• In striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, the Supreme Court struck a blow for justice. In so doing, it validated a group of people, akin to what Brown vs. Topeka Board of Education in 1954 did for racial minorities and Roe vs. Wade did for women in 1973. Monumental. Earth-shaking. Colossal.

  • Keep your Uzis and other rapid-fire, mass-loaded weaponry. They’re mere toys. Deadly ones, to be sure, but in the symbolic sense, they’re laughable. Guns and an arsenal-level cache cannot prevent the kind of subtle, inch-by-inch erosion of Americans’, as Ben Franklin called them, “essential liberties.”

    The final surrender will come not in a form of an OK Corral-like showdown, but with a whimper from fear-filled, knee-knocking Americans begging their government to “protect” them. 

  • Vox

    Witwer column compares apples and oranges


    After reading Rob Witwer’s article titled “Now liberals have their own Nixon” in a recent Clear Creek Courant, I couldn’t help but feel sorry for the young fellow.

  • We’re doing something wrong, or perhaps it’s better to say we’re not doing something right. I’m not talking morally or ethically, but pragmatically, although one could present a strong case about the moral and ethical way in which we deal with those members of our society who have for one reason or another gone off the path.  

    Colorado is not being successful in keeping its parolees out of jail. The odds of one staying out of jail are worse than 50/50.  

  • Vox

    Designated shooting ranges needed


    I applaud Tim Mauck’s leadership in the exploration of establishing designated shooting ranges in Clear Creek County to foster safe, multi-use recreation on public lands. 

  • In his quiet work “Seven Thousand Ways to Listen,” Mark Nepo writes about percussionist Evelyn Glennie who is “profoundly deaf.”
    Nepo explains Glennie “lives the rhythms and feels the vibrations of the music, not instead of hearing but as the foundation of all hearing.”
    It is our insistence that feeling and hearing, like the other senses, are distinct functions and not integrated that causes our dissonance.

  • If you took a social studies class in the past 30 years, there’s no way you could avoid knowing chapter and verse about McCarthyism, J. Edgar Hoover’s abuses at the FBI, and President Nixon’s “enemies list.”
     The paranoid abuse of government power in the latter half of the last century led to a healthy skepticism of federal leadership, and justifiably so. While corruption itself is nothing new, it became more visible in the television era. Today we rightfully look at those events as low points in American history.

  •  I love ironies, especially double ones. Yes, yes, the IRS improperly red-flagged Tea Party applications for nonprofit status, but it is delicious to watch righties now screaming victimhood in the process, given — get this — their activities are not political but fall, instead, under the umbrella of the IRS definition of “social welfare.”

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) was first officially recognized in 1980. Up to 1.5 million American veterans who survived heavy combat situations have been diagnosed with PTSD.

    According to the Marquette Law Review, there is a clear correlation between PTSD and the risk of involvement in the criminal justice system, citing that since the Vietnam War, up to 25 percent of those diagnosed have since been charged with a criminal offense. 

  •  A few months ago, I had a dream. This is the kind of dream that comes to you in the middle of the night. It was the kind of dream that, when you wake from your slumber, you remember details and never forget. Surprisingly, you were in it. I couldn’t see all your faces, but many of you with whom I’ve worked so closely were there. 

  • Vox

     Which country am I describing?


    Its leader has the power to control every aspect of the country. Spying on its citizens is an art form carried out by thousands of drones. 

    Electronic eavesdropping on all communications via gigantic, highly advanced, multibillion-dollar intercept facilities happens every second of every day. In addition, its civilians are encouraged and trained to spy on each other. 

  •  Governance is far easier in states such as Utah, Idaho or Texas, where the minority is effectively ignored since it has no potential for upsetting the ruling culture. The zeitgeist — prevailing popular opinion — in those states is decidedly right wing/conservative, so any chance for a liberal voice to be heard is equivalent to the biblical lamentation of a “voice crying out in the wilderness.”

  • Associated Press records scandal. IRS scandal. ObamaCare scandal. Benghazi scandal. When it rains, it pours. Ask former Presidents Bill Clinton and Richard Nixon. Both presidents’ second terms were plagued with scandal. Mr. Clinton with a “little blue dress,” and Mr. Nixon with his famous line of “I am not a crook.”  

  • Vox

    Fracking has dangerous consequences


    Regarding Robert Houdeshell’s blaming the state legislature for not looking out for our well-being when it regulates the oil and gas industries, especially on the process of hydraulic fracturing:  

  • The difference between a man and a boy, the old saw goes, is the price of his toys. On one level, that’s fine, one supposes, such as when comparing skateboarding to NASCAR, but at what point is it expected for a male to assume the full responsibilities of adulthood and the consequences that come with it?

  •  Lucky for you, it’s mixed-bag time. Today, I feel like writing about myriad topics. I kind of like that word, “myriad,” as it means numberless, countless, infinite. It is a classical Greek word for the number 10,000. In modern English, the word refers to an unspecified large quantity. At least that’s what Wikipedia tells me. 

  •  Welcome to Colorado Liberty Day! It is May 8, and the Colorado legislature adjourns today. At a state level, you are safe until next January. That is when the liberty-busting Democrats will demagogue another hot social issue or crisis. That is the modus operandi of this slate of legislators. So, without getting too geeky on you, let’s recap what I’ve seen in the legislature this year.

  •  Memorial Day traditionally occurs each year on the final Monday of May to honor the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it originated after the Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in that war, though it now honors all Americans who have died in all wars. 

  •  NBA star Jason Collins has proclaimed to the world he is gay. What’s the big deal? Billions have publicly averred their personal truths since time immemorial. 

    People declare their religious preferences — Catholic, Muslim, Mormon, Southern Baptist — daily, and oftentimes fight and kill to prove their love for their God. No big deal, eh?

    Two-thirds of registered voters have declared their political party preferences, thus telling the rest of the world they are more likely liberal or conservative. No big deal, eh?

  •  A week ago Monday was Earth Day. This is something near and dear to my heart, the Earth. Actually, it is nearer to my feet usually, but that’s just anatomy. Clear Creek County has a resource that I think is under-appreciated and probably under-utilized. That resource is the Clear Creek County Transfer Station, located on Soda Creek Road outside of Idaho Springs. It is a place we visit almost weekly to bring the garbage, take in the recyclables, and catch up on conversation with Tim, Jim and Michelle.