A Matter of Corpse
Regarding "Deliverance" by Arthur Hodges in the March 30 issue:
Mr. Arthur Hodges, you are a sick and twisted writer...I love it!
The Edge of Right
Regarding "Life on the Edge" by Karen Bowers in the March 23 issue:
Our town is not strange--it's your reporter and what sounds like a few disgruntled politicians. We need more judges like Ben Klein. Maybe there would not be as much crime. No, we are not all elderly (and so what?) and we do not all live in clapboard homes. We raised three wonderful children here with good values. This is a great community.
If "quirky" means a city that is in the black financially, with a police chief who is winning the war with gangs, with a judge who will not tolerate a thirty-year-old man harassing a mailman and threatening a senior citizen--so be it.
"Weird" is the word I would use for a reporter who brings up the past of a city that took place a hundred years ago. Red light district, so what! Denver has always had red light districts and who the heck cares? Weird is when it seems this reporter has a twisted vendetta. The truth will never be known, but I bet at some time she got a speeding ticket in our city.
As for our judge, at least we know where he has been and how far he has been able to pull himself back up. We are proud of him. As for our whining ex-councilperson, every city has some, so what!
As the co-author of the book Lethal Secrets, the Psychology of Donor Insemination, I was very pleased to see Steve Jackson's "Theories of Relativity," the story of Greg Wiatt and his experiences with donor insemination, in the March 2 issue.
I had the privilege of meeting Greg in Boulder following the publication of my book. It was indeed a comfort to Greg to know that he was not alone, but rather one of many of hundreds of thousands of people born through donor insemination. What "donor offsprings" like Greg have in common is that the medical profession that has controlled donor insemination for the past hundred years decided the process should be kept in total secrecy; therefore, it was not necessary to keep records and they could be destroyed. Anonymous donors were used and sperm was often mixed, so that when donor offspring like Greg Wiatt decided to search, they found themselves confronting a concrete wall, virtually impossible to penetrate.
Our research has shown that donor insemination is indeed a widespread phenomenon, contrary to popular belief. It may surprise your readers to know that it is three times as prevalent as adoptions. It is so widely practiced because donor sperm is readily available and simple to administer. It is not only the specialists in infertility who are able to inseminate parents: Every general practitioner in every small town can easily become an expert. In fact, our research found that many doctors would use their own sperm for women who came asking for donor insemination.
People like Greg Wiatt have opened the door to a greater understanding of this phenomenon and the psychological impact of the secrecy and mystique that has surrounded the practice of donor insemination. Let us hope that as we move into the world of high-tech pregnancies, we will recognize the importance of openness and honesty and the importance to every human being of knowing who he is and where he comes from.
Pacific Palisades, California
The Doctor Is In
I write this letter in response to Steve Jackson's March 16 article, "Ill Will." I work with Dr. Adam Myers at Denver General Hospital. His dedication, excellence in delivering care, and compassion with all his patients are his trademarks. His work with patients with AIDS at Denver Health and Hospitals is superb. Dr. Myers's integrity is beyond reproach. For Lance Clem to say that Dr. Myers "spends only 1 percent of his time with AIDS patients" is absurd, as is his false reporting of Dr. Myers's salary. Mr. Clem's accusations against Dr. Myers are broad strokes that reek of hostility of a personal nature rather than facts. Has Lance Clem been with Dr. Myers at AIDS patients' homes while making house calls? Has Mr. Clem seen Dr. Myers in his AIDS clinic seeing between thirty and forty patients during the week in addition to other responsibilities? And Dr. Myers is not alone on the front treating AIDS patients at DGH. There are other physicians and health-care providers who make Denver and specifically DHH a model for AIDS patient care.
I cannot speak about the workings of the Governor's AIDS Council. Yes, there are politics in health-care issues, especially regarding AIDS. Mr. Clem may have been a victim of these "politics," but to lash out in what sounds like a personal vendetta against Adam Myers is certainly taking the low road. Mr. Clem needs another job and Dr. Myers needs our continued support. Everyone needs to be accountable for their actions, and this letter is written to state the truth. Dr. Myers gives back much more than he takes. His ethics, his quality and quantity of care delivered to AIDS patients at DHH can withstand any scrutiny. Let the truth be known.
Paul Bregman, M.D. (with support of DGH staff)
Denver General Hospital
Are You a Man or a Mouth?
Reviewers (restaurant, music, art, anything) should know that loyal readers look for an ongoing relationship with someone they can trust. The reviewer requirements are a lot of soul (Kyle Wagner's got that in spades when it comes to food) and to remain unfailingly objective.
When Kyle Wagner proclaims in the March 30 Mouthing Off that she'd "settle for edible seafood in Denver," she is showcasing either her ignorance of what's available or her pretentiousness and lack of objectivity--neither of which makes for the great relationship.
Denver has a commendably diverse restaurant scene that's (I think she'd agree) getting better all the time. Kyle's writing almost always hits the nail right on the head. Please don't let her sell Denver, herself and me short with all-knowing, ill-informed comments.
I just read Kyle Wagner's March 23 Mouthing Off, and I have a lot of problems with it. I'm a male chef and I think that her whole orientation has been very feminist and not really objective. I resent the fact that her column is so one-sided. I have worked with some female waitstaff who are even vulgar: grabbing men's butts, saying what a cute ass.
Seeing as how Westword has a female editor and this is a female reviewer, somehow we're missing the all-around point of view, not just about how men are bad but also about how the industry in itself is bad. I think we should have a more objective, well-rounded journalistic approach to these things rather than an entirely feminist, one-sided, oh-my-god-the-men-are-after-us approach.
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Deep in the Art of Texas
I have to take exception to Michael Roberts's March 23 Feedback on Austin's annual SXSW music conference. I lived in Austin for years before I came to Denver, and I can tell you that in spite of being only one-fourth the size of the Denver metro area, Austin has a much bigger and more prolific music scene. Unlike Denver, which has seen so many clubs shut down in the past two years, Austin actively supports its local music--resulting in its being dubbed the "Third Coast," trailing only New York and L.A. in terms of original acts signed. Denver, on the other hand, has only two papers supporting the local music community (Westword and the new Denver Scene), and most local musicians are unable to support themselves through music alone. Perhaps Austin-based bands, with their financial and creative support through the community, are considered so much more polished and ready for major-label signing because of this local support. If the band is free to concentrate on the music, instead of working extra jobs, it follows that the music produced is probably going to be better. But for now, compared to such music, the bands appearing at SXSW from the Denver area (with a few notable exceptions, such as the Hippie Werewolves) are going to be passed over. Hopefully, Denver will start activating the public to go out and support this local music. Until then, however, music-based communities like Austin are going to keep overshadowing Denver. And, for now, rightly so.