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Letters: Colorado Springs dining, Palmer High School, dogs on leashes 

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Eat at home

I read through Bryce Crawford's piece titled "Springs chefs pick their favorites" (Bites, Feb. 6). What a great piece. Short. To the point. Informational.

I was disappointed, however, in the number of chefs whose "go-to" spot is in Denver. Really? In a state that encourages local fare, your go-to spot is an hour away?

I realize their opinion may differ from mine. Frankly, my go-to spot is probably in Denver, too. Actually, it's in a different state. But if the local media asks me about the restaurant scene, I will come up with a local spot.

The article illustrates the state of Springs cuisine. The local restaurants have a lot to offer, but little support. We can defer to the diamonds at The Broadmoor, but that doesn't support a community. Colorado Springs has the culinary talent to produce a good product, and the citizens have the palate to recognize quality. Why isn't the restaurant scene better? I don't know, but it doesn't have to be that way.

My family recently moved here from a city with a lively restaurant scene, and we have struggled to find the local vibe. We find glimmers of hope, but can't develop a roster of fail-safe dining and I know why. It's too conventional. Several chefs in Crawford's article mentioned consistency as their basis for their go-to place. I love consistency, but I don't want redundancy.

If you're concerned with a consistent menu, then you are doomed to a stuffy menu. Get outside the box. Stare in the face of failure and risk success.

I don't want a safe restaurant. I want a restaurant to taunt me to try something different. I want a cocktail that doesn't have sweet-and-sour. Is that too much to ask?

— Jonathan Berry

Colorado Springs


Hands off Palmer

Dear Ralph,

Are you fucking nuts? Dumping a top-rated high school (Palmer) to reinvent a failing school that has been circling the drain for years (Wasson) to make room for a downtown presence of UCCS ("UCCS inspires new thinking," Between the Lines, Feb. 6)?

Maybe instead of taking over Palmer, Chancellor Pam Shockley-Zalabak should avail herself of the many empty storefronts along Tejon Street. Then again, they might fit on Nevada across from the Pioneers Museum; that makes about as much sense.

— Dana Keys

Colorado Springs

A well-mannered dog

After reading Jessica Hunter-Larsen's letter ("Unleashing heartbreak," Feb. 6), it occurred to me that even in the most professional of dog shows, all dogs, no matter how sweet or well-behaved and trained, are on a leash.

I walk my dog every day and am constantly bombarded with pets off leash and the typical owner response, "Don't worry, our dog is friendly." Please consider that the leash is intended to protect your dog as well!

A well-trained dog on a leash is a sight to behold and one of pride. An off-leash dog in public areas other than designated parks or one's own yard is not only potentially dangerous but shows a lack of respect on the owner's part.

I am saddened by the story and only hope the owner of the offensive dog took some financial responsibility in the matter, although Jessica's story makes it sound otherwise.

— Alan Joseph

Colorado Springs

Bremer's bunk

Duncan Bremer's suggestion to county commissioners that the county ban birth-control pills as an insurance-covered benefit to the county's female employees ("County advised on how to deny birth control," IndyBlog, Jan. 31) is absolutely astonishing.

1. This seems to be spawning off the Plan B objection on the basis of some websites alluding to an ovum already fertilized and not being implanted, of which there is not a single case of evidence. In spite of some websites not being accurately up-to-date, coupled with leading U.S. scientists saying this is pure bunk, they are quoted as though they were gospel. A more in-depth report can be found in an article written by Pam Belluck, the science journalist for The New York Times.

2. Current and long-standing legislation does not allow the government to pay for any abortion-causing substances, or abortions. This is the Hyde Amendment. No paid-for abortions except in the case of rape, incest or to save the life of the mother.

3. Inasmuch as we've already sent messages of bias and intolerance to outlying businesses who otherwise might want to expand their business and investment interests here, do we really want to sound stupid, too?

We're seen as too often voting against tax increases that would improve our city's services and infrastructure, being anti-gay and pompously religious, and promoting strong religious-right organizations that pay no taxes but add plenty to our pious image, led by politicians who would deceive us on term limitations and stand against the will of the people who voted to legalize recreational marijuana.

