This morning I overheard a visiting couple say, “This is an ugly town!” I was shocked at first, but then realized what greets people as they enter from the south: big-box stores, fast-food outlets, car dealerships, cookie-cutter neighborhoods, manufacturing sites and newly constructed apartment complexes that I think resemble prison blocks. The small remnant of our city that is advertised as “Santa Fe” to tourists and second-home buyers does not reflect the reality of what our town has become: a small, semi-historic city center that offers “elite” art and music, bounded on the north and east by over-large, obscenely expensive housing for the very rich and sprawling to the south by compressed, crowded stick-built housing (plastered to imitate Santa Fe Style) but unsupported by adequate job and educational opportunities for the not-so-rich. Crossing all boundaries are the shopping carts of the homeless. I wonder why our mayoral candidates and city officials are so keen on expansion when we have so utterly failed the majority of our current population.

Gail Robertson

Santa Fe

Excellent show

I attended Sunday’s production of Lungs presented by the New Mexico Actors Lab. Contrary to the negative review of opening night that appeared in Friday’s Pasatiempo, I found it to be a wonderful performance (“Shouting their way to the end of the world in ‘Lungs,’ Pasatiempo, Oct. 8). The acting was excellent and the audience apparently agreed as we joined in a standing ovation. The play runs until Oct. 17. I recommend seeing it.

Rosalind Doherty

Santa Fe

No on bonds

Unfortunately, I am not one of the voters who can support Superintendent Hilario “Larry” Chavez’s call to support the Santa Fe Public Schools bond issue and mill levy (“Voters can support schools with bond, mill levy,” My View, Oct. 10). With consistently declining enrollment and absolutely horrible student-achievement scores as of the last measurement in 2019, it makes no sense to put more money into a failing system. It is time for the voters to send a message to Santa Fe Public Schools and its administration by voting no.

David Shulman

Santa Fe

Not forgotten

Now I’m really confused. In the article (“A year later, obelisk fallout remains,” Oct. 10), police Capt. Michael Champlin states “officers were being punched and kicked and choked.” He saw it as a dangerous enough situation for him to order a retreat and not secure reinforcements. Yet the penalty for assaulting police officers and destroying public property is community service? The more we learn about the inept handling of this disturbing incident at all levels, the more outrageous it becomes. The mayor said, “Even though it was illegal, unlawful and painful, the aftermath can be one of healing and reconciliation and bring out our better angels.” Oh really? If the mayor is counting on our collective amnesia to get him out of this mess, I think it’s going to be a while.

Mary Conant

Santa Fe

Wear it right

Good grief. The large photo on the front page of Monday’s paper shows three of the four children wearing their masks incorrectly (nose exposed, essentially not masked). The photo purports to be about teaching mathematics, but what is clearly being taught here is that wearing masks correctly is unimportant, despite the state mandate on wearing masks indoors. And we wonder why children get infected in schools, why teachers and parents worry about COVID-19 transmission in the classroom, why mask-wearing is ridiculed or disregarded on so many fronts.

I strongly encourage The New Mexican to print only photos of people wearing masks properly. Printing photos of folks not following state mandates is tantamount to sanctioning this behavior and seriously undermines the use of one of our most valuable tools in fighting this pandemic.

Pamela Geyer

Santa Fe

(14) comments

Bronwen Denton-Davis

We do not have the natural resources available for all who are heading our way. The building up and crowding in is ugly. The drain on H2O deadly. The magic of the City is being erased. Water is life people.

Charlotte Rowe

Sandra, you are correct. Santa Fe might just as well be any ugly suburban sprawl mess anywhere in the country, except for the small downtown area.

Khal Spencer

Gail Robertson has nailed it. As long as we continue to be a society of extreme wealth and everyone else clawing at the crumbs that fall off the table, we will see people building extravagant homes, the well off and the investment firms gobbling up second homes in town that should be affordable housing, with the result being we have to build what is affordable to those living with low incomes. How do you do, City Indifferent?

Housing reform starts with economic reform. If things keep going this way, I think crime and dissolution of civil government will be on the table. Without a meaningful social contract, I surmise that as Bob Dylan once said, "When you ain't got nothing, you got nothing to lose".

rodney carswell


Cheryl Odom

Gail Robertson: [thumbup]

Dow Williams

Excellent point Gail Robertson.

Stefanie Beninato

Pam So agree with you. Either wear the mask properly (0ver nose, below the chin) or stop pretending that you care.

Richard Reinders

Pam, by all means lets not show the truth so it can be corrected lets hide everything like we have for the last year including the VP. That's the problem in this country not enough truth.

Patrick Brockwell

Richard, It is quite a stretch for a trump supporter to lay claim to any kind of truth. Big Lie, little lies, all lies, all trump.

Richard Reinders

Who ever said I was a Trump supporter, and Biden is passing Trump in the lies dept.

Charlotte Rowe

Richard, your poor grasp of facts, science and norms make it clear you are a Trumper.

verne lucero

Really now Patrick, I thought your berry odummy was the all-time Pinocchio.

Charlotte Rowe

Oh look and verne is no better.

Charlotte Rowe

You are correct, Patricki. But Richard seldom has anything worthwhile to contribute. So he subjects people to his unworthwhile drivel.

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