Christmas jar

Christmas jar was a blessing

A huge thank you to the person that left a Christmas Jar on my front porch on Christmas morning! You are truly a wonderful, sweet, amazing soul — my children and I are still in shock and awe over this blessing we received.

Miracles are alive and well, we are honored someone chose us to receive one! We will share the gift with others and give them the same joy we feel in our hearts. And we are starting our own Christmas Jar to spread the tradition and brighten the holidays for someone next year! I encourage everyone to research Christmas Jars and discover this glorious movement.

This year has been rough for so many of us — I am wishing peace, hope, love, faith and Gods favor to all — may we have many blessings in 2021!

Karen Gentzel

Colorado Springs

Not a very good fir

st impression

The Gazette has thoroughly documented that Colorado Springs has everything the Space Force is looking for; infrastructure, contractors, facilities, educated work force, universities, recreation, scenery and lifestyle. President Trump said he would make the decision, but that probably won’t happen now. Whoever chooses the location will undoubtedly need to study it further before they make a final decision.

When the government needs to choose a location, they send in teams to evaluate potential sites. In the Air Force, whenever a base is going to be visited, the base commander usually conducts what we used to call “the drive.” The base commander along with the base civil engineer and maybe a couple of other staff members get in a van and drive the routes that will be driven by the evaluation team. Along the route, they make a punch list of things that could be done to improve the visitor’s first impression of the base. Realtors call it “curb appeal.” The list includes things like pick up trash, sweep streets, fix street lights and traffic signs, re-stripe roads, trim hedges and mow lawns.

The Air Force has done a superb job of preparing Peterson AFB, so let’s start at the main gate and drive to Shriever. You will turn right out of the gate onto SH 94, probably the trashiest section of highway in the state. Actually, there is beautiful high desert scenery along the highway, but it is spoiled by trash hanging on barbed wire, junk yards, abandoned trailers and dirt bike tracks. It’s too late to clean up the property, but at least someone could enforce the covered load laws and pick up the trash. Maybe a squadron of AFA cadets could volunteer to pick up the trash; many of them may be driving that highway soon.

OK, back to the main gate; the evaluation team might want to go to town for dinner or to visit the mayor; turn left out of the main gate and drive west on Platte Ave. Platte, between Academy and Union looks like a 1950s scene from Route 66. There are cheap motels, empty store fronts, tattoo parlors, liquor stores and marijuana dispensaries lining the road; not a very good first impression.

What can Colorado Springs do to improve it’s curb appeal? Do Colorado Springs leaders need to do “the drive” along potential evaluation team routes?

Rip Blaisdell

Teller County

Get rid of the pork

In my opinion, the federal government is proof positive that common sense is no longer with us. They were asked to come up with a relief bill for the victims hurt by the virus that has taken American people and their businesses to near destruction, And what did they do, those people who haven’t missed an inflated paycheck? They came up with an approximately 5,500 page bill that is supposed to help those who are negatively affected by these unprecedented times never seen before in our generation or generations before. Nonsensical things like foreign aid for gender study in Afghanistan, financial aid to many other countries, money to add another building in the Smithsonian campus, financial help to the Kennedy Center, and the list goes on and on. Is this helping the local restaurants and bars and many other businesses who employ thousands and maybe millions of hard working people that may have to live on a lot less money than when they were working? No! This is unacceptable.

Time is of the essence to get in a room somewhere to put their feelings aside, earn their paychecks and agree with the other side and help the people in the United States who work in industries that are too big to fail. During the pandemic it’s been said “we’re all in this together”, well it’s about time to show it. Politicians are supposed to do that very thing, and stop bickering like a bunch of immature children. It seems like there is way too much hate between both parties. Grow the hell up and do something constructive, and you don’t need over 5,000 pages to do it. Get rid of the pork.

William James

Manitou Springs

Student debt cancellation

In response to the contended student debt cancellation policy proposals:

Student debt cancellation as a policy proposal has been making waves amid the transition to a new administration and intensified economic distress due to COVID-19. No surprise, there has been a lot of backlash from the opposition, ranging from those who claim that debt cancellation is unfair to folks who have already paid off their student loans, to those who impose their skewed bootstrap ideology. Though I personally disagree with these arguments, it made me reflect on why some people are so hesitant to support policies that would give immediate relief to millions of people struggling to make ends meet during this economic downturn.

What is their fear? That the policy will not work? That the government is overstepping its boundaries and people will become too dependent? If copious amounts of policy and economic research indicate that debt cancellation will significantly improve individual lives and increase cash flow back into our economy, would that generate a more supporting consensus of the idea? Or would it turn into another partisan war to denigrate and undermine its efficacy, like with Obamacare?

One thing that I do agree with the opposition on is that student debt cancellation policies alone do not address the systematic flaw in our higher education system, such as affordability or the lack of standardized loan protections for students. The benefit and the problem of these policies are that they are simple, but they serve as short-term solutions to a problem that is deeply entrenched in our higher education system.

While students’ need for government assistance during this economic hardship is urgent, the government must also provide lasting reforms in our higher education system.

Kate Jung

Evergreen

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