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Thursday, April 17,2014

In case you missed it

LAWMAKERS GREEN LIGHT RED LIGHT CAMERA DEBATE 

Those gotcha red-light cameras in Boulder and other cities along the Front Range could be banned if opponents in the Legislature have their way.

Senate Bill 181 eeked past a committee this week amid protests from police chiefs and the Colorado Municipal League that the cameras reduce accidents. But lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in both chambers are critical of the cameras, wary that they generate revenues for cities at the expense of their citizenry (sometimes for the slightest of infractions, like a car stopped just over the edge of the white line). Sen. Lucia Guzman, a Denver Democrat and bill co-sponsor, said drivers’ due-process rights are at issue. “I believe that individuals have a right if we are being photographed, we have a right to be stopped by an individual,” she said, according to The Associated Press.

‘BLOOD’ MOON, NOT SO BLOODY OVER COLORADO 

The moon rose big over Boulder on Monday night, not blood-red as feared, but rather with a serene hint of tangerine. Later, long past midnight, the shadow of Earth concealed the moon and darkened the sky. Coloradans who stayed up (or happened to be up) spied the full moon, almost directly overhead, glowing white, seeming to disappear behind the cosmic veil only to reappear. All manner of theological and astrological prediction preceded the event, including prophesies of End Times. It didn’t help that the eclipse occurred in the wee hours of Tax Day, the dreaded final hours in which procrastinators rush their annual fiscal paperwork to the Internal Revenue Service. The celestial waltz wowed some, reminding them, if only momentarily, of the grandness of the universe and the humble and isolated place that our home and the moon share within it.

JESUS, THE HOMELESS SPARKS DEBATE 

A statue of Jesus bundled in a blanket and sprawled out on a bench in front of St. Alban’s Episcopal Church in ostentatious Davidson, N.C., is bringing out the art critics this week. The statue, “Jesus the Homeless,” by Canadian sculptor and devout Catholic Timothy Schmalz has offended people who don’t like to see Christ fashioned into a vagrant or, worse, a wino sleeping off last night’s bender. Church rector, Rev. David Buck, brought the statue to the church to teach a lesson to his flock: “We need to be reminded ourselves that our faith expresses itself in active concern for the marginalized of society,” he told NPR.

SHOT DOWN AND NOT: DRONE HUNTING CONSIDERED 

The Big Sandy Shoot, an event for hardcore machine gunners in Arizona, included several very-hardto-blow-to-little-bits-and-pieces drones. That ought to make the residents in Deer Trail, Colo., feel good for defeating a measure earlier this month that would have issued licenses to drone hunters (perhaps surprising after all the national attention that town got, too!). The Big Sandy drones — remote-control airplanes — were hit, but didn’t exactly come crashing to the ground. A video posted by Popular Science shows drones kept flying, taunting the gunners, until there was a direct hit to a tiny engine. The verdict, writes PS, “It’s possible to bring down small drones with a machine gun, but it takes good aim and many shots — and it helps if the drone is just flying back and forth in front of you.” That leads us to wonder how much a box of AR-15 bullets costs.

Respond: letters@boulderweekly.com

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