4. The county commissioners know that the county government can't pass as a religious institution, the only allowed exemption in the Affordable Care Act.

It's time to let our commissioners know that women see this as pure rubbish.

— Micheale Duncan


Fear of family

Last week's issue featured a letter whose author is apparently terrified (inexplicably) of civil unions ("No adoption option," Feb. 6). Thinly cloaking his argument in language about adoption and religious persecution, the writer is merely demonizing homosexuals.

Raising responsible children is a demanding yet rewarding endeavor, which anyone desiring children should be able to experience. To argue that only a married man and woman should have the right to have children is a pretty shallow argument.

I know several kids that are being raised in "non-traditional" settings, by same-sex couples and by single moms who wanted children. They are all regular kids from loving homes — respectful, smart, funny kids, doing all the usual kid stuff — music lessons, art shows, sports, school plays and spelling bees. Isn't this what we would hope for our children, what all children deserve — to grow up being loved and nurtured in a safe home environment?

Surely a child from a broken or abusive home, one who has lost parents or suffered other tragic circumstances, would benefit from a stable, loving home regardless of the marital status or gender makeup of their adoptive parents. Interracial marriage was once frowned heavily upon. This, too, shall pass.

— Dan Wiencek

Colorado Springs

Economics test

Sequestration and military cutbacks at local military installations should be welcome news for local conservatives. Less federal government money will pour into El Paso County. A perfect test that will prove Keynesian government employment policies don't work in a weak economy. Great news for the county that voted for Rick Santorum in the GOP primary and will probably vote for Paul Ryan in 2016.

One can now expect local unemployment to drop as federal military dollars evaporate. As we have been taught by important suits who know best, one can expect this to be a big boom as the private sector is freed to make much greater investment in Colorado Springs. This will certainly trickle down throughout the county.

This should be good! See you in church. Bring your automatic rifles.

— Jonathan Reilly

Colorado Springs

Drought and poison

Colorado Springs will be on watering restrictions by April 1. In mid-January, snowpack was about 50 percent of what it should be. Our reservoirs were about 40 percent of normal. Forecasts predict continued drought, statewide water shortages, and another very scary fire season.

How, then, can Colorado Springs Utilities justify selling vast amounts of water (see "Drilling in a drought," p. 14) to oil companies for hydraulic fracturing?

Each frack will use approximately 5 million gallons of fresh water which will be permanently contaminated by toxic chemicals. Oil companies have resisted disclosing the contents of fracking fluid, but most chemicals have been identified as endocrine-disruptors and/or carcinogens.

Some toxic water remains underground, and some returns to the surface, risking contamination of aquifers, wells and creeks. The original water is "used to extinction" meaning it will be too poisoned to return to the water supply. In El Paso County, reaching oil and gas will require drilling through up to four separate aquifers — aquifers tapped by citizens and farms for fresh well water.

Other states have had problems with the chemicals poisoning their ground water. Drilling has begun, yet questions about safety, air and water quality, and water availability haven't been addressed. We owe it to future generations to set strict regulations to protect our resources. Please write to elected officials with your concerns. It's our water, our air and our home!

— Nicole Rosa

Colorado Springs

Power up

Getting rid of Martin Drake Power Plant without another power source in place to provide electricity at equal or cheaper cost is insipid! It is a clean plant that conforms to government regulations. It can be made a more efficient electrical provider by utilizing the heat loss via the smokestack and other end-stage heat-loss processes.

Several companies will provide free Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) energy-recovery units to recover the heat-loss energy and make additional electricity.

Opportunities exist whereby a company will freely provide the city with LED street lighting and will take a percentage of savings of electrical cost. LED bulbs are energy-efficient and long-lasting, saving manpower time on replacement.

Heat-recovery generated by landfills is also a source of electricity (Red Rock Canyon and other old landfills). The land could be covered for solar power generation.

Colorado Springs is behind the eight ball in its acceptance of newer electrical saving potentials.

— Brian Miller

Colorado Springs

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