This is the original message that Steve Cummings wrote to Rep. Larry Liston and several other state lawmakers:
Thank you once again for reinforcing in my heart why it is foolish to trust elected officials. Our country's government was founded on the principle of "for the people by the people"...at least that's what we are taught. Your recent support of the "Super Slab" project assures me that in fact our government today is "for the rich by the rich" and whoever gets a piece of the pie along the way. I served in this country's military for 12 years defending the freedom we boast about. I served in the cold war and remember praying that our country would never become like the USSR. I guess it was a wasted prayer. The use of Eminent Domain is no better than the thinking of those we fought all those years. How dare our elected "representatives" even think of this behavior. All this in the name of progress. How dare you think its your duty to destroy homesteads, ranches, towns and, lest we forget, people's lives, all for a wealthy developer to get richer at every! one's expense.
Somehow I believe that if this ridiculous proposal affected your home or neighborhood, you would have voted it down. The people who live in eastern El Paso County work hard for what they have and enjoy being just far enough from the city to be comfortable. Many of the people are ranchers who make their living from their land. Despite the untrue statement made by Rep. Jim Sullivan that the people here are "starving to death," many are doing well for themselves. Many of the ranches have passed from generation to generation. Would you give up your home for Mr Wells to get rich? I wonder.
This road will serve no great purpose for El Paso county. Our corridor of I-25 flows well. The buisnesses along the route do well. I am a truck driver and use the route often. The only slowdown I normally run into is in Denver, due to the TREX construction and generally heavy traffic in Denver. Colorado Springs has done just fine without a superhighway. The thought of using the eastern plains as your passageway for hazardous materials is numbing. As a driver, I believe that Hazmat at 85 MPH is genocide in the making. There are many ranches in that corridor. Would you like to chance tainted meat or dairy products from a Hazmat spill? Can you sleep with that responsibility on your shoulders? Autobahns belong in Germany, not here in Colorado.
In closing, I ask that before the vote is done that all of you attend the town meetings and listen to the people who elected you, for a change. For God's sake, don't turn tail and run as Mr. Decker did at a recent meeting. Hear the people out for once. Don't turn a deaf ear or get defensive. These are people fighting for what is theirs and holding some hope that our government isn't just smoke and mirrors. Remember, these people entrusted you with a valuable responsibility. It is your sworn duty to uphold the people's will. Take a vote of the people and see what the real opinion is. Don't rely on the words of a developer that obviously has no respect for people or the rightful property of others. Vote NO and DO NOT support Bill 1030. I believe it would serve all of you well to reconsider this proposal. It doesn't work for Colorado or El Paso County. Tell Mr Wells to destroy someone else's backya! rd, like his own perhaps, or maybe Mr. Decker's since he is so fond of this proposal. I challenge you all to prove me wrong in believing ethics no longer exist for politicians. I would like to someday be able to teach my kids that our government really is "For the People and By the People."
Thank you for your time,
This is what Larry Liston wrote to Steve Cummings:
Your note is very offensive and you turn off people with your threats. You don't even know me, nor have you met me, yet you condemn me and everyone else. It is OK for you and everyone else to drive and congest I-25, but when a "proposal" is mentioned to take some of the pressure of the highway, which was built over 45 years ago, you go ballistic. I do represent my district, and quite frankly, most everyone does SUPPORT it. Please don't bother me again.
Here's Steve Cummings' response to Liston's reply:
From: Steve Cummings
Subject: RE: Bill 1030 is BAD for Colorado
I'm sorry you feel offended. Yes, we are "going ballistic" as you put it. We are on the verge of losing our homes, are you? There surely must be other ways to relieve the traffic congestion you refer to without ruining homesteads. Are we supposed to lay down and let Mr. Wells and friends just take what we have worked for and be happy like cattle in the slaughter houses? I'm sorry we have all been taught to defend our homes and stand up for what is right. If this offends you, then perhaps you are in the wrong profession. Ask the people what they really want instead of imposing the will of a developer looking to enhance his bank accounts.
I will not "bother you again" as you said, even though we are constantly reminded to voice concerns to our representatives. I will be sure, however, to let people know how you respond to concerns of the people you were sworn to represent and serve.