Letters to the Editor

From the week of June 9, 2005

Girl, Interrupted

Society's child:I'm not a big fan of Westword, and I'm not a big fan of stories that are written about people who are down and out for the exclusive purpose of advancing a political agenda. That said, I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed reading "Lost and Found," Luke Turf's article about Baby Girl in the June 2 issue. It was engrossing and informative, and, as far as I could see, was not written solely to blame society for one person's misfortune.

I was glad to see that there are organizations and people who are trying to identify, educate and help those whose situations are similar to Baby Girl's. I've just one question: Was Luke able to maintain an emotional distance from the story? Is it possible to maintain an emotional distance from the story?

Don Lopez
Parker

The hard cell:I used to wonder why the population difference between men and women in prison was so high. Not anymore. If this "victim of the system" -- or whatever you are trying to paint this girl as -- had been a man, she would be in prison, where she belongs, for many years.

Who cares about her stupid little wannabe-gangbanger fantasy memories or her broken-home sob tales? Who doesn't have sad stories to tell? Why make it look as though it's some kind of excuse for being a crackhead hooker with a bunch of welfare kids who's eaten up more of our tax money than she will contribute in a lifetime?

What these people -- and by these people, I mean crackheads, welfare recipients, etc. -- don't understand is that no one in this world owes them shit. Most people really could not care less if some hooker dies with a crack pipe in her hand in some alley. I certainly don't. No one but themselves is responsible for their lives. There shouldn't be a government office dedicated to coddling and otherwise holding people's hands who aren't adult enough to take care of themselves.

The victimization of people like this is very irresponsible and should stop.

Michael Jordan
Denver

Coming clean:I don't appreciate "Lost and Found," Luke Turf's story on Baby Girl in the June 2 issue. It's no one's fault that she's a crackhead. I know firsthand that she has had more chances to clean herself up -- by our grandparents and by my parents. It's ridiculous that you bought her, hook, line and sinker. It's nothing but attention, and you just gave her a whole shitload of it.

Life is what you make of it. I've been around all the same shit she has, and yet I managed to go to college and get a degree. All you've done is contribute to her pity party.

Please relay this message to her: If you want to be clean, clean yourself up. Thanks.

Jeremy (Baby Girl's cousin)
Thornton

Little girl lost:The girl in the story, Baby Girl, is my sister. Well, we grew up calling each other that. We lost touch a few years ago; I have been looking for her everywhere. Please tell her I miss her and am very worried about her. My heart aches for her after reading this.

Samantha Martinez
via the Internet


Bulk Mail

' Roid rage:Thanks for "What's the Beef?," Eric Dexheimer's piece in the May 26 issue. It was nice to see an intelligent, comprehensive article about steroids instead of the usual hysteria.

Metisse Krenicki
via the Internet

Return to sender: I would like to thank you for two very interesting articles regarding anabolic steroids.

In "A Bulky Blue Line," I do have a problem with what Arapahoe County investigator Mike Knight stated. In 2002, a package that was later found to contain anabolic steroids was delivered to my home. This package was not ordered by me and was never inside my residence. It was never opened, either -- which was a condition for a search warrant. The officers obtaining the warrant lied to a judge by omitting pertinent information, and elaborated on what was in the home.

Knight states, "Inside the house there was ample evidence of steroids, including used and unused syringes." This is another lie. If this were true, why was my case dropped in a preliminary hearing? In my sixteen years as an officer, I have never participated in a preliminary hearing that was not bound over for trial. This shows how poor of a case they presented. There were no used syringes in my home, and the unused syringes belonged to my fiancée, who took doctor-prescribed estrogen shots. No traces of steroids were found in the home. I was not "lucky," as was stated; I was innocent.

I have had several lawyers advise me that I had an excellent civil-rights-violation case against these officers, but instead of dragging this out even further, I opted to just file an informal complaint with their respective departments. Both major departments involved in the case refused to accept any complaint from me. I was cleared criminally, as well as departmentally, of any wrongdoing. I took and passed drug tests of urine, blood and hair. I also passed a polygraph test.

It's a shame that our tax dollars are being wasted on politically motivated, victimless crimes when we have terrorists threatening to destroy more buildings, the water supply, etc. It's sad, but some cops just can't catch realbad guys.

Tom Lahey
Denver


The Ride Stuff

Go to the head of the class: Regarding Jared Jacang Maher's "Ticket to Ride," in the May 26 issue:

Here in Carbondale, where the bowls are definitely awesome, and in Aspen, which is equally gnarly, helmets are accepted without question by the real skateboarders -- who are also the real snowboarders. The enforcement level for helmets goes down as the users get used to the helmets, and they advance skills they can achieve, and riders realize that they can actually think to protest because they wear helmets. To not wear a helmet on concrete at the speeds these skaters go is stupid, in a word -- or brain-damaged, perhaps?

