The Condemned

Since your story is about the "latest condemnation of homes," it would appear that Mr. Hansel does not evaluate his mistakes in past condemnations and correct them ["The Dispossessed," by John Suval, May 11]. Using the children as messengers is not legal.

This tactic was used in the Highland Park Independent School District in Dallas to promote a political agenda. Taxpayer money cannot be used to propagandize the taxpayers.

What a shame that property that people purchase can be taken away at the decision of powerful people. HPISD took homes once, but they were stopped the next time. What will HISD do with the old school sites? Sell them for big bucks while the displaced homeowners are sent away traumatized. This is not the way America was meant to be.

Name withheld by request


I read with interest your article on HISD construction plans for near-northside Houston. I'm amazed that HISD is intending to build a school in a location which includes service station and salvage yard sites, given the usual environmental concerns and problems associated with those types of sites. Do residents have any information on that?

Mike Morse


Duke's Lament

I am ashamed. I feel bad every day. And I have to live with my decisions and choices I made ["Duke Truong's Freedom Ride," by Steve McVicker, May 4]. I am saddened and I blame myself for placing my family and my dear friends in a shameful and anguished situation. I have to live with that thinking every day.

I've learned a very painful lesson -- avoid any contact with the criminal justice system, because it's a system that's stacked in favor of the prosecution.

I realized that we are caught in a culture where labels are more important than facts and reality.

For some people, talking to a reporter brings up feelings of being six years old again, about to be beaten up by a schoolyard bully. Because of the unique combination of emotional stress and tight time constraints, I was unable to clearly answer Mr. McVicker's questions. Apparently, Mr. McVicker did not receive letters from me and from my dear friends that clearly explain some concerns during our interview session, and to clarify answers. Now I have to live with his interpretation to my answers and his impression of me during our session.

What disturbed me the most was the claim by a former assistant district attorney that I claimed to be the father of Barriga's child and later admitted it was a lie.

It is a horrible accusation -- labeling that does not depict the facts and reality. An officer of the court must not jeopardize the integrity of the court.

Duke Truong

Childress, Texas

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