Stinky brown-nosing

The Gazette's duplicity toward Rick Tosches [Public Eye, Sept. 5] is particularly troubling, because journalism is not just any profession. It has special responsibilities, commensurate with its constitutionally enshrined freedom.

The Gazette's public kowtowing was a complete betrayal of both responsibility and press freedom.

Having not only approved Tosches' column but given it special pride of place, The Gazette had a responsibility to stand behind its writer. At the very least, that meant leaving to any offended parties the responsibility of speaking for themselves.

Instead, the paper relieved them of this responsibility by speaking on their behalf, and implicitly disavowed its own responsibility for publishing the column.

If a newspaper behaves in a manner so redolent of brown-nosing after printing a story that no more than slightly annoys a local business, a reasonable person might wonder whether that paper would risk printing a story that would clearly serve the public interest, but incur the full wrath of interests powerful enough to have a court gag it or throw its reporters in jail.

Might wonder, in other words, whether that paper would be willing to pay the price that has often been exacted for exercising the liberty known as freedom of the press.

-- Kurt Foster

Colorado Springs

He wrote "Innuendo"

My name isn't Atomic Elroy (almost, if you say it fast), I never went to "Rugratts University," I never built an "Uncles' Willie," I did write a show called "Innuendo" (it was about how lame Colorado Springs is), and I can't drink "sour grape whine" anymore. However, I did do Sandy Bray's job before (for approximately seven years).

I just blew all that smoke up your ass to express how most people here, especially in the Community Theater (no, I didn't invert those two words accidentally) "just don't get it"!

Noel Black's column, Culture Vulture, is the best thing to happen to arts journalism here, ever. I love its irreverent, gossip-ridden, and honest take on the Community Theater (no, I didn't invert those two words accidentally) here in Colorado Springs. I also think it shows verve and clarity that he doesn't take himself, or what he's writing about, too serious.

I wish I could say that for the rest of the Colorado Springs Community Theater. (No, I didn't invert those two words accidentally.)

OK, kids, do you get it now? It's supposed to be a gossip column; I thought the title would be a "dead" giveaway. Perhaps if any of our Community Theater (no, I didn't invert those two words accidentally) had any personality, or did anything interesting (artistically or otherwise), he would have more to write about.

Regarding Black's Aug. 22 column, what really tickles me is that so much of a hubbub is made over the filling [of] one position. Then I'm sadly reminded that there are only about five full-time theater jobs in our cultural mecca, so unless you're one of those five, I would be careful how you use the term "professional."

Oh I did, when asked by composer Philip Glass, once, call him "a cab."

-- Tom McElroy

The former Mr. Theatre Bastard

Colorado Springs

Hope for peace

We are of First Congregational United Church of Christ, whose Congregational forebears founded Colorado College in 1874 -- the first presidents of the college and the first ministers of the congregation being the same! We are of a mind with the church's early 20th-century leaders that the college should be free of church control, and so blessed the school's becoming an independent liberal arts college.

With that history in mind, we are dismayed over the criticism by a number of religious and political figures directed toward this week's visit of Hanan Ashwari to Colorado College. Dr. Ashrawi is an Anglican Christian, a recognized academic thinker, and an articulate spokesperson.

As men and women who follow Jesus, we believe that Dr. Ashrawi's point of view should be heard for the very principles of Jesus' way: the truth being told, peace being sought, and love being forwarded.

Surely we cannot hope to educate our children if we demonize those who bring us speakers with whom we may find disagreement.

We cannot hope for peace if we silence the voices for peace. We cannot hope for a political settlement if we silence the voices of moderate politicians. We cannot leave the speaker's podium in Colorado Springs to warlords; we must open it to peacemakers.

We applaud Colorado College for inviting Dr. Ashrawi to our community and hope that important truths will be told in our hearing.

-- James W. White, Senior Minister of the Church

Signed by more than 100 members of the congregation

Spreading the word

Thanks for a thought-provoking, truthful article ["One Year Later," Sept. 5]. My sentiments, exactly. I'm forwarding it to everyone I know.

