By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
Death-defying: Great article ("Bull Riding," by John Gonzalez, July 22); besides big-wave surfers and race car drivers, you ask, who else risks their life in pursuit of sport? Bull riders--one man, 130 to 200 pounds, against a 1,500- to 2,000-pound bull full of testosterone and vinegar. And you may not have noticed, but today's bulls are getting smarter. Keep up the good work.
The end is near: "I would love it if we played the Deathray Davies, but they're not a mainstream band" (And Another Thing, by Sarah Hepola, July 22). What? When the assistant program director of a so-called alternative radio station gives that as a reason not to play a great rock-and-roll band FROM HIS OWN TOWN, we know the end is near. Since when is being mainstream the criterion for playing a NEW band? That's how we end up with radio stations only playing bands that sound like other bands on the radio. Or is he saying he really doesn't have control over the programming at the Edge? I hope it's the latter. Anyone who listened to the DRD's last record could tell you that it could easily fit into a "modern rock" playlist, if only the program directors had the balls to take a chance.
St. Louis, Missouri
Looking for the real D.O. : I used to think that your newspaper was just a repository for revisionist historians, conspiracy theorists and assorted other fruitcakes. When I read the Letters to the Editor section of this week's paper and saw that you actually published letters pointing out the errors in your movie critic's review of Fahrenheit 9/11, I just had to write and tell you how impressed I was.
Would it be too much to expect a detailed article from you pointing out the assorted fallacies, logic errors and distortions presented as "facts" in that movie? Probably so. But the fact that you actually published letters that state a different opinion is impressive enough.
I think I will start reading your paper for a little while at least to see if this is for real or just an aberration.
Good people: The implications and innuendo in your story implying that political contributions by Dan Patterson may have influenced the historical property tax abatements he received for his Lakewood property are unfair ("Home Suh-weet Home," by Paul Kix, July 8). Your reporter states that the Pattersons are "good people," and that is correct and should be the end of the story. I have always known Dan to conduct his personal and business affairs with the highest integrity and ethical and moral standards. I truly doubt that there is any correlation between Mr. Patterson's contribution to his councilman's campaign and the residential abatement he received for his historic home.
Rise up, bus riders: Jim Schutze is so right about the arrogance--no, the hubris--of Dallas Area Rabid Transit ("DART Guns," by Jim Schutze, July 8). Carolyn Davis' letter in your July 15 issue mirrors my own experience. DART's employees know that the agency has, ultimately, little or no effective accountability. I have had to call dozens, if not hundreds of times, about rude and confrontational drivers, late or completely missed stops and (most inexplicably) buses that run early. A bus running late from time to time is inevitable, but there's no excuse for the bus zipping by your stop five or more minutes before its scheduled time. The frustration you feel when you see the bus roll on past as you're heading for the stop is almost indescribable.
DART's general lack of competence is astounding, from the basics of dealing with their ridership all the way up to their imbecilic route planning. The only amazing thing to me is that the entire citizenry of Dallas has yet to rise up en masse and say, "Enough! Goodbye, DART." It's way past time that DART was retired and replaced by an entity that can run the trains and buses on time and at least simulate some level of accountability. I try very hard to avoid riding them unless I really must--it's just not worth all the hassles. I will sign any anti-DART petition I hear about, and would love to see someone put together a Web page to bring their misdeeds and misbehavior into the light. DART is hardly a shining jewel in the crown of Dallas; it is an embarrassment that needs a complete overhaul, at minimum, to become marginally acceptable. World-class cities have world-class transit systems. Dallas, most certainly, does not.
Best regards, and big thanks to Jim Schutze for writing the story.
Elite inside: Students mentioned in this article, including my nephew Chris Bryant, should not waste energy worrying about why a particular university doesn't see the wisdom in having them as students ("Nice Kid, But..." by Zac Crain, June 17). Apparently, Chris continued his efforts for a "designer" university because he decided that Texas Tech was sub-level. These students need to recognize that their success in life will not be cast in concrete by the status of the college they attend. Graduates of elite universities may start their careers with advantages, but in the end, success will be determined by what they do with their education and how they actually live their lives.