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Insulting the masses

I was pleased that Editor Cara DeGette mentioned Keith King in her column last week. He was the state representative from El Paso County who last year smirkingly asked Rep. Michael Merrifield how he felt "knowing that all of his [Merrifield's] bills would be killed outright?"

I remember reading that story last year but had forgotten Keith's name. He is very forgettable. Ms. DeGette also mentioned that when questioned about his statement to Merrifield, King said he was just kidding.

Personally, I think King was lying. I think he meant every word of it but wasn't man enough to admit it. One wonders what kind of ass would taunt a fellow lawmaker, especially since Merrifield was so politically outnumbered. But now with the Republicans in the minority in the state Legislature, I guess that sort of puts Keith in a political hole.

-- David Loucks

Manitou Springs

Boy is he mad

Regarding Mayor Lionel Rivera's comments, in last week's Public Eye, that Democrats are "weak, they can't take the cold":

Oh boy, I'm mad.

We trudged through the cold on the Saturday, Sunday and Monday before the election, knocking on doors. Saturday was nice, Sunday was freezing, and Monday was cold when it got dark.

In La Junta, we had 2,500 show up in the heat for Kerry-Edwards; people went to the hospital from heat stroke. More than 12,000 showed up in Pueblo.

That mayor is an a**hole.

-- Nicholas Werle

Colorado Springs

Vagina monologue

Given that letter writer Joseph F. Pennock (Letters, Nov. 4-10) is so repulsed by Christians displaying photos of aborted babies, can we logically conclude that he is more repulsed by the doctors who perform (and photograph) these procedures? Why do I think not?

Pennock worries that soon Christians will show close-up vaginal shots of the abortion procedure. I'm certain the doctors have plenty on hand.

-- James Bussanich

Colorado Springs

Freeing a city

Visited some friends recently in Colorado Springs and was delighted to see your Nov. 4 article about Richard Florida. His work is fascinating, and I wish his upcoming book, The Flight of the Creative Class was available today, so I could read it postelection.

We're doing our best to keep Minneapolis a free city, with theaters and restaurants and music and dance clubs and all the things I'll probably never go to -- but could. If I wanted to. And if I didn't look like somebody's visiting uncle.

Thanks again for the great article.

-- John Louis Anderson

Minneapolis, Minn.

Food for the soul

As an English professor, poet, singer and former home-school mom, I take issue with the conclusion drawn by James Finucane in the Wall Street Journal and cited in the Nov. 4 story about Richard Florida that "Colorado Springs has no culture, no diversity, no research university, no vitality or resiliency to [he should have said "in"] the job market."

It sounds like his statement is based on what he considers to be relevant or interesting in the above areas. I found Richard Florida's agreement with Finucane to be myopic, too.

Addressing just one area, as a member of New Life Church I can tell you that there is both culture and vitality happening in our midst. We have a growing artist community that includes some of the finest names in the country in bronze and other media, as well as music, drama, poetry and dance.

I will concede a (very important) point, however. You might not know about our artist community because we are generally ensconced within the walls of our church, but on the other hand perhaps you have come to believe that only non-Christians are capable of "art"! You should send someone to check out our next open house. Lots of great food!

-- Mary Elizabeth Morin

Colorado Springs

Sheath the sword

I read with interest Tom Neven's thrice-flawed Nov. 4 response to Bill Durland's letter of the week before on "Whom would Jesus bomb?"

Neven says Durland is mistaken about Jesus by citing Luke 22:36, where Jesus tells his disciples to sell their cloaks to buy a sword.

The reason for Jesus' command to buy a sword has been illuminated by Christian scholarship and suppressed only by fundamentalists such as Neven. One needs only to look at Matthew 26:52 where Jesus says, "Put your sword back into its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword." The purpose to buy the sword was to witness against its use as Christians did in the early days of Christianity.

Then Neven wants us Christians to give up the pacifist teaching because the government's primary task is "fighting to protect citizens." To do so would be to replace the moral values of Jesus with those of the government described by Neven as "self-defense" but known more recently as "pre-emptive strike."

And finally, he attacks us Christians personally, as we have become used to by fundamentalists, by stating that if we refuse to "fight and die" for Caesar, we are betrayers "out to save our own skin."

Tom Neven's "moral values" are those we heard in the recent presidential election. But, as for us Christians, we will stick with the moral values of Jesus even though James Dobson and some bishops advise otherwise.

-- Patricia J. Huhn

Colorado Springs

Finding God

Poor dear sheep,

1. A true Christian does not turn their church into a Republican PAC.

2. A true Christian is not afraid of the world.

3. A true Christian does not turn fear into hate.

4. A true Christian does not support invading innocent countries.

5. A true Christian does not support murdering innocent people for our country's profit.

I know because my dad is a true Christian.

You have lost your true God. You must find him again.

-- Jan Chappell

Colorado Springs

The brave new world

Tasers are being handed out by the thousands to police all over the country.

