By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Eric Nicholson
Where He Belongs
No hope, and rightfully so: It is comforting to know that Edwin Debrow Jr. ("12-year-old Killer," March 28, and "Boy in the Big House," April 4) is still behind bars. Let's hope he will remain there for the rest of his life. There should be no "small cause for hope" for someone such as Edwin. I was amused to read that being locked up for his entire teen-age life was the "saddest part of all." I am sure the family and friends of Curtis Edwards, the taxi driver he shot and killed, feel the same. He will be known as a "12-year-old killer" for the rest of his life because that is what he is. Let's hope that Ms. Lyons does not make the same mistake Norman Mailer and William Buckley made with their literary prison friends Jack Henry Abbott and Edgar Herbert Smith--both had a way with words, and both were released to kill again.
All about choices: This story has touched my heart, and I just wanted to tell you that. Having pulled myself up from what I now refer to as "crap," I am reminded that life is all about choice. I so wish that Edwin could have been given some choices that would have enabled him to have a better life. While nothing I endured can ever compare to what he has endured, I will wish and pray daily for him to be able to be free and actually have a life. His story is sad, but may he have a happy ending. As a native of Texas, I am not very proud of what the "justice system" has become there or even in this nation. Anyway, basically, I just wanted to let you know how the story affected me. Thank you.
No sympathy: I know that many associated with Debrow are trying hard to elicit sympathy for him, but he is a murderer and should have been executed long ago.
Cuban and Napster: Your article on Mark Cuban and the record business ("When Online Got Off Base," April 11) was right on. I have been in the record business for 30 years, and everything that Mr. Cuban says is absolutely correct. The heads of the labels are very old-school and very slow to react to change. Technology has created a chaotic state for the business, and until the powers that be create a new model, it will stay that way.
Keeping up with the Joneses: I hope Jerry Jones gave up some good money to the Dallas Observer for writing that multi-page advertisement for his new football toy ("Desperate Measures," April 4). Did you quote him your rate by words, or did you charge him by the column inch?
Something immoral: I read with interest your column about the 110 missing low-income houses ("Lost Houses," March 28). You are right on target with your comments and questions.
While the Dallas Housing Authority may have difficulty in determining what low and moderate income levels are, the federal government does not, and for each different program, the specific income and property price guidelines are given. While it is true that under certain federal programs a market-value house can be built and the builder subsidized up to a set amount to enable a lower-income buyer to purchase the house at a lower sales price than market, that is an easily definable and easily explained arrangement. It does not appear from your explanation that is what is being done here.
The bottom line once again is "how much money can be made by certain individuals by manipulating the system" rather than "how many people can be served and how can we do it and still allow the developer to make a living."
The purpose of the federal programs is to provide a way in which decent, up-to-date housing can be provided to low- and moderate-income buyers in a market that favors the high-end buyer. A manipulation of this system only exacerbates our housing problem. Further, there is something inherently immoral in moving people out of housing projects and replacing these projects with products these same people cannot afford.
Please do us all a favor and stay on this subject. We all pay federal taxes to support these programs. Any local participation is paid by the property owners of the city of Dallas and purchasers who buy within the city limits of Dallas.
This is everyone's business.
Me, Myself and I
OK, OK, we get the joke: I think Schutze typically covers excellent topics. Generally I enjoy reading your publication because it talks about things the DMN won't discuss, and I like that. I mean, I really enjoy being able to sit down on my couch at my house and read articles that provide me enjoyment. However, I think Schutze needs to do more research before he writes. That's just my opinion, but then maybe he wouldn't have to come back a few weeks later and get the rest of the story (see the Oak Cliff bus stories). I would rather go to my corner shop and pick up my copy of the paper and read it right the first time. I think your publication would get more respect that way. But hey, that's just my opinion.