Letters | Nablus: The time has come


Correction: The May 30 article “Boulder altogether” misspelled the name of Giulia Pecone.

Clarification: The May 30 article “Physical theater and the silent tragedy of the inanimate” stated that Naropa University’s MFA program used to emphasize physical theater. The program still emphasizes physical theater, but not the specific Lecoq method used by the actors in the story.

Nablus: The time has come

(Re: “Boulder’s sad siblings,” Danish Plan, May 30.) Sister cities are designed for people-to-people opportunities to learn about each other, to share expertise, and broaden and expand appreciation for the diversity, as well as similarity, our world holds. The Boulder Nablus Sister City Project has initiated projects intended to offer opportunities to citizens in both cities, including yoga, rock climbing, teacher training, student exchanges and art. Citizens of both cities have an opportunity to experience each other’s cultural offerings. In opinions and letters from those opposing the sister city relationship, I notice patterns I wish to address:

1. Taking sides — When the Boulder City Council approves a sister city relationship it is acknowledging that organizers of the project have complied with all relevant legalities governing sister cities. In this case, approval does not imply council’s opinion about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict anymore than approving Yateras, Cuba, implies council’s siding with the Cuban government.

2. Safety — Dozens of our supporters have traveled to Nablus, in some cases for months at a time, and have had the most wonderful experiences. Delegates have included teenagers, seniors and in between. Without exception, they enthusiastically encourage us all to visit Nablus.

3. Divisiveness — Our project has been underway for two years. We have conducted dozens of events in Boulder. In no event have we experienced upset in the community. There has been no disruption, tears, mobs, anger or other sign of discord. We fully expect this to continue following the June 10 hearing.

4. One-sided — In the spirit of sister cities, our intent is to share Palestinian culture and experience. Our role is not to make commentary on foreign policies or political viewpoints. Our role is to share a new culture with fellow citizens.

5. Human Rights — While it is true that Palestinians face considerable human rights abuses, some even from their own government, the people themselves share all the same values we hold dear — love of family, friends and neighbors and kindness to strangers. We intend to collaborate with nonprofits in Nablus that share our interest in supporting women’s and human rights and the well-being of all. Anyone who has spent time in the Occupied Territories will attest to the incredible hospitality bestowed upon visitors, regardless of religious identity. Palestinians are overwhelmingly kind, generous, good-natured and welcoming. Please join us in discovering this hidden treasure in the Middle East!

Essrea Cherin, Board Chair, Boulder-Nablus Sister City Project/Boulder

Psy-ops lawsuit?

(Re: “Failure to extend drilling moratorium sparks talk of recall election for commissioners,” DyerTimes, May 30.) Perhaps a nice whopping lawsuit against Range Resources Communications for their “psy ops” on the average American taxpayer would go a long way in keeping the ball in play, many years down the road. We might even win it, providing the decision hits when there’s a president to the left of Barack Obama.

Karen Janson/via Internet

You made the case quite superbly!

Kaye Fissinger/Longmont

Chavez was not recalled

(Re: “Kidnapped,” cover story, May 9.) Ms. Salinas declares that Hugo Chavez’ presidency was “illegal.”

According to a Carter Center Comprehensive Report: “On Aug. 15, 2004, Venezuelans came out in record numbers to participate in the first popularly mandated presidential recall referendum ever to be held. In doing so, the Venezuelan people voted not to recall President Chávez from office, with 59 percent of the population voting for Chávez and 41 percent voting against him. It is the opinion of The Carter Center that the Aug. 15 vote clearly expressed the will of the Venezuelan electorate.”

Deborah Hirsch/via Internet

Danish is fresh

Mr. Danish, I always enjoy your column in the Boulder Weekly. Your good sense and realistic views on a variety of issues are a breath of fresh air. The truth isn’t always comfortable. I’m sure you take flack for your views. Thank you.

Very few people are ever willing to admit that the particular emperor they admire may not be wearing any clothes. Thank you for pointing out the many emperors in our midst who routinely wear no clothes.

Jean Hoefling/via Internet

Move bypasses the people

The Town of Superior is poised to grow by 30 percent on Monday, June 10, potentially increasing taxes and decreasing our quality of living without a citizen vote. Elected officials will consider giving away up to $140 million in tax increment financing to a developer proposing to build 1,500 residences on 150 acres. This is public financing to the tune of almost $1 million per acre for a high-density residential development. This is not the town center envisioned for the last major parcel of land within the town’s boundaries as agreed upon in the town planning process. It is a high-density housing development with less than one full downtown block.

To entice town staff and board members, the developer is promising to build a new town hall, over twice the size of the current one, a new recreation center and a new community center with library space. Never mind that residents have voted down the funding for the construction and operation of a recreation center twice and a library once. On June 10, the board can approve these expenditures without going to the voters!

In addition to the increased taxes for operation of new public amenities and services, the proposed development is right at the gateway to the town and, by the way, Boulder County. Additional traffic in the area could impact our existing revenue-generating businesses while providing no new significant revenue.

Most alarming is that only 200 neighbors adjacent to this proposed development have been noticed about this monumental change. This is not due process. After years of planning and citizen input, the vision for our town center has been tossed. In just a matter of months, our elected representatives are being asked to move forward with something completely different and to spend an inordinate amount of public funding, which will burden the community far into the future.

Please check out the town website, www.superiorcolorado.gov, click on Agendas. Contact your elected officials and attend the June 10 meeting.

Karen Imbierowicz/Superior

Gardner harvests lies

This letter is in response to Rep. Cory Gardner’s recent guest opinion in The Denver Post, where he proclaims that we don’t need top-down federal regulations since Colorado’s regulations are already stringent enough to protect citizens from fracking.

Did you know, however, that this industry is exempt from current federal environmental regulations — and it’s called the “Halliburton loophole”? Gardner continues with the industry mantra that fracking has never caused a documented case of water contamination, yet our very own COGCC database has thousands of spill records that indicate groundwater and aquifer contamination.

Denying water contamination is an outright lie and one that you’ll hear over and over again, fashioned by the industry spin machine that writes the scripts for the unconventional oil and gas industry. Even our governor spouts the same propaganda. We are led to believe that state and federal regulations offer us protection, but according to the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, regulations only “regulate” the amount of harm done to us. Regulations don’t stop the industry from contaminating the air, nor do they stop the industry from destroying our most precious resource — water — which becomes so toxic after fracking that it must be transported away and injected deep into the earth.

However, this highly toxic brew doesn’t necessarily stay entombed, according to several scientists who believe most of our groundwater is at risk from leaking injection wells in the future. Remember the fracked well leak in Parachute that contaminated the town’s water supply? Did regulations protect the citizens? No! Their news story seems to have faded away. However, Parachute citizens continue to be victimized by a powerful industry that cares more about profits than your health, safety and well-being.

Energy independence? What price do we have to pay?

Teresa Foster/Longmont

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