Hundreds of people a month are routinely being Tased at the drop of a hat. We are no longer people, we are cattle upon which electric prods, clubs, gas and guns are used to gain "submission to authority."

Welcome to the brave new world. It includes the Infotech Identity Society of DNA, financial information, biometric and chemical profiling through the maintenance of enormous government databases and analysis software.

Where a system has evolved that enables virtually everyone to be classified as a "criminal" using environmental, drug, family, social or other administrative laws, it is impossible for any citizen to remain out of the clutches of the "judicial" system. I will bet anyone $100 that with little research I can find a "law" being broken by each and every elected official in the state. But it is the citizenry against which the selective enforcement is used.

A new book, Constitutional Chaos: What Happens When the Government Breaks its Own Laws, by Judge Andrew Napolitano, explains concisely what is happening in the breakdown of the judicial system and militarization of law enforcement.

The increased coarsening of the police in the treatment and view of all citizens as "criminals" bodes ill for America. The idea of constitutional behavior by police in their original role of protection of rights is all but dead.

Police will protest that Tasers help reduce the number of people shot, never acknowledging that the excessive use of force in all its forms is due more to the increasing militarization of the police. They're only doing what they're trained to do.

We are tax and revenue slaves for the use of the government as it sees fit. Then, when we don't immediately comply with a government command, we will be shocked and brutalized into submission. Failing that, we can be shot and killed for any semblance of resistance to this ever-encroaching tyranny.

Sound far-fetched? Just look at the difference of today from just 30 years ago. The authoritarians are in control.

-- Jeff Wright

Calhan

Guilty consciences

Well, I see that local and state Republicans are waxing righteous and indignant about Democrat Michael Merrifield removing some illegally placed Republican campaign signs.

How indignant the self-righteous, the holier-than-thou, the hypocritical, can be! How false it is! And how ironic!

As my third-grade teacher used to say, "A thief yells loudest when he tries to pin the blame for his own stealing on somebody else."

My dear friends, let me say this: The Republicans are the biggest thieves and ripper-downers of opposing campaign signs that we have ever seen in Colorado. Ask the Ken Salazar folks about this. They had eight or nine of their large signs ripped down.

Ask the Democrats in El Paso county who've posted signs in front yards over the last three or four elections. Where did those signs go?

So, it was just like them to hire some sneaky video-taker to skulk around and film somebody removing illegally placed Republican campaign signs, and then turn over the video to the local Republican-owned TV media, and start the silly hullabaloo about the shameless Democrats.

My dear friends, only thieves with guilty consciences engage in this kind of behavior.

-- J.J. Barrera

Colorado Springs

Strut your stuff

An open letter to Ken Salazar:

We are proud that you will be going to Washington to represent Colorado and all its citizens. I am extremely proud that the citizens of Colorado made an intelligent decision to send to the Senate someone with original ideas and significant experience fixing the problems of society. I am also proud they decided against yet another multimillionaire who would rubber-stamp everything President Bush proposed -- there are enough of those in Congress.

As the president's views have been validated by a small majority, our views have also and must be represented by a strong legislator and a true liberal who sees the good that government can do and the problems it can solve. I urge you to perform that duty.

And never forget this: No matter your accomplishments, the Republicans will denigrate them. Each vote has the chance to be misrepresented -- a vote against any tax cut will be portrayed as support for a tax hike. A procedural vote will be twisted into a significant vote on the related issue.

Stand your ground -- our ground -- and in six years your values will show through and your efforts to build on our principles will be there for the voters to judge.

-- Bud Gordon

Colorado Springs

Retire to the basement

I'm a loyal Democrat with mixed feelings about the election; we lost the Big One but turned Colorado light blue with the Salazar brothers and the state Legislature falling into our column. And now, President Bush has appealed to supporters and detractors alike for unity as we heal the wounds from a truly divisive campaign. I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, so:

First, yard signs -- so pass. Please retire to your basements or recycling bins.

Second and most compellingly -- bumper stickers. GOPsters, you did it, and you get the props. But in six weeks, it'll be '05, and your cute little W '04 ovals will be out of date. Plus, you seemingly carried the day warning us of the dishonorable things John Kerry did in Vietnam. Good enough. He's back in the obscurity of the Senate where his flip-flops shall never be spied upon again. It's safe to remove "Kerry for President -- of France."

Why not be the first on I-25 with "Hillary For President -- of France"? And to my fellow Dems: The morning after, I removed a bumper crop of stickers from my car (Note to all: They come off nicely when you use a hair dryer). Take 'em off, friends, and some of you really need to get those Gore-Lieberman babies outta there! Now, by all means, put back on "We will NOT get over it!" or "Don't blame me, I voted for ..." or even "Obama-Salazar '08" (check 'em out at several fine local establishments or on the Internet).

But everybody, it was an abysmal campaign; do we really want to dwell a minute longer on that past?

-- Steve Meyer

Colorado Springs

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