Letters for May 15-21, 2008

Air Fizzle

And that attitude is why I no longer fly on American Airlines ("Ride "Em, Cowboy," Tailpipe, May 8). I've paid more on my last five trips and put up with the inconvenience of making connecting flights, but I feel much safer than I would on American. Until they make a clean sweep of upper management and change the culture there, I will continue using other carriers.

Name withheld by request

Via the internet

Eerie that that item should arrive in my mailbox today. I just got back from Paris last Friday and was on the same flight number of April 27 [a week after American Flight 48 lost a fuselage panel midair]. We got as far as about Toronto when the overhead reading lights began to flicker like there was a short. Shortly (ha!) thereafter, the pilot alerted us that there was an "instrument" malfunctioning but that it didn't affect the safety of the plane. We then turned around, landed at O'Hare in Chicago, and everyone was put on another plane. We arrived in Paris about four hours late.

Name withheld by request

Via the internet

Walk Like a Man

My heart bleeds for Tara Nieuwesteeg, your Night Watch reporter. It's absolutely shocking in this day and age that a fine young woman like her should be exposed to the "blatant objectification," pitiful pickup lines, caveman come-ons, and asinine antics of the sleazy dudes her professional duty requires her nightly to engage with ("Borne in the U.S.A.," April 24, and others). Equally scandalous is the conspicuous failure of Broward's finest to be on hand to round up these worthless bums and shove them en masse into the local slammer, where they clearly belong.

But let's get real. Nieuwesteeg's a gifted and dedicated researcher who patently deserves a more challenging assignment for her investigative talents. So here's the deal. Let's get her — assuming she's no pocket-sized midget — to dress as a guy and hit the bars cruising for female company. Let's hear about her chat-up technique, how much fun she has accosting complete strangers and handling the blank stares, icy glares, and dismissive gestures. Let's hear, in short, how she fares in Rejection Land, that blissful and most enviable habitat of the average Joe. Go for it, lady!

Jerry May

Oakland Park

Evil Is Around Us

I just finished your article, and I am in tears (Thomas Francis, "Lambs to Slaughter," April 17). The saddest part of all is how the story of Sam has affected me. I said a prayer for him right after and felt the need to write to you. I am a Catholic woman who understands how even in the Catholic Church, such monstrosities can exist. Whether that man is tried here or by God himself is not my biggest concern. I applaud you for your foresight and unbiased report on a matter that is very important. I believe that evil is always around us; the worst kind comes through in the form of good. I feel sorry for these men, but I pray and will continue to do so, so that in their hearts they can see the difference between a man and his sins and God, who is nothing but love.

Name withheld by request

Via the internet

This is just one of the most disturbing in the long list of horrors committed against young men who have trusted in religion. There is no question in my mind that many guilty parties are in the church. They once again have chosen to protect their image over the importance of the people they serve. People in this country need to demand that those within the church who are responsible for permitting this to go on be brought to justice. I expect if this is done, we will find that many of the participants who allowed this to go on will also have victims. The law has a statute of limitations, but the magnitude of this crime calls for legislation to waive it so we can protect our children from this continuing criminal conspiracy.

Jeffrey Fichtelberg

Miami Beach

Miles AheadThanks for the lowdown on poor Jerry Miles' plight (Amy Guthrie, "Take Your Rubber Ducks and Vamoose," April 3). I realize your role is to write an interesting story — and you succeeded. Having been in business for 30 years, it's odd for Miles to claim naiveté as an excuse for not understanding that an annual lease runs for one year. And to spend $60,000 to keep that space leads me to believe Miles either arranged a sweetheart deal with that "classy woman" who has been (mis)managing the absentee landlord's affairs — or he's bordering on insane.

Name withheld by request

Via the internet

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