Our letters section and your opportunity to weigh in and be heard. Send us your thoughts and profundities. You can contact us here.


Dear editors:

So, Dave Stephenson has found a new forum for his opinions (“Soapbox” 02/06/03). Readers of the Fort Lewis College Independent may have noticed his absence; some might even have mourned it. Either way, it seems Dave remains committed to his view that all ills visited upon us are courtesy of a female cabal.

His claims of domination of a considerable portion of this country’s society by feminists – of whatever stripe – are questionable on their face and unsupportable, I contend, by the facts. Dave’s other arguments are less convincing still, and his recommendation to Beth Christie about the suitability for her children of any particular restaurant is gratuitous, to put it kindly.

“Let the games begin,” Dave? Games have rules that we abide by. There’s also an expectation of fair play and good sportsmanship. Above all, they are supposed to be fun. Take care; you might find that the game’s locked.

– Sincerely,

Chap Myers, Durango

Editor’s note: We regret to inform fans of Dave Stephenson that he has been barred from further participation in the Telegraph’s letters section after advising a member of the editorial staff to “grow a pair of balls.” Mr. Stephenson will just have to go back to playing with himself.

All-American jugs

To the editors:

In response to Beth Christie’s letter, I frequent Three Rivers Brewery at least two times a week with my husband, daughters and granddaughter. This establishment, in my opinion, is a respectable place, and it is family orientated. The owners and employees are always gracious and asking if the food is all right or if there is any thing they can get you. I feel very comfortable taking my family there. Ms. Christie was offended by a sticker that was placed on her tip tray, which was not a sticker for Three Rivers but a sticker to their new 21 bar to be open soon. Her opinion was that it offended her, and she was concerned about the juvenile customers.

She has every right to voice her opinion, as I do. Making the statement “Riding the high hard one” is like the pot calling the kettle black, because that statement is more offensive that the sticker itself. Besides, only the lonely would truly understand the meaning of this phrase. She drove home approximately 50 miles one way and wrote the letter with TLC and concern.

When I read the letter, I thought how negative this woman is and how much time and energy she must have on her hands to be writing about a sign in Durango and a sticker in Farmington. But in turn she did do something positive. She gave these two businesses free

advertisements and struck the curiosity of the public to see what this is all about.

So this in turn will up the sales. When the owners “must be on vacation in the Bahamas” and return from their vacation, they should graciously say “Thank You!” instead of apologizing. Ms. Christie you are entitled to your opinion as am I. Neither is right nor wrong, but that’s our freedom of being in America we have a right to make choices. God I love this country!

– Thank You,

Mitzi Thompson

In praise of wild women

Dear editors:

It took me some time to determine whether or not Dave Stephenson’s letter (“Another Look at Jugs”) even deserved a response. Especially since a quick search on the Internet revealed that Mr. Peterson is not new to anti-feminist rhetoric. After some deliberation however, I decided to speak my piece.

The very fact that there are opinions like Mr. Stephenson’s surfacing means that the women’s movement is working. Women’s issues are taking center stage, and they will never be suppressed again. You have to kick the hornets’ nest to get things done now and then, and apparently it is working. For us fellas, it is time to get on board or get left behind.

Mr. Stephenson seems to think women are “hypersensitive” when they object to seeing a large-breasted brunette on a beer coaster. Did he say the same when the Fort Lewis College “Raider” mascot was deemed offensive to Native Americans? It is just a guy on a horse, right? How would Mr. Stephenson react if the same beer coasters were adorned with a well hung, nude man? Men are not hypersensitive because everything in our society up until now was controlled by and designed for them.

I would say to the educated, independent and refreshing women who make this town such a great place to live, “Thank God for wild women.” Your progressive, caring and intelligent ideas are inspirational and helpful to us all. Archaic, fear-based pontifications such as Mr. Stephenson’s are merely the last, lonely grunts of a dying animal. The old guard is changing, and by winning one small victory at a time when women are getting the respect they deserve. It’s about time.

– Andrew Wracher, Durango, via e-mail

Say no to golf growth

To the editors:

It is glaringly obvious to almost everyone except the developers and Planning Commission that any proposal of a new golf course and new housing development should be rejected. For one, the Animas Valley has been ruined enough not to mention the elk habitat. For two, the water is not available. Denver is actually closing golf courses for lack of water. What are these developers thinking? The fact is, Durango is in a bad way unless the area receives a ton of moisture. And even if it does, can “planners” just not leave well enough alone? It is possible to say “no” to growth. Say “no,” say “no,” say “no.”

– Debbie Williams, Durango

Bring down the Toh-Atin Indian

To The Citizens of Durango,

When I first moved to Durango a couple of years ago, I could not help but notice a certain sign located downtown. Since this sign now appears on the cover of the Snowdown schedule of events (surely in jest) the question must be asked: What gives with the Native American caricature located at the Toh-Atin gallery on W. Ninth Street? If that sign does not portray an old-time stereotype of Native Americans, what does? If the Toh-Atin gallery depicts itself as a place of class for Native American works of art, that sign makes the place out to be classless!

I know around the country there have been movements to change team names like the Washington Redskins or the mascot of the Cleveland Indians, both deemed offensive and rightly so. So how can Durango put up with a sign that promulgates the continuing image of an old Hollywood stereotype?

Has anyone else noticed? Does anyone around here find it offensive? Maybe it is time for the owners of Toh-Atin to do the right thing and take that sign down. I hope so.

– Sincerely,Shelly Perlmutter

A walk with Johnny

To the editors,

I thought your package story and photos on that man named Johnny, or the Sheriff, was a wonderful idea. This man is Durango and it was very appropriate to tell his story amongst the pages of what is now considered Durango’s independent local line.

I’ve lived here for more than seven years and have always seen his happy face, his waving arms, his constantly chattering mouth walking the streets of town. And always, I’ve wondered who this man was.

Thanks for solving my mystery! He sounds wonderful, and it was a great idea to run a story about a day in the life of such an interesting and friendly character. I certainly wish I could be as carefree as Johnny. We can all learn from people like him.

Thanks for profiling him.

– Shirena Trujillo Long, Durango,

via e-mail

Stop the cigarette twirly dancers

Dear editors,

I went to see The Gourds last weekend and had a very enjoyable time. Most of the folks at Storyville were well behaved and respectful of each other, despite the crowded environment. However, there was a young lady who enjoyed both smoking a cigarette and twirly dancing, and she was doing them simultaneously. Her cigarette spinning round and round put everyone in the immediate vicinity at considerable risk. I know there are many responsible hippie smokers who do not try to combine the pleasures of smoking and twirly dancing. Please do not twirly dance while smoking a cigarette.

– Erik Jones, concerned Durango citizen

Box car blues: An old Durango & Silverton Railroad car sits idle along Narrow Gauge Avenue in downtown Durango on Monday. /Photo by Todd





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