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Opinion

  • Have you ever noticed how every year is the most amazing something in people’s memories? We’ve never had a drier winter. We’ve never had a hotter summer. That’s the best team we’ve ever had. I’ve never seen someone behave so badly. It’s usually not true. Time has a tendency of evening things out.

  • The article in the Canyon and Columbine couriers on April 22 may have given the impression that Jefferson County’s social services fund would leave the Head Start program short $650,000 and in violation of federal law.

  • At the state level, next year’s elections may shape up to be a referendum on government spending. And the most obvious change in direction could come in the governor’s race, where this issue has become a significant point of difference between Gov. Ritter and his critics.

  • Hannah Hayes

    I loved Kelly’s passionate plea for schools in her Columbine column. It’s ironic and predictably perfect that she would follow it up by advocating for a $300 million cut in higher education this week. Education is the single most important force in creating the kind of citizenry that America needs. An indication that you value schools would be a willingness to pay for them, as our state surely must.

  • For several years, a husband-and-wife team of “environmental artists” named Christo and Jeanne-Claude has proposed a massive project near Canon City titled “Over the River.”

  • By Hannah Hayes

    When I see parents waiting at a bus stop, I can remember the multitude of feelings I had when my child came home from school on the day of the Columbine shootings. The illusion of schools as safe havens was irrevocably shattered, as were so many lives. We are all Columbine.

  • Last week, my former colleagues in the state House passed a bill that would make it illegal to drive while talking on a cell phone, unless you’re using a hands-free device. By the looks of it, the ban will pass the Senate and be signed by the governor.

    At first glance, this seems a reasonable law. But it’s also totally redundant. In fact, under current law, a person who causes an accident while talking on a cell phone can be prosecuted under no fewer than four criminal statutes.

  • My term on the board of Great Outdoors Colorado expires today. It has been my honor and privilege to serve the people of Colorado’s 6th Congressional District on this important board since 2002.

  • As we enter the final stretch of this year’s session of the Colorado General Assembly (it must be concluded by May 6), we could be watching a sequel of “Jerry Maguire.” The operative phrase for the last month of the session is likely to be, “Show me the money!”

  • Opposition to Buchanan plan is not new

    Editor:

  • The other day, a friend told me he believes there’s a good chance our kids’ generation will face the same kind of Depression-era challenges our grandparents did. I don’t know whether that’s true. I sure hope not.

    If we had our way, of course, our kids would never face economic hardship. Difficult times lead to deferred dreams, missed opportunities, strained relationships and, in some cases, poverty. There’s nothing good about job losses and a stagnant market.  

  • When President Obama signed a $410 billion budget bill last week, the story might have been that Congress failed to pass its fiscal 2009 budget until almost half the fiscal year was over. Instead, the discussion was about earmarks.

    Earmark has become a dirty word. Candidates badmouthed earmarks in the last election, and John McCain said Obama should have vetoed the budget compromise because it contained them.

  • By Hannah Hayes

    What do you call 50,000 troops that will be left behind when the U.S. withdraws from Iraq? Re-missioned. How can you re-mission troops when they never had their original mission disclosed?

    But we’re jumping ahead on Iraq (while we’re falling behind at home). The reality today is that lives keep being lost, dollars continue to be spent, and troops still redeploy. It ain’t over, folks.

  • By Hannah Hayes

    The month of February was devoted to awareness of size and growth of the human population. Did you miss it? Creators of Global Population Speak Out (gpso.wordpress.com) wanted you to catch some of the qualified scientists that spoke publicly on reducing the 218,000-person net gain the planet experiences each day. Bringing new voices into the discussion of population issues is hoped to break down the taboo that exists on this topic.

  • We’ve been hearing every day for months now about the bad economy. Every night we go home to the news of more layoffs and cutbacks. We have all been impacted in some way. I know the Courier has. We have reduced staffing through attrition; as employees have resigned for different opportunities, we have restructured and asked our current employees to take on additional duties.

  • “For suddenly he was thinking … that if he was not a writer, he was not real, that he did not exist.”

    — Robert Penn Warren, in “Flood”

    As Coloradans listen to the echoes of a great voice gone suddenly silent, the words of Robert Penn Warren ring quietly and persistently for me in the void.

  • By Hannah Hayes

    The sixth anniversary of the war against Iraq is fast approaching. While there is a commitment to be out in May 2010, many are holding their collective breath. The extended stay of some troops is a given in most people’s minds. Iraqis and peaceniks will call it “not out.”

    But just in case the U.S. actually leaves Iraq, aren’t those who worship endless war in luck? We can redouble our efforts in Afghanistan. It’s less than 1,500 miles away.

  • Over the years, I’ve written columns in February about historical African-American figures with Colorado connections in observation of Black History Month. The stories I told were about people who had lived and died before I was born. As this February is the first Black History Month in which we have an African-American president, I’ve found myself thinking about the contemporary black history I’ve personally observed.

  • It’s not news that the state budget is in crisis. Loose, some would say reckless, government spending in the good times along with lower revenues have contributed to an approximately $600 million hole in the budget. While many services will be affected, higher education will take the biggest hit.

  • By Hannah Hayes

    There’s no doubt Jan. 20, 2009, ushered in a color change. Still, racial bigotry is a stubborn, often deeply entrenched characteristic. It’s been only three weeks since the inauguration, three months since the election, and a new president couldn’t possibly jar that manner of thinking loose in such a short time. Could he?