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Dear Editor:

A little note to thank you for publishing your great newspaper. The Comment keeps us COVID house-bound residents connected to the village, so you’re more appreciated now than ever before.

As a former newspaper reporter, I’m a real “news junkie!” I just wanted you to know how much we all look forward to each issue.

Blanche Fishel

Dear Editor:

As I drive through Corrales (yes, I am a Rio Rancho resident who “cuts” through but I also patronize many of your businesses), I am seeing a lot of signs about growing marijuana.

Clean Air for All Now (cafanow) supports any Corrales residents’ efforts to make their community a better place, a safer place. If the residents of Corrales are concerned about odors and chemicals originating from grow facilities, I also share their concerns.

Cafanow joins your efforts to discuss and support the concerns about the growth of marijuana in your village.

Will you join us in our efforts to ensure Intel is held to account for the over 250 volatile organic chemicals it uses and the 95 tons of hazardous air pollutants it emits into your home, soil and air?

Cafanow has been concerned about the odors, chemical and hazardous waste pouring out of Intel’s outdated cub scrubbers and thermal oxidizers for decades.

Villagers have tried to work with local, state and federal government agencies to hold Intel to account without success.

Villagers have previously asked for basic protection from a chemical plant that sits in their midst.

1) Intel currently holds a minor source permit, like a dry cleaner! Based on this impotent permit, there is no government oversight whatsoever. Intel uses more than 250 volatile organic compounds and emits 95 tons of hazardous waste. Nothing less than a major source permit should have been granted. The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) completely failed to protect the residents surrounding the Intel/Rio Rancho plant.

2) Intel is currently using old and outdated emissions abatement equipment. Cafanow is requesting Intel install new thermal oxidizers and cub scrubbers to make their hazardous chemicals a “little less” hazardous.

Let’s face it, no chemicals are safe. The best we can ask for is to minimize Intel’s chemicals that rain down on villagers on a daily basis.

The chemicals and hazardous waste Intel emits and the concern of marijuana growth in your village addresses the same issues: the health, well-being and property values of your residents.

Ask yourself: is it safe to live under a giant microchip facility that has no governmental oversight whatsoever? If Intel becomes a superfund site, will your home values increase or will Intel leave a giant mess behind as it did in Mountain View, California?

Is living next to a marijuana grow facility safe if they use insecticides and pesticides?

The answer to both is no.

Cafanow is not asking for the removal of Intel! Cafanow is hoping/praying NMED will do the right thing, what they are charged to do: protect the residents surrounding the Intel/Rio Rancho facility. NMED must award nothing less than a major source permit and require the installation of new and updated emissions abatement.

Intel can afford it!

Please join our efforts as we join yours! Go to cafanow.com and sign the petition. Our goal is to reach as many residents who live near and around the Intel/Rio Rancho plant of the dangers of the chemicals being used in their midst.

See our website: Cafanow.com, and  note our email address: cafanow @gmail.com

Marcy Brandenburg,

co-chair Clean Air for All Now

Dear Editor:

I agree with you, Johnny Martinez, it was “gracious” of Jeff Radford to publish your entire commentary (or was it a manifesto?). And that is the only thing I agree with.

If your commentary was meant to insult “newcomers” you have succeeded. You went on and on and on, about how things have changed since we newcomers have arrived. You said you are not the only Corraleño who feel this way. I am glad I was welcomed to Corrales by other Corraleños who do not feel as you do.

I moved to this area because it reminded me of where my dad grew-up in Colorado (“the Valley”). You not only insulted/slandered newcomers but the Village Council and also the mayor, (who many Corraleños voted for). Many of us believe Mayor Roake has done an excellent job as mayor, so she will be missed.

We seniors would like to think that things were better, “in-the-good-old-days.” Perhaps they were, but things do change, no matter where you live. The newcomers you have insulted are the people who have tried to assimilate into the community. Newcomers have supported the village not only monetarily but by giving of themselves (their time).

