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Guns and baseball, gay rights, the Manitou Incline, and more 

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Sky Sox and guns

We want to come back to Sky Sox baseball. It's been a while. So I drove over to the stadium to take a look around and pick a game with fireworks. Then I saw the sign that prohibits firearms. It led me to write this open letter to Sky Sox management with this simple question:

Are you nuts?

Did you learn nothing from the different outcomes at New Life Church versus the Cinemark theater in Aurora? If your lawyers are worried about liability more than body count, consider the fact that nobody sued New Life but Cinemark is going to pay big time. If you're actually concerned for fans, then why advertise our vulnerability?

The Sky Sox website also announces the self-defense prohibition. In other words, you tell the world that a few thousand Americans get together in a wide-open, free-fire zone to sing the national anthem and watch America's pastime.

Given that we're a well-known military and tourist town, I can't imagine how much more attractive you could make Sky Sox to yet another nut case with a murderous cause.

So much for coming back.

— Ed Herlik

Colorado Springs

Battle remembered

Once again John Hazlehurst has written a timely and insightful piece about our city's past and present ("Long and winding road reaches its rainbow," City Sage, July 1). Thank you!

I would like to add to his recognition of the fine folks who stepped up and stepped out in response to Amendment 2 by citing the ongoing good works of Tim Gill, who started the Gill Foundation (and later the Gay & Lesbian Fund for Colorado) and Katherine Pease, the foundation's first executive director. They were in the thick of the good fight for equal rights for all. As an early staffer I was and am proud of their dedication and commitment.

— Brooke Hoffman Ellis

Colorado Springs

Ode from New England

Last November I left Colorado Springs after 37 years for the godless, liberal bastion of Vermont. After the horrendous decisions by the activist Supreme Court justices, I cannot but help to think about my poor Colorado Springs friends.

You must all be in mourning. I hope your spiritual leader, Will Perkins, is holding 24-hour prayer vigils that God will strike those justices with a bolt of lightning or turn them into pillars of salt for their sins against humanity.

Please tell me the mayor has ordered all city buildings to fly the flags at half-staff to mourn that lazy poor Americans still have access to health care, and godless gays and lesbians will be able to diminish the Christian sacrament of holy matrimony for the ridiculous reason that they love each other.

Pray for us in Vermont; the oppression is overwhelming. They have outlawed billboards, forcing us to look at pristine forests and clear rivers instead of the creative, anti-gay and anti-abortion billboards you display for all to see.

The oppression here gets worse with mandatory recycling laws. We don't have the privilege like you lucky people in Colorado to throw plastics into landfills so future generations can build homes on mountains of plastic.

Harken my friends, all is not lost. Those activist judges actually did what our Founding Fathers decreed, determining that injecting those convicted of murder with poison, so we can enjoy watching them die an agonizing death, is our constitutional right.

They also aided your business community by deeming that coal-fired power plants can continue to emit mercury and other heavy metals, allowing them to settle into your drinking water.

So I pray with these tidbits, you can all smile a little, have a healthy drink of metal-laden water and enjoy watching a good, entertaining execution by lethal injection.

— Michael McMahon

Montpelier, Vermont

Different aggressions

Columbia University Professor Derald Wing Sue has identified some terms that he deems "microaggressions." Among the terms are "I believe the most qualified person should get the job," "I don't believe in race" and "America is the land of opportunity."

Praise for the United States and the good she has done for the world are also to be forbidden, according to Dr. Sue. These standards are being adopted by some so-called institutions of higher learning.

I'm not even certain what a "microaggression" is, but I have a pretty good idea.

With that in mind, it could be time for some "macroaggression." I ask all to read this carefully: If you live in my country and tell me that I am not allowed to have my own opinions and to heap whatever praise I like on my country, then you are a jackass. Does that bear repeating, and does that qualify as a "macroaggression?" I hope so.

Congratulations to the United States of America on her recent 239th birthday, and God bless all freedom-loving people of the earth.

— John Howell

Colorado Springs

Incline suggestion

While I appreciated a recent article in that other local newspaper about the Manitou Incline's dangers, individuals hurting themselves should not concern our community near as much as the hordes who daily assault this treasure.

My experience was typical: large boisterous groups, people taking dogs up and/or coming down the Incline (ignoring rules intended to increase safety and decrease wear); hikers wearing earbuds that prevent them from hearing others who want to pass; people freely cutting switchbacks on the spur route to Barr Trail and on Barr Trail itself. The way the trail smelled, some hikers were also apparently relieving themselves in locations other than porta-potties.

The Incline and lower Barr Trail cannot long endure this; on the Incline some ties are loosening and erosion is evident, less than nine months after major repairs were completed.

I have an idea that will ameliorate these problems while further enhancing the Incline's allure (because this is America and it must be commodified).

Create a quick, inexpensive fitness check at the base; particulars would be determined by exercise physiologists. Design a classification that identifies hikers as "qualifiers" or "elite"; give each an inexpensive, date-imprinted wristband that displays his or her status. People who fail to meet at least the "qualifier" standard are turned away.

Every aspiring hiker pays a buck for the fitness check; that money stays with the Incline. Some would pay the wage of checkers, the rest would go toward Incline and trail upkeep.

Tourists and locals alike would view it as a special experience reserved only for those who prepare themselves. This scheme would immediately reduce traffic and associated degradation of the Incline and Barr Trail.

— Cate Terwilliger

Manitou Springs

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