Little Grouse on the Prairie
High school is indeed hell, as Patricia Calhoun points out in her May 20 column, "Pomp and Circumstances." Although nothing excuses the shootings at Columbine, I am sure that that high school, like Kiowa High School and all other high schools, had no shortage of petty decisions by bureaucrats and petty behavior by students that could serve to unbalance emotionally unstable teenagers (which means most of them). I hope we learn from all these lessons, both little and large, to be kinder and think about our actions.

Janey Fulton

To the two mothers in Kiowa who have nothing better to do than squabble over which one of their daughters should be the "real" valedictorian: The young woman who was supposed to be valedictorian at Columbine High is dead. I wonder what her mother is doing these days.

Beth Skinner

The Hard Sell
Why did you title your May 13 special report "This State for Sale"? It has already been sold to the same people who have ruined so many other "nice" places. You mentioned something about the "big" money from Bill Owens's opponents, e.g., "big labor." Get real--there is no big labor. The "privatize everything" folks convinced the gullible of "big, bad labor, government, teachers' unions, etc.," and now there is nothing that serves as a barrier to the right wing.

Westword was so outraged about former governor Roy Romer's affair. Why did you make such a big deal about Romer's so-called lie about his private life instead of focusing on the lies that most politicians tell that truly have an adverse impact on the entire state? I wonder how you feel about the addition of your new mediocre governor and the morons in the Colorado Legislature to complement your pathetic U.S. senators. But I guess an elected official's private life is more important than having some intelligent politicians around.

Ironically, when I lived in Colorado, we felt so superior to the folks who lived in "evil" California. Now California seems to have learned from its mistakes; it has thrown its rascals out and is cleaning up its act. Poor, poor Colorado. So much promise, now a state in regression, bought and sold by the highest bidders: Coors, the gun lobby and land developers. I weep for you.

T.V. Helms
via the Internet

Westword is obviously an extremely liberal paper, which I generally don't have a problem with, but you're also obviously very one-sided in your thinking. In "This State for Sale," several comments about Governor Owens are quite ironic, because you couldn't have found a governor who was more special-interest-oriented than Romer, and he didn't have any loyalty to the people whatsoever.

The bottom line is this: We have a conservative governor now, and he doesn't spend the people's money--meaning mine, because I'm upper-middle-class and pay a shitload of taxes--and he doesn't waltz to the same tune as Romer, who would sell his ass to anybody for a nickel. It's not quite the same at all. Certainly all of the politicians have special-interest groups that back them--but nothing like Romer. And you never used to talk about Romer in a negative way. So that tells me something--you were obviously pro-Romer and extremely liberal. So what else is new?

Steve Bennett

Oil and gas are essential to today's modern lifestyle. It is impossible to live or work in the six-county metroplex without a car. RTD is very slow and untimely; RTD routes are a conspiracy to prevent the common use of mass transit.

I cannot blame Governor Owens for loving his car, his country, his living or his family. But I hate air pollution, and I firmly believe that Owens could be part of the solution, if we encourage him. The almighty American dollar is more to blame than Bill Owens. Materialism and power corrupt even babies, not to mention politicians.

Margaret Okagawa

Wild in the Streets
I enjoyed Gayle Worland's "The Wild Life," in the May 20 issue, very much. As a conservation ranger in Georgia, I see the same problems: budget cutbacks, political interference and court apathy. It would really be nice if other news-media outlets would take up the gauntlet on behalf of wildlife and the "Thin Green Line" that consists of all wildlife officers, both state and federal, who work as a team to protect these natural resources.

Terry Carpenter
via the Internet

As a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agent, I, too, feel that we are forgotten. We need the support of many to make some in this agency realize that the special agents who risk their lives daily need to be appreciated and funded properly. Thanks for your efforts.

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