Published: July 15, 2013
Obtuse argument stuck in the past
In reading Beth Heinrich's recent letter disparaging the mayor's plans to revitalize downtown and other areas of the city, I couldn't help observing how well she made the case for his plan and wonder why she chose "the good old days" rationale to make her point.
Apparently, Ms. Heinrich hasn't been downtown since 1967 because that area is a far cry from what she remembers and currently has much less to offer a resident looking for a pleasant stroll and a variety of shopping venues similar to Denver's LoDo or Pearl Street. We have few or no architectural standards preserving the look and feel of the pleasantly reminiscent past, but, if you intend to bar hop, or get a quick meal and leave the area without a stroll or doing a little shopping, you've come to the right place.
Although we're improving slowly, one has to wonder why Colorado Springs residents wouldn't want something other than what downtown has come to be, because it certainly isn't what is remembered.
Updating or removing "all the empty buildings," using the old structures as a basis for a pleasant pedestrian park, shopping, and yes, maybe a sports facility or conference center similar to nearby cities to produce jobs and attract tourists to raise revenue to pay for most of this is exactly what the mayor wants to do. No one wants to blatantly mimic other cities, but as Heinrich suggested, leveraging our culture, geographic and physical attributes would improve our surroundings. However, without a focused plan, we'll continue to lose our remaining unique character.
Keeping Colorado Springs the way it is can't be the reason for opposing any revitalization plan. Therefore, I've got to believe opponents are worried about taxes and other legitimate concerns. So why don't you just say that instead of concocting an obtuse argument with a basis in the past?
Returning downtown to a more vibrant and pleasant place to spend an evening which draws in external spending, just might generate the funds necessary to avoid taxpayer impacts and regenerate our infrastructure with additional taxes.
Many are talking, no one listening
Tom Philpott's column on July 6 concerning the backlog of the VA by exposing the inability to resolve veterans benefits provided great insight to that problem. Realizing the problem should stimulate or provoke a solution but I doubt it. What the article does reveal is a malaise within the Congress that is evident but ignored for eons.
When a problem appears our lawmakers are quick to respond by writing bills and enacting laws on the pretext that they are "on the ball" and responding to the needs of the people. In truth it appears that they respond to more of a photo op promoting their ego or reelection. This is evident when they are compared to a bifurcated donkey and they create more problems than they correct. (Don't bother to look up the donkey term as I mean it to be half-assed).
This VA debacle is merely an example of the many amendments appended to the laws on the books. Recent examples point to the health care law, IRS and the executive departments back-tracking on many issues that reveal ill conceived proposals not fully considered. One of the problems is that many are talking but no one is listening and nothing is fully considered because of political interests. I believe that the people that appointed the members of Congress often at great sacrifice to themselves deserve better. Your tool is your vote, use it unbiased and wisely. As one commentator says, What say you?
Richard N. Sunderland
Figuring out how this is good
I'm sure it is for my own good, but I am trying to figure out how. In checking my wife's and my credit reports, I found that the Social Security Administration had run credit checks on both of us on January 12 of this year. I cannot believe that the SSA has any business that would require a credit check.
I am 77 and my wife is 75. We have both been receiving Social Security benefits for more than ten years. Just another effort of the federal government looking out for our welfare?
Explaining the Fremont County sign
Re: "An extremely heartbreaking sight":
If you would have taken the time to stop at the Fremont County Airport and Memorial Park, you wouldn't have been so "devastated."
Fremont County is very proud of their park. The park is built by donations and free labor. The people of Fremont County are still collecting pennies from 1966 to 1985 to embed in the letters of In God We Trust. The IN is completed and looks great. Any year pennies can be donated as the banks in Ca?n City will exchange them for the years needed. These pennies represent the pre-Vietnam, Vietnam, Korea and all conflicts. All the military equipment was acquired from different organizations and donated to the park. The Memorial Wall was built by each brick being paid for by family members of veterans or current active duty serving in the military. Each brick has the vet's rank, name, years served and war or conflict they served in.
The Memorial Park was named after Col. Sydney Boston, who has shot down in Vietnam in 1966. Three years ago his remains were found, identified and sent home to Canon City. He was buried at Air Force Academy. The fighter plane on display is like the one he flew in Vietnam. This park is very important to all people living in and around Fremont County.
This project is on-going. As you see, this is not a choice of religion, but a very special way of saying thank you to all members of the military that are stationed all over the world, living or dead. So please, as a rule of thumb, believe half of what you read, one fourth of what you hear and one fourth of what you see. All are welcome to visit our park.