February 10 Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,

With four seats up for election in May and the application deadline on Friday, February 18, I want to encourage folks to consider running for Marfa ISD School Board. It’s a vitally important position in the community and plays a huge role in what happens to Marfa moving forward. 

If you have school-aged children — run for school board.

If you have babies and toddlers that will all too soon be school-aged children, or are considering having kids someday — run for school board.

If you don’t have kids and love this community — run for school board. 

If you are interested in the Montessori program — run for school board.

If you love everything the school does — run for school board.

If you want to see accountability for the administration — run for school board. 

If you live in this community and understand that the soul of Marfa lies not in niche boutiques or galleries or how many Instagram influencers we entertain for a weekend but in the magic of connection and whether this town can sustain families and future generations — run for school board.

Because families are leaving Marfa for myriad reasons, not the least of which is this: the school and kids in this town often do not receive the same attention that the art and services and landscapes do. Texas governance has not been kind to public schools. Will Marfa figure out a way to meet the needs of its children and families? 

As we’ve seen recently in both state and national news, school boards can be the very epicenters of political, cultural and ethical debates, establishing a vision and goals for our public schools and community ethos. What and how we teach our kids has implications far beyond our own limited purview. Please consider engaging in the conversation.

Ariele Gentiles

Marfa

Ariele Gentiles is the copyeditor for The Big Bend Sentinel.

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Dear Editor,

A million for a new school track, a half a million for new police cars (whatever happened to their $800/apiece bicycles?) …

Does this city — like the federal government (30 trillion underwater) — have no sense of fiscal restraint?

Perhaps the school board and city council are doing us a favor, spending our greenbacks while they still have some worth.

Steve Seegers, M.D.

Marfa

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Dear Editor,

I was listening to Betse Esparza’s podcast the other day when she was interviewing the GOP candidates for Brewster County judge. I listened as each candidate stated their positions, then at the end of the interview she asked this question: “Is Joe Biden the legitimate president of the United States?” I was embarrassed, saddened and irritated by the answer that each candidate gave. They hemmed and hawed and danced all around and then never said the correct answer. The correct answer is YES, Joe Biden is the legitimate president of the United States of America, but not one candidate would say that.

I’m pretty sure that I don’t want someone like that to be the county judge. Cowardly, unable or afraid to voice their own opinion, they choose to go along to get along. Is that the kind of leadership that should represent Brewster County? I don’t think so. The kind of judge I would want is someone who has the courage of his convictions and will speak truth to power. I believe that Brewster County needs a judge like that as well.

By the way, please get out and vote.

Thanks for listening.

Karen Cantrell

Alpine, TX

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Dear Editor,

I was alarmed to read that Marfa city residents will be required to foot the $114,000 gas bill from last year’s winter storm power-supply problems. We already pay an exorbitant amount for natural gas here in Marfa – something I don’t understand given our proximity to the Permian Basin, one of the world’s leading suppliers of natural gas.

As was proven last year, the fault for the power supply issues of last year’s storm lay entirely with the energy companies, ERCOT (the energy regulatory commission) and the Texas Legislature, due to environmentally unfriendly and isolationist policies. Energy companies were warned their systems were compromised in the face of extreme weather. They did nothing to remedy the situation, nor did ERCOT require them to. Since then, our Texas Legislature has also done nothing, preferring to focus on banning books and denying women access to abortion. And indeed, why should they, if their solution is for the hapless consumer to pay for their egregiously expensive and preventable mistakes? Instead, our legislature has responded by assuring everyone that it won’t happen again because there won’t be any more extreme weather. Yet more extreme weather is in fact guaranteed, due to the increasing effects of climate change.

What this means is, for every future power distribution problem, we, the consumers will be footing the bill. Our already expensive natural gas will become even more expensive. Where does it end? I would like to hope that our local district attorneys recognize the injustice of this arrangement and get together to sue those who are to blame for the disaster. Specifically, the energy companies, ERCOT and the Texas Legislature. It is not for us, the consumers, to have to foot the bill for corporations’ and politicians’ mistakes. 

Carolyn Macartney

Marfa, TX