-- K. Lewellyn

Tucson, Ariz.

The other foot

The "take out Saddam at all costs" obsession of our president is ill advised, will serve up nothing but needless death and destruction, and will wreak havoc across the globe. America invading another country to eliminate its rightful, if distasteful, leadership is not what this country is about.

The war to oust Saddam from Kuwait was a well-thought, reasoned and world-supported endeavor. An invasion of Iraq to oust Saddam from his presidency is entirely different. There is no justification that can be made for this. Iraq has "weapons of mass destruction." So does the U.S. Saddam bombs his people. We bomb Colombian farmers with poisons (who are producing a crop we are demanding).

Many across the globe do not like our leadership. Perhaps an invasion of the United States to remove Bush from power is justified? Americans might feel differently about war if bombs were dropping on our heads, instead of watching a video-game war complete with graphics, instant replay, and theme music.

-- Dan Wiencek

Colorado Springs

Come to Jesus

Landscaping consortiums and golf course advocates will promote their short-term watering philosophies until the last drop is used up.

If the drought continues at this rate over the next few years, Colorado Springs will be in serious trouble. The citizens won't have water to drink.

Then let the bluegrass advocates perform a miracle and turn their whine into water.

-- Dani Greer

Colorado Springs

Missing the point

Why is it people can't seem to realize that the drought is affecting the entire southwestern region, not just their little corner called Colorado Springs?

Even if one area purchases more water than they need, it doesn't change the circumstances in the least. The Broadmoor should not be wasting water on golf courses; people in Widefield should be conserving water. Water that is not being used should be left in the reservoir and not pumped out.

Nothing changes the fact that we are not receiving enough rain in this region. The Arkansas River is at its lowest level in years. Pueblo Reservoir and John Martin Reservoir levels are dropping lower every day. Everyone is so busy worrying about the legalities of who gets what allotment of water and who pays for what that they miss the entire point.

We are running out of water and everyone needs to conserve it! No exceptions!

-- Joy Abernathey

Colorado Springs

Need the info

I think the majority of the Colorado Springs administration is really two-faced. I believe the current drought is real but despite what we hear about how the city is saving water, there is no mention about the new water taps that have been issued since we've gone on water restrictions.

I heard that recently one of the contractors was issued 265 new water taps -- where is that water coming from? I would like to see information published [for the] public that shows how many new water taps have been issued since we went on water restrictions and who got these taps. I think this should be updated on a weekly basis so that more people are aware of what's going on in this sector.

-- Alan Johnson

Colorado Springs

Manage what life gives us

Regarding Steve Blackwell's comments on handicapped parking stickers [Letters, Aug. 22]: Please don't judge strangers who have issues you may know nothing about.

We've met, Steve, although you probably don't remember. I look like the poster person for good health. Multiple Sclerosis is like that. Fortunate to have a mild case, I can even still ride my bike -- four miles on the bike path at a high enough altitude that if I go early enough the heat doesn't defeat me. My days of 500 miles across Iowa are in a scrapbook, but when I ride four miles and feel the wind in my hair, it is wonderful.

I know that on a rough day it could be hard to find the strength to lift the bike onto the rack, but that after 10 minutes rest in my car, I'm back.

Imagine how angry your brother's friend would be to see my bike on my car parked at the grocery store if I have to make that stop on the way home from my ride. The friend wouldn't realize that a grocery cart can work about as well as a walker and be undetected by the average fellow shopper.

Diagnosed in 1993, I resisted getting a sticker for my car. Most of the time I felt fine. It was years before I even shared with co-workers that I had MS. Then there was an episode and I had to explain. Two weeks later there was no sign of a problem. That is relapsing-remitting. After all, I am fortunate and I do realize that.

We all manage the things life gives us, especially as we get older. If someone were to mention that I have MS, you would probably be surprised.

Just as I know most people would never guess I have a chronic disease, I know there are people who are managing their lives the best they can, and live with things that I might never be able to handle.

Don't be quick to judge; your energy surely could be better spent.

-- Name withheld by request

Woodland Park


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