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Letters to the Editor

Aspen Times writer

Bair Ranch for the bearsDear Editor:Unfortunately for the black bear population of Aspen, houses aren’t getting smaller, Aspen ain’t getting any bigger, temperatures are getting warmer, berries are growing fewer, and bears are getting ballsier!It is my understanding a caught bear is relocated and tagged. If the bear returns, it is euthanized: “The act or practice of killing or permitting the death of hopelessly sick or injured individual (as person or domestic animals) in a relatively painless way for reasons of mercy” (Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate). Bears had no problems until man came along. Now they are a “problem.”They try to feed on land that once grew vegetation for them and now has a 10,000-square-foot house with an ADU on it. So, the bears come to town. Trash the Hickory House for some ribs. Hell, why come all the way into town and settle for vegetables when you can have tasty baby-backs? I agree these bears are a problem! Sick or injured – I don’t know about that. Hungry, for sure! If that bear is caught, and comes back, we will practice the act of mercy killing on him, which eventually costs the Division of Wildlife and taxpayers money.My solution is to relocate the bears to newly acquired open space land in Glenwood Canyon. I believe it is called Bair Ranch. You know, the place that gets to continue its commercial dude ranch operations on now taxpayer-owned land that I will never set foot on. Anyhow, we sell black bear hunting excursions to the Hummer-owning, second-home owner, vacationing tourists who have “native” bumper stickers on the Illinois license plate that says SKI ZG.Fifty-thousand dollars gets you the chance to drive your Hummer off-road (for the first time for most of you Hummer owners) on some fine, western Colorado turf, and hunt a bear that has become a “problem” and needs to be shown some “mercy.” You only get three days, so come locked and loaded with your AK-47!The money can fund the Division of Wildlife and hopefully lower my taxes, so I can save more, and hopefully buy a townhouse for $300K in the midvalley that allows my dogs – because dogs are “problems,” too. I am sure we can find an ample supply of illegal immigrants to work at the on the ranch – you know, to keep costs low for the hunters, and so they can get their breakfast made the morning of the big hunt, since us Americans won’t work those jobs! My ass, we won’t! Norm for Prez! John NormanAspenDon’t call it a rainoutDear Editor:”The Carbondale Run” national skateboard contest was not rained out! The boys at HRC and Thrasher worked with the town and mainly Chris “Woodsie” Woods to make the best of a crappy weather weekend. The Western Slope Skateboard Alliance ran a local competition on Friday, kicking things off righteously. And then the rains came …Power outages, slick concrete, mud everywhere … whatever. When there are 20-plus of the world’s best riders, hundreds of other rippers plus thousands of eager spectators coming from all over the country, you gotta make something happen. So the scene was not pretty, but skateboarding is not pretty to begin with. Skateboarding of this style (big and fast-flowing concrete) is raw.Anyway, we had a best trick jam on the Volcom volcano. A full-pipe challenge went down (upside down). The full-pipe ceiling roll-ins were constant entertainment (rain or shine). And then a jam was thrown down in the park. Just like the ads said, no heats or points, just full-on skating mayhem.Who cares who won? We got to see Lance Mountain skate our park. Darrel Stanton, Ryan Sheckler, Jamie Thomas, Chris Senn and Omar Hassan were skating around with us. Al Partenan and Benji Calloway would have definitely walked away with some prize money, maybe they did.As Woodsie told me, “It’s just the first year, it is only going to get more organized.” We survived, we thrived. Let’s DO IT AGAIN next year!Petar Skateboard activistEl JebelDinner at the dumpDear Editor:The bears have to eat, too! Can’t there be some sort of area where bears can feel comfortable eating trash – say, like at the dump? What’s wrong with people dumping their food/trash in a remote area where the bears can consider it a picnic ground, somewhere away from town? If there is a central food area, wouldn’t they resort to that area to feed, as well as their natural berries and such?If I lived in Aspen, I would attend the town meetings to suggest a central dumping ground for food where the bears would feel at home and then possibly leave everyone’s home alone. I hate the idea that the bears may be hungry or starving and have little food to eat. It’s not fair that people get to rule in the forest! We have to live and take care of our furry creatures.Charleen BarnickelParker, Colo.


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