The Hating Game
In the May 6 issue, I read first in Patricia Calhoun's "The Ten Commandments," then in Kenny Be's Worst-Case Scenario, of Vikki Buckley attributing the Columbine shootings to "new-age hate crimes." What I want is for someone to corner this feeder at the public trough and ask her to define her statement. Since she works for Colorado taxpayers, this Colorado taxpayer wants to know what she meant by that statement.

Hate crimes are hardly a "new-age" idea. They are carried out by folks who subscribe to one of the oldest philosophies on earth: the philosophy that one should hate and kill that which is different. That's not new-age, for folks who think they know what the term means. It's been around since the Cro-Magnons and Neanderthals. It is what put six million Jews on Hitler's list and 1,200 on Schindler's list. The hatred of the different is what put Matthew Shepard on a fence in Wyoming.

I feel that Ms. Buckley must be called into account for her words and have to back them up publicly. No mealy-mouthed apology: Put up or get outta town.

Chris Tucker
via the Internet

While reading Calhoun's "The Ten Commandments," I circled the quote "new-age hate crimes," already composing in my mind a letter asking for clarification on whether Buckley or the Shoels family had said it and noting the insidious "newspeak" implications. Then I turned the page and saw that good old Kenny Be was on the same wavelength. You are the greatest one-two punch in journalism today!

Also, Doc Presser, in his letter from the same issue, sounded like a 1920s socialist pamphleteer in attributing the sole cause for the Columbine shootings to the "capitalist system." This is fundamentally true, but these and other such perpetrators are not sweatshop kids lashing out against class oppression. Nor are they children of the Weather Underground, like the Unabomber and the militia movement. They are indolent, dispassionate children suffering from the advanced, final stages of a pandemic disease called "affluenza." Cases promise to become less isolated...

Jim Bernath

Dear Diary...
In the May 6 issue, why did you print the alleged "Heston's NRA Stand" diary entries when you said you "were unable to verify their authenticity by press time"?

Forrest DeYoung
via the Internet

Editor's note: Had we waited until the Red Sea parted, Heston's diary still would not have been authenticated--because we made it up.

Next Items on the Agenda
Patricia Calhoun: I am shocked and dismayed that you think that threats of violence against a politician and his family are a good thing ("Opportunism Knocks," April 29). I assume you only think this is positive as long as the politician disagrees with your agenda. I can imagine the screams from the rooftops if it had been Pat Schroeder getting the threats. I refer, of course, to your crude remarks about the threats against Doug Dean that he considers serious enough to warrant removing himself from public service. I thought you were supposed to be the pacifist. I thought you abhorred threats and violence. I am very confused. Maybe you would like to take a minute and explain this: Is it because your hatred toward the man overran your common sense?

I think very highly of your paper and, in particular, I think you do a very fine job. That said, please make yourself clear on this. It pissed me off the first time I read it, and it continued to piss me off the second and third time. I am not a fan of Mr. Dean, but I am a fiscal conservative with a liberal tilt toward social issues. I'll bet this describes a much larger portion of your readership than you feel comfortable with.

I am appalled by the idea of anyone being driven from office by threats. Even my most hated politician, Wellington Webb, deserves to serve the term to which he was elected. I would not celebrate if he decided that he could no longer serve his term due to threats to himself or his family. I sincerely hope that you feel the same way about Mr. Dean.

Eugene Wofford
via the Internet

According to one letter in the May 6 issue responding to Calhoun's April 29 column, capitalism is the root cause of the Columbine shooting.

If we could collect a dollar from everyone with an agenda who's been grinding their political and social axes over the incident, we'd be so rich we wouldn't need capitalism.

Stewart Vardaman

Oh, Patricia--please! Are we really to believe that, of your entire readership, the only reply to our pointing out the callous disregard for life in America today was the May 6 letter pretending to be shocked at Colorado Right to Life's extremism?

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