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A family's request

Colorado's primary political season is fully upon us, and during such times many of us have grown accustomed to candidates pulling out all the stops. Historically, sound political rhetoric was an important distinguisher between candidates. Spirited back-and-forth debates were aimed at validly undressing the opposing candidate, increasing one's own position in this intellectual game of chess.

Unfortunately, one of this year's local candidates has demonstrated a stunning ignorance of the "rules" of this game.

The political rhetoric by Mr. Lamborn in Colorado's 5th District race has devolved to a new low. He has already been caught by the Denver Post "leaning deceptive" as a result of spewing flat-out lies, innuendos and half-truths.

While these lies are upsetting for Blaha family members to hear and observe, they were for the most part expected. We were advised beforehand that there might be such vitriol, especially considering Mr. Lamborn's previous political campaigns.

We were not, however, prepared to hear Mr. Lamborn make mention of Mr. Blaha's children in his political rhetoric. We are not political figures. We are simply the proud sons and daughters of a man who has the guts to stand up and make a difference in today's broken political system, due in large part to career politicians like the one our father seeks to replace.

Frankly, at this point, we feel sorry for Mr. Lamborn, as he appears to have grown quite desperate and confused. At this time, however, we only ask that he refrain from mentioning members of the Blaha family in his nonsensical political posturing.

— Robert Blaha's children:

Bo, Rachel, Claire, Kathryn, Lydia, Zac and Ben

Colorado Springs

Stop wasting time

I must reprimand all of you politicians for trying to move your campaign forward by putting your opponent down — this is not the time to do this. It is not a new tactic and we are not shocked, just annoyed. I do not want to hear what you have to say about Doug Lamborn, Mitt Romney or Obama.

Our society has always deemed that disrespectful and unconscionable. Case in point: Robert Blaha. He started out running a clean, informative campaign, but once Doug Lamborn started picking him apart, he became re-active instead of pro-active. What a shame. His campaign went from "this is who I am" to "this is who I am not." Not meaning to single out Blaha, it also goes for Obama and Romney.

Come on politicians, don't you know that the voters are fed up with the smear? This does not impress us. Remember the advice your mother gave you? "Do not care so much about what other people are saying about you." "Know who you are and go on about your life." You are wasting so much precious time (yours and mine) on other politicians that you never get your message out.

Whether I vote for you or not, I would like to hear all your efforts before I make an effort to vote for you. Save some of those negative issues for the debates.

— Marie Mueller

Colorado Springs

Change course

J.D. Shaffer ("No need to stay," Letters, May 9) could be the new head of Mayor Bach's economic recovery team.

They could create Colorado Springs' own version of TSA at east and west U.S. Highway 24 and north and south I-25. They could also have spot roadside checks similar to DUI checkpoints at other roads coming into the city. Look at the jobs this would create and how secure our town would be.

Can't be too wary of these sneaky varmints who will not take the Colorado Springs oath of allegiance. Repeat after me: "We are so right wing, we will not even think of eating the left side of a chicken."

If we do not curtail the number of misfits who are moving here we are apt to elect a minority president sometime in the future! Let's get that thought train back on the straight and narrow. Classes could be provided to teach how to think in our fair city.

— Dave Joss


No improvement

It is my understanding that the Memorial Hospital board is made up of volunteers. How can volunteers be fired for sticking to a commitment that they arrived at jointly, in keeping with the level of expertise and experience of a CEO that is the norm all across the country?

Seems that with present-day budget concerns, a panic reaction has led us down a very slippery slope.

The new appointees seem to be mostly from big business backgrounds. What do they know that the former board did not? Could it be favoritism, in our democratic republic?

— J.R. Sowell

Colorado Springs



Mayor Bach, acting on the recommendation of his so-called Transit Solutions team, has made up his mind to cut the Front Range Express (FREX) without considering the people it helps or the good it does for our communities. This "team" has said that FREX is not necessary, and that riding it is a choice, not a necessity. I heartily disagree.

Most regular riders, myself included, can't choose where we work, but we do choose to stay in the Springs/Monument area to raise our families, buy our groceries, clothes, cars and homes. We also pay our share of taxes to the municipalities and special districts where we reside. Without FREX, many of us would have to move.

One argument the transit team makes is the lack of ridership and the costs to the city of supporting the service, but FREX data (springsgov.com/units/transit/TST%20-%20FREX%20Summary.pdf) seem to belie the figures the mayor and his committee are relying on.

When farebox revenues support nearly 50 percent of operating costs, FREX is a success by any measure. (The Springs fixed-route service only gives a 25 percent farebox-to-cost return.)

Another consideration is the need for reliable public transit along the Springs-Castle Rock-Denver corridor. There's no train service, commercial buses are unreliable and expensive, and vanpools have logistical problems. FREX is the only viable system for intercity commuters until regional public transit makes great strides, which seems improbable at this time. There is also the environmental value of keeping up to 400 extra private vehicles off the roads daily.

