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Don't encourage them
Re: the picture of a defaced McDonald's billboard, (Slice of Life) in the July 30 issue: Quite a while back when I lived in L.A., graffiti seemed to be at its apex. I remember a column on the front page of the Los Angeles Times bemoaning this fact. Accompanying this was a big picture of an overpass with tagging.
My thought at the time was, "Great. You just gave these guys exactly the attention they wanted." Simple animal behavior (do remember we're animals): When you reward ("Here's a treat," "Good dog," "How cool that is") unwanted behavior (barking inappropriately, defacing property), you are reinforcing that behavior. Meaning you are encouraging the continued behavior.
I am no fan of McDonald's, and I can imagine I would snicker a little upon seeing that billboard.
But my greater self would remind that snickering self that destroying others' property is wrong, and spreading that negativity is bad for our community. Taking that picture, spreading it among friends — at worst, a small act of immaturity. But the editors display terrible judgment in publishing it. Instead of one neighborhood being assaulted, you made sure your entire readership was made to wince.
Go sit in the corner.
— Judith Lee
Behind the PR
Re: your SimpliCity article "Floor to sealing," in the July 30 issue, kudos to the Energy Resource Center, an incredible and much-needed service organization!
But I am puzzled by the big-picture, common-sense and future-oriented comments from Mark James of Colorado Springs Utilities, about CSU's and the utility world's view. On the value of reducing demand for electricity, which aids us all, you quote James: "How much [can] we reduce our peak demands, so that we don't have to build new [power] units in the future?"
A commendable view, and remarkable PR, really; but if true, I don't understand why CSU refuses to do net-metering for household rooftop solar installations — which certainly reduce peak demand and contribute to peak supply at the same time.
Imagine if all our city's south-facing roofs held solar arrays — why would CSU actively discourage that?
I get so many solicitations from solar-power companies in the mail and online, but as soon as they find out I'm serviced by CSU, they say, "No-go, we can't work with them." It seems to me our city- and customer-owned nonprofit utility is speaking out of both sides of its mouth, and definitely not thinking remotely of the future and what "aids us all"!
— Marty Wolf
The feature article about Peggy Littleton ("Fed Up," cover story, July 23) was a well-written and an informative piece of journalism, so rare with what is called journalism today.
The extremism she represents is a dangerous menace, unlike the phantom menaces people like her see all around them. She gives a veneer of official credibility to dangerously misinformed people that start shooting and think later, if at all. Ninety thousand dollars a year certainly helps her attack poor people looking for work.
After being appalled reading the dangerous ugliness she supports, I had to have a laugh with, "People thought Noah was crazy when he built his ark, then it started raining." She certainly seems to have extensive experience with crazy people, but there are more seaworthy vessels available than some wooden box boat filled with all the animals of the world when the entire Earth is submerged with rain.
Her views, actions and comments show that undercurrent of nastiness toward others, especially those not part of her primitive tribe. Reading that Peggy was part of the Blond Babes for Bush in 2004 in New York City was interesting too. Did she have fun there talking to other members of her primitive tribe wearing Purple Heart Band-Aids to mock John Kerry and insult veterans everywhere?
Colorado Springs has become a mecca to people like Peggy. Just ask Michelle Malkin and her unapologetic extremism. Productive people that are constantly told they are needed by local companies will stay away despite the supposed lure of having an expensive and unneeded stadium downtown. The primitive tribe is eager and working hard to return us to feudalism and the Dark Ages, literally and figuratively.
— Derek Voll
Bullets and babes
A front-page picture in the Gazette at the end of July: our police showing our children a military weapon and, on TV, showing a small army of men, militarized as for war, going after one or two men or women.
What a shameful abuse of the police's role in our community — to serve and protect.
— Jan Chappell
A savior for Detroit
I have just read about the efforts of the Greens, owners of Hobby Lobby; I am submitting an idea for them.
They say that 1) they are good Christians, and 2) they wish to open a Christian artifact museum in our nation's capital. The patriarch states that he has over 40,000 Christian artifacts.
What did they do; pick up every stone and pebble on the roadway between Nazareth and Bethlehem? I can't imagine just what this collection is comprised of.
However, I do believe that I have a much better idea for the location of their well-intended efforts. They should put their museum in Detroit! The city is in dire need of income stimulus. Such a museum should attract every God-fearing person in the Lower 48, and then some. What a boon for those poor folks in Detroit!
Also, I understand that the city is teeming with heathen Muslims. (Yes, I'm being sarcastic!) What a great way to counteract that group, or, perhaps convert a few! What a great evangelistic deed!
— Nancy Lieber-Lazzaro
In the Aug. 6 installment of Get Involved, the eRace Childhood Obesity Ride should have been more clearly defined as a bike ride. We regret any confusion this may have caused.