Letters to the Editor

From the week of March 15, 2001

I Drink, Therefore I Am

The glass is half-empty: After reading Patricia Calhoun's "A Mile High," in the March 1 issue, I have to wonder what she thinks the solution might be.

Should our state welcome murderers like Donta Page with open arms just so a few drunks don't have to wait a day or two for touchy-feely treatment? Better that we lock them up, too.

Ray Randolph
via the Internet

The glass is half-full: The recent judicial-panel decision (and some of the attorney responses) regarding the application of the death penalty to Donta Page -- the convicted rapist and first-degree murderer of Peyton Tuthill -- should clearly point out to the rest of us that folks can be highly educated, eloquent in their language...but overall morons in their conclusions.

J. Matthew Dietz
Denver


Ready, Fire, Aim

Guns on the run: Eric Dexheimer's "Bad Guys, Legal Guns," in the March 1 issue, barely mentions concealed-carry permits, but it really points out a very valid reason why holders of those permits don't want the list of their names to be made public: It doesn't pay to advertise if you don't want the goons going for your guns!

And for those who think that the goons are going to get concealed-carry permits -- check your county and see what you would have to go through to get one. In my county, it starts with about a hundred bucks up front, non-refundable, then passing tests and background checks more stringent than required just to legally purchase a gun and then passing the sheriff's own personal test -- whatever he wants. And he doesn't have to tell you why he didn't like your hairdo!

Name withheld on request

Bad behavior: I commend you for publishing one of the most compelling articles I have ever seen stating the futility of firearms laws that SAFE and HCI push. As you said, bad guys don't obey these or any future laws.

The title "Bad Guys, Legal Guns" is somewhat misleading, however. As soon as that rat Charles Taylor stole those guns, they became illegal. As a member of the National Rifle Association, I support Project Exile anywhere and everywhere -- even for juveniles. Once these subhuman slime figure out that they might go away for a long time because of that gun, they might leave it alone. It sure works in Richmond, Virginia, and it will here, too, if we have the guts to follow through.

The woman in Aurora who was terrorized by these creeps is a prime argument for "shall issue" (aka concealed carry). If she'd been armed, she might have mounted a defense instead of being scared to death. Sure, she was outnumbered, but cowards usually run when they know a potential victim is armed. Taylor and his ilk aren't scared of police. They're not afraid of jail. What makes them quake is the idea that one of their potential victims might shoot back.

The bottom line is this: Not all of us lock up all our guns. If someone tries to break in here and do me or mine harm, my wife or I will kill them. If they are stupid enough to come into my house, they are not smart enough to live.

Pat Desrosiers
Denver


Get the Point?

Neighborhood watch: After reading T.R. Witcher's brief but informative article on the Rossonian Hotel and the development afoot on Welton Street in Five Points ("Brick by Brick," March 1), I wanted to add a note to the overview.

As a twenty-year resident of the neighborhood, I am constantly bewildered by the avoidance of planners, developers and, yes, writers, analyzing the area in recognizing one key aspect of the success, or lack thereof, in the development of the commercial district. For most of the past century, Five Points was made up of two distinct ethnic neighborhoods: Hispanic and African-American. Economically speaking, both communities saw the flight of the upwardly mobile, leaving the stigma and stereotypes of both neighborhoods and giving us the Five Points of the '60s and '70s, characterized by crime, public housing and poverty.

Slowly, the area's proximity to downtown, its historic housing stock and cultural history have been rediscovered. Today, a wonderfully diverse neighborhood, both culturally and economically, has emerged. Yet this reality is seldom acknowledged by city planners and business visionaries when speaking of a Five Points renaissance.

Business after business has failed on Welton due to the simple fact that their targeted market groups no longer exist in size to support the rather narrow direction some wish Welton Street to take. Until such time as reality over nostalgia is addressed, Welton will never achieve the success that other neighborhood commercial districts have experienced -- a healthy mix of services and attractions that are supported by and mirror the entire community as it exists today.

All the necessary ingredients are here for commercial success in this historic and diverse inner-city neighborhood. It's time to look to a new and more culturally inclusive renaissance for the Points.

