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Out with NASCAR
Call me anti-American, but isn't NASCAR (and all other manner of gas-guzzling, eardrum-splitting, quasi-sports) among the biggest examples of waste and stupidity?

Everyone, except the handful of capitalist pigs who control 98 percent of the wealth generated by commerce, business and industry, is feeling the effects of high gas prices. Yet nobody has the smarts to point out the obvious: NASCAR is part of the problem, not the solution. I wish someone would give me one or two reasons, even half-baked, as to why people ought to continue to drive around in circles (OK, "ovals") at 200 mph, just burning fuel and causing noise pollution.

There are dozens of other useless sports to watch, but auto racing seems to be the most useless. Is it just the unspoken wish to see all the cars crash into one, big fiery doomsday scene? Is that what it's all about?

Bernadette Young

Colorado Springs

The real China
No feats of athletic wonder, no new drug scandal, no other astonishment can emerge from Beijing to make me watch the upcoming Olympics. China's willful destruction of 6,000 Tibetan monasteries and brutal torture, imprisonment and outright execution of tens of thousands of Tibetan people, along with iron-fisted suppression of native Tibetan religion and culture right up to the Olympic event itself sickens and disgusts me.

No Olympic Games can sugarcoat the real China.

Michael Maddox

Colorado Springs

Ragin' Cajun
To quote your review ("Thibo-don't bother," Appetite, July 31), "Thankfully, in the Springs there's enough good food at reasonable prices that you never need to waste money on mediocre hotel food masquerading as authentic anything. I'm not Cajun, but if I was, I'd be a little steamed about Thibodeaux's tarnishing my cuisine's good reputation."

Just wanted to write and let you know I'm 100 percent in agreement. My son and I went soon after Thibodeaux's opened and the service, the food and the atmosphere were not at all what I expected. The old Couzan's was gourmet compared to this place. (But they were really good.)

By the way, my mother's maiden name was Thibodeaux. I hate the fact they've named this restaurant Thibodeaux's, because my mother was a wonderful Cajun cook and I've inherited her cooking chops. It's embarrassing that this restaurant has used my heritage to sell "food."

I asked why they named it Thibodeaux's and was told they wanted it to sound authentically Cajun. Too bad they didn't hire someone who knew how to cook authentic Cajun food. Thanks for your review.

Jim Reynolds

Colorado Springs

Lies: Take 3
Donald Pelton, thanks for the well-written response ("Yellowcake's aftertaste," Letters, July 31) to my letter intending to settle the urban legend that Bush lied us into the war. You're right that I neglected to address Bush's famous "16 words" that fly in the face of what Joe Wilson reported. That's probably the most pivotal argument that Bush lied us into the war.

He said this because the British did believe they had evidence this was true. Given a choice between taking the word of an ambassador with no intelligence-gathering credentials sent to Nigeria by his wife, and the British intelligence community, I hope our president would make the same choice every time.

You may disagree, but you can't maintain the president told a lie. Go to factcheck.org/bushs_16_words_on_iraq_uranium.html.

As for the rest of the Wilson/Plame saga, I'll just say the left is selective when deciding to get outraged about someone leaking classified national security information (New York Times, Sandy Berger, et al).

Your other evidence was that Hans Blix said there were no WMDs. I don't believe this was the case. We know Saddam had WMDs because he used them on the Kurds in the 1990s. The U.N. resolution insisted he had to prove he destroyed them. Although the weapons inspectors did not find WMDs, that was not sufficient.

Now, gentle Indy readers, can we finally put the "Bush lied" meme to rest?

Bill Mendelsohn

Woodland Park

Keen on impeachment
I applaud Barack Obama's high-mindedness and lack of vindictiveness. But I disagree with the viewpoint that President Bush should not be impeached. He has run roughshod over the right to be heard of half the country for as long as his party was able to maintain the power to do so. Turning a blind eye to that is a setup for repetition in the future when either party has complete dominance of the Senate, House and White House.

If Obama is elected, Democrats have a chance to balance the imbalance that has occurred, but I do not believe that it will be done by partisan-type exclusion of the Republican mindset. Obama makes me proud to be a supporter by knowing that injustice being heaped on top of injustice will only cause more polarity.

But future America will not be well-served if nothing is done to satisfy justice. The American people were lied to and debased by having human rights taken from us. The entire citizenry was deemed untrustworthy and unworthy of protection by the shield of human rights. We were all lowered to the level of beasts that could be violated on a whim, without notice. Victims of rape show the same symptoms as those stripped of their human rights. To do nothing about it is the disempowerment that follows debasement.

