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A new city flag

Heads up, Independent! Your recent cover story on the fallen soldiers of Fort Carson featured agents of foreign powers (Exxon, Bechtel, Halliburton) brainwashed and sometimes drugged to use deadly force on innocents.

Any day now, those innocents may also include American civilians here at home, should we dare to question Halliburton law and order. Too bad those soldiers aren't out delivering meals and fixing windows in American cities and towns where they belong. Too bad more of them didn't have the guts to refuse to serve in the wars of our king, also the agent of foreign powers, whose crocodile tears they now seem to crave in memory of those needless deaths. Ain't no taxpayers payin' for stained glass or pressed uniforms down on my ol' homestead in the name of misplaced gallantry.

Enclosed (as seen above) you will find my submission for new city flag or logo for Colorado Springs or any other military town. The slogan reads: Like Lemmings Unto War. You may pin it up on the wall of your choice. And please continue to print items about military people who have the courage to rise above the lemmings and speak out.

-- Slim Wolfe

Villa Grove

Fighting for our jobs

I'd like to bring up an organization that promotes the reduction or abolishment of imported foreign IT workers under special non-immigrant visa systems designed to fill job slots here in the United States during times of rapid job growth, something we have not seen for years.

This organization is named TORAW, or The Organization for the Rights of American Workers (their Web site is www.toraw.org).

It is bad enough that jobs head overseas, but it is a slap to our faces when foreign workers from India and other countries are actually imported, thus displacing American workers perfectly capable of doing the jobs or training into them.

I understand that businesses must compete and that the seeking of cheap labor is one way to compete by reducing costs. However, I also believe that we are all union people when it comes to this issue. Our union is called the United States of America, and we must work together for fairness in business competition. If India and other countries cannot create their own jobs, then they should be restricted from taking ours. One way to do this is to stop the importation of foreign workers.

The fact that Colorado Rep. Tom Tancredo is chairman of the 65-member Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus is also significant. Mr. Tancredo has expressed support for TORAW's goals. I urge all who have concern for these issues to join TORAW and express their views to the appropriate elected officials.

--Ray Kampa

Woodland Park

A rare genetic disorder

I'm writing to ask that you print this letter to help find men and boys who have this rare genetic disorder.

Does your son have XXYY syndrome?

The doctors said I was overreacting. The teachers said he was obstinate and noncompliant. I said there was something wrong, but nobody would listen and the medical bills were piling up.

Many families of children with disabilities can relate to this story. But how long should a family have to wait before they get answers and support? In our case, it was 10 years before a diagnosis of XXYY syndrome came. Oddly, it was a relief.

Parents and children should not have to suffer so long to receive a proper diagnosis and that is why I am writing this letter. XXYY syndrome occurs in one in 17,000 live male births, which means there are approximately 127 XXYY males in Colorado. My hope is to find them.

Since this syndrome is so rare, many doctors have not seen it and do not recognize the need to seek genetic testing. Instead, since XXYY males often have other difficulties, they may appear to have other conditions such as autism, Tourette's syndrome, Prader-Willi syndrome, Pervasive Developmental Disorder, Sensory Integration Dysfunction, or Bipolar Disorder, to name a few.

A male with XXYY syndrome has shown delays in development, has speech and language issues, is probably very tall, has behavior outbursts and mood swings, learning difficulties, ADD, is experiencing unusual problems with his teeth and may have had seizures, bone problems, asthma, heart problems, sterility and hand tremors. These are a few characteristics of XXYY.

If you or your son fits this description, ask your doctor to refer you for genetic testing. If you know someone with XXYY, please pass this information on to him. For more information about XXYY or to join our international parent support group for XXYY, contact Renee at 303/766-2050 or by e-mail at amazonb@worldnet.att.net.

-- Renee Beauregard


The real world

As someone who was raised in a strictly Christian environment with Christian curriculum, I'd like to point out that many Christian "schools" focus far more attention on memorizing the Bible and learning about God than providing children with a real education.

Today I can recite massive amounts of scripture and explain large portions of the Bible but I was taught relatively little or nothing about real-world subjects, science being a major one.

And as Fred Kormos pointed out in a recent letter to the editor, I received no sex education. I also received no instruction on how to interact with the rest of the non-Christian world, a fact that left one of my siblings socially defunct. Since when is receiving a moral education more important than receiving a real one?

