"Night and Day," December 25
How I Loves Ya
I understand that Jesse Hughey was trying to be funny in regards to his blurb in the Night & Day section regarding the Backdoor Comedy Club's New Year's Eve show. What he failed to realize is that it's impossible to show sarcasm or facetiousness through text alone. Now if he were to say it onstage it might get the effect he was looking for. I've seen comedians do jokes about the stereotypes he mentioned in the article and get huge laughs (in fact, I have a joke about tech support as well). However, written funny and performance funny are two completely different things. In this case, the blurb just came across offensive. I expect the Observer to make fun of artists' material, performance, fan base, etc. But I've yet to see them slam a performer along racial lines. Now if this is how the Observer's now promoting shows, thanks for making me the test case. I look forward to the Martin Luther King Day issue and Jesse's stirring rendition of "Mammy" in blackface.
Paul Varghese, Dallas
I was just reading Jesse Hughey's article about the New Year's Eve comedy show. I realize Mr. Hughey's comments were meant in jest, but I feel that the editorial staff did a lousy job of making sure readers knew the difference between that and the perceived racism that his comments made and the editor's silence seems to support. His comments are easily misconstrued on the racist side of the line rather than the humor side. The comedy stage is the place for folks to say whatever they want to say about any subject. A paper has to be more careful about looking like it supports racism in its impartial pages as that would show bias, something a newspaper, even an entertainment weekly, isn't supposed to have. I sincerely hope that the Dallas Observer knows the difference and will spell this out in the apologies section of your paper.
Dan Schlissel, Minneapolis
I would just like to say that the story about Paul's NYE show was one of the most offensive things I've read in a long time. I can't believe that it was allowed to be published. You should be ashamed that those comments were allowed to be printed in your paper.
Josh Luna, McKinney
"Empty Hugs," by Megan Feldman, December 18
Best Years of Their Lives
Thank you for alerting the public to the financial challenges faced by local organizations providing support for the families of America's fallen soldiers.
Since being founded by surviving military families in 1994, TAPS, the Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (www.taps.org), has provided a national network of resources, information, comfort and care free of charge, 24/7, for all those who are grieving the loss of a loved one in the U.S. armed forces. While many newly founded organizations focus on combat deaths, TAPS is the nonprofit organization reaching out to all who have suffered a loss in the military, regardless of circumstance or geography of the death. Families who have experienced a loss as a result of suicide, illness, combat and accident are among the more than 25,000 attending our national network of care groups, good grief camps for children and regional seminars for adults.
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Many surviving families will move away from their military installation to another community after the death, and this is where our national network, which reaches beyond military base communities, can offer support and help families integrate into their new local community. We provide survivors with peer-based emotional support, grief and trauma resources, case management assistance, and crisis intervention care—no matter where life may take them in the days and years after their loss. Now more than ever, we need for the American people to stand up and take care of the families who are left behind.
Bonnie Carroll, founder and chairman, Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS)
In a piece about the Cotton Bowl last week we mentioned "the most infamous play of the 1954 classic, when Rice's Dicky Moegle scrambled off the bench to tackle free-and-clear Alabama player Tommy Lewis at the 42-yard line." Actually, it was Lewis who tackled Moegle, with Rice going on to win the game 28-6. Sorry, Rice fans. Thanks for setting us straight.