Hearts and Glowers
Robin Chotzinoff's "Detective Lynch Gets Her Man," in the February 11 issue, was a wonderful valentine to love--and a real shocker to find in Westword.
Since when did you decided to run heartwarming stories? Next thing you know, you'll be running a pet column.

Francie Dillon
via the Internet

I don't know how Chotz does it, but she's done it again. Human interest that's human and interesting. Oh, yeah--and ironic and whimsical. Randy Newman should write a song.

Robert Poulk
via the Internet

The Lot Sickens
Regarding Harrison Fletcher's "Chicanery Row," in the February 4 issue:
I'm really amazed that someone has finally taken notice! My mom lives in Thornton Mobile Estates (another of ARC's recently acquired properties), and her lot rent is now going to take 75 percent of her Social Security. She has many health problems, and working or even finding someone willing to hire her is a problem. Let's face facts: My mom cannot afford to buy toilet paper any longer. I say it's time to reach out to ARC's investors and let them know just where their investment monies are coming from. Let's all get together and get even with ARC for abusing the old, disabled and poor!

Please, Westword, keep publishing articles on ARC and its damage. Good luck to John the Depressed Guy, and God help all of those in ARC's parks.

Paula Hillyard

Give Them a Hand
Stuart Steer's February 11 "Survey Says," on the state's survey of O'Hara Regional Center for Rehabilitation, was upsetting. The point he made in the article that stood out was the reimbursement rate paid by Medicaid to facilities caring for people with such high need for care. To reimburse a facility $214 a day for 24-hour room, board and medical care is less than $9 per hour. Talk about tying a facility's hands! How can our country's medical system ever expect to care for our constantly growing elderly population at these rates? Short-staffing is a chronic problem in our entire economy right now. How can a medical facility expect to attract qualified people when its hands are tied by a system that refuses to keep up with competition?

I feel for the people who have worked so hard to care for the patients at O'Hara. They should be proud of the work they did to bring their facility back to state standards. This facility does the hardest work in health care, as far as I am concerned: caring for the people who can't pay top dollar but have the most serious of medical conditions. It is disgusting to me that lawyers would even consider bringing this case. It's our system that's created the problem, not a facility trying to provide loving care with no resources!

Jennifer Woodard
via the Internet

Not Another Silly Love Song
I just wanted to point something out in your February 11 issue. One article is about O'Hara Regional Center, and the very next one is Juliet Wittman's "Eternally Yours," about Gloria Lamar, who ended up in Heritage center. That's the same place. The reason I know this is that I'm a music therapist, and I played music for Gloria and Tom Hoh. It was one of the most profound experiences of my life--the love between the two of them was unending.

Edee Gail

God bless you, Gloria Lamar. And may you burn in hell, Donald Bauman, you cheating bastard.

John Rael
via the Internet

Great writing style in "Eternally Yours." Gloria Lamar's story is tragic...but Juliet Wittman's done a great job of telling it.

P.S.: I've watched alternative newspapers across the country, and Westword is every bit as good as the papers from the bigger towns. Thanks for being here. And thanks for printing Savage Love. Fuck the wimps...he's great!

Larry Eschenbacher
via the Internet

Since Donald Bauman was a stalker, did he ever stalk Gloria? And forget the legal technicalities--he owes her way more than $1,000 in restitution. Where is this creep's conscience?

Carolyn Billick
via the Internet

Editor's note: No, Bauman did not stalk Gloria Lamar. And that $1,000 in restitution was determined by the Boulder District Attorney's Office, which did not increase the amount after Bauman's financial resources were revealed.

First Amendment Things First
As a "faggot" reader of Westword, I was not surprised by the anti-sentiments aimed at your awesome decision to run the Savage Love column. Needless to say, I am not shocked by the ignorant, politically correct fascist views of the letters' authors, either. I would like to say to these people that if you are going to judge something, become familiar with it first--that is, before you "attempt" to defend "a cause." First and foremost, Mr. Savage does not refer to others as faggots; he refers to himself as the faggot. Duh! Furthermore, plenty of black people refer to themselves as "niggers." Where is your letter to HBO for presenting Chris Rock's show, Mr. Goodrum?

Anyway, to those who are just too sensitive to get the joke--just to fill you in, the joke's on you! Political correctness has been exposed as a fascist, one-dimensional ideology created by those who demand what others can or cannot say because they are just "too sensitive." The majority of people are sick of this--hence the popularity of the above-mentioned and more. Instead of policing what others read, why don't you just turn the page or change the channel? This is America. Can we say "First Amendment"?

Name withheld on request
via the Internet

Don't Mock It Till You've Tried It
I am no fan of organized religion. I gave up on it long ago and don't miss the hypocrisy of the leaders and many members of every Christian denomination that I've investigated.

However, I cannot fathom why Westword mocks Jesus Christ with "Jesus of the Week." His teachings are a marvelous gift to humankind. If everyone, including those who claim to be Christians, lived according to his teachings, this world would be close to paradise.

Mocking Jesus Christ shows, in my opinion, a small mind. Yes, anyone who wants to mock him has a right to do so. Is it an intelligent thing to do? I think not. Do you have to put it in your paper?

Allen Peacock
via the Internet

Editor's note: Not this week. "Jesus of the Week" is sitting out this issue so that we can introduce a new comic, M. Wartella's "Nuts." Check it out on page 28. (This is the first of several changes we'll be making to our cartoon selection--feel free to share your opinions with us via the means listed at the end of Letters.)

Some Came Running
Many thanks to Kenny Be for the January 28 John Elway parody, and for all of his moments of humor and insight over the years.