-- Dani Hiller

Colorado Springs

Hear her roar

I can no longer keep quiet. I am fed up with the condition of this male-dominated society! Equal rights my ass!

Let's consider turn about is fair play for a moment, shall we? Starting with marriage and divorce: A male is to assume the woman's last name (after all, the woman wears the pants in the family!) If that marriage fails, the male is to pay all the fees associated with returning to his "maiden" name -- driver's license or state ID, notary seal, utilities, P.O. boxes, bank accounts, just to name a few -- but wait! He will have to wait for an approval from a judge to use this name he was given at birth! Individuality is not allowed until a stranger signs a decree!

Planning to start a new business? Better use your married name and then pay lots of fees to change it later or just put your life on hold until the divorce is final. How nice it would be to drop him like a sack of potatoes and move on with no associated costs.

How about sex, pregnancy, birth control and abortion? It would be great not to worry about any unwanted pregnancy! No pills to take, no patch to apply, no precautions to think about.

Next: government and religion are separated. Who are they trying to kid? Sounds good though, doesn't it? How easy it is to turn the other cheek when religion interferes -- or even worse -- influences the government to pass ridiculous laws that prohibit a woman from her right to privacy or pursuit of the American dream ... all the while being tax exempt.

No, money is what it is all about: organized religion, politics, government, money, money, money -- give enough of it and you can dictate who does what, when, where, how, and it doesn't even matter why.

And this is just the beginning, a tiny little scratch on the surface of the repressive thumb that is Commercialized Corporate America today.

-- Rev. Audra J. Krug


Animal guardians

All I have to do is look out my window and already I see a dog that is forced to be penned outside 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

When I drive down the street, I see more, only they may not be penned up, but chained, only able to move in a circle. The lives of these dogs usually consist of boredom, neglect, waiting, and little attention or affection. What's more, Colorado is a state that gets extremely hot in the summer and extremely cold in the winter. In these two seasons, there is often no "in between.

While the guardians of these animals may enjoy the luxury of going inside and cooling off with the air conditioning in the summer or heating in the winter, their dogs cannot. They are forced to endure the weather and temperature conditions regardless. My question to these people is this: Why adopt or take in animals if all you are going to do is neglect them and force them to constantly stay outside?

My question to legislators is this: Why are those who have pets permitted to lock them outside -- especially when they tie or chain them? Dogs' bodies are not neutral to harsh weather conditions and cannot withstand extreme temperatures. When will people learn that animals are sentient beings too and must be given not only protection from the weather but also attention and companionship?

Thankfully, Denver has made progress in anti-chaining laws, but the rest of this state needs to address the issue (as does most of the United States).

Please do not chain your dog, and if you see animals chained or kept outside who looks like they need help, they probably do. Please do not hesitate to report anything that looks like abuse or neglect. You may be saving a life.

-- Jessica McDorman

Pueblo West

Rail system vital

Awhile back the Independent published a short piece about riding Colorado's rails. The article reported that in 1904, 54 passenger trains served Colorado Springs every day. I have this article posted in my kitchen.

I would like to see more coverage of public transportation in the Independent. Mostly, I would like to see the paper provide more information and support for a rail system to Denver, and throughout the Front Range. Colorado Springs must have a more metropolitan connection to Denver and the rest of the Front Range than is currently available, and that means a rail system.

While buses are considered unappealing, dirty, and unreliable by many and used only as a last resort, if at all, rail systems tend to be looked upon with higher regard, and utilized by people along a broader socioeconomic range.

The current idea about town that implementing a commuter bus to Denver would act as a feasibility study for a rail system is unrealistic. I have taken the Greyhound to Denver; the bus was on time, clean, full of passengers, and the passengers were polite and respectful to one another. Still, I have spoken to many people who say they would never take a bus to Denver, while many of these same people would readily take a train, if only it were available.

Conscientious cities provide and maintain good public transportation systems for their citizens. A good transportation system can help to reduce economic stratification and raise self-esteem, independence, and equality by providing a readily available, affordable and reliable means of transportation to those who cannot afford the costs of owning an automobile and to those who cannot drive.

Buses are fine for travel within Colorado Springs, but to connect us to other cities, a rail system is vital.

-- Dawn Badolato

Colorado Springs


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