Take a look at the helmets of real riders, if you want to know why. No helmet = poser.

Kath Goudy
Carbondale


Goodbye, Columbus

Ward of the state:Lately, Westword and its various contributors have intellectualized two points to the extreme, most recently in Adam Cayton-Holland's June 2 What's So Funny?

They are: 1) Columbus Day (or, the day we hate a guy for making a mistake); and 2) Ward "doesn't everybody lie on job applications?" Churchill. Columbus was some "dago" who misjudged geography 500-plus years ago and ran into North America on his way to China. I doubt like hell that he ever murdered any indigenous people, since he actually "discovered" the East Indies and not the USA. If you're going to hate someone for discovering America, go stone a Norwegian. The Vikings got here first, and some of those dudes were bad!

To all Indian proponents of the Columbus Day/Celebration of Death Day theory: If you're wondering why there was a Jewish Holocaust and not an American Indian Holocaust, remember one fact: The Nazis lost WWII. Only "victors" are allowed to rationalize genocide. If Hitler had won, do you think you would even be aware of what happened at places like Dachau? Our government tends to put the demise of five million Indians into the "Well...you know" category. As you sit there and hate those "white men" for taking the land from the Indians, I will sit here and wait for you to name one country on this planet that wasn't taken from someone else. And yes, many of the vanquished were murdered -- just so the survivors wouldn't forget who was really in charge.

As for Ward Churchill: Get over him, people. He is an absolute waste of questionable DNA. Why do people love losers, liars and con men? Churchill lied about his ancestry and who he is. His education is questionable, at the very least. His military service? His combat missions in Vietnam? Let me explain something to those of you less experienced in the ways of war. Eleven Bravos (light weapons/infantry) might not be intellectual equals to Churchill, but the last thing they will do is go on a Charlie Alpha (combat assault) with an FNG (fucking new guy) truck driver walking point. Churchill's lies are an insult to every real grunt who ever went on patrol. Has any veteran ever come forward and verified Churchill's claims? I think not!

Lastly, my interpretation of "freedom of speech" doesn't include that it is okay to copy stuff at the library and claim it is mine. Of course, I'm not tenured.

Steve R. Fickler
Wheat Ridge


Chimp Off the Old Block

Heavy petting:Regarding Laura Bond's "Primate Directive" in the May 5 issue:

Oh, man. So the same crazy who is heading the charge against entirely legal medical research on primates is the one who instigated the "guardian" status for pet owners in Boulder? Good Lord. Thanks to Rita Anderson, when I lived in Boulder, I was "guardian" to a python, a goldfish and a chameleon.

While I am fond of my pets, I find it rather difficult to think of myself as playing the same role to these cute but unthinking creatures as I would to a foster or adopted child. Sorry, but they're animals. There is a difference between us and them. I would never abuse them, but I sure as hell don't want to be called their parent.

Libi Striegl
Arvada


Male Call

Rock steady: Word has come to me about "The Simple Life," Jason Heller's May 12 story defending the "Boys Are Stupid" line of apparel. Mr. Heller's reasoning, apparently, is that he finds the men's-rights people, who object to the clothing, a disgusting group of males.

I have in recent years wondered about what exactly has happened to American journalism, with seemingly every major publication in the nation taking on some obvious ax to grind. It is clearly a deterioration of the standards that once ruled the media.

If people like me have to write to people like you about obvious anti-male bias in your reportage, and in order to attempt to justify objections to slogans like "boys are stupid, throw rocks at them," then I suppose there is insufficient rationality in your organization for even common sense to matter. And that doesn't say much for your newspaper, or the ethics of its publisher and editors.

Leo Buccellato
Fort Collins

Editor's note: Okay, that's it. Since Jason Heller wrote his 260-word piece on Todd Goldman, the author ofBoys Are Stupid, Throw Rocks at Them, who was coming to town for a May 13 book signing,Westword has been flooded with dozens of e-mails from around the country, calling Heller everything from a "communist" to a "college-inspired idealist" (ow!) to "immature and unprofessional" (okay), and demanding "that he be terminated immediately to help restore faith in your services" (that from a person in Michigan who's likely never experienced our services). For the record, Heller wrote about Goldman's art, not the men's-rights movement; he never suggested that "fathers are asking for special rights in custody of their children." In fact, althoughWestword reporters have written about the father's-rights movement many times, it's not a topic we'd assign to an entertainment writer. Entertaining though the responses -- e.g., "feminists are akin to the KKK" -- might be.

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