Ken Miller
Denver


The Rave and Rave-Nots

Information, please: I am writing to say thanks for Laura Bond's great "Home of the Rave," in the February 22 issue. It was awesome. I am a Metro student doing an essay about raves. The article helped me a lot! It was in-depth and thorough. Finding information about raves that is accurate is not easy, because they are so new.

I read your paper every week, and it is great! Keep up the good work. Thank you, Laura.

Jeff Kegley
via the Internet

Raving mad: Congratulations to Laura Bond for a well-balanced and informative article regarding concerts that feature electronic music (aka "raves"). Unfortunately, she was not able to interview certain people whose voices should have been heard. I refer in particular to some members of law enforcement who rightly view raves as nothing more than concerts for the new millennium and who work intensively with promoters to ensure that events in their jurisdictions are run as safely as possible. These law-enforcement personnel either would not or could not talk to Ms. Bond for fear that their superiors might not approve.

I take issue with Captain Spence's view of the three events in his county, Arapahoe. The promoters of those events did, in fact, work face to face with the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Department; they did not hide behind a "fast-talking lawyer." The promoters and I worked hand in hand with certain officers, just not Captain Spence. For Captain Spence to indicate otherwise is a statement that applies to him only, not to the department as a whole. Having said this, I want to commend Captain Spence for his willingness to engage us in dialogue and to work with us at events.

Finally, I would like to note that shortly after your article appeared, I discovered that I have been placed on a "rave blacklist" compiled by the Denver Police Department. It seems that anyone who works to ensure that raves continue, within the confines of the law, will be targeted by law enforcement as someone not to be trusted. Nonetheless, I will continue my work to legitimize raves and advance the Constitutional rights of promoters.

Cris Campbell
via the Internet


Continental Drift

The parent trap: Michael Roberts's interview with Bob Ewegen of the Denver Post in the February 8 Message regarding Linda Chavez clearly illustrated what is wrong with the media today. It has been proven that Chavez has not only lied to the FBI but has been untruthful about other aspects of her life. The most serious of all her deceptions is the fact that she is not a Latina. On September 6, 2000, she stated on page 11B in the Post that her father was from Spain and her mother was from England. The last time I checked, those countries were in Europe, which would make her European.

I thought the days when Anglo personalities painted their faces and pretended to be something they were not had become a thing of the past. If Latinos were respected by the media industry, individuals like Mrs. Chavez would be exposed and purged to their rightful place. The media would never attempt to pull something like this on any other community. It is another sad reminder of the weak position that Latinos have in American society.

What is also discouraging is that the media will continue to look towards her because she validates the social and political agenda that they have conjured up for Latinos. Once the facade is truly exposed, she will be nothing more than a conservative Anglo who will have to compete with the other like-minded political analysts. Mrs. Chavez has every right to express her opinion, but she has no right to benefit from pretending to be something she is not.

Richard O. Delgado
Denver


Review to a Kill

Home of the Dave: Who does Michael Roberts think he is? Just because he's a "critic," he has the right to ruin lives with lies? This is regarding his March 8 Playlist review of the Dave Matthews Band's Everyday, wherein he states that John Tesh is much better when the listener is "stoned and drunk." You are wrong, sir! Mr. Tesh is horrendous even when you are stoned and drunk, and this kind of writing will, I'm sure, ruin more than a few killer buzzes! Damn you!

I do have to say I agree with your every word about Dave and his band. Kudos on that.

Paul Tracy
Denver

Shut the Doors: John La Briola's review of Bright Midnight Sampler in the March 1 Playlist told us a lot more about Mr. La Briola than it did about the music he was supposed to be reviewing. Okay, he doesn't like the Doors, their music or their fans. He expressed that rather cleverly. But considering the huge influence of the Doors in defining modern rock music, it's hard to imagine why anyone with La Briola's attitude would even become a rock reviewer, much less take on the assignment of covering this particular new release. He simply used his pulpit to rail against the Doors legend while failing to say anything readers could use -- unless, of course, they're preparing their own snakebite antidote.

Rob Karnisky
Boulder

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