By Alan Prendergast
By Michael Roberts
By Michael Roberts
By Amber Taufen
By Patricia Calhoun
By William Breathes
By Michael Roberts
By Melanie Asmar
The Sound and the Furry
Robin Chotzinoff is a national treasure--the Studs Terkel of our time. Her ability to burrow into a person's life and extract its essential juices is uncanny. She helps make Westword by far the most intelligent newspaper in Denver.
Regarding Robin Chotzinoff's article "So Fur, So Good," in the March 1 issue, I'm not surprised that Mable Mauser didn't want to "get into all that" when asked where she gets her furs. It would be in bad taste, I'm sure, to get into the grisly details of how the animals are treated.
I imagine Ms. Mauser would be appalled if people were trapping little dogs like hers or keeping them in tiny, filthy cages and then anally electrocuting them like they do the animals that have the misfortune of having their pelts valued by the fur industry. Of course, nobody is doing this to dogs, but all animals feel pain and terror.
I cannot admire or respect someone who makes their living off unspeakable cruelty and wanton waste (nobody eats minks, lynx or foxes).
Last summer I took two seven-year-old children to see a lynx that was rescued from a fur farm. She licked their hands and played with them, purring all the while. She was one of the sweetest creatures I have ever met, and she wore her fur coat with more grace and dignity than any human ever could.
Rebecca D. Furr
Whilst reading the "Independence's Day" article by Eric Dexheimer in the February 22 issue, I noticed the quote at the top from Tom Tancredo, president of the Independence Institute, saying, "We're not just an ivy (sic) tower where people sit about smoking pipes and thinking about things."
Ivy tower? Last time I looked, it was an ivory tower, Tom! This, from the head of a "think tank?" More like a "think cup," dontcha think, Tom? Before you preach your conservative pap to the rest of us, go get a clue from a real think tank.
Paul. H. Wigton II
Who's the Boss?
After reading Arthur Hodges's February 22 article "Down by Law," on Denver city attorney Dan Muse, it appeared to me that Mr. Hodges's and Westword's frustrations stem from the fact that Mr. Muse is a good attorney, properly representing his client. Mr. Hodges never did seem to understand who Mr. Muse represents.
Mr. Muse represents the city, embodied by the mayor and Denver City Council. The mayor and the city council represent those of us living in Denver. If you have a problem, you take it up with either the mayor or city council. That is how representative government operates, and that is why you elect the mayor and members of city council to represent you, rather than the city attorney.
It is Mr. Muse's job to vigorously represent his client. He seems to be doing that quite well. A case in point is his advice to the mayor and city council that the legal bills routinely released in their entirety by the auditor's office (according to your article) deserved some scrutiny. If you review the exemptions of the Open Records Act, you will find that certain information is not subject to release. This would include information subject to attorney-client privilege, which would clearly include information on legal bills.
In the legal world, many public and private entities involved in legal disputes are concerned about confidentiality for a variety of legitimate reasons (often when settlements are involved, by the way), and as an attorney, I often offer counsel and assistance on the confidentiality issue. Mr. Muse was evidently astute and careful enough to review the legal bills to determine if they contained any confidential information and then to excise that information. The mayor or city council may want to release the information, anyway, but those are their rights as clients. Mr. Muse is not entitled to make those types of decisions for his clients, only to advise them of the law and then to act according to their wishes.
If you hired an attorney, you would expect him or her to represent you in the same way that Mr. Muse is representing his clients, the mayor and city council. If you would like the city to represent you, all you need do is approach the mayor or city council.
Put That in Your Pipeline
Regarding Arthur Hodges's "The DIA Pipeline," in the March 1 issue:
Having worked for the City of Denver for fifteen years, I got a good chuckle out of Normando Pacheco's statement, "The city's so full of shit it's incredible." The reason it is "so full of shit" is because it has an apathetic citizenry that will continue to ride in the club car watching soap operas and the Broncos until the train runs out of steam.
Denver has had minority politics ever since Federico Pena got elected, and it hasn't elevated minority status. What these "affirmative-action" programs, along with kickbacks, have done is make it possible for the movers and shakers, regardless of race, color, creed, gender or sexual orientation, to manipulate the Golden Goose to their own advantage. They could care less about minorities. It's the same old stories of "The rich get richer" and "I got mine, how the hell are you gonna get yours?" It's business as usual with a small, very small, percentage of minorities benefiting--and that small it appeared to me that Mr. Hodges' and Westword's frustrations stem from the fact that Mr. Muse is a good attorney, properly representing his client. percentage has the social conscience of a boa constrictor.