Letters to the Editor

From the week of May 30, 2002

Colleen Auerbach
via the Internet

A wing and a prayer: I can tell that May 23 letter writers Name Withheld and Palden Yangtso Hester are right-wing heterosexual males, because they Just Don't Get It. Lucky for them, I do.

Holger Jensen lost his journalistic credibility when he utterly abandoned the last shred of his professional dignity and used his "news" platform as a stick with which to endlessly bash Israel. I'm not a Jew. And unlike Name Withheld, odds are my relatives in ze Old Country were solidly on the morally wrong side of the jackboots. But Jensen's bigotry became so obvious in his writing, you'd have to sit right of David Duke not to notice and be offended by it. He is so blinded by his anti-Semitism that when the Rocky spanked him for it by moving him out of news and into commentary, he took it as a license to grow even worse.

Reggie Rivers wasn't doing news, so on-the-job eruptions of his personal political and philosophical views, no matter how he twisted truth and logic, were just fine. That's not why he got the bum's rush; it's because listening to him was like listening to a more out-there Gary Tessler. Rivers's strident leftist screedstering was not only counter to the perspectives of today's average listener, it was also just plain boring. Rivers, to his credit, never milked the "I was a Bronco!!" thing, which might have appealed to sportsholes in the afternoon drive-time slot. But boring radio hosts can watch their Arbitron numbers drop like the gas gauge in an overloaded SUV.

You lefties out there can screech and stamp your feet over it, but you just ain't gonna create that vast right-wing conspiracy you have been so desperately seeking in these local media turnovers. Jensen and Rivers got sacked for one reason: money. They were costing the Rocky and KHOW (both private businesses) more than they were worth, whether that meant advertisers leaving holes because of Jensen's virulent anti-Semitism, or listeners who had to flip the dial on Rivers because they couldn't sleep and drive at the same time. Pretty simple math. Even a right-wing heterosexual male can get it.

As for Roberts's May 23 column, the Post's "Colorado Voices" makes fine fish wrap. Too bad if you're looking for interesting regional-angle commentary instead on Sundays.

JM Schell
via the Internet

Foreign correspondent: This is our country. Get the hell out of our newsrooms!

Foreign elements have been waging propaganda wars in America since its discovery by Europe, and I've certainly had my fill of the modern one. Still, I'm compelled to observe that Arabs -- and Palestinian Arabs, in particular -- who wish to see more even-handed U.S. policy in the Middle East should emulate their pro-Israel competitors here and abroad:

•Mobilize their relatives in America to prepare their sons and daughters for careers in journalism, so they, too, can be dispatched to cover events in Palestine and Israel.

•Cultivate foreign and domestic corporations that can threaten to withhold advertising from U.S. media that publish opinions or stories perceived to be "unfair" (i.e., objective).

•Find wealthy, politically aggressive backers who will fund the purchase of strategically important media outlets in the U.S.

I really don't care to see yet more foreign manipulation of my news, but hey, fair's fair.

Karl Sutterfield

The Hole Truth

Taken to tax: I take exception to Nick Werle's letter in the May 23 Westword which, while apparently in defense of Douglas Bruce in his feud with the City of Denver (Alan Prendergast's "Vendetta," May 16), characterized him as an a-hole. Perhaps it would be more meaningful if Werle were to take the time and mental effort to explain why he personally doesn't like Bruce instead of making a mindless insult, which only shows his ignorance and lack of class -- in addition to Westword's irresponsibility in publishing his foul characterization.

I worked with Mr. Bruce on the ballot initiative for Tax Cut 2000 and found his character and concern for his fellow citizens inspiring. He has spent his own time and money so our state government and its lavish spending can be held in check, so that average people like Werle might actually be able to keep more of what they earn, so that seniors can stay in their homes instead of being taxed out of them. If that's an a-hole, I strive every day to be one. I think Jefferson and Madison would think highly of Mr. Bruce. I know I do.

Dennis Hammond

Street Legal

Cheap tricks: Once again, David Holthouse shows us that he's not afraid to dive into the dark issues in writing the May 2 "Tricks of the Trade." Our city has many dark issues hiding in dark corners, and prostitution is but one of many. Drug and alcohol abuse, as well as prostitution, have become all too easy to ignore. It takes a true journalist like David Holthouse to dust off the shadows and bring issues like these back into the light and awareness of the city of Denver. It's become far too easy to look the other way, yet what message does this send to our children? Drugs are illegal, yet lawmakers tell us we can't stop our loved ones until they ask for help. This tells our kids that it's okay to use illegal drugs because no one can make you stop until you ask for help. What kind of crap is that?

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