D Letters

Beneath the Neon Moon

In the facetious vein: How could y’all possibly overlook Debonair Danceland in your article on honky-tonks (“The Ultimate Honky-Tonk Tour,” November)? Ain’t it the most wonderful lest: place you ever set foot into? (And out of twice as quickly?)

PAUL AMUR

DALLAS

My wife and I have been country and western dancing for more than eight years. Our son has one of the area’s top country bands. Poll Circle, and we have danced to their music at Belle Starr. Cowboy’s. The Country Connection, The Crystal Chandelier, Lee’s Silver Fox and many other area clubs.

We try to go dancing at least twice a week, and the club with the best atmosphere, best dance floor, best entertainment, best food and best clientele, without a doubt, is the Southern Junction in Rockwall, Texas.

We have been to Borrowed Money. Stampede and the other “in” clubs, and there is no comparison, S. D. Henderson has certainly done your readers a disservice by not including the Southern Junction at the top of your list of the top 10.

WILLIAM D. GRENVALL

MESQUITE

I was shocked that you left Billy Bob’s Texas out of your list of best honky-tonks. At 100.000 square feel, with 40 bar stations. Billy Bob’s is known worldwide as “The World’s Largest Honky Tank.” The. huge family entertainment center features live entertainment nightly and the top names in country music every weekend…plus Live Pro Bull Hiding inside the club, which is located in (he historic Fort Worth Stockyards.

Billy Bob’s is also a great place to two-step or line-dance, and we offer free dance lessons and free admission on Thursday nights.

I realize you were gearing the article at Dallas “honky-tonks,” however you mentioned those clubs in Lewisville. Terrell and Lancaster.

By the way, Billy Bob’s Texas was recently named Club of the Year by the Country Music Association, an award voted on by the entertainers, record companies and management.

Corne on D. Fort Worth is your friendly neighbor.

DAM. MUNICK

DIRECTOR OF ADVERTISIN

BILLY BOB’S, FORT WORTH

Home Affront

The Jim Schutze article, ’’The New Houses Oil The Block-?(November), hit. home. Not mine (though I get the feeling that no one is safe), but m\ parents”, who live on a quiet, little- street, named Cedar Circle in Oak Cliff. The neighborhood residents attempted to stand up for their “cherished notions of neighborhood zoning” but weren’t rich enough, young enough, big enough to “play hardball” against the Big Brother tactics of the Mental Health and Mental Retardation Center, As a matter,of fact, (hey report being ridiculed at (he meet-ing in which the> stated their case.

The MHMR and other agencies have effectively put this- [is* su a] into the moral/minrstry arena by “reaching oui” to innocent victims or the downtrodden of society. And no one can argue that this is an honorable filing. Bui, my parent.*; are honor-able. And yet. in this issue, they look like the bad guys. It reminds me of rape, when I he vied m i s accused, The. truth is anyone is free to move into our neighborhood, in a single-dwelling zoned home If a member of the household is a victim of AIDS, mental -illnpss or drug addiction, or a released prison inmate, we cope, and sometimes out of our humanit\. we cope nobly. Though many American neighborhoods don’t “neighbor” as in (he past; many “neighbor” in a multitude of ways in a larger, more diverse community by contributing time, talent and treasure to,agencies and .cause*.. And yes, they leave their neighborhood to do this. They go to the inner city. To the shelters, To the soup kitchens. To the nursing homes. To the clinics, To .die churches,. And then, it’s back home…a home and a neighborhood about which they made a conscious choice, The underhanded legislation removes conscious choice.

1 asked in a letter to Don Gilbert, executive director or MHMR, if he would want a group home next: to .his house, The re-” Spouse? None. And. 1 wasn’t surprised.

JANACE PONDER

AMARTLLO

Re: “New Houses on the Block”: This is the number one reason America is headed for l lie dumper. If do-gooders want to help people in life, absolutely 100 percent great. But when taxpaying citizens have their rights encroached on (taxation, “mandatory” zonirtgia:wK)M.]’ieriweal’l lose another mile of freedom and head down the same path of every stinking European country that has already tried this method of “forced” kindness. Just because it is a law doesn’t make it right. It only means it must be enforced. 1 say get to City Hall and demand that these zoning laws be reversed to what they were, what the citizens wanted but were loo apathetic to contest at the time.

JEFFREY CHERN

FRISCO



A Case for Group Homes

As an employee of a local mental health organization, 1 found Jim Schutze’s article disturbing. It is not the aim of the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation to move clients “out of the houses of their own families.” It’s goal is to assist families in securing the best environment possible which meets the client’s medical, educational, vocational and social needs. If these needs can’t be met in the client’s own home, alternate placement in a group home may be pursued.

Furthermore, mental retardation is a condition, usually present at birth, that results in below-average intellectual and adaptive functioning. It has nothing to do with being a “mental patient,” as Mr. Schutze erroneously concluded.

