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Opinion

  • 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?

  • Each of us has our own reasons for living in the Evergreen area. The beauty of mountain living, the solitude of being nestled in the pines and our close proximity to Denver are all appealing attributes.

    With my longevity in the community of close to 30 years, I’ve earned the honored title of “local.” As with most “locals” you know, I am very protective, loyal and adamant about preserving everything that is special about our community.

  • When Jefferson County voters  rejected Amendment 3A last November, it forced school officials to work in earnest on spending plans they’d begun discussing before the election. After implementing spending increases that are already planned, it has been estimated that $35 million will need to be found over the next three years.

  • In his terrific essay on “Politics and the English Language,” George Orwell observed that “(w)hen there is a gap between one’s real and one’s declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink.”

    Orwell spoke of a phenomenon that exists in our time as it did in his — the hijacking of language to conceal the truth behind political objectives.

  • By Hannah B. Hayes

    The issues around immigration are complex. There’s a melting pot of experiences that led most of us here. Every immigrant has a story — often compelling and heart-wrenching. The migration from “my country” to the promise of a better life is a journey into the unknown on an uncertain path through a maze of danger and bureaucracy.

  • In response to a letter from the Evergreen Park and Rec District board in the Nov. 5 Courier, we would like to clarify our position with regard to the tae kwon do classes in the district.

  • To kick off 2009, we put together a quiz based on citizen questions and some crime/quality-of-life problems we encounter regularly in Jeffco. We invite you to take the quiz and see if you know the best way to handle the following scenarios.

    Q: You want to teach your young child to stay away from adults who could harm him or her. What’s a good phrase to help them remember?

    a. “Trust no one”

    b. “Say no to strangers”

    c. “Check first before you go anywhere with anyone”

    ANSWER: C

  • The 2008 presidential election created four vacancies in the U.S. Senate: Barack Obama and Joe Biden left open seats in Illinois and Delaware; the new secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, opened up a spot in New York; and of course, Sen. Ken Salazar was nominated as secretary of the interior, paving the way for Gov. Bill Ritter to appoint Michael Bennet, former head of the Denver Public Schools.

  • Deteriorating bridges across the state, congestion that robs us of time, declining gas taxes because cars are more efficient, and an economy on the fritz. What’s a state to do? If Gov. Bill Ritter, state Sen. Dan Gibbs and state Rep. Joe Rice have their way, we’ll go faster.

  • I have been a businessman in Evergreen since 1962. Evergreen Drug Company was an important institution in the history of Evergreen. During 2005 I became frustrated because of the burdensome managed-care regulations, third-party prescriptions and shrinking profit margins and chose to close Evergreen Drug. The same situation happened to most independently owned drugstores, and consequently chain stores have taken over the prescription business.

  • By Kelly Weist

    Leftists all agree that one of the first things the president-elect needs to “change” is the situation at Guantanamo Bay. At least, that’s what they thought prior to the election.

  • By Hannah B. Hayes:

  • If great communities have great schools, there can’t be a much better place to live than Evergreen. All schools in Evergreen received excellent ratings on school report cards issued by the Colorado Department of Education.

    It marks the fourth time in the last five years that all of our neighborhood schools achieved the highest rating. Our local charter, Rocky Mountain Academy of Evergreen, rated excellent in both its elementary and middle school programs.

  • Several years ago, I heard former governor Dick Lamm say that the biggest policy challenge of the 21st century would be sustainability. At the time, I thought he was speaking primarily about environmental issues, but recent events suggest the word encompasses even more than that.

    Of course, environmental sustainability remains a significant issue. As third-world countries catch up to industrialized nations, the problems connected with resource consumption and pollution will continue to grow.  

  • As the 1992 presidential campaign honed in on voter priorities, political consultant James Carville decided to simplify the message for his candidate. He told Bill Clinton, “It’s the economy, stupid.”

    When the 67th Colorado General Assembly convenes this week, Carville’s message will be coming through loud and clear. Everyone’s agenda is the same. It doesn’t matter whether it is the executive branch or the legislative branch. It doesn’t matter whether they are Republicans or Democrats. It’s the economy, stupid.