Letters to the Editor

Mad TV

Regarding T.R. Witcher's "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised!" in the March 30 issue:

What a typical Denver story: A legitimate bid for a building is rejected so that the city can play favorites with a certain political faction. But this time, the joke is on the Hispanic activists. They may be gaining an office building, but they are losing their own Hispanic TV channel!

I laugh every time I drive by the old DA's building. Good work, Westword!

J. Rosen

On March 27, I saw the Denver Post's "special advertising feature" on the Denver Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, with a picture of Sol Trujillo as the head of the campaign to finish the Bernie Valdez Hispanic Heritage Center. Why doesn't Smilin' Sol just pay for the project himself? The $3.5 million is pocket change for Mr. US West. And he should have plenty left over for the cable channel we were promised by another rich telecommunications company.

John Vigil
via the Internet

How does a black coalition manage to "snatch" a whole access TV channel?

Black Star Communications's new Colours channel was created by removing one of our local community-access channels, Channel 55, which was a request channel for re-airing locally produced access TV programs. Now what we have is an infomercial channel for paid advertisements on what was once a public access channel. Exactly where is this revenue going? And where is the promised six hours of programming that was supposed to go with this agreement?

I questioned the Denver Office of Telecommunications and was given a well-rehearsed reply that later appeared in a February 28 memorandum from Darryn Zuehlke, assistant director of the office. Assurances were made that the disappearance of Channel 55 as a community-access channel is temporary. When AT&T reconfigures, Denver Community TV will get back another channel. Sure it will.

Mayor Wellington Webb is quoted in T.R. Witcher's piece as saying, "Not only is this a good community project, it's a smart business project." Sure it is.

Who are these people and where is the money from this Colours channel going? It sounds like another Webb-administration giveaway to the black community. (I'm thinking about Eulipions, a storefront operation, suddenly acquiring a "mausoleum" on Sherman Street for next to nothing, then a strange board-of-directors takeover followed by a "for sale" sign for triple what was paid for the building and backed up by several loans from the city.)

I was shocked to find the whole board of DCTV and the management and office staff (minus a few very essential people) gone! No one is talking about this cloud-covered purge; they claim to know nothing about what happened at Denver Community Television.

When are the people in this city going to wake up and begin questioning some of these deals? Am I the only person in this city who thinks this is odd?

Tony Palange

Editor's note: Producer Tony Palange took DCTV to court after an explicit, gay-themed program he'd made was blocked from airing; in 1995 a jury ruled in his favor, but awarded just $1 in damages. For more on Palange, see Michael Roberts's "Censuring the Censor," September 14, 1994; Palange also makes a brief appearance in Roberts's "Access Denied," in the February 10 issue. And for more on Elipions, see T.R. Witcher's "All the World's an Empty Stage," from our January 6 issue. Those stories, as well as complete archives dating back to 1994, are available online at http://www.westword.com/search/.

Pulp Fiction

Regarding Michael Roberts's "Paper Trail," the March 30 installment of The Message:

It comes as no surprise that one of the major dailies in the Rocky Mountain region is, bluntly put, cooking the books when it comes to circulation numbers. Keep looking and I'll bet you will find the same or similar practice in numerous other dailies.

Why are the numbers off? Why do these rags need to cook the books? Because I, for one, have stopped reading them, either in print or on the Web. Most of a given issue of a given newspaper is advertisements -- not news. And what is passed off as news is nothing more than a well-constructed lie. So why bother to even give them a glance?

If the egotists, the sycophants, the whores that peddle these pulps of sorts wanted to do something right and proper, they would fold up and slither away in the dark of the night.

Given that they are cowards, liars and frauds, they won't.

James C. Hess
via the Internet

Bad News

What is with you people at Westword? Have you ever met a young criminal and simply accepted the fact that he is not misunderstood, not wrongfully charged -- but a flat-out criminal? The most recent case in point is Josh Beckius, so ardently defended by Juliet Wittman in "This Boy's Life," in the March 23 issue. But just two weeks before, Justin Berton went to bat for Aurora's bad boys in "Left for Dead."

