From Aspen to Ashvegas

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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God bless Hunter S. Thompson. This sounds an awful like lot like some of the Ashvegas hippie literati. Every place you see the word “Aspen,” think Ashvegas:

Thompson for Sheriff

Aspen, Colorado, 1970

1) Sod the streets at once. Rip up all the streets with jack hammers and use the junk asphalt (after melting) to create a huge parking lot and auto-storage lot on the outskirts of town.

2) Change the name Aspen by public referendum to “Fat City.” This would prevent greedheads, land-rapers and other human jackals from capitalizing on the name “Aspen.”

3) Drug sales must be controlled. My first act as Sheriff will be to install, on the courthouse lawn, a bastinado platform and a set of stocks – in order to punish dishonest dope dealers in a proper public fashion.

4) Hunting and fishing should be forbidden to all non-residents, with the exception of those who can obtain the signed endorsement of a resident – who will then be legally responsible for any violation or abuse committed by the non-resident he has “signed for.

5) The Sheriff and his Deputies should never be armed in public. Every urban riot, shootout and blood-bath (involving guns) in recent memory has been set off by some trigger-happy cop in a fear frenzy.

6) It will be the policy of the Sheriff’s office savagely to harass all those engaged in any form of land-rape. This will be done by acting, with utmost dispatch, on any and all righteous complaints.

Our program basically was to drive the real estate goons completely out of the valley to prevent the State Highway Department from bringing a four-lane highway into the town and in fact to ban all auto traffic from every downtown street. Turn them all into grassy malls where everybody, even freaks, could do whatever’s right. The cops would become trash collectors and maintenance men for a fleet of municipal bicycles, for anybody to use. No more huge space-killing apartment buildings to block the view, from any downtown street, of anybody who might want to look up and see the mountains. No more land-rapes, no more busts for “flute playing” or “blocking the sidewalk” … fuck the tourists, dead-end the highway, zone the greedheads out of existence, and in general create a town where people could live like human beings, instead of slaves to some bogus sense of Progress that is driving us all mad …

Rolling Stone

October 1, 1970

(Content Rolling Stone copyright -except for my intro of course, Issue 970, March 24, 2005, on stands now)

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

  • 1

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