Letters for April 26, 2007

Hook’s wasting your money
Re “In defense of the conservative mind” (Right Hook, April 19):

I’m not even going to comment on what Mike Lafferty wrote this week. Suffice to say that it made little to no sense, depending on which point he was rebuffing. As usual, I found little substance to his arguments, which is a point I’ve made before. In the past, I have made that point in the hopes that you would drop his column or, at the very least, find someone who could string together a coherent argument to write it. Alas, my efforts have been to no avail.

Since the editors don’t seem to care if their columnists can intelligently defend a position, and I still want Lafferty’s column gone, I’m going to take a different approach this time. Editors!! You’re getting hosed by this guy. If you remove the parts of his column that he cut and pasted from his e-mail, you are left with 59 percent of the original column which, to be honest, looks as though it was only 85-90 percent of a column to begin with. Please, I implore you, try to find a columnist who is willing to, if not provide intelligent, reasoned commentary, at least do his or her own work.

Scott Herbst

Mellow yellow
Re “What You Can Do!” (Earth Day program, April 19):

I’d like to add some other ideas to positively impact the environment:

1) Reuse envelopes—in my business I regularly get the brown, large envelopes. It’s easy to use them a second time.

2) When faxing a document, I simply cross out the last name I sent something to and add the next name. I will use the same cover sheet at least a dozen times before throwing it away.

3) Don’t use paper towels in public restrooms—in our dry climate you can drip dry in no time.

4) Consider not flushing every time you use the toilet at home. If we all eliminated a minimum of one flush a day it would result in hundreds of thousands of gallons saved a year.

Mark Glenn

False diagnosis
Re “Proclamation disorder” (News, April 19):

Your governor should check the facts before embracing Parental Alienation Syndrome. Richard Gardner, the founder of this make-believe diagnosis, committed suicide by stabbing himself repeatedly. He proclaimed positive aspects of pedophilia. The governor should also check on how many mental health professionals are being investigated, indicted and stripped of their licenses nationwide because of their use of this supposed syndrome. The fact is, it does NOT exist and is being used to remove children from perfectly good homes to place them where they don’t want to be and shouldn’t be.

I speak as a parent who almost lost a child, after raising him for 15 years, because of this “syndrome.” The worst aspect is that my son was not allowed to speak in his own behalf until the judge had already decided to remove him from my home. After the judge finally heeded my desperate, last-second plea and spoke with my son, he declared that PAS never existed at all.

Bob Shreffler
Orlando, Florida

Alienated children
Re “Proclamation disorder” (News, April 19):

It’s true the verdict by the American Psychological Association is out on whether Parental Alienation Syndrome (PAS) deserves a bona fide position in the DSM. This does not mean, however, that parental alienation (PA) or hostile aggressive parenting (HAP) do not exist. As with some diseases, identification and cure do not sometimes come before effects are felt on a massive scale.

PAS, HAP or PA is at epidemic levels around custody disputes and has been for many, many years.

I need only ask myself or my daughter, now 20 years old, having raised her from 18 months to 6 and one-half years, if I could if only I get her to reconnect with me after being severely alienated from me 14 years ago, to know that this exists. I am told she may never be able to bridge the fear connected with severe alienation.

PAS is one of the most insidious forms of child abuse. The proclamation taken by the governor was an accurate one for the sake of restoring health and vitality for the children and parents of divorce and separation.

Robert Gartner
Houston, Texas

Who? Us?
Re “Fight the war” (Letters to the editor, April 19):

While doing my laundry, I read Mr. MacKenzie’s opinion that “an anti-war column is needed, and your paper is the logical one to publish it.” Also, “and I know that the RN&R will not become an anti-war newspaper.” Wow, some people cannot see the obvious! I almost spit coffee onto your paper, for the simple fact that this man cannot see the beyond-leftist approach and slant that RN&R gives to every subject or story!

If the RN&R is not “anti-war,” then I certainly do not breathe oxygen!

Robert Ramos

Re “Proclamation):

We reported that Gov. Gibbons signed a proclamation declaring a day commemorating parental alienation syndrome awareness. He actually signed a “certificate of recognition” that promoted awareness and declared parental alienation to be a form of “abuse.”