Tuesday, January 25, 2022 Jan 25, 2022
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LETTERS

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SATIRE AND CENSORS



CHRIS TUCKER’S comments on the Joe Bob Briggs affair [Insights, June 1985] should be taken to heart by all journalists. As a member of the legal profession, I am cognizant of our profession’s duty to fight de jure censorship by governmental authority. Tucker cautions the media as to the dangers of de facto censorship which results when free expression is inhibited by editors’ suppression of ideas to please some special interest.

John C. Fleming

Lufkin



CHRIS TUCKER is right about the Joe Bob business. This town is full of media wimps who are confusing literary value with pursuit of the dollar. The Times Herald, its Pee-You-litzer prizes decaying in the corner, wusses out over Joe Bob. As Tucker pointed out, it’s those people of the redneck persuasion who should be bent out of shape, not blacks or women or anyone else. People always misunderstand satire. You use satire to confound people, to make them interpret things. So the claim that people misunderstood Joe Bob is a lame reason to snuff him out. In fact, Joe Bob was the perfect satire because, through the character and his writing, he satirized and confounded everyone.

Rick Owen

Dallas

BRAVO! I was extremely pleased to read the Insights column this month. This article is one of the few I have read on the Joe Bob story that interpreted the true meaning of the column and the decision to cut it.

It is great that not all publications show themselves to be plagued with tunnel vision.

Keep up the meaningful copy-there is already plenty out there for the true “Joe Bobs.” And who knows? Maybe you will enlighten them.

Jenny Gipson

Lufkin



CONCERNING THE Joe Bob Briggs event and your very insightful article pertaining to the real implications therein, I suggest the following course of action for the Dallas Times Herald: In addition to the already announced plan of action of hiring “at least 12” minority journalists and a special minority assistant, I recommend the hiring of one major minority journalist, specifically to replace John Bloom/Joe Bob. In the name of no satire, no discrimination, non-offensiveness and no misinterpretation, I submit the name of Carl Rowan! Good luck to John Bloom and thanks to D for the only journalistic approach to this event.

Bob Link

Dallas



JAILHOUSE WRONGS



THERE ARE a few factual errors in your June “Thumbs Up” article “Kid AWOL, Mom Gets Jail.” As the Irving mom who went to jail for her son’s “crime,” I feel I have a right to correct them.

The judge your writer commended is Mark Ovard. The article called him John Ovard. The warrant was issued by Judge Richburg. Judge Ovard’s secretary said there was one notice from the school and one notice from that office. At the college I got my degree from, one and one makes two. I still “steadfastly claim” I received NO notices.

Ovard, according to you, said it is unusual for a case to go this far. My attorney said otherwise. Parents, in his experience, are usually bewildered. Just like me, they don’t know what the hell is going on. At least the publicity from my experience will give a few parents a chance to defend themselves.

If you believe that my terrible experience, and my painful leg from having to stand without my stocking, are just punishment for something I knew nothing about, I suppose you have a right to your somewhat sanctimonious judgment. I sincerely hope it doesn’t have to happen to some other unsuspecting parent. There is supposed to be something called “due process of the law” in these United States of America. Abuses such as this are an outrage.

Billie Henry

Irving



BOYS AND GIRLSTOGETHER



THANK YOU for the timely, well-written article on First Texas Council of Camp Fire’s Special Sitters Project [“Special Sitters: More Than a Summer Job,” May]. I applaud your willingness to spotlight an innovative Fort Worth community effort such as this.

The article captured the essence of this special project. And, unlike some news sources, the reporter printed the information thoroughly and accurately. However, as of 1977, Camp Fire is a youth organization of boys and girls-not just girls as the article indicated. Thank you for noting this correction and helping us to educate your readers as to this change.

Carla Garber

Special Sitters Project Manager

First Texas Council of Camp Fire, Inc.

Fort Worth



STAGE OF MATURITY



AS THE MANAGING director of Stage #1 at the Greenville Avenue Theatre, I thought your comments on our production of Sam Shepard’s play Curse of the Starving Class were misleading [“Welcome to Greenville Avenue,” June].

Some of what Shepard shows us is shocking, and it is supposed to be. He needs to shock us in order to make us see beyond certain conventions and inhibitions that sometimes obscure our vision of a whole problem. Sam Shepard has won acclaim as one of the most important and innovative playwrights currently writing. His plays are certainly not for everyone. We knew that when we selected Curse of the Starving Class, but we felt it was important for our audiences to discover what the leaders of contemporary American theatre are up to.

I’m sincerely sorry if our production made some people uncomfortable as you suggested in your article, but I can’t guarantee that it will never happen again. The perception of art is a completely individual matter. But we do try and warn people; our ads for Curse of the Starving Class and Native Speech carry the warning that they are recommended for mature audiences, which is meant to imply that they contain material that some people might find offensive. It’s a tricky business, though, because we truly believe that people with an interest in current movements in the theater will want to see Curse of the Starving Class and Native Speech, and we don’t want to scare people away if we can avoid it.

Ernest Fulton

Managing Director

Stage #1