By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
Get your buzz on: So, according to Mark Stepnoski ("Steppin' Out," October 31), we should grab us a couple of joints and enjoy it in the comfort of our homes, and whether we have a family or are in a car full of kids, just light up. Maybe your kids will start taking whiffs of the smoke and start diving into the parent's private stash just out of curiosity. Ahhh, nothing like seeing your 13-year-old on a nice buzz, huh, Mark? And then maybe the buzz isn't quite enough, and the little tyke may want something a little stronger, or hell, anything to take him over the edge, like glue or paint.
Hell, Mark, let's start pushing that in addition to Mary Jane--why stop at pot? Mark, you don't have any kids, do you? My respect for Mark would not have changed even if I was around him while he toked. But for him to advocate that everything is cool to legalize this junk, my respect for him just dropped a few notches.
Harmless hemp: I was thrilled to read about the Dallas Cowboy who has now dedicated himself to dispelling the myths about marijuana.
In the year before 9/11, this country arrested 750,000 pot smokers and two international terrorists. A plant that has, by the government's own admission, killed not one human being gets all the attention, while New York burns.
Alcohol and tobacco kill millions, Al Qaeda kills thousands, yet we're spending our resources banning a plant that hasn't killed anyone and in fact has many proven medical uses.
Just a plant: Good for Mark. It takes a lot of courage to speak out against unjust laws. Someday, hopefully soon, this country will stop arresting sick people and everyday Americans for possessing a simple plant. It should be a freedom of choice--that's what this country is all about.
Breezy Bill: How truly sad that this mess within the Dallas Police Department and the district attorney's office can go by with such little outcry from the public ("Mr. No Apology," October 31). Sadly, Bill Hill will probably breeze right into another term. The city will be sued for multimillions, and we taxpayers will have to pay, and Chief Bolton will keep his job, and it's business as usual in Dallas. And so on, and so on.
Hard-hitting: Hats off to Jim Schutze for his hard-hitting reporting on the political life of our city. When it comes time for me to cast my vote, I find it very difficult to get in-depth information on the candidates. Whenever I see Jim's byline I read the article. Keep it up, I'm voting for Craig Watkins.
The shame: Thanks to Jim Schutze for his article on Bill Hill's office. The unlawful imprisonment of innocent people is a shame on Dallas and validates negative stereotypes about Texas and, specifically, Dallas. Dallas could be an international city, but it isn't and it won't be for a long time, if ever, for this and other very obvious reasons. Dallas District Attorney Bill Hill and Dallas police Chief Terrell Bolton are examples of reprehensible "good ol' boy" attitudes. We like to feel superior to Third World countries where innocent people can be unjustly jailed, but we are living in a place where that not only has happened but also seems to be accepted (wink, wink, nod, nod).
In addition to the shame and corruption that have led to citizens of Dallas being unjustly jailed, we have a Dallas school board with a history of racial divisiveness that has at times led to the lowest common denominator of physical fighting. Instead of thinking of the education of our children, the school board has bogged down for years with vain selfishness and meanness. This is enough to hold Dallas back, but let us also consider the big-money boys in Dallas (you know who you are) who could help make downtown Dallas into that international city it could be while still making a profit, but haven't because they would rather take advantage of the city.
Dallas could be an international city, but for reasons such as these it is no more than a very, very big town. I love Dallas and know it could be so much more than a place that falsely imprisons innocent people. We need to expect more.
Seeing red: I live out here in Southern California and have no involvement in your community whatsoever, but my face flushed crimson to purple when I read about your Bolton and Hill. Lawmen like that are an embarrassment to this country.
Copping a Plea
Miller lover: As a civilian employee with the city of Dallas, it is quite evident to me what Jim Schutze is trying to do. He is trying to stay in good with Mayor Miller. I wish that civilian employees were as organized as the uniformed officers ("Those Poor Starvin' Cops," October 10); then we would not be used to always balance the budget.