Home sweet Hope House
I loved the article "Young, gay, and thrown away" [Nov. 30] by Johnathon Briggs. I found an old issue today and read that touching story. When I was done reading it, I just sat there and thought about how hard life is for some people, especially for gay young adults. I'm 18 years old, and I cannot imagine what I would do if I got kicked out of my house.

It's great to see people like the members of the Cathedral of Hope doing something about this. I think the article was a good eye-opener for other people and me. It's crazy some parents and family members turn their backs on their loved ones just because they are gay. I think when people have kids they need to keep an open mind about these issues and be ready to deal with them and love their kids no matter how different they are. Kicking them out of the house or out of their life is not a good choice.

Cory Harati

The newsletter of the law
A copy of your Nov. 22 "Buzz" column ["A case of elephantitis"] was mailed to me since the column referred to the Grand Prairie Chamber of Commerce and the inclusion of Dallas County Commissioner Ken Mayfield's fund-raiser flier in our monthly newsletter.

To clarify, all chamber members are offered the opportunity to pay for advertising inserts in The Focus. Those who do so find it a cost-effective way to promote their products or services. Mr. Mayfield is a chamber member, he paid for the insert, and, as required by election law, his flier says it is a "paid political announcement." He did not, as you wrote, "send out campaign material on a constituent group's postage." Our board of directors has reviewed The Focus insert policy, and Mr. Mayfield's insert is within published guidelines.

Terri Ricketts
Grand Prairie Chamber of Commerce

Judging a paper by its cover
Your excerpt from The Last Hero: The Life of Mickey Mantle ["The Last Days of Mickey Mantle," Dec. 14] is very well done and treats The Mick with dignity. However, I find your front-page illustration short-sighted, in poor taste, and insensitive to those who loved and admired him.

Thousands of people will see this illustration, but only a fraction of them will bother to pick up the article and read it. The balance of them will conclude that Mickey Mantle was just another drunk. How sad.

Chris Reyher Jr.

Shoot to drench
I am responding to an article titled "The smell of caps in the morning" ["Buzz," Nov. 15], written by Glen Warchol. The intent of the article was obviously to ridicule and trivialize an issue we take very seriously. We don't mind being called "peaceniks" (although surely he could come up with a more up-to-date title), or "peace boys," even though a good number of us are female, but we think this issue has become a concern to most of the public and manufacturers. As one toymaker--Randy Covington, who manufactures Retro Toys in North Dallas--said in The Dallas Morning News, "It doesn't seem like a terribly bright thing to teach kids that guns are good things to play with and that shooting each other is recreation."

Mr. Warchol wrote: "You'll get our Super Soaker when you pry our cold, dead fingers off them." Well, one of my friends was stopped at an intersection when she saw someone in the next car with what looked like an assault weapon pointed at her. Before she could start up, the other car sped alongside and in front of her, shooting a stream of water on her entire front windshield, obliterating her view and frightening her badly. I wonder what would have happened if this had occurred after the concealed-weapon carry law had taken effect. Mr. Warchol, would you be willing to pry the cold, dead fingers off the Super Soaker that was used in this "harmless prank"?

Rita Calver
Dallas Peace Times

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.