Letter: State the obvious on traffic
Let’s begin with a simple and obvious proposition: The highway design that exists between Basalt and Buttermilk should extend all the way into Aspen.
It wasn’t too long ago that I collected the signatures of 800 Aspen registered voters in support of the above proposition, so that number represents only a portion of the Aspen voters who agree.
Now let’s look at the vote totals of the bottom four candidates in Tuesday’s council election: 442, 381, 340 and 274.
In this election, it required 1,000 votes to win a seat on the City Council. Do the math, please. Can anyone tell me why the bottom four candidates didn’t want to be on the City Council badly enough to state the obvious?
True, they would have been vilified and denigrated. That’s how it works these days in politics when you state the obvious.
Meanwhile, in an event that didn’t qualify as newsworthy, just three weeks ago the Pitkin County clerk rejected another citizen initiative regarding Highway 82 and the Entrance to Aspen. The first reason for the rejection has to do with a section of the county charter that is in conflict with the state constitution. The county has already lost this argument in district court — the state constitution takes precedence, and everyone knows it — but there isn’t any reason for people to care about this issue because it’s only a matter of principle.
The second reason for the rejection is a pure invention — it is literally based on a standard that doesn’t exist. There is no reason for me to explain it to you because it is a bit technical, and nobody wants to be bothered by a bunch of legal gobbledygook.
The solution for all of this is that sometime in the next couple of months, three responsible adults should declare themselves candidates for the positions of mayor and council members for the 2017 Aspen election. They should then spend the next two years occasionally reminding people that it is truly and deeply crazy to maintain an artificial traffic jam, one that completely contradicts the community self-image of rural beauty, wastes multiple lifetimes worth of time and defies any form of environmental rationality, just to avoid accepting the obvious.
Yes, all you need are three sensible Aspenites with enough courage and self-confidence to shrug it off when they are attacked for telling the truth.
Simple and obvious.
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I was disturbed by Aspen High School Principal Sarah Strassburger’s April 11 guest commentary: “State board of education representative off mark on Aspen High Survey.”