Please protect the future by letting it be known that the dignity of the American people is to be preserved even if it means we have to fight for it.

Lisa L. Ruffin

Colorado Springs

Lesson for Lamborn
When did "liberal" become a dirty word? And what does it mean?

Am I a liberal because I read the Independent and listen to National Public Radio? Maybe it is because I don't care if you choose to live your life gay, straight or in between?

This was all sparked by a recent Doug Lamborn advertisement. Our buddy "Dougie" is fighting against those Nancy Pelosi liberals on Capitol Hill! Thank goodness you are there for us! Dirty liberals.

Wait ... why? What are these "liberals" doing? Are they hunting us down and feeding us soy products to turn us all gay? (If you don't know what I am talking about, do an Internet search on this ... seriously.) I do not think that is what those "liberals" are doing. I think those liberals are just like me. We do not agree with everything that goes on in our world, or maybe the direction of certain items. But why is Dougie fighting the liberals? What is there to fight?

Here is a concept for you, Dougie. Try this neat, new, cool thing called bipartisanship. I know that is a big word for you (probably why you won't debate your fellow Republicans). But give it a try. I took a look at your voting record since you have been in office. Not stellar, Dougie. Embracing the idea of working together for everyone may be the way to go.

Scott Cote

Manitou Springs

Check the facts, liberal
I am writing in response to Tony Katava ("Fix the fix," Letters, July 24). His letter illustrates how liberals turn fiction into fact.

His comparison about drilling in the Garden of the Gods has no rational logic to drilling in frozen tundra where there is little or no animal life and certainly no humans wishing to visit there. Likewise, drilling 50 or 60 miles offshore certainly would have no comparison.

As to "lies" by Bush, this is a tired old liberal cry for which there is no proven fact. Actually, several prominent Democratic leaders believed Iraq was indeed hiding WMDs. And "in fact" there were some indications Saddam was actually plotting for their manufacture.

As for having the technology in solar, wind and hydrogen power sources, Katava needs to read up on recent articles regarding such technology. Solar is not practical for a constant source. It is extremely expensive, and the sun must be shining for it to be effective.

Wind power is proving unreliable as, at any given time, only 40 percent of the Earth's surface has sufficient wind. Also, electric companies cannot currently handle the sporadic electricity that they generate. As for hydrogen power, it is not even close to being developed sufficiently to produce any significant energy.

I agree these or other sources need to be advanced further. But until they invent a better source, I am not willing to hide my head in the sand and ignore the resources we have, such as oil and natural gas. That scenario can only lead to disaster for this great nation.

Dwight Underwood

Colorado Springs

Donate blood
It's absolutely critical to have a sufficient blood supply at all times in Colorado. This summer, demands will be further compounded by the Democratic National Convention. As Denver welcomes over 45,000 guests, additional responsibility will be placed on our health care system. As a cancer survivor, I know firsthand how absolutely critical it is to have sufficient blood.

Unfortunately, blood donations in Colorado can drop by as much as 20 percent in summer. In an average year, 4,000 donors per week are required to meet the needs of our community. This year, an even greater supply is necessary to meet our general needs.

If you are eligible, please consider donating today, or visit one of Bonfils blood-collection centers to help us meet our increased collection goals. It's a simple way to contribute, and your donation can go a very long way.

We will introduce new legislation next January to make it possible for more eligible Coloradans to donate. Current state law requires a donor to be 18 years old, 17 with parental consent. But if the age requirement is lowered to 16, with appropriate safety precautions, Bonfils Blood Center estimates up to 2,600 additional units would be collected annually.

Colorado high school students are already active in mobilizing blood drives and donating. During the 2006-7 donation cycle, 6,100 units of blood were donated by eligible high school juniors and seniors. Around 3,700 were first-time donors.

States that already have lowered the age requirement to 16 have seen a 30 percent jump in participation for blood drives.

When young people donate, they are more likely to continue in years to come. So start now by going to bonfils.org for locations and donating to help meet our exceptional demands this year. Talk to your kids about the importance of blood donation. Become a donor for life.

State Rep. Michael Merrifield

Colorado Springs

Correction
In last week's "Running for their lives" (7 Days to Live), the International Anglican Church of Colorado Springs was mischaracterized as having broken from the Episcopal Church of the United States to align with the Rwandan Anglican Church.

The IAC of Colorado Springs never was a part of the Episcopal Church of the U.S.; it was originally founded by the Rwandan Anglican Church.

Also, a note of clarification: While "Run for Rwanda" organizers were raising money to help fund construction of a clinic and a school, they do not plan to help physically construct those buildings in Rwanda.

The Independent regrets the confusion.

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