PAUL NELSON

DALLAS



Conspiracy Watch

November of next year will be the 30th anniversary of the JFK assassination. When that time comes we are sure to see a great deal of media coverage of the tired, old and unproven conspiracy theories. I hope writers for your magazine will display a more thorough knowledge of the subject than the “Street Talk” writers did in “Co-conspirators” in the November issue.

In the Zapruder dim of the assassination, Jean Hill isn’t even looking at the president’s limousine as it passes. Since it is past her. the Secret Service agents in the follow-up ear were closer at the time of the shooting. Closer still were people standing further down Elm Street. Closest at the time were Jackie Kennedy, the Connallys and agents Kellerman and Greer in the president’s car.

Jean Hill’s story has evolved with each telling. The day of the assassination, she claimed to have seen a shooter from where she was standing. When a Dallas Times Herald reporter told her it was physically impossible for her to have seen what she claimed from her vantage point, her story changed. (The movie JFK made this reporter out to be an evil government agent.) She then claimed she ran across the street, through the motorcade, up the knoll, and that is how she saw the gunman. However, photos taken by Wilma Bond clearly show Ms. Hill sitting on the ground long after the motorcade passes. She has stuck to her story because of her financial interest in her “research” center.

Please don’t be taken in by these kinds of stories. Read the Warren Commission Report. You’ll find the investigation much more thorough than you might have been lead to believe. Then read Manchester’s Death of a President and Jim Moore’s Conspiracy of One. Then you’ll be ready to fend off the conspiracy oddballs who will try to profit from the anniversary.

ROBERT J. BUCH

FORT WORTH



Bluebonnet Blues



Thank you for printing the short article about my ongoing battle with the Blue-bonnet Award gang (“Shhh! No Criticism.” November). I would like to correct one minor error. Cynthia Gray told Z)’s reporter that) was asked to give my speech at a different time. Not so. I was told I could meet with the committee. I’m a fairly tough old bird-I believe I was called “crusty”-but the odds of seven or eight to one seemed a bit much. Besides, I wanted to talk to the entire membership. Too much of the work of the committee is done in secret and that’s why the conditions I have discovered have come to be.

I have yet to hear anything from Ms. Woll, although a Texas publisher told me she had contacted him and denied making the statement in the article. Neither has the TLS president, James Stewart, said anything. I expect they plan to just “hunker down”-another good old Texas expression-and let the whole thing blow over.

Not if I can help it!

ZINITA FOWLER

CARROI I TON



Getting the Copy Right

Re: “Forever Young” in Inside Dallas (October) about the creative Rodney D. Young television commercials: The company who originated the concept now used by Rodney D. Young Insurance was William B. Meeks Advertising. Mr. Meeks is an icon in the music/advertising business. The original copywriter and account executive on the Young account was Larry Ca-rolla, a creative genius in his own right who now owns Carolia & Associates and also happens to be my husband. Our company has branched on to service many direct-response insurance clients. Mr. Meeks is still very much alive and in the picture and has produced copy, music and creative input for each of these accounts through his company, Upbeat Communications.

In this time of political who-done-it, I just wanted to set another record straight.

SHERIDAN K. RILEV-CAROLLA

Plano



A Haunting Story



Thanks for the well-researched “Who Killed Baby Eric?” by Eric Celeste (October). I was at first bored with Celeste’s reporting every last detail of his research findings. That’s why I closed the magazine on page 65.

But the cover photo of that brutalized baby (about the age of one of my grandchildren) haunted me, and 1 picked it up again a week later. First I noticed that Celeste shares the first name of the primary victim, the child. Interesting.

Then I realized that if all media would take a lesson from Eric Celeste, the public would neither feel nor be brainwashed. Nothing will be left out of good investigative reporting. With the Celeste kind of reporting, we can come away from the story drawing our own conclusions. It makes for a healthy society.

I’m keeping the name of Catherine Shelton, attorney at law, in my Rolodex. I don’t doubt she’s unpopular-bearers of the truth seldom are.

We need more heart in the media and the law. Celeste and Shelton have it!

And D has it, for having the guts to publish what may be a politically unpopular report.

BETTYE MARTIN-MCRAE

SWEETWATER

I am an Army pediatric surgeon, who sees a significant amount of pediatric trauma, much of which is non-accidental or child abuse. I realize that the figures of two to four million cases [of child abuse] a year are probably underestimated and certainly on the rise. What surprised me was the outcome of the trial. The evidence as presented in your article was clearly supportive of a diagnosis of child abuse and there should be no scarcity of expert witnesses in a city the size of Dallas.

I find it hard to believe that there is no intent to pursue the real perpetrator, which is common in many of these cases. If this were a case of a cop-killer, all resources would be applied to bring a guilty party to justice. But in this case infants and children do not seem to have the same rights.

Articles like yours will surely help give child abuse the visibility it needs to compete with other epidemics like AIDS. Thank you for the opportunity to read one such effort.

TROY M. RENMA, M.D.

EL PASO

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