We need to ask Mayor Bach what his real motivation is for stopping FREX service, and ask Council why they haven't studied this themselves or asked for advice from the Pikes Peak Regional Transportation Authority or for data directly from FREX.

I urge the public to go to savefrex.org or to change.org/petitions/save-frex to support this critical service.

— Jon Rogers

Colorado Springs

Writing critique

Was just reading Roger Weed's "Personal challenge" letter of May 2, and I noted that he wondered how a couple articles got published, questioning if anyone had read them for compatibility.

Well, I wondered myself if anyone had edited his letter prior to publication, but then I remembered the Indy is a fair-minded manifesto for all low-info folks.

Mr. Weed was perplexed that one of the articles said: "Anything and everything worth accomplishing demands an investment." Makes sense to me, but then he discovers the Indy is free and tries to correlate the Indy being free with no investment. Makes no sense to me. I should menton the quotes in his letter made for the best reading.

He then jumps all over Ralph Routon about this and that, and that's about all I got from his little blurp about the Ralphster.

The rest of his letter is a hodgepodge of whining, witless attempts at humor, and scolding. After reading it, I do know the Indy accepts the tired and huddled masses who yearn to write free.

I hope I haven't offended Mr. Weed, for I'm sure he wrote his best and it pleases me that the Indy thought so too.

— Phil Kenny

Colorado Springs

Who's at fault?

Interesting pattern:

• Spending $23,000 a day to bring back the legislators because one good man wants to defend the rights of those he swore to protect — against those who also swore to protect the rights of all, then did not.

• County Commissioner Sallie Clark gets caught in a firestorm she created by refusing to honor the requests of the public for a vote on an issue a large number felt could have been confusing. When the heat got too hot and her pouting bout was over she actually, in a public meeting, asked her county attorney to research a way the vote could be cancelled! Cancel a vote of the people? Why do we have laws?

• El Paso County Clerk & Recorder Wayne Williams attempts to cancel a part of the election process he feels is "silly" and has to be cut off by the Secretary of State and the court.

Who are the "silly" ones here? Them? Or us for keeping them in office?

— Rick Wehner

Colorado Springs

Bolshevik copycat

The statement by Gov. Romney claiming credit for the successful revival of the U.S. automobile industry reminded me of a quote by Winston Churchill when he said, "the Bolsheviks have discovered that truth does not matter so long as there is reiteration. They have no difficulty whatever in countering a fact by a lie, which, if repeated often enough and loudly enough, becomes accepted by the people."

How ironic that Gov. Romney, Karl Rove, Ed Gillespie and Rush Limbaugh, among others, have taken a play out of the Bolsheviks' playbook; after they spent the better part of a century decrying, condemning, vilifying and using them as a rallying point for freedom, liberty, independence and truth.

Indeed, politics do make strange bedfellows!

— James M. Hesser

Colorado Springs

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Positive step

President Obama did the right thing by speaking out in support of marriage equality, stating the Golden Rule as the guideline for any decisions that affect how human beings treat each other. This was a courageous move for the president to make, and a compassionate one for our country.

Freedom and equality necessitate constant diligence to fight for the ideals on which America was founded. And when we make exceptions for any group while seeking equality, we have failed to achieve it. This doesn't mean that addressing inequalities is a rejection of other groups, as some would have us believe in order to support their ideologies. It means that fighting for equality does not require clarification. When we achieve it, it applies to all.

Kudos to you, Mr. President.

— Sharlene White

Oceanside, Calif.

Obesity epidemic

The number of Americans considered obese is expected to rise from the current 34 percent to 42 percent by the year 2030, according to a study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine and discussed at last week's Weight of the Nation conference in Washington, D.C. Diabetes, kidney failure, heart disease and other obesity-related ailments account for countless premature deaths and as much as 18 percent of the $2.6 trillion national cost of medical care. (tinyurl.com/wapo-obese)

The leading causes of obesity are consumption of fat-laden meat and dairy products and lack of exercise. This is particularly critical during childhood years, when lifestyle habits become lifelong addictions.

A five-year Oxford University study of 22,000 people, published in the International Journal of Obesity in 2006, found that those on a vegetarian or vegan diet gained the least weight. A review of 87 studies in Nutrition Reviews concluded that a vegetarian diet is highly effective for weight loss.

The time has come to replace meat and dairy products in our diet with wholesome grains, vegetables and fruits and to undertake a regular exercise program. Parents should insist on healthy school lunch choices and set a good example at their own dinner table.

— Claus Singer

Colorado Springs

The truth hurts

To Mitt Romney: Perhaps you have forgotten the incident of gay-bashing in which you took a leadership role. However, I can assure you that your victim never did.

— Gina Douglas

Colorado Springs

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