Letters from the week of August 22, 2002

Letter Rip 

Letters from the week of August 22, 2002

Gone postal: After reading the letters in the August 8 issue, I was semioutraged enough by the complainers that I felt the need to add my opinion.

I think the Pitch is a refreshing, insightful and amusing newspaper, and the fact that it's free adds to its charm.

So a writer played a tasteless joke on its readers, who haven't played a tasteless joke in their lives. I am sure her joke did no harm to the zoo. People need to learn to take a joke. To you lost readers, I say, "Your loss."

To the man and his bears, I think it's great that you want to raise awareness for some event that will benefit kids, but frankly, the bears need to go. The bears are scary-looking and tacky. I am sure people can come up with a better creative way to bring a positive message to the youth.

I would eat at 40 Sardines. I don't think having their child answer phones and help out is at all distasteful or child labor. I seriously doubt the kid will run around like a mad person, bothering the patrons and giving them a bad dining experience.

Lastly, I have to comment on the opinion that doctors should be cold and impersonal to their patients. What a crock. If that's the case, why don't we just replace doctors with robots? That will make going to the doctor a lot easier for both parties. The threat of old men feeling us up won't be there, and doctors won't have to put up with the fear of women patients claiming they got felt up.
Name Withheld Upon Request


Pride Ride
They're here; they're queer: In response to C.J. Janovy's "Gay Games" (July 25), let me share some facts about Kansas City Pride Democratic Club. KC Pride was founded two months ago with the goal of supporting and developing qualified candidates who support the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. With a focus on basic human and civil rights for all, as well as party unity and coalition-building, KC Pride has quickly developed into one of the largest political clubs in the Kansas City metropolitan area.

The formation of KC Pride was based on a desire to develop a grassroots, membership-driven organization that would truly reflect the diversity of our area. Our recent Meet the Candidates and Get Out the Vote Rally, which drew over 300 guests, demonstrated that the voters of our community agreed. We saw an inclusive event that reflected the coalition of LGBT and straight ally, labor and business, neighborhood and civic leaders, political novices and campaign veterans. Equally important was the ethnic and gender diversity that occurred. We will build on this foundation to continue developing an organization where diversity and inclusiveness are more than just words.

As November approaches, the election of U.S. Senator Jean Carnahan has become the No. 1 priority for KC Pride members. KC Pride will hold its next membership meeting on Wednesday, August 21, at 7 p.m. at the Broadway Baptist Church, 3931 Washington. Anyone seeking to become involved in the political process is encouraged to attend.
Roger A. Gooden, President
KC Pride Democratic Club
Kansas City, Missouri


Ho Down
Ho improvement: As if being on the school board and then resigning amidst self-induced controversy weren't enough, Michelle Hensley is the "superhero" gone bad who should have died in a battle against her nemesis a long time ago. Saying that she's trying to be a good role model for her nephew while threatening bodily harm and encouraging ignorance and stereotypes was the only irony I could even crack a smile at in this article.

If she were so concerned about getting these women out of her neighborhood, and hopefully off of the streets for good, why doesn't she get her name in the newspaper for actively pushing for a red-light district instead of daydreaming about what these women do for a living and what kind of character they have? What about working with community agencies to have STD/HIV-testing on the streets or trying to have some beds set aside in a drug-treatment center specifically for prostitutes? Is publicly addressing sexual and physical abuse too much to ask? And I guess we're supposed to ignore the johns that keep this vicious cycle going -- Mrs. Hensley certainly makes no mention of them.

Michelle Hensley is picking up where she left off -- kickin' up dust when there is no storm and bringing attention to herself and not to her cause. I'd pay good money to have her spend one night getting to know these women and see what they go through in an up-close and personal manner. Until then, Veronica's Voice and any other agency that provides outreach and nonjudgmental support for women has my endorsement, time and money.
L. Diane Spight
Kansas City, Missouri


Lap Dogs
Busted!: I'm glad the police in KC have the time to go out and bust these dancers for doing their job (Casey Logan's "Booby Trap," July 25). God forbid they accidentally (or purposely, for that matter) rub their pubic area against the pubic area of a patron. The senior officers who ordered this sting don't get out to dance clubs much, huh?

