Letters to the Editor

From the week of October 17, 2002

Raining on His Parade

A sorry development:I was disgusted by everything I read in Alan Prendergast's October 3 "Viva Las Villa!" Even if all of the developers at the Parade of Homes were on the up and up, the excessive displays -- too much living space, too much water, too much sprawl -- would be horrifying. But with his behavior, Paul Lambert is the living embodiment of why the word "developer" has become an abomination to the people who care about Colorado.

Janis Payne
Denver

Home wasn't built in a day:Paul Lambert does build great homes, but after you buy one, he's gone. He has hired Pro-Home as a go-between for him and the buyer. Their job is to tell the buyer where they're wrong and protect Lambert from any expenses of having to fix anything that is wrong -- and rightfully his to fix.

Pro-Home is a joke, and any builder who uses them is not a builder you want to do business with. It is one lie after another. Lambert wears you out so much that we just went and got everything fixed to avoid a year of arguing. He really doesn't care what the buyer is dissatisfied with. Our oven and microwave are inferior to the one in the model home, and he refuses to fix the problem, instead telling us that in the contract, it only states that he is furnishing a microwave and an oven. I think the buyer would assume the appliances in the model would be the same, but shame on me for being so stupid. We did business with a guy who doesn't really care. As the saying goes, "Buyer beware." Even if you get it in writing, Lambert will wear you out.

He has two homes next to us that have been on the market for over a year, and every time a potential buyer asks about our thoughts, guess what we tell them?

Don Gallegos
via the Internet

Siding special: I had to hold my sides while reading "Viva Las Villa!" What a great article!

J.B. Holston
via the Internet


Fights of Columbus

Wop! There it is:As a person of Italian ancestry, I found Stuart Steers's "The Watermelon King," in the October 10 issue, to be of great interest. It was not until I moved to Colorado from the Northeast a few years ago that I was aware of the Italian immigrant community that existed in Colorado at the turn of the last century. I also found "Columbus Day Forecast: Stormy," the article on the Columbus Day controversy, to be informative and evenhanded.

One slight quibble I had with that article was over the word "wop." The "without papers" origin is an urban myth. The word actually derives from the Naples dialect word guappo (pronounced "gwappo"), which roughly translates to "thug" or "bully." Most collegiate dictionaries have this etymology listed, as does the book Made in America: An Informal History of the English Language in the United States, by Bill Bryson. It is thought that non-Italians picked up this word in much the same way as other non-English words enter the language.

Again, I found both articles to be informative and interesting.

Paul Magnanti
Boulder

The white stuff:You know, regarding the Columbus Day controversy, it's actually pretty simple if you think about it. Italians, Irish, English, Germans, French or whoever all came to this land from somewhere else. Then, over a period of a couple hundred years, these foreign groups proceeded to take the land from its rightful inhabitants in a most dishonorable fashion. The result is called the United States of America. And it's all historical fact: Read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, by Dee Brown, to see the gory details for yourself.

"America" is built on the backs of many ancient nations, and the fact that we've been here a few hundred years doesn't change that reality. We rightfully "own" this land as much as the Dutch owned South Africa, or the British owned India, or the French owned Algeria. The Euros have a nasty habit of going around the world and assuming they have the right to take whatever they want. Not so. Thus, to celebrate Columbus, who the Indians see as the man who got the whole colonial ball rolling, is not only a slap in the face to their whole culture, but a tacit approval of the mentality that thinks it's okay for white guys to dominate whoever they want in the name of "civilization."

I think this way of thinking is deeply sick and should stop now.

Neil Haverstick
Lakewood

A slave to facts:I am not of Italian background and do not go to parades. Since it is so easy to point a finger and not take responsibility or share blame, Columbus is the scapegoat for slavery and disease in the New World.

The Aztec, Mayan, Toltec and Inca Indians all had slaves who were used to build lavish temples -- so slavery was already here. As Spain conquered Mexico and South America with ruthless and barbaric conquistadors like Cortez and Pizarro, thousands of Indians were killed and tortured to submit. I notice there is no mention of these conquistadors by the anti-Columbus Day factions.

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