I found the letter from the secretary of the Colorado Democratic Party in the May 3rd edition of The Flume quite interesting.
The author discussed what he called the “common sense” of some of the bills rushed through the state legislature this year. The problem is that common sense means different things to different people depending on our upbringing, life experiences, and other factors that affect our viewpoint. Let me address some of his comments from a different perspective.
The first bill he discussed was the Extreme Risk Protection Order, or the Red Flag bill. I have several issues with this bill. This allows courts to issue an order to law enforcement agencies to confiscate personal property from an accused individual, who to date has violated no laws, with no due process.
It goes against everything our constitution stands for. The accused is not afforded a hearing and doesn’t even know the process is in motion till a law enforcement agent shows up at his door to confiscate his legally acquired property.
In addition to losing his or her constitutional rights under this bill, the bill does nothing to address the cause for the confiscation of property that it addresses.
The accused is left in his or her own home, now angrier than before, and still able to commit violence against himself or others using knives, poison, vehicles, or many other weapons available. Nothing in this bill calls for any type of mental health assessment or assistance for this person.
If this bill is based on “common sense,” then why have over half the county commissions in our state voted to declare themselves “sanctuary counties” and will expend no effort or expense to support this law? That sense doesn’t seem too common to me.
The second bill the author discussed is the oil and gas industry regulation. This seems to be a solution looking for a problem. Prior to this bill passing, Colorado already had the strictest regulations in the country for the oil and gas industry.
The author states, “We know that chemicals used in fracking contaminate air, water and soil.” This is a pretty broad statement, and you can find different facts to support or refute this claim based on where you look and who you believe. However, there are some facts that are universally accepted.
Our society runs on energy. There are different methods available to produce that energy, but all have drawbacks. Nuclear is the cheapest and cleanest option, provided everything is done to standard and there are no accidental discharges such as happened at Chernobyl.
Even the 2011 earthquake in Japan, which resulted in a meltdown at Fukushima, only resulted in one confirmed cancer-related death. The majority of deaths were attributed to poor evacuation planning, which resulted in increased stress and decreased living conditions for the elderly.
Wind and solar are often touted as the answer to our energy needs, and these certainly need to be part of the picture. However, they are not as clean as proponents would like you to believe. Both of these require some type of storage for the power generated during optimum conditions, so that power is available when wind and solar are not producing.
Where is this energy stored? In battery farms, of course. Batteries are certainly not clean either in production or in disposal when their useful life is done, nor are they inexpensive. These facts are often left out of the discussion when alternative energy is on the table.
We certainly need to continue the discussion on these and other topics, but don’t be misled into thinking that the answers are obvious, or common sense. As we approach the 2020 election cycle, please take the time to educate yourselves on the candidates and issues at hand and determine how the various agendas affect you as a citizen.
Do you align more closely with the Democratic agenda of more government control, more taxes to pay for programs, and less individual freedom, or do you prefer the Republican perspective of smaller government, less taxes, and more individual freedom?