Letters to the Editor 

Petty sniping

I am amused by Jack Lessenberry's recent sniping at Detroit Free Press reporter M.L. Elrick. Lessenberry's latest lob was calling Elrick a "management bulldog" for the Detroit Free Press ("Getting to work," Dec. 3). In these economic times, is someone who lobbies for their livelihood a company stooge? Is UAW President Ron Gettelfinger a "management bulldog" for the auto companies?

In the past year or so, Elrick and his fellow reporters were largely responsible for lifting the lid on the toilet that was Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's administration, and, in doing so, they achieved more journalistic credibility than Lessenberry has in his whole career. I can only assume Lessenberry was in Kilpatrick's pocket, or just harbors petty jealousy for not doing Pulitzer Prize-level work himself.

Lessenberry should do the proper thing and bow down. —James Dantzer, Ferndale

Iraqi irony

Thank you, Sandra Svoboda, for an excellent article ("Bush's war, our refugees," Dec. 3) on this pressing issue that most Americans are happy to ignore. I have sent this to my colleagues and students. Please keep writing on such issues and noting, as you do here, the level at which our country has accepted (not) refugees from the largest population of refugees in the world at present, created by ... us. —Annie C. Higgins, Ph.D., assistant professor, Arabic language and literature, Wayne State University, Detroit

Cream-filled canard

In his discussion of the film Milk ("What price Milk," Dec. 3), about the assassination of San Francisco City Supervisor Harvey Milk, Cole Haddon repeats a canard about psychiatric testimony: The assassin Dan White got a light sentence "thanks in part to the incredible 'Twinkie Defense,' which argued his junk-food addiction had left him depressed and incapable of premeditated actions"

Haddon and other commentators ought to take a look at the transcript of the trial testimony. At trial, Martin Blinder explained that, like many depressed individuals, White had altered his eating habits in response to his illness. The eating of Twinkies illustrated the change in his state of mind, not that the Twinkies prompted the shooting. —Ralph Slovenko, professor of law and psychiatry, Wayne State University

Buying small

Many thanks to Norene Cashen for the article "Handy Qualities" (Nov. 26). In addition to the talented artisans who were featured in this piece, there are many local indie artists selling in online venues like etsy.com. They offer something a bit different than the "cookie cutter" goods usually found in mall stores, complete with a homemade or handmade twist. Thanks for giving readers an alternative place to spend their hard-earned dollars! —Stacy Visconti, Madison Heights, dreaminofbeadin.etsy.com

Due to an editing error, the photo caption for Jim McFarlin's Idiot Boxing column ("Blue dot days," Dec. 3) incorrectly identified the ESPN host pictured. His name is Chris Berman.

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