Letters

Brown Out
Richard Connelly's article was "right on" concerning the makeup of the Harris County Jail population ["Black and White Only," June 10]. I guess there are really no white people getting arrested in Harris County. Could there be a more sinister reason behind this practice of labeling Hispanics as white?

On the surface it appears that an equal number of blacks and whites are being arrested, while actually there is a huge discrepancy in those numbers. If any civil rights organization were to check the census of the inmate population by just looking at a computer printout, they would not be aware of the fact that it would be an erroneous report. It appears to be another example of racial bigotry and discrimination that still lingers in this country.

Name withheld by request
via Internet

It's very interesting that with all the biases that Hispanics/Latinos/Mexicans have to put up with, that this is the only article you could come up with. An article that deals with Hispanics being done an injustice by being categorized as white in the Harris County jail system. Give me a break! Yes, I think that something should be done about it. But rarely do I see articles on minorities. If you need ideas, I've got plenty that do not stereotype Hispanics as gangsters, thugs or illegals.

Eloisa A. Castillo
via Internet

I think the current jail system has it correct. Hispanic is not a race. These people are Caucasian. It would get extremely confusing if everyone put their ethnic background on the band. Where does it stop?

Hugh Holden
via Internet

Spooks and Kooks
Living on the edge -- and I don't mean "this edge of the paper," as our friend puts it [News Hostage, by Richard Connelly, May 27]. I'm talking 'bout having a tense standoff with the CIA operatives who read the Chronicle regularly. It's Mr. "Life in the Fast Lane" Thom Marshall versus the shadowy underworld asking the tuff questions that none of the rest of us would dare to. Providing us with a valuable source of information and risking it all in the process.

I agree that putting a column in by Mr. Flamboyant himself -- Lee Brown -- was a loser. It's like, "This letter was so long, stupid and boring that, well... just see for yourself." But hey, our prez and his number two yes-man are experts at long, boring, stupid speeches/letters, and look where it got them. So I think that you may be right, Rich. We don't know who we're messing with, man.

Charles Westmoreland
via Internet

International City Pity
Once again the city's wheeler-dealers and some of its politicos have teamed up to spend large amounts of money to cut another bidness deal ["Let the Games Begin," by Bob Burtman, May 27]. This time they will spend taxpayer money to attempt to bring the Olympics to Houston. This, they say, will earn us lots of cheap venues for bread and circuses (as if we do not have enough of that already). They further claim that having the Olympics here will raise our fair city into the pantheon of "International Cities."

What is an international city anyway? Do we really need to be an international city? Houston is a pretty nice place to live without such a designation. I doubt whether it would improve the quality of life for rank-and-file Houstonians.

Wouldn't all of that money be better spent on much-needed improvements which would without a doubt improve the quality of life? I believe it is time to stop going for the glitz, gusto and stadiums and focus on basic meat-and-potato issues that will have a real impact on real people, not just small sectors of the bidness community.

Mark C. Wilde
via Internet

Congratulations for the outstanding article about Houston's bid for the Olympics. For a city that has a history of barely supporting its sports team (unless they're on extended winning streaks, high school football notwithstanding), has no convenient method of transportation and has schools that are falling apart, what better way to spend a few million bucks? But shouldn't the rest of the world experience what they're missing in our summer paradise? After all, when it's 90 degrees with 90 percent humidity, you gotta ask yourself, "Now where else can you get a breath of fresh air like this at midnight?"

If we're going to buy respect, let's find a more logical way to spend our money than the Olympics.

Jeff Share
Houston

Truth Searchers
Congratulations to Brian Wallstin and the Houston Press for another well-researched and thorough article ["Immune to Reason," June 3], this time on the controversy surrounding the adverse reactions following immunization with the hepatitis B vaccine.

I must, however, correct an impression that may have been given by Dr. Blaine Hollinger's startling and completely incorrect assumption that Dr. Bonnie Dunbar's courageous stand on this matter stems from an interest in the damages that might be won by her brother (Dr. Bohn Dunbar) against the manufacturer.

I have known and worked with Bonnie Dunbar for over 16 years and was present in the laboratory when her staff took the vaccine. Dr. Dunbar is an internationally known and respected biomedical researcher and a person of the utmost integrity. Dr. Bohn Dunbar was vigorous and athletic, and is also a person of courage and honesty. I personally watched Bohn work until he could no longer hold a pipette or remain in an upright position because of the debilitated nervous system and inflammatory processes taking over his body. I also watched the fear take hold in a young student in the laboratory whose eyesight began to diminish after immunization. These people did not ask for such horrible consequences, nor did they position themselves to take unfair advantage of a blameless vaccine industry.

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