We tried hard and did our best | AspenTimes.com

We tried hard and did our best

Dear Editor:Controversy and discourse is in Aspens DNA the result of having such an overly educated population, I surmise. We seem to pride ourselves in being able to rise up indignantly and attack whatever doesnt fit into our own narrow sense of a safe zone. Somewhere along the way we lost our civility, humility and the ability to acknowledge a common good greater than our own personal tunnel vision solutions.The COWOP process for Lift One has been challenging, controversial and sometimes painful. But those of us who were able to wade through it and grasp the challenges are proud of the results even though we dont have total consensus. (Who could?) I urge our critics to take the time to read six months worth of minutes, Q&A and public comment before jumping in with unvetted complaints. Odds are good we have already wrestled with the issue and discussion of your specific gripe we had a plethora of gripes we all shared and considered.Several people, including Mayor Ireland, concluded that there are no 27 people in the world who could make a decision supported by the rest of the community. Obviously, that is true as Mick said, it takes 27 of us to change a light bulb. But we will remain in absolute gridlock without any positive motion if we dont learn to bend a tad, trust our neighbors a little and take personal responsibility for engaging in the process with knowledge of the facts and accurate background information. This isnt about not allowing dissent. This is about having a quality dialogue based on accurate information. Its about contributing instead of whining.We ALL wanted a high speed lift at the beginning. Given the tradeoffs we rejected the idea. We ALL prefer less bulk and mass and traffic. But we insisted on affordable housing. We ALL think affordable housing is a priority and that vitality is key as well. Do I yearn for the good old days when everyone hung out together and took care of each other on a more intimate scale? Yes. Do I think it is possible to put on the brakes and keep the world out? No. Do I appreciate the yeomans effort put forth by 27 individuals committed to considering everyones needs and wants and trying to balance an impossible stream of self-interest requests? Yes.We tried hard to weigh the diverse set of goals and demands put upon us. We must have done a great job if no one is entirely happy. In the spirit of a generous community plan echoing the goals of the AACP the Lift One site is a glorious tribute to cooperative solution building. Tweaks may be in order and refinements will improve the concept, but the overall plan is better than each part could possibly be alone.It is my fervent hope that we can go back to the future by embracing the traditional elements of this community that brought us here. We must nurture our character and celebrate our irreverence with humor instead of dissolving into self-absorbed nit-picking that dishonors the feelings and opinions of others. Taking a global view can help turn conversations into valuable input and idea-making rather than fault-finding.Georgia Hansonresident and COWOP participantAspen

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