Anyway I just wanted to thank the KCPD for wasting my tax dollars on things like this and not figuring out how to remedy real situations like the problem in Westport. My office is in Westport, and I like to occasionally go out and have a few drinks at some of the establishments there. It kind of sucks when my friends are afraid to come down to Westport because of all the thugs who roam the streets with absolutely no leash. So hats off to the decision makers at the police department who use my money for worthless ventures when they could be doing something that actually matters.

Hey, guys, I think I heard about a ring of kids with lemonade stands trying to pass off artificial for freshly squeezed. You better look into it.
Bret Christian
Kansas City, Missouri


Animal House
Lowly Wourm: Regarding Allie Johnson's Kansas City Strip (July 18): What if KC Zoo animals under Dr. Wourms' tenure have suffered?

What if the roundup and slaughter of the Canada geese that Dr. Wourms did order was actually unnecessary?

What if some of the persons who have read "Zoo De-Wormed" understood it's satire and got its real meaning, and we just haven't heard from them yet? (And you are getting this from a person who does not trust most satire!)

And, let us now return to the very legitimate question that Allie Johnson herself asked at the start of her "Zoo De-Wourmed" article: What if animals actually had rights?

What if...?
Doug Peschka
Olathe


The Good Doctor
Pig in the pokey: Funny, but after reading the letter of Kim Schinkel (August 8), the only point I managed to glean from her diatribe was that Dr. Culp deserves to spend five years and/or the rest of his natural life in prison for being at worst a pig, regardless of whether he actually assaulted the women in question.

Thought-crime, anyone?
Jim Holmberg
Kansas City, Kansas


Joker's mild: I would like to congratulate Deb Hipp on a great but sad story about Louis Culp. It saddens and enrages me to read that this kind old man is most likely to spend what little time he has left in prison because of ineffective legal counsel and two women who sound like a couple of greedy liars. They lived a block apart in the same trailer park and never saw each other, but they end up not only going to the same doctor but also filing rape charges against him and suing him -- gee, don't that sound odd?

I also find it even more deeply disturbing that our society can sentence a 77-year-old doctor to what amounts to a life sentence because he has shaky hands! These women should be glad they had a doctor who actually took the time to joke with them to make them feel comfortable, even if his sense of humor may have been offensive. I'm also even more pissed off about the fact that the state of Kansas can do this to an innocent old man, but the state of Missouri gives a dentist probation who was caught with his pants down after sexually assaulting a woman under anesthesia!
William H. Frame
Independence


Urban Legends
The past and the furious: I have been doing a slow burn for a long time about this, but Casey Logan's "Little Blight Lies" (July 11) ignited my flames! It angers me that 18th and Vine cannot seem to get tax-increment financing money to rehab the structures that would maintain its historic status, but the Plaza redevelopers don't seem to have a problem getting TIF money. I watched as the structure adjacent to the Lincoln Building on 18th Street fell in over time. Can we redefine facades to fit the TIF definition of blight?

Looks like the old city politics are at it again. City Auditor Mark Funkhouser said it all: "In Kansas City, the use of TIF has been driven by private developers rather than by explicit public strategies and policies." Shouldn't part of our city government's public policy be to preserve historic sites not only for their historic value but also to promote tourism? Isn't it commonly understood that urban blight is traditionally in the crumbling urban core?

I wanted to scream when I found out that TIF money would go to develop Falcon Ridge: single-family dwellings priced around $200,000 to be built on the southeast end of the Plaza. What about affordable housing? Many of the apartment buildings in the urban core are so old they still have coal chutes. They are poorly insulated and have plumbing and wiring that barely meets inspection codes. Once again, public money is used to support private enterprise. This strategy does not cause all boats to rise; rather, it makes sure that the urban core stays on a sinking ship.
Imani Wilson
Kansas City, Missouri


Mush Life
Ball of confusion: Regarding Andrew Miller's "Around Hear" about Angst (August 8): This article might have been much better if anyone could understand it. Bad opinion or good of the band, the least he could've done is give a direct opinion rather than a mush-mouth one that no one can catch on to.
Jake Henson
Excelsior Springs

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