letters from the week of July 12

Idle Hands, June 28

Troost and Justice

I was back in KC over the weekend for the 311 concert in Westport. I always loved reading the Pitch and stumbled across Nadia Pflaum’s article about 45th Street and Troost.

While in radiology school at St. Luke’s, I lived in a cheap apartment at 45th and Troost. Generally, most of the people around there are good people. However, poverty has always sprung its extremities, consisting of drugs, stealing and prostitution. I find it absolutely ignorant that the Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department would conduct these raids at this spot, knowing people are desperate. Entrapment might even be a better word. Do you think they would conduct this sort of operation in an suburban white neighborhood like Leawood? No.

I know for a fact that there were three to five crack houses in that area alone that the police could be putting more energy into instead of these so-called stings. Anyway, I just wanted to thank you for informing people the communistic ways of the KCPD when it comes to making criminals rather then catching the real ones.

Name withheld by request

The Dimwit D.A., June 21

Axis Powers

Justin Kendall has done another awesome job of reporting in his exhaustively researched report on Phill Kline. I’ve long admired his work, in particular his exposing faux-“Christian” panderers such at Patricia Kilpatrick and Connie Morris. In this piece on Kline, however, he has outdone himself. I hope this will prove the end of this scoundrel’s career. I take exception to the headline, however, much as I did with the one identifying Morris as a “high school slut.”

Kline is by no means a “dimwit.” Before I met him, his chronic stupidity led me to the conclusion that he was slow-witted. I was astounded when I heard him testifying at length, without notes, on behalf of his heavy contributor GEO Group, the ethically challenged for-profit prison operator. I then examined his background and found extremely questionable behavior going all the way back to his 1986 congressional campaign.

While Kline, much like Kilpatrick and Morris, is a hypocrite of staggering proportions, the behavior of all three leads me to believe that they would all be well served by an evaluation for mental illness. Certainly they display classic symptoms of those suffering from Axis II disorders such as prodigious narcissism. The unfortunate reality, however, is that these conditions are extremely difficult to treat and can only be properly diagnosed when the sufferers seek psychiatric assistance.

Frank Smith, Bluff City, Kansas

Night Ranger, May 24

and

Night Ranger, June 7

Dive Bombing

Many thanks for Jen Chen’s recent trips to downtown’s Zoo Bar and Helen’s Just Another Dive bar. While I enjoy most of her columns, I am especially fond of the down-and-often-dirty bars.

I had visited JAD, but the Zoo was a new treasure for me. I found Bob and Paul Henry and most of the characters Jen mentioned in their places! (As a Wisconsin native, I tried hard not to find the Badger humping the stick!)

Not sure if you are familiar with a few books or resources on the dive genre. The View from Nowhere is a 1987 book by Jim Atkinson with delightful twists on 150 serious drinking bars across the country. It includes five KC stops, including Davey’s Uptown and Kelly’s. Atkinson’s vernacular and scoring system are priceless. Another more general text is The Great Good Place by sociologist Ray Oldenburg. It explains the importance and value of bars, cafés and other hangouts to building community.

And someday, it would be great, I think, to get the Pitch staff and/or readers on my Hometown Beer Bus Tours. Keep doing the important work you are pursuing. And try to have some fun with it!

Jim Quinn, Kansas City, Missouri


Correction: C.J. Janovy’s July 5 column (“Breathe, People”) incorrectly characterized the work of Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey Executive Director Tyrone Aiken. As executive director of the KCFAA, Aiken oversees an organization that reaches more than 35,000 of Kansas City’s boys and girls through 10 year-round programs and supports the community and artistic work of the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation. The Pitch regrets the error.

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