Roses & Thorns: Councilman Skippy makes a stir; Jerry remember well at Rugger | AspenTimes.com

Roses & Thorns: Councilman Skippy makes a stir; Jerry remember well at Rugger

Aspen Times staff and readers
Members of Jerry Hatem's family pose with players and other members of the rugby community after the 2019 Ruggerfest final on Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019, at Wagner Park in Aspen. Jerry Hatem, the former Aspen Rugby Club president, died in a June snowmobiling accident on Aspen Mountain and some of his family, mostly from Ohio, came to Aspen for the weekend to take part in a game Jerry loved.
Austin Colbert/The Aspen Times
  • We’re handing a thorn to the Garfield County woman who told Aspen City Councilman Skippy Mesirow “your concentration is so small” during public comments at Monday’s meeting. There’s no room for that type of discourse in Aspen or anywhere else when it comes to discussing gun control, which the city is considering by banning all firearms from municipal buildings.
  • Councilman Mesirow also gets a thorn due to his remarks that set off the woman, who had a gun strapped to her leg. He said he was awash in fear and could not concentrate because of her appearance. Some thoughts are better left unexpressed, and Mesirow really stepped in it this time, coming across as somebody who hasn’t been west of the roundabout since it was built in 1999. Let’s hope cooler heads prevail when the proposed ordinance comes up for a second reading Oct. 8.
  • Roses to everyone who voted in “Best of Aspen & Snowmass” contest. We’re tabulating the results and putting together our annual magazine, which will come out in the end of October. We had a record amount of nominations and votes. Here’s to the more than 6,300 people who voted and the 90,8181 votes cast, which is more than double last year’s that were cast.
  • Thorns to Judge James Boyd for signing an order that sealed the case of former Basalt High School choir and music teacher Brittany von Stein. While the court hearings will be conducted it public, it appears, the judge approved sealing all motions and paperwork involved in the case. Von Stein was arrested on suspicion of having sexual relations with a student. The alleged victim is a minor. We get it and agree that the identity shouldn’t be revealed, but there are ways to protect the identity without sealing the case.
  • Roses to the crews working on Wagner Park before and after Ruggerfest. The field was in great shape (thanks to Ma Nature as well) for all those matches because of their work and the weather. And coming out of the pounding the field took for four days, the park looks like it will have a few weeks to recover before winter sets in.
  • A crown of mixed roses and thorns for Basalt Town Council for its decision Tuesday night to eliminate meat from future meals during its meetings. There is no doubt that reducing meat intake can improve personal and planetary health. For that, the council gets roses. However, symbolic gestures aren’t worth much without explaining why they are being taken. Councilwoman Katie Schwoerer, who suggested going veggie, should have given a quick, concise explanation of why the action was being taken. She didn’t, nor did other council members, thus the thorns.
  • And finally, rose to all those involved in honoring Jerome Hatem during last weekend’s 52nd annual Ruggerfest. From the logo on this year’s merchandise to Thursday night’s event for the scholarship fund and Sunday’s ceremony pre-championship match, Jerry was in everyone’s thoughts through the weekend. Cheers, to Jerry.

Have a rose or a thorn? Send them to letters@aspentimes.com.


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