reasons given above, can and should be firmly against having the head of the executive branch fire any person holding the position of FBI director, seeing as how the FBI director has a major function in the operations of the judicial branch of government.
A presidential firing of the FBI director for any reason whatsoever shakes The U.S. Constitution's separation of the three branches of government to its very core.
There is a right way and a wrong way to accomplished most tasks in life and the firing of the FBI director by the president was clearly the wrong way.
Don't need any more hysteria
Re: Inquiry into Russian ties. As I read through the article The Gazette re-posted a full day after the so-called issue came up, I noticed there really is nothing substantial in it worth reading. The author mentioned everything that "could" have happened in the meeting between our president and the Russians, but nothing that actually did happen. Our country is as divided as it possibly could be since the Civil War. We don't need more hysteria in the news.