Colorado Editorials

Truth defies ‘hate’ label for Colorado Springs

Author: The Gazette Editorial Board - September 19, 2017 - Updated: September 19, 2017

Don’t believe con artists who malign our loving city as a bastion of hate. People move to Colorado Springs from all over the world, comprising a live-and-let-live community that values diversity.

Christians, Jews, Muslims, blacks, whites, Hispanics, Asians, gays, transgender residents and more get to celebrate life in the majestic beauty of mountains, trees, waterfalls, caves and 300 days of sun.

That is why Denise Rosier and Christy Dueck left metro Los Angeles and moved to Colorado Springs. HGTV’s smash hit “House Hunters” documented the couple’s relocation in an episode that first aired Friday.

Dueck works remotely as a health care executive. Rosier quit software development to produce music and perform live with her guitar. With the help of ERA Shield Real Estate agent Michelle Blessing, they chose a spacious midcentury modern home with an unobstructed view of Pikes Peak.

Rosier’s music brought them to Colorado Springs for performances last year, and the couple could not stay away.

“The Rockies are right there, the aspens are right there, and people take time to be with each other. We spent most of last year here for gigs of hers,” Dueck said on the show. “We both fell in love with the community there. We found a community that adopted us, and we feel very blessed.”

We hope Sean Howell was watching. Howell is president of Hornet, a judgmental San Francisco-based social media business that exploited a hateful and obsolete stereotype this summer. The company insulted hundreds of thousands by calling Colorado Springs a “headquarters of hate.”

The business sponsored a billboard condemning our community’s supposed “hate” for same-sex couples.

Hornet chose to blast Colorado Springs because of a “hate map” published by the highly discredited Southern Poverty Law Center, which raises hundreds of millions of dollars by promising to combat hate. The hate map, a modern form of McCarthyism, includes two obscure, low-budget, one-man faith organizations in Colorado Springs that oppose same-sex marriage.

For the nonviolent religious convictions of two men, Hornet defamed a metro area of 700,000 people who represent all nationalities, races, religions and sexual orientations.

“We wanted to put them (billboards) in places where people might need to hear those messages the most,” said Howell, trying to justify his company’s prejudice.

The “headquarters of hate” epithet surprised a large, local LGBTQ community that loves Colorado Springs and has enjoyed a peaceful and robust PrideFest and parade downtown each year for decades.

“I don’t know that we need combative language here, specifically about the LGBTQ community,” said the Rev. Nori Rost, a 23-year Colorado Springs resident who identifies as “queer” and heads All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church.

Any profiteer can raise funds with make-believe, hateful maps that warn of monsters. The Southern Poverty Law Center’s witch hunt foments hatred and division, as seen by the way it inspired Hornet’s unjust “hate” campaign against our inclusive community.

Truth has a way of conquering lies. Fake maps and mean labels look silly against the experiences of people who lead real lives, as religious fundamentalists, ethnic minorities, transgender, or same-sex couples. As seen on TV and in our neighborhoods, we work to get along as a place where “people take time to be with each other.”

Welcome to the real Colorado Springs, Denise Rosier and Christy Dueck. As you found, love lives here.

The Gazette Editorial Board