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

Riverrocks Fresh run-off from a light snowfall flows over a collection of river rocks along the Colorado Trail on Sunday. /Photo by Todd Newcomer.


So much for liberation

Dear Editors:

The latest lie being shoved down the throat of the American public is that of “liberating” the Iraqi people and bringing democracy to Iraq.

Americans swallow this ludicrous idea because they understand virtually nothing about Iraq’s cultural composition. In addition to the potential Kurdish insurrection, the Shi’ites present a solid obstacle to liberty and democracy.

The Shi’ites comprise the majority of Iraq’s population, so they would naturally have the advantage in a democracy, gaining dominance in government. But the Shi’ites lean toward fundamentalism and are VERY anti-Western, which would pose a problem for U.S. “vital interests.” The Bush administration does NOT want a repressive fundamentalist anti-Western regime in Iraq, which means it must control the selection of candidates.

So much for democracy.

Furthermore, according to Shi’ites, the right to govern is hereditary. They are never loyal to any ruler unless he is one of the descendants of ‘Ali bin Abi Taalib.

Any governing body in Iraq will have to put down Shi’ite rebellions in the same way Saddam has for the last twenty years; by force. The Iraqi people will be no freer to oppose a U.S. installed regime than they were to oppose the regime of Saddam Hussein.

So much for liberty.

“Operation Iraqi Freedom” is a ridiculous piece of propaganda employed to win public approval for the war. The real purpose of this war is being concealed, because if Americans discover what their sons and daughters are actually killing and dying for, there will be unanimous public outrage.

-Sue Gray

Carbondale, CO

A philosophy of freedom

Dear Editors:

Abstract ideals that all of a sudden find themselves mixed in with political definitions usually undermine the full meaning of what they had intended to explain initially. For some people, their needs of having a separate, independent and unique angle as to what a definition to concepts such as freedom may mean to them can be an important personal matter. Concrete examples such as a family, historical events, places, comparisons, life in general, happiness, or many others can help explain it. Examples of freedom may abound, but these are only individual particulars of the concept that will always best represent their true ideals when left in the abstract. The concept of freedom is a metaphor for high ideals.

Jean Jacques Rousseau had said, “Man is born free and everywhere he is in chains.” When one feels free, one is free; when one is to be free all that needs to be done is “be,” awareness will promote the other to soon follow thereafter. This is a painless mental liberation of a person’s soul, without the use of a foreign invading force.

Ideologies as deep-seated as this should not be thrust upon some individuals expecting to be received as goodwill. On the contrary, I have found many definitions of political freedom not only to be less than adequate, but also quite shallow in the depth of the full understanding of what exactly needs to be defined. Would you let someone define what your definition of religion, or spirit is as only it can have a significant value to you?

It would be as unlikely for some people that value their morals to a high degree to let others do the same for the concept of freedom that an external element such as a government would understand in defining for each individual. If that would be the case, it would be time for a new government.

In such personal matters as these to be forced to see ideals as an accepted set of some kind of nationalistic pride or a doctrine is beyond my understanding. This concept of freedom runs deep, and therefore must be met when left on the terms best expressed to each person’s needs.

Freedom to think will always precede all other types, as being the primary source or fountainhead from which all other types of freedoms evolve. Without being aware of this starting point, all other types of the particular freedom are and will always be secondary. This is why the most refined type of freedom is the one that precedes all others, regardless of sacrifice. Thought precedes essence.

Patriotism can also be a bit ambiguous, and it too should require a unique reply, and should not have a cookie-cutter definition that looks to have people complying just because there is a war going on. Times like this re-defining certain words may make some people more patriotic; it does become a matter of subjective relevance. Historicity may well prove the importance of these times, and how much fruit world events may bear. Are these rebellious times, or have the people of this society lost their desire to insist that certain definitions be left up to the individual? Only time will tell. I support freedom that justifies the direct creation expressing our virtues as human beings, without the need of violently destroying any lives in the process.

-Ted Berlstein

Market value?

Dear Jen:

Your essay on house hunting was interesting. However, I have one question; when you sell your recently purchased condo will you price it at market value? If so, does that then make you greedy too?

-Dennis Pierce

War’s real winners

Dear Editors:

By instigating this war, the administration is creating a niche market for arms. The hatred we are nurturing around the world is so vast, it will produce an entire generation of people who despise this country so much that they will be willing to die in an attempt to bring us down. This in turn will create more “terrorist” enemies and thus increase the demand for more “defense” that we the public are financing.

The $75 billion price tag for the war this month equates to about $300 for every woman, man and child in America; rent or mortgage for most people. We are literally mortgaging our future; not to the bank but to the military industrial complex.

There is no chance we will win this war! The only winners will be the arms dealers, contractors, war consultants, oil companies and developing anti-terrorism industrial complex (aka Homeland Security). Profiteering will abound, but what share will we, the taxpayers, get?

Nothing but more debt and blood on our hands!

– Paul Iverson


Imagine Naomi Whitehead, left, and Erin Woolcott perform Saturday during Destination Imagination, a program aimed at fostering
student creativity, at Durango High School. /Photo by Todd Newcomer.





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