What does it take for you to recognize that some people are simply bad?

Jay Hanley

I read Juliet Wittman's article on Joshua Beckius with great interest. She implies that Joshua is "Mexican" because of his looks and accent. It is my understanding that to be a Mexican, the individual should be born in that country. Innuendos are not part of a good news story.

Don Tafoya
via the Internet

Census and Sensibility

No matter what census term Harrison Fletcher chooses to indicate his background ("What's in a Name?" March 30), one word definitely applies to him: Writer.

Jane Brophy
via the Internet

The census form is intrusive and insulting to all citizens -- particularly citizens of Hispanic (or whatever you choose to call it) descent. I, for one, will not be returning it to our government.

Name withheld on request

Dead On

Thank you, Justin Berton! Thank you for the detail and the perspective so well-presented in your March 9 article "Left for Dead," on Alan Conner's murder and Sharon Conner and Tanya Coleman's grief-ridden struggles with the Aurora Police Department. The APD's actions here are incredible. Please pray that the accused righteous public defenders are not able to spin this so Mosley is able to continue his deadly assault on society. Or are we all too desensitized and too accustomed to this now to care?

At the time of the murder, I read stories by the Denver Post, 9News and the Rocky Mountain News with the interest of a friend of the family and a former resident of the area. They misreported the situation and the less-than-accredited response of the APD. When encouraged, they seemed less than interested in the disturbing facts surrounding the shooting that suggested further inquiry.

I also believe the response during the Columbine shootings was a cowardly "wait and see if they run out of ammo and try to escape out the back door" response while unarmed kids faced assailants with automatic weapons and people lay bleeding to death on the floor. Recently, it was reported that a task force was created by Jefferson County to investigate means by which distribution of "misinformation" can be controlled during such events. It seems that for the protection of the "official incompetents," only the official story should be known. But we all know via pocket phones and news footage what the timeline at Columbine was, who was where, and that the only kids to be confronted by law enforcement were the innocents. May those who lay dying for hours on the floor of that school now rest in peace, and those who follow find hope that this will not happen again. But it may, and we can only hope that those with whom we entrust the enforcement of our traffic speeds can get training in the use of the weaponry and tactics that seem to be so easily learned these days by the fringe elements of our society.

Alan Conner died alone in the dark, possibly with the hope that someone would rescue him. Had he known that his "alleged" shooter allegedly beat someone blind with a baseball bat and was not even charged by those same police officers who could not find him there, bleeding to death, the anger alone might have kept him alive.

That is disturbing. And I am angry, still.

For Justin Berton to write this article, it is apparent that Westword was not too comfortably reliant on the local police's spokespeople to get the "facts," since this is not the PR the police hope to receive. Well done!

And even if Mosley (or, as he will be referred to at trial by his attorney, Mr. Mosley) slithers away, we can be certain that Aurora's finest will stand vigilant to protect us all from another criminal doing six miles over the posted speed limit. For Sharon, Frank, Adam and Audra Conner, may they find some peace through justice served.

Steven Weber
via the Internet

South by So What?

Regarding Laura Bond's March 30 Backwash:

I am truly disgusted with Laura Bond's ill representation of Austin, Texas. If she had half of the intellect and personality of an unflushed toilet, she would make the trip to Austin and experience the true down-home yet spiritual experience of such an awesome town...and I'm not even religious. If she did venture out of her bubble, then she must have been blindfolded, because Austin has gorgeous lakes, nightlife, incredible edibles and friendly folks. Apology expected...


Amy Simmons
via the Internet

Interesting article. Laura Bond should know, however, that the rock-music scene in Austin did exist prior to 1987. Has she ever heard of Janis Joplin -- or was she before her time?

Tony Sharp
via the Internet

Arms and the Man

I have a question I would like to ask Mr. Jones of Nederland, the author of a letter in the March 30 issue:

What well-regulated militia does he belong to?

Eric Olson


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