Ascendigo is no Mr. Rogers

Ever since the first telephone call with a representative of Ascendigo, their story has continued to change, and they have shown that there is nothing anyone will do or say to keep them from building their non-conforming business in our residential neighborhood. Meanwhile, they tell residents of Missouri Heights that they, like Mr. Rogers, “want to be our neighbor.” They imply that our opposition to their mega-complex is indicative of an anti-autism bias and that they are the good guys in a struggle of good against evil.

The first description of the project was an eight-week summer camp program. It is now, in only the first phase, a sprawling campus with hundreds of people, cars, trucks, special events, etc., etc., and maybe 20 autistic campers, during the summer months. Their latest move is the sign recently installed on the site, claiming the land is the future home of Ascendigo.

It is one thing to disrespect the voices of those who will be put in greater fire danger, fearful of lacking adequate water for our households, and have the quiet enjoyment of our homes disturbed by hundreds of cars, trucks and buses on our meager dirt roads. It is another, much more offending disrespect to act as if the mandatory approval process currently underway in Garfield County is an exercise in futility, and a “fait accompli.”

If this latest move wasn’t intended as an insult to those of us trusting in the integrity of our governmental processes to have a voice in the outcome, it is hard to know what possible alternative they would have come up with to accomplish that. I take no comfort in the fact that they are doing the same to the Garfield County commissioners responsible for conducting an open, fair hearing on the merits of the issue.

Cheryl Niro

Missouri Heights