Imagine if you will: Instead of a fat, white, "Bubba" cop wannabe, the person warning everyone to "stay clear of the area" until the suspicious backpack is rendered safe turned out to be an African-American, Ivy League student, working the venue to pay his way through Dartmouth (Humbug Square, "Eric Rudolph: GOP blogger," April 28). How many Atlanta streets, lanes and avenues would honor his name? Who do you think would have been chosen to throw out the first ball the following spring when the Braves took the field? The sheer number of possible honors is mind-boggling. And, our student would be entitled to all the kudos and plaudits bestowed.
But, Jewell embodied the embarrassing "backward cousin" many of the transplanted upper-east-side liberals have back home. That a right-wing, Southern hatemonger was eventually brought to justice proves how prescient was the prediction of "Today's" Bryant Gumble (paraphrasing): "The work of a Bubba-bomber."
In my opinion, Jewell should go down as one of the 20th century's citizen heroes. This will not happen because the degree of valor on his part is equal to the cowardice displayed by much of the mainstream media. By the way, Jewell selflessly put himself in harm's way - nobody mentions that.
- Bob Cherry, Ocean Pines, Md.
Thank you for the well-written column regarding the Atlanta bombing. I agree with you that the AJC's coverage regarding Richard Jewell was an abomination. I think it is an atrocity that the newspaper never apologized to Jewell.
It has occurred to me that, to the best of my knowledge, there is no monument of any kind to commemorate Jewell's heroic actions. As an aside, you may or may not be aware that Jewell, in his role as a police officer, saved a toddler's life. He is a proven hero.
I think the AJC could do some real good by pushing for something to honor Jewell. It would be a good penance for the paper.
- Michael J. McCann, Doraville
I've read many of your different articles over the course of the past few years, but this one in particular tripped me out ("The Rapture: Special report," April 21). It was funny, true and laced with reference points. Growing up in the South and being black, I was taught at a very early age this doctrine, but I always questioned Christianity for several reasons. Of course, my parents don't get my "logic" and I wouldn't dare tell my grandmother my views - she'd anoint me with so much oil and pray for my lost soul. I enjoy your writings and this one in particular is going to vex quite a few good church-going folks, who'll write and cuss you out. LOL!
- Scooby Hardee, Stone Mountain
Both of the letter writers in Going Postal, April 28 (about my Creative Loathing column, "Shouts and Gestures," April 21), serve to confirm my general impression: Poetry has become the tool for radical left-wingers who simply dismiss the opinions and arguments of those with whom they disagree, as Rupert Fike revealed in his statement, "This presidency is now famous for suppressing any internal opinions which might possibly go contrary to what they've already decided to do - but at least with slams, human lives are not needlessly sacrificed." There are many who disagree with this statement that Fike presents as fact.
The personal attack on my ethnic heritage by Owen Talley confirms my observation that only certain ethnic groups are respected by such defenders of the radical left. He ignores the point I made in my column: "I am not advocating equal time for poetry that takes a position from the right. It would also be street theater and not poetry." The personal attacks on me on the website of a member of the executive board of Poetry Atlanta (an organization funded with tax dollars) confirms my impression that those like me, who express a view contrary to that of the clique of the poets in power in Atlanta, are not welcome.
These letter writers and bloggers ignore my point about the role of poetry. Of course, I am not opposed to poets holding slams and readings with a political slant at any private venue, using their own money.
But the owners of places like Java Monkey should know that those like me and my poetry-reading, Kerry-supporting friends are turned off by the nature and form of much of the poetry that is read and performed at slams and open-mic nights. Of course, it's the owner's choice to continue events. What I objected to in my article was the use of my tax dollars for groups like Poetry Atlanta that exclude those like me.
- Mary Grabar, Stone Mountain
Set the record straight
As a result of your cover story, "No denial" (April 7), on revisionist historian David Irving's presentation at the Landmark Diner, many concerned Atlantans and customers have protested and promised never to eat there again.
Please allow me to set the record straight.
First, Landmark owner Tommy Landros values his many Jewish customers; indeed, he does not have a prejudiced bone in his body. For the past 10 years, each morning (at 10 a.m.) I have eaten breakfast at the Landmark Diner, and I highly recommend it, especially the toast and coffee.
Tommy has always extended a warm welcome to all of his customers. As a member of the Jewish War Veterans Association, I would never patronize a business whose owner was in any way anti-Semitic or racist.
Secondly, the Landmark Diner had no idea what type of presentation would be made at their establishment, other than its appearing to be historic in nature. In fact, their private-room booking manager is himself Jewish!
Tommy is one of the most generous people that I know. He gives and gives and gives to local charities, schools, churches and fundraisers. Currently, he is raising $100,000 in 80 days to fight diabetes.
In short, Tommy is a man of utmost integrity and fine character who has an amazing heart.
- Johnny Esposito, Atlanta
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