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Produced & Maintained by Idaho Mountain Express, Box 1013, Ketchum, ID 83340-1013 
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Copyright © 2003 Express Publishing Inc.
All Rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of Express Publishing Inc. is prohibited. 

Wednesday, March 31, 2004


Grousing over security costs is disgraceful

Local grousing about picking up the extra costs of security during presidential hopeful John Kerry’s vacation in the valley was disgraceful.

An Idaho Mountain Express online poll found that 64 percent of 160 respondents objected to extra expenses for Blaine County and its cities to provide extra security for such visits. A few letters to the editor bore similar disgruntled sentiments. A handful of valley residents interviewed and quoted in the national press also expressed unease about Kerry’s visit here.

The attitudes are more than a little embarrassing. They’re spoiled, ungrateful, rude, and unpatriotic.

Whether it’s candidate John Kerry, President George W. Bush, Vice-president Dick Cheney or another high-level government official, all should be welcome.

Perhaps the air at this altitude is really so thin it does affect thinking. Either that or some valley inhabitants have been infected by a distressingly smug sense of entitlement and ghastly selfishness, perhaps born of too much ease.

When all the accounting is done, it will probably have cost local governments less to help protect Kerry than a couple of American soldiers make in a year risking their lives in Afghanistan or Iraq.

The cost to the valley is not unbearable and is little enough to contribute in a world that has become notably unfriendly to democracies in general, and one in which terrorists have declared war on the United States specifically.

The great good fortune and prosperity so evident in the Wood River Valley is no accident. It is the result of a stable democratic government and federally funded infrastructure upon which successful enterprises have been built. It is the result of great work and sacrifice on the part of generations of Americans who lived before us.

We hope the negative attitudes expressed about Kerry’s visit were anomalies. The valley we know is not one that would begrudge the relatively few dollars it may cost to welcome a national or world leader. The valley we know gives leaders who devote their lives to making democracy work, making America safe, and fostering prosperity a warm welcome, not a cold shoulder.


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The Idaho Mountain Express is distributed free to residents and guests throughout the Sun Valley, Idaho resort area community. Subscribers to the Idaho Mountain Express will read these stories and others in this week's issue.