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The Colorado Springs Chapter of the ACLU has opposed the city's proposed "sit-lie" ordinance and supports the state ACLU efforts by Mark Silverstein and Nathan Woodliff-Stanley. If an ordinance opposed by the ACLU passes, Mark Silverstein's minimum changes are essential:
1. Obstructing walkways should be a civil rather than criminal offense.
2. People with disabilities or medical emergencies should be exempt, among others.
3. Warnings need to be more specific and in writing.
4. Exceptions for rallies and parades need to be specifically guaranteed.
It has been some 30 years since Bill Hochman, Dean Tollefson and others gave birth to the local ACLU chapter, a bulwark for our constitutional rights and often unpopular. I began my ACLU relationship in 1966 when, as a member of the Virginia Legislature, I drafted legislation to promote gun safety and end capital punishment and state restrictions on interracial marriage. The U.S. Supreme Court invalidated the latter in 1967 in Loving v. Virginia.
We look forward to the end of the current infringement of rights of free people to use public places to rest and appreciate what was originally called the "commons." For it is the common folk that won us possession of these rights.
— Bill Durland, Chair
Colorado Springs Chapter ACLU
Planned Parenthood and its supporters had their rally to support the 43rd anniversary of the decision to legalize abortion. I was the only person to stage a counter-protest. Abortion has been called a blessing by the likes of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and certain abortion advocates like to call us "nutters." If I am a nutter, so be it!
I shall call women who are proud of their abortions sluts and whores. I will not take that back unless you truly regret your abortion.
They talk about love and respect for the woman but not for the child (regardless of gender) growing within them. Another TV series recently took a stand for abortion when lead character Olivia Pope had an abortion. In most TV shows and movies, the message is that if you fall in "love" with someone, sex is a part of it, marriage or not. If you're pregnant and do not want the baby, abortion is fine. What matters is that we feel good and gratify ourselves not knowing the consequences we may bring to others.
If progressives believe we are animals and evolved from them, what is the difference? When we allow people to snuff out the lives of the most vulnerable in our community, people eventually get the message that they might be next in line. Even a mentally disturbed person like Robert Lewis Dear understood this but took the wrong action.
The end game will result in another false messiah. God forbid someone might live forever like the fictional Vandal Savage and become the plague of the human race in the far future. But maybe we deserve someone like Savage. The supporters of Planned Parenthood prove it.
— Don McCullen
Help the cause
Colorado's Legislature is considering a bill allowing doctors to prescribe aid-in-dying medication at a terminally ill patient's request. It requires the patient to be at least 18 and of sound mind. The patient must request this a couple of times separated by weeks and in writing with two witnesses. The option can reassure those in pain, even if they never use it.
If you want to encourage your representative, it is bill HB16-1054 and it will have a hearing in the House on Feb. 4.
— Vince Gosselin
Need more detail
I was disappointed in the article on Shari Zabel by J. Adrian Stanley. While Zabel's personal journey was well-documented, Stanley glossed over important political statements. Catchphrases like "gun-rights Democrat, small federal government, government out of your life as much as possible" and fix TABOR tell potential voters nothing about this candidate. Does Ms. Zabel support access to high-capacity automatic weapons for everyone? Does she support background checks? When she speaks of a small federal government, is she advocating outsourcing government functions? Does Ms. Zabel advocate getting rid of government regulations and promoting unfettered capitalism?
And while I think the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights needs fixing, my experience in Massachusetts, where property taxes are about three to four times higher, tells me removing voters from the equation and modifying TABOR without close scrutiny is a huge mistake. The Indy needs to make every candidate explain what they mean when they use slogans or clichés, and Ms. Zabel is no exception.
— Mary J. Talbott
Jim Daly stated recently, "The only way to keep religion out of politics is to exclude people of faith. ... It was to protect believers of all varieties from such abuses that our Founding Fathers forbade the establishment of a state church."
Which brings me to the hypocrisy of Mr. Daly. His organization received $2.3 million from the Koch brothers in 2014 for political activities, according to IRS records published in the Denver Post.
The Kochs support legislation that prevents people of faith from voting and by financially supporting elected officials to pass this legislation authored by the American Legislative Exchange Council.
They financially back Americans for Prosperity, which perpetuates a morally bankrupt political-economic philosophy.
Let's not forget the Club for Growth and its disruption of our Congress.
When Daly speaks, is he speaking for AFP, ALEC, the Club for Growth, any other Koch-financed political arm or think tank, or the teachings of Jesus?
Doubt if it's the latter because the Kochs' business and political model is to destroy our planet, and as Charles Koch said recently, "I don't have enough power."
Has Focus on the Family become a mouthpiece or a wholly owned subsidiary of the Koch political machine?
— Gary Casimir
Thanks for another great week of reads. City Sage earned his title, yet again. I am writing mostly for your continued coverage of "little things" like the off-leash update in county parks. I love our town, even if it gets angered about guns and marijuana. As you say, we are a city/county where "off-leash offenders will (as a last resort) be fined — but only if they blatantly and repeatedly break the law." Can't wait to see what the county commissioners think of this "idea" — and your coverage.
— Charlie Mussi