Busch shouldn’t be banished
Dear Editor:I just read where the [Aspen] Daily News gave Jon Busch his walking papers as a weekly columnist of 30 years, because the paper “doesn’t receive many letters about his column.” That’s the dumbest thing I’ve heard all year. Hundreds of people – like old locals – see him at the Wheeler every week, on the streets, in the restaurants. Almost every time I see Jon I have something to say to him about his column and there are probably hundreds of others like me. I suppose the paper plans to replace him with an Australian who has been in the country seven months and in Aspen for 10 minutes … that itty bitty kid who edits (messes up) letters to the editor and writes about current local events with such comprehensive aplomb. I’ve been proud of our Daily News because it is locally owned and operated, but this really disappoints me. Jon and I have a history of hissing fits over the past 27 years, ranging from my trying to pry a new mop out of him to clean the Wheeler before it was remodeled, to my attempts to rearrange his fixed opinion that I’m some kind of ossified uncosmopolitan redneck. (I was raised on the University of Chicago campus back in the days its intelligentsia started setting up second homes here in Aspen.) I don’t agree with everything Jon talks about, and I feel it has taken him most of his life to get the hang of “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” (a philosophy that made Chicago work in Mayor Daley Sr.’s day) – but so what? Jon has been around Aspen for decades and he loves it. I want to know what his thinking is about the place – to hear his point of view. In a hundred years, I hope there is one of those ghastly bronze statues, depicting Jon collecting tickets/standing on the theater landing of the Wheeler.Jon is part of the fabric of an era of this town – part of the local color – and he should be allowed to fade out naturally and at his own speed – not banished by teenie boppers who can’t relate to his haircut.Pat MilliganAspen
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