Gray wolves (copy)

Will ranchers be fully compensated?

Even before the reintroduction of 20-30 more wolves to rural Colorado counties, a rancher has suffered financial loss. So how will the rancher(s) be compensated?

My sources in the cattle industry say a mixed-breed 500 pound heifer’s value is $950. This purebred heifer’s value is $200-300 more. The rancher must also consider his future investment profits lost. At 2 years of age, the killed heifer would have reproduced one calf per year for at least 10-12 years. If the offspring were sold at today’s market value, the rancher’s loss would be in the range of $180,000. Will the ranchers who suffer from wolf losses be paid fairly?

Rio Blanco County has declared its county off-limits to wolves, but will the wolves honor their county lines?

Rachel Meyer

Colorado Springs

Democrats opposing the vaccine

In his letter titled “Dangerously ridiculous hypocrisy”, Mike Murphy asks Mike Rosen to identify Democrats opposing the vaccine developed during Donald Trump’s presidency.

I can help with that: The most famous example is CNN interview of then vice-presidential candidate Kamala Harris by Caroline Kelly on Sept. 5, 2020. Harris was unambiguous in doubting efficacy and safety of the vaccine.

Sidney Benda

Monument

Society subject to certain norms

This pandemic can be controlled if we, as a member of society, would be responsible. Getting the vaccine is the ideal action but wearing a mask is a second option. We must realize that as a member of society we are subject to certain norms. We should not put others at risk. Think about others, do not be selfish.

Anna T. Lopez

Colorado Springs

When the ‘truth’ keeps changing

Vince Bdzek’s column (“The pandemic is taking a toll on journalists”) was interesting. He raised an issue without seeming to realize that he also identified its source.

When journalists say they have to “keep telling the story, even if it’s about the deniers,” they show themselves to be the believers. When they refer to misinformation, the implication is that anything that deviates from that of the believers is false. When they refer to their work as “truth”, rather than accuracy (see “Absence of Malice” for a great crash course on the difference), the reader begins to question the integrity of the source when the “truth” keeps changing.

If journalists accept what they’re told without asking questions that to many of us are obvious, without challenging the dominant theme, they become little more than PR for whoever they’re quoting. We assume objectivity and skepticism and investigation from journalists, but the fact is that everyone, knowingly or not, has a core belief system from which they report.

With so much information available from so many sources, the public is right to object to what starts to look more like dogma. We’ve been led down false paths before. Local news is to a large extent being tarred with the hostile brush so deservedly applied to network and mainstream sources.

Journalists are people. We are, too. We’re all angry and exhausted. The irrationality of public policy demands have led to this, and all of us are paying the price.

Donna Brosemer

Westminster

Never asked for ‘credentials’

Having returned in mid-December from a trip to Hawaii, I found the letter “An effective response to COVID-19” regarding Hawaii’s COVID protocols in the Dec. 23 Gazette interesting.

Our experience regarding the Hawaiian COVID response was somewhat different.

After leaving the airport in Kona, we were never asked for our vaccination card by any establishment, restaurants, bars, grocery stores, etc. In fact I stopped carrying the card after about our third day on the island. We were on the “big Island” — Hawaii.

We went on several tourist attractions including a dinner cruise. The only people on the dinner cruise boat wearing masks were the crew. Ditto for the other tourist events.

In general, most people wore masks indoors but my unscientific guestimate is about 20% of the people did not wear masks. And of those that were “wearing” masks indoors, many masks were only covering the person’s chin or lips.

So I would take exception to the statement “Bars and restaurant require that patrons be fully vaccinated, and they absolutely check these credentials; every patron, every time.”

As I said, we were never asked for our “credentials.”

Mark Swan

Colorado Springs

H

ow state government manages taxes

Thanks to The Gazette for the “On Edge” series. It not only highlighted the great need for mental health care, but also the incompetence of the state government over many years. They have allowed no compete contracts, allowed the trade group to dictate preferred treatment. There is very little oversight of taxpayers’ money for this very vulnerable population.

I truly believe this is how our state government manages all of the taxes they collect. Thank God for TABOR. I for one will not be voting for another tax increase for anything until all levels of government start providing oversight, and common sense on the spending of any funds.

Sharon Solheim

Palmer Lake

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