94th Academy Awards - Show

Presenter Chris Rock, left, reacts after Will Smith slapped him onstage at the Oscars on Sunday at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles.

Chris Rock’s action wrong, too

Social media is ablaze with condemnations of Will Smith for slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars but very little is said about Rock’s behavior. While I find Smith’s actions reprehensible, Rock is the other “bad” actor (pun intended).

It is not OK to make fun of someone else. Anyone who jokes about another person’s medical condition or mental or physical disability is a bully and deserves equal condemnation. We have enough problems with bullying in schools resulting in low self-esteem and suicides. Especially among young girls. Rock’s action needs to be condemned as well.

Russ Bogardus

Colorado Springs

Stick to sports reporting

Paul Klee should stick to reporting sports scores and highlights rather than trying to become political. He demonstrated his ignorance in his report that Kyrie Irving “proved his point” about not getting vaccinated for COVID. True, Irving is only 30 and at minimal risk of death from COVID, however, he can still transmit the disease to others who might be at greater risk of complications including death. The mandates were established to protect all citizens, not just overpaid athletes.

Klee was irresponsible in reporting that the vaccinations did not stop the spread of the virus. Is Klee not aware of the hospitalization and death rate being significantly reduced since the vaccines have been made available?

Claiming Irving was “brave and principled” is wrong. The bravery has been demonstrated by health care providers and first responders who have risked their lives to help those who are infected. These workers who show up each day are of strong moral principles. Irving is an individual who should have accepted the consequences of his health care choices, period. Instead, Klee describes him as a “trailblazer.” Klee applauds Irving’s stance as helping everyday people survive record inflation and $4 gas prices, but he probably will not call Kyrie Irving when and if he gets sick with COVID. Stick to sports reporting, Paul Klee. It clearly is the only thing you understand.

Steve Rauch

Colorado Springs

Learning from our storied past

The well-deserved Camp Amache historical designation serves as a stark reminder not only of gross past injustices and the vagaries of national hysteria, but also should serve as a moral signpost for the present times to the ugly behavior of fellow citizens in times of national tensions. People rightly infuriated at their inability to have any effect on the war crimes being committed by the Russian government in Ukraine take out their pent-up rage on Russian people and culture.

Canceling concerts and symphonies by world renowned Russian artists, long dead, harassing Russian store owners, dumping Russian vodka, and locally, the Space Foundation shamefully joining the pitchfork and torch gang to cancel Yuri Gagarin night, all point to the same type of hysteria that led to the brutal internment of American citizens of Japanese descent.

This is shameful, embarrassing, and needs to stop. We would no more condone going after Muslim Americans after a terror attack then we should be of going after Russians because of the ugly war in Europe by a despicable tyrant, yet it is happening to thunderous applause. We are Americans, a nation composed of citizens more diverse in national origin than any other in history, based on the recognition of individual rights and responsibilities, and not to be judged by what tribe we originated from. Let’s learn from our storied past, let’s do better.

Victor Malone

Colorado Springs

We’re now floundering

The genius and creativity of America’s founders were manifested in their willingness to take history’s best ideas regarding governance and create something new. The founders studied hundreds of years of history to see what worked and what didn’t, and applied those results from the lens of inherent individual rights. The resultant Constitution, Bill of Rights and Declaration of Independence were visionary, extraordinarily bold and never tried before.

The basic idea was simplistic beauty: government’s role at its fundamental level is to protect the inherent rights of its citizens. The core essence was to create an environment that allowed the citizen’s natural drive, initiative and competitiveness to flourish. It was a grand experiment, and it stunningly succeeded.

Global leadership and ascension quickly followed. But along the way … we have faltered. Spectacularly. We strayed from the founding principles that made the United States so special and so different ... and we’re now floundering. We have become weak: spiritually, emotionally, and physically, and our existential resolve is mostly nonexistent. Even more so, we subscribe to a fundamental misrepresentation of reality. We have lost the ability to recognize the basic reality of what actually is. As stunning as our growth and success was, equally stunning is the rapidity of our decline.

History teaches that all great civilizations collapse due to internal moral decay. This has become our path. I pray for the brave patriots who continue to fight on, but for a great turn of events or revival, I fear the great experiment has run its course.

Curt Sawyer

Colorado Springs

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