Concrete solutions: Congratulations and warm thanks for your exposé of a pollution crime in the making ["Mixing It Up," by John Suval, May 10]. You wrote a moving and accurate story showing much research and legwork.
I am a realtor and Deerfield Village resident. Like hundreds of my neighbors, I feel blessed and lucky to have a dedicated battler like Margie Schneider leading this fight against the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission and its well-paid allies in Austin.
I applaud your journalistic guts in naming names and giving some discredit where discredit is due. I wonder how many polluting batch plants state Senator Buster Brown, the "standard-bearer of the concrete industry," as you so well put it, has allowed into his rich Lake Jackson home territory? And this "servant of the people" heads up the Natural Resources Committee!
I hope we see more of your work, John Suval.
William J. O'Shea
Rebuke the board:
I am writing in response to the excellent coverage given by the Houston Press to the lawsuit against HISD by Brandi Leigh Hyde ["Flashing Lights," by Wendy Grossman, May 3]. I feel compelled to write to express my outrage at the school board's actions. One part of the article is sufficient evidence of the district's appalling attitude on this case: "Just because the district is viewed as having deep pockets is no excuse for frivolous lawsuits, [HISD attorney] Feldman says."
That statement is breathtaking in its arrogance. Ms. Hyde was raped by your employee, and HISD has the nerve to ask to be reimbursed for your legal expenses? If the board members feel this is a frivolous suit, I would suggest the board has gone completely off its rocker.
HISD's treatment of Ms. Hyde demands that the board be rebuked by the entire community. Shame on you and the other board members, Mr. Shadwick.
Police the Doctors
Remove Ringer: Billy Ringer is one messed-up doctor ["Nature of the Beast," by Bob Burtman, April 12]. It is pretty frightening to know that there are doctors out there repeatedly injuring people and practically getting away with it.
Ringer has been able to slither his way out of trouble each time, only to walk away with a settlement, probation, community service, ethics classes and psychiatric treatment. What's it going to take to shut him down? Ringer shouldn't be allowed to work anywhere in the medical field again.
I strongly encourage the state to make and enforce stricter laws to keep bad doctors out of business, as well as increase resources to handle the already swamped Board of Medical Examiners.
Don't blame Sanchez: I was saddened to hear of the troubled times at Amigos Volunteers in Education and Service [The Insider, by Tim Fleck, May 10] and hope that the other clinics in town can pick up the slack.
Even without knowing all the details, however, I am confident that the AVES troubles cannot be attributable solely to Francisco Sanchez. I have known and worked with Francisco on important community-based projects for over four years. He has always been hardworking, dedicated, honest and smart. When others are looking for scapegoats, Francisco is usually working to solve the problem. I wish both AVES and Francisco the best during this difficult time.
What about beheaded lettuce? Wow. As I sat down to read the May 10 issue of the Press, I was completely unaware of the shock I was about to get. Ironically, the very insult I was to encounter was on the Letters page.
The Bayousphere picture [by Deron Neblett] of the hanging carnage and pile of slaughtered pigs was not only a major offense to vegetarians but a total affront to human sensitivity in general. Why didn't you just print a picture of euthanized kittens or puppies? Could you justify that? How in the world could a publication such as yours, which prides itself in celebrating diversity in Houston, forget a significant part of the population: vegetarians?
Get the difference: Thank you for giving a voice to the Asian Pacific American community ["Racist Radio?" by Melissa Hung, May 3]. This is extremely important work, and must not go unrecognized.
Last semester I founded the Asian Pacific American Coalition, Southern Region, University of Houston chapter. I am surprised and pleased that you make the distinction between Asian Pacific and Asian Pacific American. Although my scope is limited to the UH campus, I have noticed and experienced that many, including the API/APIA community, do not make or understand the distinction between Asian Pacific and Asian Pacific American!
Our Council of Ethnic Organizations at UH wants to put the organization I founded under the Asian Student Association. I tried to explain to them the distinction, but I really don't think they get it.
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Whack and Blue
Working out the kinks: If we "young fashionable dilettantes" are so phony, then why is Martin attending our play parties after the Rubber Room shuts down for the night [The Nightfly, by Craig D. Lindsey, May 10]? We know the older, overweight S&Mers talk a lot of shit on us behind our backs because we happen to look better than they do, and they'd like to believe that we're somehow not as "hard-core" as they are.
We A-list people have to hold our own parties because the HPEP and EROS crowd is less than friendly toward us; quite a lot of them are openly hostile. All this "our kink is better than your kink" bullshit is juvenile. It's sad that it's coming from the older crowd, who should be mentoring us instead of getting wrapped up in their own petty jealousies.
Name withheld by request