Letters: Jan. 5, 2023


Junie Joseph responds

On the first day of the new year, my resolution was tested.

As a public servant, my new year’s resolution is that we will work together to make Boulder the best and most positive community for our young people and all. However, my hope and desire for the new year was tested when a community member forwarded me an email from a member of the Boulder County Democratic Party’s candidate vacancy committee that showed a particular member rallying community members against my desire to finish my term on council. (Editor’s note: In November, Boulder City Council member Junie Joseph was elected to represent Colorado House District-10. She has decided to serve in both seats concurrently until her council term is up at the end of 2023. The Daily Camera’s editorial board published an op-ed on Dec. 25 expressing concern over Joseph holding both seats. Celeste Landry, along with 49 other signees, penned a letter to the editor of the Camera on Jan. 5 directly encouraging Joseph to resign her seat on counsil.)  

I have had prior experience with Ms. Celeste Landry; she was one of the contenders in the race for HD-10. After winning the vacancy committee, I reached out seeking her endorsement, she told me no, and said that I should be primaried instead. I am not sure why a member of the Boulder County Democratic Party vacancy committee is running a campaign against me even after the vacancy committee has voted and the general election is over? And on the first day of the new year. I have tried to be strong for my community members, but reading that email from Ms. Landry crushed me. 

I care deeply for all my community members and appreciated their voice. I reached out to a few members of the community and learned that Ms. Landry has been reaching out to those who voted for my opponent (including Republicans) in order to mount this campaign against me. Over 4,000 people voted for my opponent. But more than 30,000 people supported my campaign. It saddens me that she is willing to work with those who are anti-democratic in order to further her own end and undermine my work. 

I am trying my very best to refrain from categorizing and name calling as we have experienced over the last few years in our political sphere. Some Democrats have been characterized as “Dems In Name Only” — DINOs. But I am careful not to subscribe to those types of slogans because people are complicated, the Democratic Party is a big tent party, and whether a person is a progressive far left or center right, we welcome all. But when I see such behavior coming from a Democrat, I wonder if being a Democrat means anything at all or is ambition so much more powerful than the desire to see all of us working together. 

On this New Year’s Day, as I reflect on this email, Ms. Landry’s behavior is a bad example for children and the human spirit. Her current and past behaviors echo that when you lose against someone, as we have seen in Washington D.C., you don’t take your losses in stride and congratulate them, rather you mount a campaign against your perceived opponent and undermine them by attempting to rally others against them. As a community we looked over the last six years with horror when we think of our former president and the horrible example he sets for our youth. On this New Year’s Day, I wonder what is the difference between Ms. Landry’s behavior and our former president. In sum, despite her poorly timed email, I am still hopeful that many in the community subscribe to my desire to work together to make Boulder the best and most positive community for our young people and all.

Junie Joseph/Boulder City Council member and CO HD-10 rep.-elect

Pee-ew, CU!

CU’s Right Here, Right Now climate “summit” was so hypocritical:

1. CU has invested some $100 million of student money in fossil fuels, thus helping seal their climate fate and losing more and more of their money, as the costs of fossil fuels pile up. Go Fossil Free CU!

2. CU’s plan for the CU South property will pave over part of a large wetland carbon sink and prevent the real “500-year” flood protection urged by the late great Gilbert White, founder of CU’s Natural Hazards Center, one of six CU U.S. Medal of Science recipients ever, immortalized by the flood level obelisk just east of the Broadway bridge over Boulder Creek.

3. CU in 2020 fired climate scientist Detlev Helmig, who established the first continuous air monitoring here, revealing that oil and gas drilling, mostly in Weld County, is responsible for some 60% of the “severe” ozone problem on the Front Range. Continuous monitoring prevents industry from scheduling the release of toxins in between the usual occasional air samplings.

Similarly, in 2005, CU fired Adrienne Anderson, who taught how to investigate environmental crimes for 12 years. The Colorado American Association of University Professors noted the “documents obtained by CU students using the Colorado Open Records Act, finding voluminous evidence of polluters and (then-governor) Owens political appointees exerting their political muscle through implied threats of loss of funding should CU officials not cater to their desires to curb Ms. Anderson’s rights on the CU faculty.”

4. CU has accepted over $8 million from Saudi Arabia since 2018. For what? Research into how to propagandize highly educated people, like those who attended the climate “summit”? Or just good PR for a dictatorship that kidnapped, tortured, killed and dismembered American journalist Jamal Khashoggi and that has beheaded over 80 state enemies in a day?

CU? Pee-ew!

Evan Ravitz/Boulder

Another cultured meat letter

Believer Meats is breaking ground on a cultivated-meat facility in North Carolina, which the company says is the largest of its kind in the world. Cultivated meat is grown from livestock cells, without slaughter. It’s better for the environment, public health and animal welfare. Despite this and other progress from the private sector, more public funding is needed for cellular-agriculture research so cultivated meat can achieve price parity with slaughtered meat. By advancing this technology, we can reduce our greenhouse-gas emissions, pandemic risk, and the suffering we inflict on God’s creatures.

Jon Hochschartner/Connecticut

Email: letters@boulderweekly.com