Commentary

LETTERS

Page 3 of 4

Mrs. Leonard Peltier (belonging to the Mic-Mac Nation)
Denver

World Without End I read Alan Prendergast's piece "The End of the Affair" in the January 26 issue with some bemusement and not a little sorrow. I admit to bias: I have been a participant in the Conference on World Affairs on several occasions, and I nod to the comments of CWA detractors.

Howard Higman is indeed an unreconstructed Roosevelt liberal with a tyrannical bent. He is not a perfect human being and is certainly not contemporary. He is, however, intent upon challenging contemporary thinking--not with anachronistic dogma but via an event that is at once intellectual and challenging.

Dr. Higman and I do not share many common values. I am unapologetically conservative. He regards my species as a lower life form. Nevertheless, he has, for almost a half-century, not only incorporated representatives of my ilk into the CWA, but has rebuffed those who would make the conference more "relevant" by dismissing white males as mere oppressors.

If, as your story presumes, the CWA is soon to return to room temperature unless it is dominated by speakers more attuned to the prevailing ethos of the Boulder campus, it will be a tragedy. The concepts that reasonable people can disagree and that open forums are the best crucibles of thought will have been dealt a blow in Colorado.

Despite myself, and despite himself, I actually like Howard Higman. Boor though he may be, he has redeeming values, chief among them intellectual curiosity and tolerance. Some of the folks on the Boulder campus might consider this as they drive a stake through his heart.

Donald E. deKieffer
McLean, Virginia

Deputy Dogged
After reading Andrea Barnett's article "Frontier Injustice" in the February 2 issue, I felt I needed to respond. Prior to moving to Bailey last August, I worked for a large sheriff's department in southern Wisconsin. Although I have never met Sheriff Harrison, I have had the pleasure of meeting several of his deputies, including Sergeant Wegener and officers Marinaro and Swanson. I am very impressed by their appearance, attitude and air of professionalism. I have also seen firsthand their commitment and accessibility to this community.

It would seem that if there are problems with this department, they lie in a lack of community education and communication. If Sheriff Harrison has found viable ways of handling traffic and other nonviolent, victimless crimes without jailing people, more power to him. The average cost of maintaining a prisoner in county jails in the country is currently in excess of $160 per day. This does not include the cost of transport. Do you want to expand your tax base to cover this cost? I'd rather see my taxes go to an increase in the number of available officers and pay increases for our deputies. Their starting pay is extremely low, considering that every time they put on their uniform they are taking a risk.

In my former position, I had been threatened with semiautomatic weapons, attacked by kids who were "iced" or "dusted," and done CPR on a fourteen-year-old who went into cardiac arrest because he got too much Scotchgard in his Baggie when he was huffing. Some days I could almost feel my own heart breaking. Thanks to the DARE program and the accessibility of the fine officers in Park County, there is only limited involvement in these problems. If I could, I would place an "Atta boy" in every deputy's file.

I would say that if this community would write down its concerns and work with Sheriff Harrison or a liaison officer in a positive way, all these grievances could be resolved in a timely manner. I'm sure the sheriff would be happy to see this community and his department working together for the good of all concerned.

Linda Cox
Bailey

Better Ed Than Read
It really amazes me that you could print an entire issue of Westword on February 9 with no mention of the thirtieth anniversary of the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show. I guess the staff of Westword doesn't relate to their music, isn't over the age of 25 or is unable to comprehend the impact of the Beatles' music. Or this paper is written for people who read Teen Beat magazine.

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