Letters from the week of February 11

Feature: “War Chest,” January 21

Heart of Gold

Thank you for Carolyn Szczepanski’s article on Eduardo Loredo and his need for a new heart. Are there any updates on his status? Have they gotten anywhere close to raising the $500,000? Is there any solution? Has the family or the Mexican Consulate explored trying to get him help in other regions, such as here in Dallas? I can’t believe some of the online comments in response to the story. It is sad to think that so many of our neighbors are downright hateful people. I hope you can at least let me know where and how to donate.

Christopher Craig
Dallas, Texas

Editor’s note: The Gahutier Eduardo Loredo Transplant Fund is at Bank of America, account number 518001091377. Or to donate online, go to change.org/healthcarenow/projects/view/eduardo_needs_a_heart.

Feature: “Battle on Armour,” January 14

The Pitch, Arrogant?

Many residents of Hyde Park and its surrounding neighborhoods are thoughtful and engaged citizens who care deeply about urban life. Few would trade Kansas City’s amenities and vibrant social mix for the isolation of a suburban gated subdivision.

So I find puzzling The Pitch‘s characterization of 2009’s crime wave along Armour Boulevard as “Hyde Parkers battle low renters in an epic struggle.” It is a poorly woven patchwork of clichés that panders to prejudice.

In his online Reporter’s Notebook of January 13, Peter Rugg inappropriately equates an effete society column from the 1920s with a discussion of current Armour-related crime. It demeans crime victims by trivializing the real life-and-death violence that is a daily Armour reality. Its premise reflects a culture of media arrogance and self-righteous, ideological posturing that blinds itself to the unintended, negative consequences of bad public policy.

Second-rate journalism can be corrected in the free marketplace of ideas. Changes to impervious, authoritarian federal agencies aren’t so easy.

If Rugg’s description of Eugene Lipscomb’s view of crime on Armour is accurate, we as citizens should demand at least one change now. If our KC area deputy director of Housing and Urban Development is indeed “laughing cynically” and in denial in the face of clear and convincing police evidence, then we must conclude that he is an insular bureaucrat whose employment should be terminated. Lipscomb’s dismissive comment — that increased concern for crime merely reflects that “predominantly white homes have been growing” — illustrates racism, which is unacceptable.

The real story on Armour is that human lives at all economic levels and all ethnicities are being damaged, and that entrenched people who are supposed to be stewards of resources to improve social circumstances are key parts of the problem. It’s time to hold these individuals personally accountable.

Mark Dillon
Kansas City, Missouri

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