Helter Shelter

Bedroom eyes: Regarding Allie Johnson’s “Meet the Landlord” (December 2): As a single mom, things like this make me very angry. I was in a bad situation when my oldest was just a baby, and I thank the good Lord up above that I was never in a situation like that.

Men often wonder why women have a hard time trusting in them. Well, HELLO — read the story and there is your answer. I try not to stereotype anyone; I feel I have an open mind. But when it comes to trusting someone, it takes awhile.

In my opinion, they should have hanged Bobby Veal by his toenails and made him suffer as he made each woman suffer. And his wife was either too stupid or she just didn’t want to face the facts.

Altha Knight

Kansas City, Missouri

Bottle Rocket

The heart truth: If chelation is so good and so effective, then why have these advocates not been able to show that with all of their alleged “research” and studies (Ben Paynter’s “Miracle in a Bottle,” November 25)? As Paynter points out, the so-called “data” collected by McDonagh were fudged by McDonagh.

There are no reliable, well-designed scientific studies that show that so-called chelation therapy is an effective treatment for coronary artery disease. In contrast, there are several properly conducted clinical trials in credible medical journals that show it to be ineffective. This is no surprise, because there is no biological reason to believe chelation therapy would be effective against large cholesterol plaques that obstruct arteries of the heart. The main agent used, disodium EDTA (Endrate), does not have any effect on cholesterol, any other lipid or cholesterol plaques.

Claiming that the patient is “heavy metal toxic,” demonstrated by bogus testing, is a favorite way to redirect attention from the scam of chelation therapy, claiming a different “cause” and a “cure.” Indeed, some chelating agents are designed to treat high serum levels of some metals, but these types of poisonings are rare, largely occupationally related and have nothing to do with coronary arteries.

Chelation agents can be extremely harmful because they remove calcium from the serum. Rapid removal of calcium can stop the heart. The agents used by the chelationists all come with severe warnings about their use. There are many reported deaths and disablements from these agents.

Robert S. Baratz, MD, PhD, DDS

President, National Council Against Health Fraud

Peabody, Massachusetts

Pretty Displeased
Helping, not enabling: I am very offended by specific details in the story “Too Young and Too Pretty” (Nadia Pflaum, November 4). I am the girlfriend of “Jason,” mentioned in the article. The death of Amber McGathey has deeply affected him and has been very painful. Had you contacted Jason, you might have been able to connect the pieces much better, including his side of the story. You failed to mention that Jason had a two-year relationship with Amber. He knew her very well and wasn’t just some fly-by-night, abusive boyfriend. They even grew up in the same small town. There were many attempts made by him to help her away from the crowd of people who were encouraging her behavior. You have labeled him as controlling and a culprit in her fall into drugs. Jason, in fact, was one of the few who tried to rescue her before the worst happened. Instead of being seen as someone who loved and cared about her well-being, you have chosen to name him as a supporter to her addiction and someone who possibly caused her to dive into drugs.

One example of your poor investigation is the mention of police being sent to the home, insinuating domestic abuse. There will be no record of this; it doesn’t exist. This is false, very insulting, and this distortion in events could have been easily avoided had you done more research.

I’m writing because I feel you did her family a disservice as well as made a good person appear bad. I encourage you to follow up and contact some knowledgeable sources. I am not someone who knew Amber personally, but I do know many people she was close to, none of whom were contacted, and they are very offended by your article. If you are the friend you claimed to be, you would be prepared to continue looking for answers and write a respectable and moral article with the correct information. It is disappointing that you would claim to be one of the friends that cared but never once tried to intervene and in the end didn’t even try to find the truth.

Name Withheld by Request

Shirt Tale

Obey your thrust: Gina Kaufmann says in her article that the Obey posters have no particular meaning (SeeSaw, December 2). As a former resident of New York City during the late ’90s, I may be obliged to agree with her. However, the times have changed, and whatever the lack of meaning these posters used to have, the Obey posters now have the very specific role of advertising the Obey clothing line. One look at the clothing site Karmaloop.com will show you how much this icon has become a fashion statement for profit.

When I first saw these posters and signs up around town, I thought that a boutique had put them up. Nice to know the real story, but I’d be shocked if the artist didn’t know he gave the clothing line some great free publicity.

Josh Davidow

Kansas City, Missouri