Tuesday, August 9, 2022 Aug 9, 2022
86° F Dallas, TX


By D Magazine |

Branson and the YMCA

Re: “Branson’s Law: Make ’em Pay” (September): 1 am a victim of sexual child abuse perpetrated on me by my Roman Catholic parish priest when I was 13. Unfortunately, my parents didn’t have the courage to report this abuse; in fact, they chose to ignore me.

It gladdens me to see that the children who reported their abuse to their parents were listened to. I know that Mr. Branson will win. and I will be there to offer my support as a survivor of sexual child abuse. Thank you, D Magazine, for bringing this gross injustice to light.



An employee of the YMCA may be guilty of child molestation, but this does not negate the positive things about the Y; it offers wonderful, affordable things for average families who can’t afford expensive day care and private clubs. When Mr. Branson gets his money from the Y tor the family with two molested boys, I’m the one who’s going to pay in higher membership.

There are better ways to prevent child molestation at the Y than buying Mr. Branson Oriental rugs and the boys’ family a free ticket to the upper class. I hope an intelligent jury is picked and they vote in favor of the Y.

Do I know what I’m talking about? You bet. 1 was molested by a friendly neighbor when I was 12.



Who’s Next?

In “On the Edge” (September), Ruth Fitz-gibbons consistently maligned the African-American trustees of the Dallas Independent School District for representing their constituencies rather than viewing their jobs as “representing the district as a whole” like their Anglo counterparts.

The African-American trustees have a cultural and moral obligation to represent their constituencies as long as the evil of racism continues to pervade everything in this city from redlining to voting rights to school administration.

D Magazine has devoted a lot of ink to discrediting Al Lipscomb and Diane Rags-dale, then John Wiley Price, and now Kath-lyn Gilliam, Thomas Jones and Yvonne Ewell.

I suppose Fred Blair and Eddie Bernice Johnson are next



The Blond Thing

Having recently become a Dallas blond (“Gotta Be Blond!” September), I can report that the best part about being blond is that I can say anything even remotely smart and people look at me like I’m brilliant.

And as for the high price of being blond? $37.87 a year. (L’Oreal Performing Preference. $4.37 every six weeks.)



Charges Over Charges

Very nice September issue. Could you look into crossing Frank Branson with Laura Miller? Then perhaps we would get results in lowering health care costs!



Miller has understated the gravity of her husband’s case a great deal to try to make a case for “grossly excessive”’ charges. Actually, her husband came to our emergency department quite ill with a number of serious symptoms, and a chronic condition which periodically makes him ill and which made diagnosis and management of his current illness extremely difficult. Without his permission, I cannot specify exactly what he had. but her husband did not have the flu, as Miller would have readers believe.

As she says, it [treatment] required an eight-day hospital stay and a medical team that included me. a specialist in infectious diseases. It involved the use of an experimental drug, ganciclovir (which Miller truthfully reports as “a potent drug not normally prescribed for the flu”). After his discharge from the hospital, her husband’s condition required continued administration of this therapy at home under the direction of a registered nurse. Yet after outlining this extensive course of therapy, and knowing better, Miller describes this incorrectly as “the flu.”

Miller worked hard on this story to present the facts that would support a David and Goliath situation, with herself as the “lowly wife/nurse” and Baylor as part of a gigantic, indifferent health industry. When you add in the rest of the information, it’s not really news. So should you believe $15,000 for the flu? The answer is no




HMSS, Inc. provides all the related services required to administer treatment, including skilled nursing, billing services, pharmacy services, delivery service, drug monitoring and patient management. The information is taken out of context if you simply compare a line-item charge for special supplies provided for home infusion to that item purchased through another source, without acknowledgment of the related services associated with those charges.

Miller made reference to the fact that HMSS had billed the patient for an antibiotic that the patient did not receive. The fact is that the physician ordered the antibiotic. HMSS mixed and dispensed the drug, the physician changed (he prescription and therefore the drug was discarded and not administered to the patient. Miller failed to mention that HMSS authorized a full credit for the antibiotic, despite the cost incurred to purchase, mix and deliver the drug. This was done even though it is standard industry practice to bill a patient for dispensed medication, since it cannot be used on another patient. The article implies that some fraudulent activity occurred, when in fact there was no fraud involved.





Laura Miller replies:

The “chronic condition” Dr. Sutker refers to was discussed with him at the outset and proved to be unrelated to the immediate illness. Instead of “flu,” perhaps I should have used Dr. Sutker’s description of a “routine virus” that for some reason didn’t behave routinely in my husband’s body. Both Sutker and Kohl fail to address the main point of the article: that it took months of persistence, fighting an indifferent insurance company and hospital, to get HMSS to refund that money to our insurance company.

Pigment Figments

Re: “The Secret Meaning of Eyebrows’” (September) by Stacy Haymes: At no time during the interview was it stated, implied or indicated in any way that jury duty should be “dreaded.”

At no time during the interview was it ever indicated that “teasing your hair, losing weight, or avoiding eye contact” would in some manner cause an attorney to strike a person from a jury panel. That is a complete figment of the writer’s imagination. As for the wearing of red clothing being a signal to get a person off the jury, this too is false. What was stated to the writer was as follows: Black is the strongest power color in our society. It is followed by red as the second strongest power color. Red is also the color representing danger. How those comments can be construed to mean that if someone wears red they will be struck from a jury panel is beyond m



PC or Not PC?

Re: “Is SMU PC?” (September): As an SMU alumnus (Liberal arts-Eurocentrist in PC-speak). I am delighted that my alma materis “light years behind in some ways.” and I hope we’ll never catch up (if you want. to call it that) with the likes of Berkeley, University of Connecticut and other politically correct universities where administration and faculty don’t have the intestinal fortitude to tolerate, let alone encourage, true academic freedom. Lynn Johnson and her PC colleagues (what few there are on the Hilltop, thank God) would surely feel much more comfortable “teaching” at Berkeley than at SMU. They would not be missed. Thanks, Glenn Mitchell, for a great story.


Apparently concluding that student opinion is of no importance, Glenn Mitchell completely ignores it in favor of quoting four faculty members.

Mitchell says that “few” students and faculty, including, incidentally, President A. Kenneth Pye, publicly celebrated Martin Luther King’s birthday in front of Dallas Hall. He seems to have, dare I say it, some “politically correct” number in mind to determine whether such an event can be judged a success. He is contemptuous of the fact that it took the student senate eight years to charter the gay and lesbian student organization. In fact, the quality of the debate and the decision-making process the students conducted last spring was. one of the most impressive events I have witnessed in my 18 years at SMU, second only to the 1,500 students who staged a “teach-in” during the athletic crisis of five years ago.

Mitchell fails to mention that, beginning with this fall, no student can graduate from SMU without taking a course focusing on race, gender or ethnicity and another one on a non-Western topic, Our Women’s Studies Program is one of the oldest and most successful in the country. And what of our First Year Seminars, exploring subjects such as the politics of racial oppression or ecological issues in the Nineties or the struggle for human rights in the 20th century? Finally, what of faculty student and alumni insistence that General Schwarzkopf, the victor of the Persian Gulf war. submit to a question and answer session after he had initially refused, thus guaranteeing intellectual accountability for his remark





Letter from La Pausa

Glenna Whitley’s arlicle on me (“In the Court of Queen Wendy.” August), was just wonderful and. above all. a truthful portrait. She captured me completely…and I am not easy to capture. I just want all of you to know at D Magazine, a great magazine, that the article was a loving, honest, caring article from beginning to end. I was and am touched by her saying at the end. “And 1 find 1 do like her.”