It is precisely because of this humor and insight that I am proposing that Kenny Be run for mayor of this great city. In light of the dearth of candidates to challenge Mr. Webb, I believe it is time for Mr. Kenny Be to rise to the occasion and put the glory back into the Queen City of the Plains. I mean, here we are in the middle of an incredibly vibrant economy, and all we do is bitch about what's wrong with the city and worry about how we can make more money. Where is the joy, enthusiasm and celebration? A great city is judged by the beauty it inspires.

What do you think, Kenny Be? We need you.
Robert C. Leach
via the Internet

Ticket to Pride
Just to be persnickety (and, yes, some people out there use that word), in his February 11 letter, Lee Whitfield changes Marx's most infamous quote and misquotes at the same time. The original quote is "Religion is the opiate of the masses." Marx never writes "ignorant" in there, and in the context of the day, a modern quote analogous to Marx's would be "Religion is the aspirin of the masses."

However, saying "Football is the opiate of the masses" is still fairly accurate, as it brings a lot of people together in civic pride and relieves the pains of everyday life. Being able to say "World Champion Denver Broncos" brought a smile to my face last year, and I look forward to the smiles I will have when I say "Back-to-Back World Champion Denver Broncos."

A.J. Hernandez

A Shot in the Dark
I was hoping the Jock Sturges show at the Camera Obscura Gallery would merit more than Michael Paglia's February 4 Artbeat blurb. A Sturges show, and reactions to it, seem to make us confront some of our deepest, darkest, most uncomfortable attitudes--as individuals and as a society--about sexuality.

Indeed, even Paglia's mini-review could not avoid the controversy: Does he really believe his last sentence, wherein he states that the photographs--mostly of adolescent, nude females--are "unnerving" and "bristle with inappropriate eroticism"? If this is true, then Paglia is philosophically in tune with the religious-right protesters he mentioned two sentences before his summation, because there would be no way to "appropriately" present the subject matter: Sturges photos are simple, natural, direct and lack the staged artiness of, say, David Hamilton, a photographer with similar interests. Whatever eroticism exists may be inherent in the subject matter--or it may lie in the eye of the beholder--but in either case, can it be considered "inappropriate"? That is a judgment possible only in a repressive, Puritan-based society like ours. What Sturges's work is really about is honesty, openness and freedom--qualities unfortunately in direct conflict with a society hellbent on keeping alive its twin psychoses when it comes to sexuality and the body.

Peter Hodge

Bottle Babies
I didn't appreciate Gallo's sarcastic pan of the new Kevin Costner flick Message in a Bottle ("Return to Sender," February 11), about a man writing love letters to his dead wife, putting them into a bottle and throwing them out to sea. I believe Gallo said it was too far-fetched or sappy to believe.

When my wife died ten months ago yesterday, I promised her that I would always love her. So about every week or so, I write a little love note, put it into a helium balloon and launch it skyward.

I believe it, Bill.
Roger Fulton

Everybody Must Get Stones
Michael Roberts's February 11 "Content Analysis" of the Rolling Stones was humorous and insightful, although (as usual) I disagree with some of what he had to say. First of all, Keith Richards has been elegantly wasted for twenty-plus years now--that's his rock-and-roll image--but his energy for touring is just as strong as Jagger's (he just shows it much differently!). Ron Wood had a bad cold, so that's why he wasn't peppy; Charlie Watts has always been a quiet sort. So, despite what Roberts thinks, I believe the Stones are good for another fifteen years on the road--especially the satanically majestic Mick Jagger (he's simply amazing).

Although I agree with Roberts that "Sympathy for the Devil" wasn't as "creepy" as it could have been, I thought that "Paint It Black" was performed very "creepily" indeed. But "Midnight Rambler" was the cherry on top--seeing them perform that song alone was worth the price of admission. Thanks, Michael Roberts, for writing another enjoyable review.

Lisa D.
via the Internet

I have two comments to make about the February 11 Westword, which was, as always, very stimulating and thought-provoking.

1) In Michael Roberts's review of the Rolling Stones, he compared Keith Richards to Charlie Callas (a comparison that might well have some substance). He then said that Callas "[has] been dead for quite a while." I would like to point out that Mr. Callas is not deceased. His most recent appearance was a cameo in the 1995 Leslie Nielsen film Dracula...Dead and Loving It.

2) I was very intrigued by Kyle Wagner's comments in Mouthing Off about Ethiopian restaurants. As I have stated in the past, it is nice to see a food critic bring as much knowledge and enthusiasm to her work as she clearly does. Kyle Wagner was wondering about the food at Axum Ethiopian Restaurant: It is wonderful.

Mark Tunnell
via the Internet

Soul Food
I love you, Kyle Wagner. You're the best food writer I've ever read. I've never found you to be wrong about a restaurant. Your reviews are about feeding people, not foodies and their puerile, plate-painting fads. You know about ingredients, their properties, cooking techniques, running restaurants, kitchen hygiene, good service, good value and world cuisines. I also like your recipes. I'm your first fan.

Maybe you and serious diners in this town can eventually run out the mediocre Cheesecake Factories and the squirrel-sweetbreads-with-goat-cheese-and-dillberry-salsa joints.

Mark McCue

Letters policy: Westword wants to hear from you, whether you have a complaint or compliment about what we write from week to week. Letters should be no more than 200 words; we reserve the right to edit for libel, length and clarity. Although we'll occasionally withhold an author's name on request, all letters must include your name, address and telephone number. Write to:

Westword Letters Editor
P.O. Box 5970
Denver, CO 80217
or e-mail (include your full name and hometown) to: editorial@westword.com.

Missed a story? The editorial contents of Westword, dating back to July 1, 1996, are available online at www.westword.com/archive/index.html.


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