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

In search of health care

Dear Editors,

I must weigh in also, as several have done so eloquently in the past week, about the proposal to withdraw funding from the Mercy Health Services Clinic. Yes, it was to be an interim help for the thousands who lost access to medical care when Valley Wide abruptly departed. However the situation calling for an “interim” solution has not been resolved at all. The need continues to be as great. I heartily agree with those who are pointing out that, given a situation as grave as our nationwide fiscal crisis and declining revenues for the City, priorities in the City budget must be reviewed and realigned. I too love that Durango is pro-youth and pro-sports, and I love the Animas River Trail. However, we must achieve a balance that is fair not only to seniors with Medicare, but the hundreds more who cannot afford insurance policies nor doctor visits. It is so very important to have wide-based access to care, in order for people to be pro-active in their own health care, thus avoiding costly visits to the emergency room. Basic medical care is actually a cost-saving measure in the long run. $50,000 is better than nothing, but please restore the City’s full contribution to the Mercy Health Services Clinic.

– Caye D. Geer, Durango


Exceeding capacity

Dear Editors,

Re: Twin Buttes and development in general. At this time in human history it is ridiculous to talk of “sustainable growth.” We humans have long since exceeded the capacity of the Earth to support our numbers in the long term.

– I.G. Stone, Durango


Collision course

Dear Editors,

While walking from Bayfield to Gem Village, I see many wildlife dead on the side of the road. On one such walk, there lay a female deer that had just recently been hit. She was still bubbling from her mouth. Two days ago, I got word that my boss/sister hit a deer on her way home from work. And when I arrived home, one of my housemates said her friend hit two deer that same day. Last night, on the way home from Durango, there was another deer that had been hit that day, and not far from that one were two SUVs that had pulled over to the side of the road to look for the deer they had just hit. The person driving the car I was in was paying so much attention to what was going with them and talking to his mate about it, that he didn’t see the buck cross in front of him. He came a whole 6 inches from hitting him.

On the way to work another morning, I saw a buck running for the fields with a dislocated jaw after being hit by a car. How will he eat? I hear people say things like “a deer hit me last night” or “it helps keep the deer population down.”

I would like to remind everyone that the deer were here first. Please be more mindful of them. They are beautiful, peaceful animals that deserve more respect than to be hit by our vehicles and then left on the side of the road dead, injured or unable to care for themselves so they die in agony. Would you do this to your brothers and sisters? Let’s all remember that the four-leggeds are brothers and sisters to the two-leggeds (humans), and we should honor them as such.

When they die by our hand they should be thanked for their giveaway and honored for giving their bodies to us for food and clothing, not just tossed to the side and dismissed. They deserve so much more than that.

Please remind others as well that our four-legged friends/family need our help!!!! By helping them, we help ourselves!!!!

– Love and light, Moriah Sleeth, Bayfield


A flight of fancy

Dear Editors:

Doug Quinones’ letter “Join the resistance” is a great example of flight of fancy. Am I feeling betrayed by Obama? The man hasn’t even started the job yet. How could he betray us when he hasn’t done anything? As for Ron Paul and Cynthia McKinney, I’ve never heard of them. I seriously doubt that their world view accounts for the plurality that exists in the United States. Mr. Quinones is whining about the play before the first curtain has risen.

– Merry Christmas, Charles Roach, via e-mail


Gathering Kindling

I bend to gather twigs.

I cradle them in my left arm,

While sensing a coolness in the air.

As I meander under the shadows,

I am careful not to disturb

The wood ants and their tiny metropolises which are

Hidden under the larger broken branches,

Embedded in the softer loam.

I have come to know these trees.

I have come to know their unique personalities.

Each sings

Its peculiar song

Beneath this autumn blue.

In ancient times,

Someone theorized that people turned into trees

When they died. It could be true.  

I give these friends,  

These cedars, piñons and oaks each a name,

Like “Lefty,” “Toughy,” and “Wilbur.”

Now in my greyer years

During each gathering ritual,

I have come to quietly realize

That my real home is under these

Wondrous and arching limbs,

Which patiently grace me with a deeper and abiding     warmth.  

– Burt Baldwin, Ignacio 


Points of view

Dear Eds,

As a progressive liberal with a mission to create cartoons that make people think, Shan Wells missed the mark in last week’s tirade against religion. In his little world, everything is fine as long as you see his point of view.

While the Mormon church makes no bones about the fact that they supported the California Prop 8 ban against gay marriage, Mr. Wells conveniently glosses over the fact that over 75 percent of blacks in California that voted for Obama also voted to support Prop 8. Pundits on both sides of the political spectrum credit the large number of blacks and Hispanics that voted for Prop 8 as a major factor it the passage of the amendment.

As with most bleeding-heart progressive liberals, Mr. Wells is selective in his views of what constitutes tolerance.

– Dennis Pierce, via e-mail


The Soul of a Horse

To the Durango Telegraph Editors:

One of the many things I appreciate about this valley is the vast areas of open land and green pastures. More often than not, there are horses on these properties running about or just switching their tails in the afternoon sun. Such scenes bring a great deal of joy and gratitude, for there are not many areas left in this country where horses have large tracts of land to run and chase the wind if they so desire.

With so many horse owners in the Four Corners area, I thought I would pass on a recommendation for a book I read just recently called The Soul of a Horse by Joe Camp. It has truly changed my understanding of the human relationship with the horse.  I hope all of you who own horses or who have an interest in horses will read this book. It is a fast read and well worth your time.   

– Sincerely, Brynn Marie, Durango


Protect a wise investment

Dear Editors,

As Americans nationwide and here in Durango watch financial infrastructures change and states make hard choices about spending, we’re forced to consider investments with the greatest return.

Promoting tourism is a great investment for Colorado. Tourism brings billions of dollars into the state each year including a record $9.8 billion in spending by overnight visitors in 2007.

Since 2000, the Colorado Tourism Office has promoted the state through national and international marketing. Today, industries and individuals around the state and in Durango benefit directly and indirectly from tourism. In 2007, tax revenue generated from tourism-related activities generated $763 million – equating to $157 in tax revenue for every Coloradan or more than $407 per average household. The tourism industry also is one of the largest employers in the state, providing more than 200,000 jobs for Coloradans.

Even in uncertain times, one thing is clear: Promoting tourism is a smart investment for Colorado.

– Bud Reynolds, via e-mail


A shameful stain

Dear Editors,

January of 2009 marks the seventh anniversary of the arrival of the first prisoners at the Guantánamo detention center. This prison is a shameful stain on America’s reputation throughout the world. Its existence also undermines our country’s commitment to the rule of law.

Detainees have been held in prison indefinitely, for years in most cases, without being charged with a crime.

The president has been granted the power to declare who is an “enemy combatant,” decide who should be held without access to a legal process, and to define what is considered torture and abuse.

Criticism of Guantánamo is widespread among public officials and foreign allies alike. Former Secretary of State Colin Powell has declared that “we have shaken the belief the world had in America’s justice system by keeping a place like Guantánamo open and creating things like the Military Commission.” Yet it remains open.

I call on our government to close this facility immediately and to restore due process.

– Kevin Stewart, via e-mail



In this week's issue...

January 25, 2024
Bagging it

State plastic bag ban is in full effect, but enforcement varies

January 26, 2024
Paper chase

The Sneer is back – and no we’re not talking about Billy Idol’s comeback tour.

January 11, 2024
High and dry

New state climate report projects continued warming, declining streamflows