World of Hurt; Yucky Bathrooms; Don't Call Home; Cops and Ravers; Legal Kidnappings; Clarification

Well, if it was her aim to do any of the above, then she is a considerably worse writer than I suspected. In fact, her article did not concentrate on any of these things to any substantial degree, but instead opted for the same old sensationalist point of view that we have come to expect. There were a number of things she could have done to produce a substantial commentary of the local, national, and international scene: 1. Gone to more than one party; 2. Spoke with more people who are involved with the scene; 3. Completed more secondary research on the scene, its inhabitants, and its choice of palliatives. I believe that if she would have performed any of these activities, she would have found the situation far more complex and beautiful than her subtle insults have indicated.

I personally have been a part of this city's dance-culture since the late '80s. I am in my late 20s now, work a professional corporate job, and still maintain a supporting role in the Dallas rave/party scene.

Also, I happen to be happier now than I have ever been. Most of that happiness is attributable to good choices at appropriate times, but I'd be lying if I said that drugs had nothing to do with that feeling. If anything, drugs like ecstasy have helped me fine-tune my moods in a way that I find much more desirable than being saddled with a Paxil prescription for the rest of my life.

Perhaps what I've just said isn't "man-bites-dog" enough for Ms. Singh or the Dallas Observer, but it is the other side of the coin--the side people don't seem to be paying attention to.

After it's all said and done, we will probably have to fight a new version of "cops and ravers" due to Ms. Singh's incomplete vision of our culture. This will not cause her to lose any sleep, and I can almost see her now sipping cocktails at Cuba Libre or Sipango with Becky Oliver, trading quips about those evil, drugged-out ravers.

Shawn Richburg

The children's best interests
As bizarre and unfortunate a situation as this story portrays ("Between Heaven and Hell," July 27), it is even more bizarre and unfortunate when children are "legally" allowed to be kidnapped and kept from a parent; this has occurred with the blessings of the very people and system that are entrusted with protecting children. If you read Brian Wallstin's story "Absent a Mother" from the Houston Press (houstonpress.com) this year, you will understand. I hope that my attempts to see my children, whom I have not seen in more than three years, will be successful soon. I wish the gentleman in this story good luck.

A big part of this problem lies in existing legislation, and the "broad powers" of judges who may or may not have any interest in children, much less the children's best interests. Hopefully the bright light of public exposure will bring about pos-itive changes.

Karen Shrader
Gun Barrel City

The Dallas Observer neglected to disclose in its August 17 cover story, "Sins of a Preacher Man," that state Sen. Florence Shapiro, who is mentioned in the article, is the sister of Observer staff writer Mark Donald. We regret the oversight.

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