Letters | News | Dallas | Dallas Observer | The Leading Independent News Source in Dallas, Texas


Annexation politics
In "Raw deal" [July 23], on governor emeritus (from the Latin "e" meaning "out," and "meritus" meaning "deserved to be") Clements' land by the south end of Lake Ray Hubbard, Jim Schutze gets the fundamentals of politics right. This is rare and difficult.

Schutze again shows what everyone but the laughably naive should already know, that governments are captured by the wealthy and powerful in order to enrich themselves at our expense. City governments subsidize developers by coercing money from the general taxpayers and using it to pay for services and infrastructure that, in justice, should have been paid for by the developers themselves.

Of course, they should have the opportunity to sell these homes, with those costs included, to customers who could then voluntarily contract to pay for those otherwise subsidized things. But there should be no coercive guarantees.

More to the point, those services and infrastructure would then be paid for by those who actually use them and benefit from them, rather than by someone across town who is already having enough trouble paying for his own services.

But he gets the geography wrong, which could have been fixed by looking at a map. Clements' land is nowhere near Interstate 20. It is close to Highway 80. (A few years ago, these were the same road, however.) Also, it is Interstate 30, not Interstate 20, that runs across the center of the lake, and it is there that the notorious Faulkner scandals occurred. Rockwall's main sewage treatment plant does not empty into Lake Ray Hubbard, but into Buffalo Creek, which joins the East Fork of the Trinity River several miles south of the lake. New plants could flow into that creek, or directly into the Trinity, also below the dam.

[Forney-area resident Buddy] Miller is quoted as saying that the Mesquite Trinity floodplain is "behind" the dam. What was clearly meant here is "below" the dam. (What is "behind" the dam is the lake.) Schutze should have changed that to keep Miller from looking like an idiot, which he is not.

Richard N. Draheim
Via e-mail

In "Raw deal," at least a couple of errors were made that have potential for causing problems for those involved.

The statements that my grandparents or family settled or owned any of the land now in Clements' ranch is untrue and a misstatement, or a result of confusion on the part of Mr. Schutze. The tracts of land are also separated by Lake Ray Hubbard Drive. I certainly never made any claim to that effect. Please understand the strong concern; I feel that these inaccuracies affect my credibility and reputation in my community as well as my relationship as a neighbor to Mr. Clements.

Thank you for publishing an otherwise great and informative article on this annexation proposal. Although the issues and principles of economics and fairness are of great importance to all taxpayers, it is nice to feel that as ordinary people, we can have our opinions and concerns heard and given exposure. Also, I might add that in none of this has The Dallas Morning News contacted any of us.

Stephen E. Davis

Editor's note: Richard N. Draheim's geography is accurate; we apologize for the mistakes.

The error to which Stephen E. Davis refers is a result of a telephone conversation in which Davis spoke at some length about the role of his grandparents in settling land in the Lake Ray Hubbard area. Jim Schutze mistakenly interpreted Davis' remarks as pertaining to the Clements land. Again, we apologize.

Please give Jim Schutze a big fat raise and tenure for life. He is one of your biggest assets. If it weren't for him and several other fine journalists like him in your employ, the citizens of Dallas would never hear the truth of the dubious goings-on of John Ware and our "esteemed" mayor. I know I will never hear the truth from The Dallas Morning News, which is why I never buy it. It's guys like Jim that hold the promise of giving journalism a good name again. Please keep up the great work.

Jim Curtis
Via e-mail

Peter Rainer's review of Saving Private Ryan ["Life and death during wartime," July 23] is the most detailed, thought-out, on-the-money movie review I have ever read.

Matt Shevin
Via e-mail

Even the greatest battles staged in film until now--in the work of such directors as Griffith, Kurosawa, Eisenstein, Ford, Welles, and Peckinpah--had an overarching artfulness." What are you babbling about? Welles has never made a war movie--not in the sense you're speaking of--in his life. The sole "artfulness" lies in your pretentious praise of an overwrought movie. Do you realize that every battle scene was lifted straight out of Elem Klimov's Come and See? That includes the tracer-fire scene in the cow pasture; the slow-motion-I've-just-been-stricken-deaf shots of Tom Hanks; the grainy newsreel look; et al. Next time, I suggest you do a bit more research.

Via e-mail

Goodbye, Mr. Gatti's
They're looking for a scapegoat in Denton ["Rock out," July 23]? Lemme get this straight. There was this club in Denton that ran quietly for three years and gave really cool starter bands a chance to rock in front of strangers, and then this bullshit alternative weekly from Dallas publicized it, and they got shut down. Good job, Dallas Observer!

Why not give us the weekend rave schedule complete with Mapsco coordinates? How about the new Swingers club locations? Huh? That's bullshit to blame the cops. Cops have to do what they're told.

You told them where freedom was, and they crushed it.
Steve Abell II

More ethnic than thou
Maybe it has something to do with my Mexican-born father and my Polish-American mother, but I was not aware that politicians in Dallas or any other city had the right to determine whether or not I or anyone else was a true Hispanic ["Hispanic enough," July 9]. Indeed, I always had the weirdly un-American idea that a person's ethnic origin--whether he or she be a Ted Benavides, a Wendy Gramm, a Colin Powell, etc.--was ultimately nobody's business but his or her own.

If you're proud of your ancestors, good for you. After all, I'm proud of my ancestors too. But por favor! Let's have no big sermons about how Mr. Fulano de Tal [roughly translated, "Mr. So-and-So"] obviously isn't a true Latino because he doesn't eat this or he doesn't do that. That type of rhetoric is insulting enough when it comes from Anglo bigots, much less one's fellow Latinos. And in any event, have not recent events concerning a certain Hispanic mayoral candidate and a certain Hispanic DISD president taught us a lesson about trusting those Latinos who wave the Mexican flag just a little too freely? Add to that the obvious problems in determining cultural purity in an age of increasing interracial dating and marriage, and one wonders why Dallas' Mexican-American leadership even bothers. After all, we need more unity in the Latino community, not less, and we're not going to get it by automatically ceding to the opposition every Spanish-surnamed individual who fails to match our personal stereotypes on the grounds that he or she might be a vendido. They tried that tactic in California just before the last election, and look what happened.

Rogelio Mendoza, Jr.

KEEP THE DALLAS OBSERVER FREE... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.

Latest Stories