America's beauty standards, helmet laws, TPP, abortion, and more 


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Worth your time

I would like to address "More than a body" (News, Oct. 26) by J. Adrian Stanley, and the promotion of the documentary "Embrace" that may be shown Nov. 16 at a theater here in Colorado Springs.

Within the article, Stanley tells the story of a young girl coming to America from Mexico and how America's beauty standards affected her self-esteem, which carried into her adulthood. The media's focus on women's body image has affected women around the world. The unrealistic standards women face daily from advertisements and other societal pressures have caused low self-esteem/poor body image in women starting at a very young age.

This topic should be focused on more often to promote a healthier self-image within young girls, and also to bring awareness to the media's unrealistic standards it holds upon women. The outcome of positive body image will be beneficial because it will instill confidence, which will help mental health, relationships, and life choices within women.

Embrace focuses on a woman's journey with her issues of self-image and how she overcame it. This is a very important issue in today's society, and the awareness would be beneficial to a young woman's future. The viewing of this documentary could help any woman and show the importance of self-love.

— Jackie Oliver

Colorado Springs

Safety concerns

Driving around Colorado Springs and the state of Colorado, one can see a lot of motorcyclists on the road with hardly any personal protective equipment (PPE) and sometimes none. I do agree in seat belts for cars, trucks, SUVs, etc.

Where is the safety for motorcyclists? Colorado state law says that helmets are not required for motorcyclists over 18 years of age. The state wants everyone in a car to be safe, but not on a motorcycle. This is definitely a double standard.

The Colorado Department of Transportation indicates motorcycle drivers must obey all the same traffic laws as other motor vehicles on the roadways. Isn't safety a traffic law?

One of my sergeant majors in the Army would say in our weekly safety briefing that most motorcyclists race to die. If motorcyclists or the state do not see this, then something is wrong.

— Jacob Purdom

Colorado Springs

Next, stop TPP

I have joined other activists to protest the TPP (TransPacific Partnership) for nearly three years.

The harm it would do to every sector of our national economy and our freedom is so great it was kept secret from Congress for several years. The corporations that wrote it want us to remain ignorant of its dangers. As Jonny 5 of the Flobots said at the Rock Against the TPP concert, "An uninformed electorate can be duped. A disengaged electorate can be ignored. But an engaged, informed electorate can determine the path that its leaders must take."

Inform yourself at Flushthetpp.org for articles, fact sheets and a history of the resistance. TPP would allow corporations to violate laws and regulations that don't advance their profits. Then they could sue us for even having them under the Investor-State Dispute Settlement provision. Since the three judges deciding cases would be corporate execs, they will rule against countries with no recourse to a higher court. The huge fines they impose on countries now under NAFTA often force them to water down their laws.

Those who are informed find it incomprehensible any elected representatives hesitate to oppose it. Yet, after many protests, petitions, letters of opposition, scholarly articles hand-delivered and global resistance, Colorado Reps. Diana DeGette, Ed Perlmutter and Jared Polis claim to be undecided on TPP.

Call them at 202/225-3121 and tell them to state their opposition to the TPP.

— Laura Avant


The party's over

Can someone please explain how any Christian, Jew or any other individual who believes in spiritual and moral guidance provided by the Bible can participate in, or support, a political party with a major principle that includes killing the innocent? The fifth of the Ten Commandments (for those who still remember them) states, "Thou shall not kill."

It is recognized that many among us do not believe in a supreme being or that the Bible is the word of God. For those, I can understand abortion is just a personal choice and has little temporal or eternal ramifications. However, these individuals are not the focus of my puzzlement; it is those who seem to rationalize this killing by pointing to war, capital punishment, self-defense, personal difficulties, etc., as justifications, and furthermore, consider abortion as another issue to contemplate.

As a local minister so aptly put it, "Abortion is not a mere disagreement. Abortion is not on the same moral level as the war in Iraq/Syria, taxes, the environment, global warming, the cost of gasoline, energy independence or any other of the hot-button topics."

Mother Teresa (whom many respect, Christian or not, because of her self-sacrifice and dedication to the poor and sick of over-populated India) stated, "But I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child — a direct killing of the innocent child. ... And if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?"

— Bill Offutt

Colorado Springs

Save the canyon

The Grand Canyon is one of the most amazing places on Earth. More than 5.5 million flock to see its beauty every year. When President Theodore Roosevelt visited the area more than 100 years ago, he said, "You cannot improve it. But what you can do is keep it for your children, for your children's children, for all who come after you, as the one great sight which every American should see."

Today, the Grand Canyon and surrounding area are under attack. Mining companies want to open up land around the park to dig for uranium and other metals, and a mine is reopening just six miles from the park's South Rim. Uranium mining would threaten an area that is home to endangered wildlife and the Colorado River watershed, which supplies drinking water to more than 25 million Americans downstream.

Now is the time to ensure this national icon will be around for our children and our children's children. President Obama can do that by permanently protecting the Grand Canyon and the millions of acres surrounding it before he leaves office.

Join me in calling on President Obama to leave a legacy as the president who protected the Grand Canyon forever by creating the Greater Grand Canyon Heritage National Monument.

— Becca Houske

Environment Colorado Policy and Research Center


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