We newcomers have volunteered;   volunteered at the library, senior center (delivering meals, teaching classes, painting, etc.) the old San Ysidro Church (mudding), organizing events, Corrales Historical Society, Village in the Village and St. Nicholas party (keeping the memory of Evelyn Losack alive) as each year newcomers and Corraleños have baked mountains of cookies for the party. Years ago, when we were younger, we newcomers volunteered to clean-up Corrales Road and Loma Larga twice a year.  Newcomers have also volunteered/donated to the elementary school (school supplies, helped children improve reading skills, and helped pay for outstanding lunch bills).     

Newcomers are regulars at Perea’s, Village Pizza, Frontier Mart, Mercantile, Hannah & Nates, the Bistro Brewery and Sandia Bar when it was open. As well as the galleries, shops, etc.

If you were not so busy finding fault with others you might have noticed newcomers also call on the sick, deliver communion and food, give rides, etc. Instead of complaining I would like to suggest you volunteer/donate. Depending on the COVID restrictions; the school, church, graveyard, Senior Center, and Village in the Village can all can use  volunteers (garden work, cleaning, sanitizing).

Mr. Martinez what have you done lately to make the village a better place to live? Your “we-were-here-first” attitude is insulting not only to us newcomers but to the people who were “really” here first. I will go out on a limb and make a wild guess that centuries ago when Europeans were colonizing this area, someone else was here first. Just saying…. In short, things change! Get over it.

Dolores Chavez-Caballero Biehl

Dear Editor:

This is a needed follow up to my article that in the last issue of the Comment. If you did not read it, I encourage you to read “Elephant in The Room”.

Apparently, it struck a chord as I received numerous emails, was encouraged to run for office and I was even given a lead on securing the Corrales song. If I can get it, I’ll post it on YouTube for all to enjoy.

Here are non-edited excerpts from some of the emails I received:

—“What an unwelcome, and I would guess, prejudiced commentary you wrote. This is a Hispanic MAGA sermon. All was the garden of Eden until the expats (whites) came.”

—“Johnny, I greatly appreciated your recent article in the Comment.”

— “We don’t feel we can honestly call ourselves Correlenos if it’s defined by a long family heritage in the village. However, if Correleño is defined by a close knit group of friends who care for each other, we would consider it an honor to proudly wear that term.”

—“Thanks for speaking out in a respectful but honest way.”

—“Many thanks for your essay. It was obviously heartfelt and the result of much reflection, as well as conversations with other long-time Corraleños.”

—“Outstanding article, Johnny.”

—“Thank You for your text. You mentioned your grandparents house burning and I recall that Sunday. My Aunt Sofia and I were walking back home when we saw the smoke. Tia Sofia and Trinidad Perea got together to see what they could do to help your grandparents.”

As I wrote in the previous article, my aim was to expose a contrast of community and culture. As I read the comments emailed to me, I can say that was accomplished, as evidenced by the vastly different takes on my writing. My emphasis was the contrast between people from here who shared community and concern for one another and some people who have moved in but care about their own interests at the expense of others and community harmony.

I never mentioned a resentment for people of any color moving into our village. If you read about our village history, you’ll learn some of our original families were Italian, French, German, and more; we even had a Black mayor. I encourage everyone living here to buy a copy of Mary Pietsch Davis’ book Hometown Corrales, a Family Album.” She wonderfully highlights much of what the different families contributed to Corrales. Let me be clear; bigots of all races are ugly. Race and culture can be vastly different.

Culture is tradition, spirit and personality. Corrales, let’s get back to a culture of “close knit group of friends who care for each other,” as one commented.

Again, I solicit comments, stories and ideas for more articles. You can write me at Corralesstories@gmail.com or by dropping off written correspondence in the Comment’s drop box at the start of the walkway to the office door.

Be well, be a good citizen —a Corraleño!

Johnny Martinez

Dear Editor:

Jim Crow 2.0?

Hell NO!

Support voter rights legislation.

Michael Baron

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